The parish Roman-catholic St. Jacob church in Levoca is one of the best known sacral buildings in Slovakia. The first gothic church was built here in the 14th century. The tapering tower from the first half of the 19th century is the characteristic element of the town’s landscape.
The main altar, 18, 6 m high, made of lime wood in years 1507-1517 in the workshop of Master Pavel of Levoca, is one of the biggest gothic altars in the world. In its central part there are figures of Holy Mother, St. Jacob and St. John the Evangelist, and on its wings one can see reliefs presenting the scenes from both apostles’ lives. When closing the altar, one can see the eight paintings of the Passion of Christ: Gethsemane garden and Judas’ betrayal, whipping, crowning with thorns, the conversation with Pilate, carrying the cross, crucifixion and resurrection. Their author was probably a painter called Hans.
There are 13 side altars in the church: eight late-gothic, two from Renaissance and three baroque. The collection of gothic liturgical accessories is also very valuable.
Among the best treasures of the church one can mention the figure of St. George on a horse, from 1515. The sculpture, also made by Master Pavel, stays in the corner of Eulenbach chapel on the background of wall paintings connected with the legend of St. George. Another work of art coming from Master Pavel’s workshop is the group of Crucifixion in an altar called Korwin Oratorio (funded by king Matthias Corvinus) – the over-life-size sculptures were also made of lime wood.