Workers are restoring the tomb of St. Jadwiga in Poland when they notice a slab that appears different. Curious, they decide to lift the section and find a cavity underneath filled with charcoal and plaster. And as the conservators begin to hack away at this mix, they discover the answer to a centuries-long mystery.
Come March 2020 conservation work was already underway at the Basilica of St. Jadwiga in the town of Trzebnica, south-west Poland. And the latest renovation had been ordered by leading clergy there who were worried that a small crack located on a stone sarcophagus could widen.
In any case, overall conservation efforts had been ongoing for a handful of years now. And over the course of that time, a number of unexpected discoveries had been made. In fact, someone who was there to witness many of them was Marek Długozima, the serving mayor of Trzebnica. He later summed up the finds on the town’s official website.
Yes, Długozima told the website in March 2020 , “From the very beginning I have been involved in renovation works carried out in recent years in the Basilica of Trzebnica, where there were many interesting and unexpected discoveries. A few years ago, during the renovation of the bell tower on the roof of the basilica, a time capsule was discovered.”
Długozima revealed that this so-called “time capsule” had contained “historical documents and old coins.” He added, “Many interesting discoveries were brought about by the renovation of the basilica floor, during which burial chambers with [17th century] burials of Cistercian sisters [and] clergy… were discovered.”