The history of the Urban Bell in Biecz

Where does the name of the famous Bell in Biecz come from? It should probably be connected with a frequently chosen papal name. It was named most likely in honour of Pope Urban V who in 1367, on Casimir the Great’s request, allowed the Dominican monastery in Biecz to be established. It is also possible that its patron was Urban IV who in 1264 established the feast of Corpus Christi, under the invocation of which operates the local parish church. Yet, the beautiful Gothic Urban Bell, one of the oldest in Poland, was initially placed in a late-Gothic bell-tower from the 15th century accompanying the parish church in Biecz. The bell does not announce feasts or ceremonies today. It cracked after the World War II and then in 1969 it was destroyed after the unsuccessful attempt to weld it. Some part of the bell was melted and the remaining part was smashed with hammers. Probably in connection with the failed attempt to repair the bell it was decided to melt the entire bell and in order to do this it was smashed into smaller pieces. Fortunately, almost at the last moment the ancient Urban Bell was saved, finely glued together and placed in one of the branches of the Biecz Land Museum, in the so-called Kromerówka (Marcin Kromer’s house). Since it is more than 600 years old, it was the witness of the most important events in the town.

Elaborated by Editorial team of Małopolska’s Virtual Museums,
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 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Poland License.

See the Urban Bell