Plomin – Brseč – Lovran


St. George the Elder

St. George the Elder is an older and more complex structure than the parish church. There is a lot to be said about it, and thanks to its importance it deserves an entire monograph. The exact year of construction is unknown; however it is supposed to have been built partly in the Romanesque period. Many ancient spolia were incorporated: in the threshold at the entrance to the belfry, as the base of a high altar and as impost capital of the triumphal arch. On the triumphal arch is a carved rustic sculpture of Cain and Abel's Offering. The manner of carving bears resemblance to the most important monument inside the church, the famous Plomin tablet (Plominski natpis), one of the oldest Glagolitic monuments with an inscription on an earlier monument portraying Silvanus, the Roman god of woods. In the Middle Ages he is identified with St. George, Christian martyr whose feast day is celebrated in spring and who is considered to be the Slavic deity "Green George" ("zeleni Juraj").

The walls of the church were once decorated, since the remains of two layers of frescoes are visible. The older layer is surely Romanesque and preserved in fragments, only the parts of an ornamental feature are best preserved in the lunette above the entrance leading from the belfry attached to the facade. The only figurative part is a foot of a figure that was later added onto the wall of the sanctuary, at the time of reconstruction. On the northern wall, above the entrance to the northern chapel, which on the outer side is dated by its Glagolitic inscription to 1524, is the only remaining figurative scene. The four heads are the fragments of saints which were depicted before the wall was opened. In terms of style, they belong to the painting from the first half of the 15th c. and resemble the figures from St. Anthony's Church in Barban. Although these are modest fragments, they bear witness of the complex artistic influences deriving from South Tyrol.

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