The Romanian Orthodox Metropolitan Cathedral

Cathedral / Monument


Bulevardul Regele Ferdinand I, Timișoara, Romania


The Metropolitan Cathedral, located in Victory Square, is the largest place of worship in Timișoara, declared a monument of art due to its architecture, painting and sculpture.

The need to build this cathedral appeared in the political context of the Great Union of 1918. Starting that moment, Orthodoxy started to be encouraged: thus, in 1926 the old parish from the Cetate Neighbourhood was established again, and in 1939 the Timişoara Bishopric, which later became the Mitropoly of Banat, was established.

The project of the impressive cathedral was entrusted to architect Ioan Traianescu, and the cornerstone of the building was laid in 1936. The consecration service was performed by Bishop Andrei Magieru.

The bells and crossed of the Cathedral were sanctified in 1938, and the inauguration of the halidom took place in 1946, in the presence of King Michael I of Romania and Patriarch Nicodim Munteanu. The finishing work, interior and exterior paintings were only completed in 1956, as they were delayed by the World War II.

From the architectural stand point, one may note the combination of the Romanian religious tradition with the Byzantine and Moldavian one.

Because of the marshland, the building stands on a concrete slab supported by over 1,000 concrete pillars, sunk 20 meters deep. The exterior walls are decorated with red and yellow-orange brick, while the building is covered with glazed tiles, the colours of the Romanian flag, on a green background.

It is the highest church in Romania (90.5 meters). The total built area is 1,542 meters. The Cathedral has eleven towers, of which the highest reaches 83,7 meters. The seven bells have a total weight of 8,000 kg. They were tuned by the famous composer Sabin Drăgoi.

The Cathedral houses the relics of St.Joseph the New of Partoș, considered the protector of the Romanian Orthodox community from Banat, former bishop of Timișoara between 1651 and 1655.

The necropolis of the Bishops of Banat lies in the basement, on the side facing the altar.

In the basement, the visitor may find a rich collection of old religious art from the area of Banat and a valuable collection of icons. The museum owns 3,000 rare religious books, over 800 icons and paintings, and more than 130 ecclesiastical objects.

Early Romanian manuscripts can be found here as well: the New Testament from Bălgrad (1648) and Cazania lui Varlaam (Varlaam's Homily) (1643).

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