The wooden church "The Holy Archangels Michael and Gabriel" from Rogoz
Biserica de lemn / Obiective turistice
282, Rogoz 435611, Romania
Located right in the heart of Lăpuş Country, Rogoz village boasts one of the most beautiful wooden churches in Maramureş. It was erected in 1663, on the site of a church burned by the Tartars during their invasion in 1661 and legend says that it was built from two huge pieces of woods brought from Popii Hill. The church dedicated to the Holy Archangels Michael and Gabriel is, in general, part of the architecture specific to this region.
Unlike other churches, the Rogoz place of worship stands out through its harmonious asymmetry. The roof, on one level, is much lower in the northern part of the building, providing protection for a table designed to commemorate the dead. The monumental table consists of two beams and is delimited by segments, intended for various families, whose names are inscribed on the north wall of the church. These families respect the tradition and, every year, on Holy Thursday, they bring "dishes", leaving them on the table overnight, so that on the Friday of the Crucifixion of Christ be given to the poor.
The harmonious architectural lines gracefully blend with the unique decorative elements. In addition to the interesting three-ring coif, located above the steeple’s turret we find in Rogoz a beautiful entrance portal to the narthex and a twisted rope, broken by a solar symbol, which runs along the entire south wall.
Unique in Maramureş are, however, the ends of the beams that support the roof, carved in the shape of stylized horses. Those on the southern façade are considered, in the village, to be carriers of the Sun on the celestial vault, and those on the north side are considered carriers of the Sun at night, in the realm of the dead. The altar is provided with a circular window to the east, through which, between August 1-15, the sun's rays penetrate and illuminate the table of the Holy Altar for 30 minutes. This characteristic individualizes it, placing it next to other monuments in the history of art, which direct the sun's rays towards important symbolic elements.
The monument outstands through the painting executed in 1785 by the painters Radu Munteanu and Nicolae Man. The iconographic appearance is close to the one in Deseşti and is very well preserved. It is interesting to follow one element from the Last Judgment, which is painted in the narthex, namely: the road to Heaven, on which the soul travels, accompanied by an angel. The theme is inspired by a folk belief that speaks of the trials that men go through after death in order to reach God. The church and the people of Rogoz village quickly introduce you into a fairytale world, where the natural and the supernatural seem to blend effortlessly.
- Patrimoniu UNESCO