The small village that contains a famous pre-romanesque church

Kopčany's Church of St Margaret of Antioch includes the foundations of 12 Great Moravian churches.

Church of St Margaret of AntiochChurch of St Margaret of Antioch (Source: Milan Hollý)

This article was prepared for an edition of the Spectacular Slovakia travel guideand was published in the travel guide Slovakia.

A helping hand in the heart of Europe offers for you Slovakia travel guide.A helping hand in the heart of Europe offers for you Slovakia travel guide.

Kopčany is a small village located in fields on the east side of the Morava River.

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There are three things which have put it on the map of distinctive places in Slovakia.

The first is that Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, the first president of former Czechoslovakia, has his roots here. The second is a tiny pre-romanesque church, hidden in the fields, dedicated to St Margaret of Antioch. The third is the baroque stud farm Štít.

Church of St Margaret of Antioch (Kostol sv. Margity Antiochijskej)

The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, the oldest church preserved in its almost original form in central Europe, stands outside the village on the east bank of the Morava River accented by a single lime tree.

It dates to the 9th century, the times of Great Moravia. Its construction overlaps with building the Great Moravian fort Valy located across the Morava River near the Czech town of Mikulčice.

The site includes the foundations of 12 Great Moravian churches. Recent archaeological and historical research shows this pre-romanesque church as a uniquely preserved type of a single-nave church with a rectangular-ended sanctuary, commonly built in Europe between the 8th and 11th centuries.

Slovakia has submitted the Church of St Margaret of Antioch to the UNESCO World Heritage’s tentative list.

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