Saint Adabert’s body was laid in Gniezno Cathedral. Otton III made a pilgrimage to his grave. Although the temple's history probably dates back to the time of Mieszko I (his wife, Dobrawa, was supposed to be buried here), but at that time it was still a pre-Romanesque building. After the destruction of the 11th century, caused by the invasion of the Czech prince Brzetysław, the rebuilt basilica became part of the Romanesque style.
One of the most valuable elements of the modern temple comes from this time - the Gniezno Doors cast in bronze in the 12th century. This priceless piece of Romanesque art can now be seen on the south wall of the church. An impressive monument tells the story of St. Adalbert. Scenes from the life and circumstances of the martyr's death were depicted in 18 carved squares.
Doors tailored to art survived, but the cathedral itself again fell victim to attacks on Poland, this time from the Teutonic Knights. The events of the fourteenth century motivated Archbishop Jaroslaw Skotnicki to build a new, Gothic temple, whose construction (not without necessary reconstructions) has survived to this day. The three-nave space of the Gniezno cathedral is surrounded by 14 chapels with elaborate portals. and its interior hides, among others tombstone of Bishop Zbigniew Olesnicki, made in 1495 by Wit Stwosz, numerous Gothic and Baroque polychromes or a large crucifix from the 15th century hung on a rainbow beam.
Despite the undeniable artistry, it all pales in comparison with the masterfully made mausoleum of St. Adalbert. In the center of the ascetic presbytery there is a richly decorated, stone baroque canopy. Its golden color strongly contrasts with the silver casket below, in which the saint's relics were deposited, and it was made in 1662 by the Gdansk goldsmith Piotr van der Rennen. From the age of the reliquary, the sculpture of Saint Adalbert looks at the pilgrims, while the casket was laid on the shoulders of four kneeling figures by Wladyslaw Marcinkowski. Behind the confession we will find a fragment of the former tomb of the martyr, the image of the deceased, a medieval tomb from the second half of the 19th century. 15th century, made of red marble by Hans Brandt.
Above the temple, two crowned helmets towers, which were rebuilt after the fire in 1760 in the Baroque-Classicist style, according to the design of the talented architect Efraim Schroeger. A monument to the first Polish king and founder of the church in this place - Boleslaw Chrobry.
Next to the basilica is the Archdiocesan Archives; its resource currently has about 2,500 lineare meters of archives and books, including about 80,000 books - nearly 1,100 items are parchment or paper manuscripts, including over 200 medieval. Among the collected monuments are, among others: a parchment manuscript of the Evangelist from the 9th century, originating in Reims in France, The Golden Code of Gniezno (Codex Aureus Gnesnensis) - a gold-plated evangelist from the 11th century, the bull of Innocent II from 1136, containing 410 Polish geographical names and the Bible from 1414 - richly decorated with hundreds of miniatures in initials.
The most interesting attractions of Lech Hill include the already mentioned Gniezno Doors and the cathedral underground. The cathedral's underground still remembers the times of the first Piasts. That;s there you can see the place where the saint's Adalbert body was originally laid. Later, Adalbert's brother Radzym Gaudenty was buried here. Radzym Gaudenty became the first archbishop of Gniezno. Later archbishops also rest here.
The third most important place of the cathedral is the altar, where the remains of Saint Adalbert rest. They are enclosed in a huge silver casket, supported by representatives of various states of society. This monument is called Confession of St. Adalbert, and his location is the first pilgrimage center of Poland.