Photographer's Note

Cupola of the Saint Stephens Basilica.
Budapests largest church, whose landmark dome can be seen from all over the city, was built in Classical style between 1851 and 1905. Inside is the Hungarians most revered relic the mummified right hand of Hungarys first monarch, King Saint Stephen. Among many famous works of art the statues of Alajos Strbl are well worth studying, as is the painting by Gyula Benczr depicting St. Stephen commending his country, by the offering up of his crown, to the patronage of the Virgin Mary.
Construction of the largest church of the capital (seating 8,500 persons) was beset by vicissitudes. No sooner did the groundwork begin when the War of Independence broke out in 1848, then construction was resumed in 1851, followed by the immediate death of the two architects, and even the dome collapsed during the works. The church with a Greek cross plan was finally consecrated in 1905. With the river Danube in the vicinity, huge foundations and three underground levels had to be laid under the church, resulting in an underground "house" almost as large as on the surface. It took 60 years and two architectural poques - Classicism and Eclecticism - to build the Basilica. Special works of art present the life of King St. Stephen - in whose name the basilica was dedicated - founder of the Hungarian State and Christian Church in Hungary.

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Additional Photos by Serge Rapin (Stan) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 309 W: 11 N: 270] (2770)
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