The Things of Warsaw – core exhibition / Room of Medals

Where was the centre of Warsaw in the 19th century?

When William Lindley was commissioned by the president of Warsaw, Sokrates Starynkiewicz, to design the public water and sewage system for the town, he needed a triangulation grid. He selected the cross on top of the dome of the St. Trinity Church of the Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession in Poland, located at Małachowskiego Square, as the grid’s central point.

The church was designed by Szymon Bogumił Zug. In its collection, the Museum of Warsaw has a medal minted on the commission of Warsaw’s Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession, presented by the church to the architect as an expression of its gratitude for creating the architectural design of the temple and overseeing its construction for free, as well as for financial support which allowed for the building to be erected.

The medal was minted in bronze and silver. The only piece minted in gold, with weight equivalent to 64 ducats (over 222 g), was presented to Zug by the members of the ecclesiastical college on 4 May 1784, four years after the consecration of the church. In 1829, the college bought the medal from the heirs of the architect. It was kept in the church chancery until the outbreak of the Warsaw Uprising in 1944. Its further fate is unknown. Most probably several duplicates of the medal were made as early as the 18th century, with copies of the original piece cast in bronze with a thick coat of gold applied in the process of fire-gilding; one of the duplicates is included in the collection of the Museum of Warsaw.