Podpeč – Zanigrad – Hrastovlje


St. Stephen

We do not have to wander long from Podpeč to arrive to the second stop of our journey. Zanigrad is less than a kilometer of linear distance away. Indeed, together with nearby Hrastovlje we have already seen it from the mentioned belvedere above Podpeč. The church in Zanigrad is dedicated to St. Stephen. It is simple by its typology, single-naved with an inscribed apse. A belfry was added to the northern side of its western facade in 1521.

Inside, on its southern wall the scenes are as follows: The Stoning of St. Stephen, St. George Slaying the Dragon and Holy Sunday. The northern wall bears preserved scenes of St. Lawrence's martyrdom and the Adoration of the Magi. On the western wall angels blowing their horns invite the dead to rise from their graves and approach the Last Judgment together with the living ones. Christ is in the center of the scene, above the entrance door, seated in the mandorla surrounded by angels and a sword in his right hand.

The prevailing colors are red and yellow ochre, with the glaring white bodies standing out. Decently, beside them appear pastel green colors. The scenes are animated by curved lines of the drapery and by the geological parts of nature.
The frescoes are dated to the beginning of the 15th c. Because of their architectural shape, their influence can be found in Trecento. Padua painting, while the typology of characters with tall foreheads is considered a characteristic of the Italian region of Furlania. They have recently been associated with the frescoes at St. Silvester near Oprtalj. The common elements are their bordure and velarium, details of architecture, figures and military equipment.

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