Strážnice, kostel Nanebevzetí Panny Marie
Piarists came to Strážnice in 1633, at the request of Count Francis Magnis, who came from a Swedish aristocratic family. Through the Piarists, he wanted to return the Catholic faith to Strážnice and its surroundings. The Count supported the Piarists with money and material every year. Piarists also took over the buildings and land of the protestant church called The Unity of Brethren, which was expelled from Strážnice town from 1622 to 1624. The first twelve Piarist monks came from Mikulov to Strážnice on 6th February 1633, and Strážnice became the second oldest centre of Piarist order north of the Alps. (The oldest centre is Mikulov.)
The Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary was built on a place of a former school and a worship building of The Unity of Brethren in 1747. After building the church, the Piarists built a student house with a basic school and a grammar school in 1765. J. E. Purkyně taught at the grammar school (1805-1806), and T. G. Masaryk studied there (1865). Today, the building of the former student house is used as a home for senior citizens.
The church is built in the Italian Baroque style. The main altar was made at the expense of Count Francis Magnis, he was buried under the altar later. Above the altar, there is a revered painting of the Virgin Mary of Strážnice. It is a precious masterpiece of an unknown Milanese painter from 1630. It was also given to the church by Francis Magnis. Above the presbytery, a fresco from the 18th century has recently been uncovered. (It depicts the assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.) The oldest piece of art it the church is a wooden Gothic statue of the Virgin Mary. Its origin is unknown.
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