Evangelical 'Articled' Wooden Church in Istebné

Evanjelický drevený artikulárny kostol v Istebnom
Contact: Evanjelický farský úrad Evangelical Parish Office
027 53 Istebné, Slovakia
Mailing address: 
Evanjelický augsburského vyznania farský úrad Istebné, 027 53 Istebné, Slovakia
421 (0) 43 589 1353
10am-5pm daily except during church services

One of five 'Articled' evangelical churches, so called because they were built under the article of the law issued in 1681 by Emperor Leopold I in an attempt to halt the spread of protestantism. As such they had to be built at the edge of a village with the entrance facing away it and to be constructed only from wood with no foundations, towers or bells. It was originally planned to build 38 wooden articled churches in Slovakia but only nine were built and of these five have survived. All of them were designed in the form of a 'Greek cross'.

Built in 1686, the wooden church at Istebné stands on the hill beyond the village. Small and relatively unsophisticated in design, it acquired a new nave in 1730. The richly-decorated altar, pulpit and baptistry and the various paintings date from the time when the church was built. The church along with its belfry is among the most valuable historic structures in the Orava region.