Author: N / A
Created, location: late 19th century, Plungė District, Rietavas County.
Material / technique: wood carving, polychrome, tin.
Dimensions: high - 37 cm.
St Florian (died in 304) is a saint martyr who was a Roman soldier. He was forcefully drowned in the River Emso (Austria) by attaching a millstone to his neck. He is depicted as a Roman officer wearing armour, holding a vessel in one hand and pouring water over the flame, and holding a spear or a banner, which symbolises strength and power, in the other hand.
/.../ A long time ago when Casimir was the king, Poles wished to have a patron who would defend them in various matters and against attacks. Therefore they sent a messenger to Pope Lucius and begged him to send the bones of any saint to the Polish land. In 1183, the Holy Father took the bones of St Florian and handed them to Bishop Egidius to deliver to Kraków. /.../ Because at some time during a fire in Kraków its residents received special help after invoking St Florian, this martyr was considered a protector against fire. Since our towns wish to be free from fires, people mount St Florian, who pours water with a bucket on burning homes, on a pole. (Motiejus Valančius, „Žyvatai šventųjų“, Raštai 2, 2006, p. 237–241)
Reference: "The Lithuanian art collection of Jaunius Gumbis". Museum and Collector - 6. Vilnius: National Museum of Lithuania, 2016, Kat. No, P. 210.
Published: "The Lithuanian art collection of Jaunius Gumbis". Museum and Collector - 6. Vilnius: National Museum of Lithuania, 2016, Kat. No, P. 210; "The traditional folk sculptures collection of Gediminas Petraitis". Ed. Marytė Slušinskaitė. Vilnius: National Museum of Lithuania, 2012, P. 200.