The Franciscan Monastery

The Franciscan Monastery


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Șumuleu Ciuc, Miercurea Ciuc, Romania


It was built between 1733-1779 in the characteristic style of the Transylvanian Franciscan monasteries. In the inner courtyard of the monastery is the statue of Kájoni János (Iohannes Caioni) (1629-1687), the work of the sculptor Ferencz Ernő (1972). Kájoni's printing-house worked there between 1675 and 1854, the monastery being an important cultural center of the area. The monastery was repeatedly devastated (1553, 1601, 1661, 1694 and 1705).

Starting with 1668, the middle level education in the Ciuc area was organized in the monastery, the school being the predecessor of the current Gymnasium Márton Áron. In 1941, the Franciscan Library had 124 incunabula, of which only 6 remain today. In 1985, a series of manuscripts, incunabula and other valuable books, hidden by the Franciscan priests from the communist authorities were found in the wall of the refectory during a repair, but many of them have unfortunately suffered irreversible damage.

The 14 volumes restored to date, including the priceless Codex Kájoni and 8 incunabula, are in the thesaurus of the Szekler Museum of Ciuc. The library also preserves, among other things, the Latin works of the historian François Losteiner Leonárd (Transylvaniae et Siculae descriptio; Topographica).

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