Biertan Fortified Church

Biertan village is one of the oldest Saxon settlements of Transylvania, being mentioned in documents since 1283. After the Reformation it developed into the most important religious center for Transylvanian Saxons, serving as the Lutheran bishop’s seat between 1572 and 1867.

Biertan Fortified Church was built on a small hill right in the centre of the village. The first church, most likely a Roman basilica, was mentioned back in 1402 and demolished later. Today’s church was built between 1490 and 1525, in Gothic style. It is a hall type one, with chief nave and two side-aisles and has net-shaped ribbed vaults over the entire ceiling. Doorways, brackets and the pulpit were carved in stone, in late Gothic and Renaissance style.

The folding triptych, the furniture and the doors date back from 16th century. The 1515 sacristy door, with its nineteen locks, was rewarded at the Paris World Exhibition, in 1900. The previous restorations revealed bits from the pre-Reformation frescos, to be seen inside the Catholic Tower. The church was protected by three shielding walls, built in a spiral, strengthened by eight towers and a bastion, still standing today. The whole complex is a UNESCO site since 1993.