Stamps on Churches of Lithuania

\"\"Lithuania  issued a set of two stamps on  3rd Sep 2011 featuring churches, Šiauliai Cathedral of St. Apostles Peter and Paul and Trakai Church of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.Šiauliai Cathedral of St. Apostles Peter and Paul is the most prominent Renaissance work of Lithuanian architecture. Construction of the church began in 1595 and was completed in 1625. The church was given the title of Cathedral on 28 May, 1997, when Pope John Paul II established the Diocese of Šiauliai.With original architectural elements and a spectacular 70 meter high tower the Šiauliai Cathedral is a magnificent building of more than 400 years old. The bay windows of the main fa?ade of the cathedral and the churchyard gate towers with embrasures give an impression of the fortress.The privilege of setting up the Trakai parish church, which was later given the name of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary as well as St. John the Evangelist, was granted on 25 May, 1409, by Lithuanian Grand Duke Vytautas.During the seventeenth century wars the church as well as the Trakai town itself was devastated. In 1718 the church has been reconstructed, interior and fa?ades of the church were given Baroque features.

The Trakai Church of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary is famous for its picture of the Trakai Mother of God which is thought to be painted in 1123 in Constantinople and given as a gift to the Grand Duke Vytautas by Byzantine Emperor Emmanuel II Palaeologus in 1390.

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