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Pilgrimage Church

of the Seven Joys of the Virgin

The Pilgrimage church of the Seven Joys of the Virgin is situated close to the well-known seven-source spring. It is a baroque building founded in 1733 (consecrated on May 5, 1734). The Chapel of Saint Jude the Apostle adjoins the church at the north. The whole complex was rebuilt in the spirit of classicism in 1830 and 1831.

Nowadays, the main altar of the Seven Joys of the Virgin rises in presbytery. It dates back to 1886 and it was made by the cabinetmaker Kajetán Pejskar and the sculptor Ferdinand Demetze. The statuette of Virgin Mary is laid in a glass niche at the upper part of the altar. 

The Statuette of the Seven Joys of the Virgin (also called as Schwadowitz Madonna) was made in 1715 by the woodcarver Jan Karásek. It was first hanged in a wooden cabinet on a withered cherry tree. Therefore, it is sometimes called Our Lady of Cherry Tree. The statuette was transferred to the church in 1734 during its consecration. Remains of St. John of Nepomuk (Czech national saint) are put in a decorated base of the statuette. There are ten statues of angels around the glass niche. Each of them plays some musical instrument. The dove representing Holy Spirit is situated above the glass niche for the statuette.

In the side niches, there are statues of Saints Cyril and Methodius, the apostles that brought the Christianity to the Czech lands.

The current appearance of presbytery dates back to 1975. The sacrificial table has three copper engravings at the front.  There is pictured Virgin Mary of Seven Sorrows (in the left), the head of Christ Crowned with Thorns (in the middle) and St. Joseph holding the lily of virtue. The ambon has a copper engraving as well. St. John the Evangelist with his attribute, the eagle, is represented in there. Sculpture of crucified Jesus Christ at his cross from 1899 hangs on the side wall of presbytery opposite to the wooden pulpit. Above him, there is a statue of Virgin Mary of Seven Sorrows from 1901.

There are two lateral alters at the church. The Altar of St. John of Nepomuk from 1887 is situated next to the pulpit. The Altar of St. Barbara, the patroness saint of miners, was made in 1888 and it is located at the right side of the church. 

The Way of the Cross is compound of 14 coloured wooden panels. It was made in 1903 by the painter Ignác Russ. You can find similar Stations of the Cross at the Marian Garden that extends at the hillside above the church.

The pipe organ, situated at choir loft, dates back to 1901. It was fabricated by the company of Jan Tuček at Kutná Hora. It has two keyboards, one pedal keyboard and 17 stops which allow the organist to control ranks of pipes sound at a given time.

The murals of the Seven Joys of the Virgin were made in 1899 by Ludvík Nejedlý (except of number six which was made in 1982 by Iva Beščecová):

1st Joy - The Annunciation to the Blessed Virgin Mary by the angel Gabriel

2nd Joy - The Visitation of Mary with her relative Elizabeth

3rd Joy - The Nativity of Jesus in Bethlehem

4th Joy - The Presentation of Jesus at the Temple

5th Joy - The Finding twelve years old Jesus in the Temple

6th Joy - Resurrected Jesus appears to his Mother (there could be also pictured Assumption of Mary)

7th Joy - The Coronation of the Virgin Mary 

In the ceiling there are also murals of all four evangelists, St. Matthew, St. Mark, St. Luke and St. John.  Furthermore, there is a fresco of Immaculata (Virgin Mary of Immaculate Conception) who stands between two angels having a moon under her foot and 12 stars around her head and crushing poisonous snake by her foot.

Chapel “Studánka”

The seven-source spring in Malé Svatoňovice has been known from time immemorial. Its water has very good taste and it never gets frozen in winter. Actually, it is slightly radioactive and it has a constant temperature of five degrees. The flow rate is 2 litres per 10 seconds.

The spring became very famous after certain David Dröschel had been healed in 1715 (see History section).  In 1732, the princess Anna Marie Viktorie Piccolomini de Arragona, the owner of Náchod estate, let people build a baroque chapel above the spring.

The chapel is called “Studánka” (which means “The Spring”). It is situated east of the church. At the west side, the octagonal building is formed by three semicircular arched arcades with decorative wrought iron bars.

The interior is made up of a small pond. Seven springs flow into the pond in the east side of the chapel. Separate pipe brings water directly from the spring to the chapel front where pilgrims can drink it and take it to their own containers.

The mural on the dome pictures the dove, symbol of Holy Spirit. There are two Latin writings in the mural: "SPIRITUS DEI FEREBRATUR SUPERAQUAS" (Gen 1:2) and "QUASI PLATANUS EXALTATA SUM JUXTA AQUAM" (Sir 24:14). The back wall is covered by the mosaic of the Virgin Mary from 1907.


Two chapels are situated above the sanctuary of Studánka very close to the church.

The Chapel of St. Jude the Apostle was built in 1904. It adjoins the sacristy at the north side. You can see wooden statue of St. Jude the Apostle from 1952.

The chapel of Our Lady of Lourdes was built in 1934. A small copy of Lourdes grotto was established inside fourteen years later (by Jan Nápravník, the priest at that time). It is made of the petrified woods (araucarites) that occur at the hill of Žaltman (the highest peak of local highlands). You can see the statue of Our Lady of Lourdes and a sculpture of kneeling St. Bernadette.

The Chapel of Our Lady of Lourdes is open daily (approximately from 8 a. m. to 6 p. m.) from the beginning of the May till the end of the October.

The Chapel of St. Jude the Apostle can be visited on Sundays and feast days.

The Church House (the old parish office)

The interesting part of the pilgrimage site is the so called Church House (House Number 16), located above the chapel of Studánka.  It is the oldest building representing popular architecture in the municipality. It dates back to 1749. The original construction, shape and materials have remained well preserved up to the present.  It was repaired  in 1998 - 2002

Marian Garden

In 1891, The Association for Promotion of Pilgrimage Site in Malé Svatoňovice was established. This association contributed to the foundation of the Marian Garden, where we can find seven small chapels consecrated to the Seven Joys of the Virgin, the Way of the Cross and the Chapel of the Holy Sepulcher.

In 1892, the foundation stone was consecrated and in the same year seven chapels of the Seven Joys of the Virgin Mary were built at the hillside 300 meters above the church. The whole park was built in the spirit of classicism by the architect Edmund Chaura from Červený Kostelec. The pictures of the Seven Joys of the Virgin were painted by Josef Cobl, former student of the local school.

The Way of the Cross dates back to 1893. It consists of 14 coloured statues placed into the glass cabinets. By its arrangement, the Stations should remind the way of the Lord to Golgotha.

At the end of the Way of the Cross, there is the Chapel of the Holy Sepulcher. It was built in 1902 - 1905 and consecrated on 8 April 1906. There is the Holy Sepulcher inside with the alabaster statue of deceased Jesus Christ from 1906 made by Antonín Sucharda. The Holy Sepulcher is decorated by petrified woods (so called the araucarites) that are typical for this locality.