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Preserved corpse of aristocrat destroyed by arsonist

The almost 400-year-old corpse of aristocrat Žofia Bošniaková, which had been on display in a church in Teplička nad Váhom (Žilina region), was set alight and completely destroyed by a 31-year-old man on Wednesday, April 1.

The almost 400-year-old corpse of aristocrat Žofia Bošniaková, which had been on display in a church in Teplička nad Váhom (Žilina region), was set alight and completely destroyed by a 31-year-old man on Wednesday, April 1.

Žilina police spokesperson Jana Balogová told the TASR newswire that police had arrested the culprit at the scene of the crime as he watched the coffin burn. Although he confessed to starting the fire, his motive is still unknown. The man will face charges that could lead to a jail sentence of 1-5 years.

Žofia Bošniaková, the wife of Hungarian palatine František Vesselényi, lived in Teplička nad Vahom and at nearby Strečno Castle, where she died in 1644 at the age of 35. During her life, Bošniaková was well known for the help that she gave to the poor and sick and for her other good deeds. Her body, which was almost perfectly preserved despite the fact that it had not been embalmed, was found 45 years after her death in the castle crypt. TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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