Man patinka Lietuva

I like Lithuania – a visitor's point of view


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Prince Casimir’s crown rises above the rooftops in Vilnius

DSCF1492This church (Sv. Kazimiero baznycia) was built by the Jesuits starting in 1604 with the interior completed in 1618. It was dedicated to Prince Casimir who had just been canonised. It was the first baroque church in Vilnius although the dome with the lantern and crown wasn’t added until the 18c.

Later the church was taken over by the Russian Orthodox church, made into a cathedral, and rededicated to St Michael but was returned to the Jesuits in the early 20c.

However it was closed after being damaged in WWII and then in 1961 re-opened as a museum of atheism – something which happened in other parts of the soviet union as a way of humiliating the church. It was only returned to the Catholic Church in 1989.

This view is from the backstreets, the church front is on Didžioji gatvė.