Frauenkirke or Church of our Lady--page 2 (of 2 pages)

George Bähr
1743; 2005 total reconstruction after bombing of Dresden in World War Two

The sanctuary with altar and organ

The organ has an important place above the altar just as music plays an important role in Lutheran worship services.


Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane

The original sandstone altar of 1738, sculpted by Johann Christian Feign according to a design by the architect George Bähr, represents Jesus on the Mount of Olives. Many fragments of the original altar were salvaged and inserted into the reconstructed altar. On the right are the sleeping disciples and above them are the soldiers led by Judas who will take Jesus prisoner. Above Jesus are angels, who remind Jesus of his purpose and offer strength.


The clouds above the scene contain the eye of God in a triangle (the Trinity), golden beams, and angels with a cross. On one side a putto holds wheat, while on the other there are garlands of grapes, both symbols of the Eucharist.

Aaron and Philip

Aaron, one of Moses' associates, is dressed here as a priest with robe, turban and censer. Philip, according to some traditions, was crucified upside-down; here he holds a cross.

Moses and Paul

Moses holds two tablets representing the Ten Commandments; Paul carries a sword since according to tradition he was beheaded==or died by the sword.

The inner dome

The inner dome (26 meters high) is divided into eight sections with the larger panels depicting the four Evangelists and the smaller oval panels featuring allegories of the three Christian virtues, Faith, Hope, and Love, with a fourth addition to complete the pattern--Mercy. The original paintings were done in 1734 by the Venetian artist Johann Battista Grone. A modern painter learned to imitate this style.

Three of the four evangelists, depicted traditionally: Matthew with the angel, Mark with the winged lion, and Luke with the ox


Allegories of the Christian Virtues: Center--Mercy and Right--Love

The other two, also depicted in the dome, are Faith and Hope. Here Mercy drops coins into the hat of a poor man; Love, surrounded by children, holds a flaming heart.

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Works Consulted or Quoted:
The Dresden Frauenkirke Foundation. Translated by Alan Lloyd Nothnagle. The Dresden Frauenkirke [church guide]. Leipzig: Evangelische Verlagsanstalt, 2006.

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© 2017 Mary Ann Sullivan. I have photographed (on site) and manipulated all the images on these pages. Please feel free to use them for personal or educational purposes. They are not available for commercial purposes.