The Saint Peter and Paul Parish Church from Şumuleu Ciuc (2002–2005)   
Colleagues: Lóránt Darvas, Boglárka Tóth

The excavation of the Western quarter of the church took place in 2002 – 2005. We opened the nave and the sanctuary walls of the medieval church that was pulled down in the 1800s. During the excavation we discovered four construction periods.

Unfortunately we could not find the first stone church (1st period), but we know on the basis of the next period’s stone material that the walls were whitewashed, at some parts covered with frescos, and that the aperture frames were made of carved stones.

From the next period of the church (2nd period) we opened the Northern nave wall and a small part of the sanctuary. The width of the foundation reaches 150 – 170 centimetres, the length of the nave is 13,6 metres, and the straight Northern wall of the sanctuary is 4,1 metres long, its width is  not known. Most probably in the 12th century there already had been a stone church, as in the filling of a grave we found brick and mortar portions. The existence of a stone church in the 12th century is also confirmed by the fact that in the mortar of the earliest foundation wall there were discovered some ceramic portions that can be dated to the 12th century on the basis of their characteristics. (They were made on slow potter’s wheel, and were decorated with wavy lines.) However, in order to be able to date these “early” graves more accurately we need to carry on further researches.

The nave wall of the church, which was standing until the 1800s, was built in the 3rd period.

During the last reconstruction of the medieval church (4th period) the sanctuary of the 3rd period was pulled down, and the church was enlarged with a new sanctuary that was as wide as the nave wall (8,6 metres).According to the dating of the altar from the point of view of history of art, these constructions took place on the beginning of the 16th century.

At this time the church had a bell – tower made of wood with a bell from 1595. On the basis of the Domus Historia (the construction inscription) the pointed bell – tower was built in 1677 – 1683.

The crypt of the Sándor family was built before 1731, in the North – Western corner of the nave. Here, we found several coffins, decorated with buttons and with inscriptions on it.

The early period(s) of the parish church prove that in the 12th century the Ciuc – basin as a politically and ecclesiastically organised territory belonged to the Eastern confinium of Küküllő or Fehér County. That is why the conception, according to which Transylvania became inhabited during long centuries of the age of the Árpáds, must be rectified.

The Sekler Museum of Ciuc
Miercurea Ciuc, Cetatii Square no. 2
Harghita County, Romania

The Nagy Imre Art Gallery
Miercurea Ciuc, Zsögödi Nagy Imre Street no. 175.

The Kossuth Gallery
Miercurea Ciuc, Kossuth Lajos Street no. 12
Postal address:
Muzeul Secuiesc al Ciucului
530132 Miercurea Ciuc, Piaţa Cetăţii nr.2
Judeţul Harghita, Romania

Tel: (004) 0266-372024
Tel/Fax: (004) 0266-311727
Mobil: (004) 0753-073531

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