St. Benedict church in Mals

The building of the church dates back to the Charlemagne times (around 800 A.D.). The construction is simple, rectangular in shape, and it is home to an extremely rare interior decoration. The three apses terminating in horseshoe arches on the eastern wall, are worth mentioning. In the central niche, Christ flanked by two angels looks out to see – in the two side niches – Pope Gregory the Great and St. Stephen. The two figures in the basis of the square nimbus are unique. The spiritual founder of the church carries it in the palm of his hand, while the laical founders have a sword, a symbol of power. This is the only European representation of a Frankish man in costume. Fresco fragments on the northern wall witness the presence of full murals. Evident are the scenes of the conversion of Saul, and of the life of St. Benedict. Beneath, Joseph II was profaned of his jewels. The church was rediscovered during the 20th century.

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