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The Catholic Church of St. Panteleimon is located in the south of Old Cologne. Today the church is one of the oldest churches in the city. The temple is presented in the form of a three-nave Romanesque basilica with two transepts. A closed gallery adjoins the north side of the building.
The construction of the church was carried out on the territory of the Benedictine monastery in the 10th century. The founder is Archbishop Bruno I, who played a significant role in the formation and development of the archbishopric.
In the XVII – In the 18th century, the temple gradually began to acquire baroque features in the course of numerous reconstructions. In 1652 a new organ was installed here, in 1747 – the church choir is being rebuilt. One of the towers of the church collapsed in 1757 due to dilapidation, after which all the towers of the building were rebuilt. During the construction they acquired Baroque finials.
At the end of the 18th century, the city was occupied by the French revolutionary army, in connection with which the monastery was closed, and the temple was used as a stable. In 1815, an evangelical garrison church was opened in the basilica. In the 1830s, an optical telegraph receiving and transmitting equipment was installed on one of the church towers. The station was closed shortly after the optical telegraph was supplanted by the electrical one. In 1890-1892, the church underwent a number of reconstructions, during which the building was restored to its Romanesque appearance.
During the Second World War, the temple was seriously damaged – the towers were destroyed, roof and part of the walls. The vault's paintings were also irretrievably lost, and all the interior decoration was destroyed. After the end of the war, restoration work was carried out in the building, which lasted for several decades.
The church was originally a hall, but during the construction work carried out in the 18th century it was turned into a three-aisled basilica. However, the 10th century westwork, symbolizing imperial power and greatness, remained intact.
Currently, the church of St. Panteleimon has the richest interior decoration in the city.
The pulpit decorated with filigree carving deserves special attention in the interior of the church. In the southern nave is the white marble tomb of Empress Theophany. In the crypt of the church is the sarcophagus of Archbishop Bruno. One of the main treasures of the treasury is the sculpture `` Head of Christ ''; the relics of Saint Albina and Saint Maurus are also buried here. Part of the relics of St. Panteleimon is also kept in the church. These relics were brought to Cologne by Theophany in the 10th century.
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