GROMANN, Nicholas
(active 1537-1574 in Saxony)

Interior view

Schloss Hartenfels, Torgau

From the 1530s new Protestant churches were built in the first place within the castles erected by German princes who adopted the new reformed religion. The first newly built Protestant chapel was the project of the Saxon princes at Hartenfels Castle in Torgau.Prince Johann Frederick began this in 1533 as part of a large-scale renovations to the castle by the Saxon court architect Nicholas Gromann, in order to further establish the importance of the castle as a centre of the newly reformed religion. The chapel incorporated aspects of the reformed religion into its design, creating an architectural space ideally suited to the practices of worship.

The space has no aisles; it is one large open space with all attention directed toward the simple altar at the far end. It is in three storeys, two of which have narrow stone galleries. Gothic detailing is everywhere evident, especially in the vaulting. The pulpit is given prominence along the side of the nave, and the galleries provided space for groups of varying ranks to listen to sermons.

The Castle Chapel was dedicated by Luther on 5 October 1544, and his sermon praised the 'new house built for the office of preaching God's word'.

The photo shows the interior of the chapel.