Institutul de Sociologie, Academia Română; Institute of Sociology, Romanian Academy
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Antropologie și etnologie
The old Orthodox wooden church from Drăguș
Two unpublished documents from Henri H. Stahl’s private archive
(Drăguș village, 1933)
The Orthodox church of Drăguș village (Brașov County), was the last of the painted wooden churches from the Olt region (also called the Făgăraș region, central Romania). The unpublished documents presented in this article were initially preserved by Henri H. Stahl in his private archive, and were, after his death, included in the Stahl Family Archive. The first document, dated April 20, 1933, is a certified copy of a report signed by Valer Literat, a corresponding member of the Historical Monuments Commission (H.M.C.). It describes the church and its state of decay. The rapporteur extolls the beauty of the church’s interior wall paintings, recommending the church be restored as soon as possible. The second document is a request, signed by Nicolae Iorga, President of the H.M.C., and is addressed to the Minister of Instruction, Cults and Arts, Dimitrie Gusti, the leader of the Sociological School of Bucharest and initiator of the monographic campaigns undertaken in several Romanian villages in the interwar period. Based on the positive report that he attached to his request, Iorga asked for funding, to undertake the restoration of the church. The monographic campaign of 1929 drew attention to the wooden church in Drăguș, but for reasons which remain unknown, it was never restored and no longer exists. Based on currently available sources, including valuable archival material, this article reconstructs the 1933 events and tries to learn more about the old church from Drăguș village and the historical context in which it was in use. Thus, this article complements the subsequent article in this volume, authored by Irina Stahl, regarding the order of places within the church, introducing and clarifying several aspects that will later be expanded upon.
Keywords: painted churches, wooden churches, monographic campaigns, Drăguș village, the Sociological School of Bucharest, Henri H. Stahl, Dimitrie Gusti.
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