FORMERLY KNOWN AS WIKARYJSKA (VICAR’S) OR DZWONOWA (BELL TOWER)
It is the oldest preserved bell tower of the Wawel Cathedral. Its lower stone part, 12 m high, was built in the first half of the 12th century, together with the second cathedral, called Hermanowska (“of Herman”). Rectangular brick part of the tower with the room for the bells was added in the third quarter of the 14th century. In 1530 another storey was added and the tower received a decorative late gothic spire, which in 1769 was replaced by a pyramid roof.
There are four bells hanging in the tower:
1.Zbyszko, aka Goworek, Gąsiorek
Founded ca. 1423 by bishop Zbigniew Oleśnicki, one of the heroes of the battle of Grunwald (Tannenberg) of 1410, in later years made cardinal.
Diameter: 98 cm (38.5 in), weight: 732 kg (1613.8 lbs), Basic tone: A-flat
2. Herman, aka Nowak
Founded by a Cracow canon named Herman ca. 1271, during the reign of Duke Bolesław the Chaste and his wife, St Kinga (Cunegunda). It is the oldest of the bells of the Wawel Cathedral.
Diameter: 83 cm (32.6 in), weight 420 kg (926 lbs)
Founded by the Cracow Cathedral Chapter in 1669. It is the smallest and youngest of the bells of the Wawel Cathedral.
Diameter: 72 cm (28.3 in), weight 210 kg (463 lbs)
4. John Paul II
It was founded by The Cracow Cathedral Chapter in 2014. It hangs in the highest level of the tower in an octagon which was built and prepared for a new bell ca. 1530 (!). The bell was made in Jan Felczynski’s bell-foundry in Przemysl on 4th April 2014 at 3 p.m. They used the gold medal of the fiftieth anniversary of priestly ordination of St. Pope John Paul II. Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz blessed the bell on 20th April 2014 – Easter day. The first time the bell rang was on the day of the canonization of John Paul II on Divine Mercy Sunday, 27th April 2014. He was then placed on a platform in front of the Cathedral. After placing it on the tower the bell rang for the first time on 18th May 2014, on 94th birthday of John Paul II.
Mon-Fri 6:25 a.m., 6:30 p.m. (silver bells), 12:00 p.m. (JPII)
Sundays and holidays 6:55 a.m., 7:00 p.m. (silver bells), 12:00 p.m. (JPII)