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Kaunas Cathedral Basilica of the Apostles St. Peter and Paul is located in the Old Town of Kaunas, near the Town Hall (Rotušės square). After its reconstruction, Renaissance, Baroque, and neo-Gothic features were added to the previously Gothic church. It is the largest neo-Gothic monument in Lithuania.
The cathedral is a rectangular three-nave basilica made from rough (non-plastered) bricks. After its reconstruction, Renaissance, Baroque, and neo-Gothic features were added to the previously Gothic church. Its eastern side has a long, Gothic presbytery with a three-sided apse, while its north-eastern side has a sacristy, and south-eastern side – a neo-Gothic chapel. The southwestern corner has a massive Renaissance style 55 m high tower. Decor typical to the Renaissance can be found on the building's exterior and the tower.
The crystal vaults (end of the 15th century) of the first and second floor of the sacristy are particularly valuable. This is a decorative construction of the late Gothic period which was a certificate of superior workmanship to those who were able to build it. It is one of the widest vaults in Europe.
The interior of the church is dominated by an ensemble of seven altars and pulpit of the late Baroque period. The most distinguished detail is the High Altar with the crucifix and seven sculptures of apostles. The wooden Altar of Assumption of the Virgin Mary and its paintings made during the fourth quarter of the 17th century are particularly valuable.
The parish church of Kaunas was funded by Vytautas the Great at the beginning of the 15th century. Historical sources first mention this church in a letter written on 22 April 1413 under which the bishop of Vilnius Mikalojus grants the church the privilege of feast day. It is believed that the church was built between 1408 and 1413 to commemorate the baptism of Samogitians. The church was repaired, expanded and reconstructed several times in the 15th and 16th centuries.
A sacristy and empora with crystal vaults were built at the end of the 15th century. Constructions of the parish church were not completed for 120 years. However, in 1624, the Royal Secretary and costal area tivun Jeronimas Krišpinas-Kiršenšteinas funded the constructions of the church with 10 000 Lithuanian auksinas (derived from the word auksas, Lithuanian for gold). Main works were finished and a massive tower was built until 1650. After its middle nave was elevated, the church gained the space of a basilica. It became the largest building of the Gothic period in Lithuania.
The wooden structures and interior decor of the church burned down in 1655. Nevertheless, the church was later rebuilt and consecrated in 1671. In 1682, a brick fence with two gates was built around the churchyard. The roof of the church burned down and the presbytery vaults collapsed during a city fire in 1732. The vaults were rebuilt, the inside of the church was painted, altars were erected and the interior gained the features of the Baroque period until 1775.
In 1800, the church was once again ravaged by fire. The shrine that was restored after the fire remains unchanged to this day. In 1808–1864, the church belonged to the Augustinian Monks. In 1812, the church and the monastery were robbed, and their interior was significantly damaged.
In 1895, under the care of bishop Mečislovas Paliulionis, Pope Leo XIII granted the former parish church the title of a cathedral – the most important diocesan church. The cathedral conversion ceremony was held in 1895. However, bishop Aleksandras Beresnevičius was not allowed to participate by the government.
A project for the reconstruction of the cathedral was prepared in 1887 by an architect from the Governorate of Grodno Florianas Vyganovskis. Two 113 m high main facade towers were planned to be built according to this project. However, the project was implemented only partially.
In 1921, to commemorate the 500th year anniversary of the establishment of the Samogitian Diocese, Pope Pius XI granted the cathedral the title of a Small Basilica. After the Lithuanian church province was created in 1926, the basilica became a cathedral with the metropolitan throne of the archbishop.