World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Gate of Dawn

Article Id: WHEBN0001001536
Reproduction Date:

Title: Gate of Dawn  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn, Vilnius, Tourism in Lithuania, Buildings and structures in Vilnius, Neoclassical architecture in Lithuania
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Gate of Dawn

The Gate of Dawn in Vilnius, the chapel of Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn is in the middle behind the glass window
Southern side of the gate
The icon of Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn

The Gate of Dawn (Lithuanian: Aušros Vartai, Polish: Ostra Brama, Belarusian: Вострая Брама) is a city gate of Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, and one of the most important religious, historical and cultural monuments.


  • History 1
  • Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn 2
  • References 3
  • Image gallery 4
  • External links 5


It was built between 1503 and 1522 as a part of defensive fortifications for the city of Vilnius, the capital of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. It has also been known as the Medininkai Gate, as it led to the village Medininkai south of Vilnius as well as Aštra broma, which derivative for the Lithuanian language word aštra meaning sharp.[1] Of the nine city gates, only the Gate of Dawn remains, while the others were destroyed by the order of the government at the end of the 18th century.

Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn

In the 16th century city gates often contained religious artifacts intended to guard the city from attacks and to bless travelers. The Chapel in the Gate of Dawn contains an icon of The Blessed Virgin Mary Mother of Mercy, said to have miraculous powers.[2] For centuries the picture has been one of the symbols of the city and an object of veneration for both Roman Catholic and Orthodox inhabitants. Thousands of votive offerings adorn the walls and many pilgrims from neighboring countries come to pray in front of the beloved painting. Masses are held in Lithuanian and Polish languages.

After World War II the cult of Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn prevailed in Lithuanian and Polish communities worldwide and is continued in many shrines to the Virgin Mary in Europe, and the Americas. The largest of the churches devoted to Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn is St. Mary's Church in Gdańsk, Poland.

The shrine is also important in the development of the devotion Divine Mercy as it is the first place where the Image of Divine Mercy was exposed for the first time and also where the first celebration of the Feast of Mercy took place.[3]

On September 4, 1993 Pope John Paul II said Rosary at the Gate of Dawn Chapel. Church festival of the Blessed Virgin Mary Mother of Mercy—celebrated in the third week of November—is of great importance in the Vilnius Archdiocese.


  1. ^ Jurginis, Juozas (1987). Aušros vartai. Pokalbiai su tikinčiuoju (in Lietuvių) (2nd ed.). Vilnius: Mintis. pp. 3–37.  
  2. ^ "The Gate of Dawn", Travel Lithuania
  3. ^ "The Gate of Dawn - Vilnius", Catholic Chaplaincy: University of Glasgow

Image gallery

External links

Media related to at Wikimedia Commons

  • Catholic Church in Lithuania | Aušros Vartai

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.