2012 | 17 | 41-58
Article title

Renesansowe kafle z tarczownikami z wyspy tumskiej w Poznaniu

Selected contents from this journal
Title variants
Renaissance stove tiles with an image of a shield-bearer from Ostrów Tumski, Poznań
Languages of publication
Stoves were constructed for the purpose of interior heating. However, tiles used in their construction provided space which might have been used either for purely decorative purposes or as a carrier of important issues – reflecting ideas professed by owners of particular stoves or a social class they belonged to. Ceramic stoves decorated with coats of arms were meant to emphasise the importance and origin of people living in the building. Heraldic ornamentation, popular since the fifteenth century, continued to be in use also in Renaissance decorations. Coats of arms were put directly on a panel or on a shield, held by a winged angel since the beginning of the sixteenth century, and by a young man or woman since the mid-sixteenth century. The stove tiles of the kind have been known from numerous manor houses and palaces, and were used to decorate various parts of a stove – corners of the main box, friezes or tops. Eight tiles bearing an image of a shield-bearer – whole ones or their indicative fragments – were produced in the course of excavations carried out at Ostrów Tumski, Poznań (1946, 1953–54, 2006 up to now). All found in the northern part of the island, the cathedral area, they had been used in the construction of heaters in buildings owned by ecclesiastical dignitaries (the bishop’s seat, Psaltery, Lubrański’s Academy, canonries). The tiles were discovered in disturbed layers, dating from the 18th to 20th century. Six of them bear images of the coats of arms: Odrowąż/Ogończyk, Łodzia, Korzbok, Godziemba, Nałęcz, and the crest of the city of Gdańsk. On two of them there are significant fragments of a shield-bearer: the head and the body. They represent the group of middle top tiles, with a rectangular/almost square panel and a body of a shield-bearer protruding over the edge. The tiles, all covered with coloured glazing, differ in terms of carefulness of their manufacturing. In the centre of the panel there is a semi-circular shield with the above mentioned coats of arms, held by a young man wearing Renaissance clothes and surrounded by the arabesque. It seems impossible to decide whether the tiles come from one stove and what it might have been like. Identical tiles had been hitherto found in different parts of Poznań (near the mill in Bogdanka, in the settlement site of St. Gothard, Św. Wojciech Street). The latter seems a possible location of their manufacture, with remnants of pottery workshops discovered there. The coats of arms pictured on the tiles may be referred to particular noble houses and persons associated with the then Wielkopolska: bishops and members of the local administration – voivodes, and starostas. The people using the Łodzia coat of arms included the bishops of Poznań – Andrzej of Bnin and Uriel Górka, as well as a the voivod of Poznań – Łukasz Górka, and the bishop of Cuiavia (Kujawy) Piotr of Bnin. The Korcbok (Korzbok) coat of arms was used by a number of noble houses of Wielkopolska: the Korzbok family, the Łącki family, the Niesiołowski family, the Rybieński family, the Stryjkowski family, the Tuchołek family and the Zawadzki family, including a canon of Poznań – Jan Kamieniecki. The Godziemba coat of arms belonged to bishop Jan Lubrański, an important founder and constructor of Ostrów Tumski. The Nałęcz coat of arms might have been connected to Mirosław of Brudzew, a provost of Gniezno and a canon of Poznań, or Andrzej Czarnkowski, a bishop of Poznań. The Ogończyk/Odrowąż coat of arms of (not possible to distinguish without a jewel) might be linked to Mikołaj of Kutno, a starost of Wielkopolska (Ogończyk) or Jan of Sprowa, an archbishop of Gniezno (Odrowąż). The listed coats of arms are also present on the foundation and grave slabs at Ostrów Tumski and the Cathedral of Poznań.
Physical description
  • Instytut Prahistorii, Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu, Św. Marcin 78, 61-809 Poznań, Poland,
Document Type
Publication order reference
YADDA identifier
JavaScript is turned off in your web browser. Turn it on to take full advantage of this site, then refresh the page.