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On Cathedral Square, not far from Rynok Square, there is a majestic edifice of the Latin Cathedral Or Catholic Cathedral. It was erected in 1360-1493 by the order of King Kazimierz the Great. The initial project by Peter Stecher was implemented by Michael Gensecke and Hanus Blecher. Yet, it was Peter Poleiovsky who executed most of the decoration works.
On April 1, 1656, King Jan Kazimierz made a pledge to protect Poland at the icon of the Virgin, called "The Most Affectionate", in the Catholic Cathedral. The original of the icon is now in the Royal Castle in Krakow.
There is a beautiful main organ in the Cathedral (1839), and another smaller organ is to the left of the altar. The exquisite stained-glass windows by Yu. Mehoffer and J. Mateika, as well as the stained-glass window in the gallery by T. Aksenovych produce a profound impression on the viewer. To the right of the central altar there is the magnificent monument to K. Yablonovska in the Empire style (by sculptor H. Vilver, 1806).
The chapels, attached to the cathedral in different periods, constitute a single harmonic entity with the church. Situated to the left of the main entrance, the chapel of the famous family of Campiani attracts tourists' attention. The chapel, that underwent numerous reconstructions, with the most significant changes being introduced in 1619-1629 and 1660, is famous for the sculptures of Apostles Peter and Paul by Henry Horst and for the sculptures of the Ivangelists by Jan Pfister.
The Cathedral has always been the center of Polish culture in Iviv. In the Soviet era not only the Catholics but also the Greek Catholics, whose religion was then prohibited, conducted their masses in the Cathedral. One can get inside the Cathedral only through the side entrances. Some sources confirm that by shutting down the main entrance the au¬thorities thus expressed their protest against the 1772 Austrian invasion.
Numerous epitaphs and memorial plagues, which cover the cathedral walls, reflect the city's complicated history. On the fasade wall which faces Halytska Street there are plagues commemorating the events of 1772 when Turks and Cossacks assaulted the city, as well as the results of the 1918 war between Ukraine and Poland. This very wall is also decorated with the fresco of the Holy Virgin holding Christ. It is a copy of the icon, chich was ordered in 1598 by Joseph Volf in the memory of his deceased granddaughter.