Neo-Gothic building of the parish church in Zgornja Hajdina was built according to the plans of the architect V. Moradini between 1873 and 1874. The beginnings of the church go as far back as to the 14th century when a Roman church was standing on the site. St. Martin’s church was first mentioned in 1342 as a vicariate of the parish church of St. George in Hoče. It became independent in 1597.
The church building has been rebuilt and changed several times during history. The most interesting part of the old presbytery is the series of fantastic Parlerian masks (around 1390) chiselled on the corbels and chapters of flying buttresses, and figural wall paintings from the 16th century. The altars are neo-Gothic, while the only remnant of the Gothic style furniture is a stone tabernacle. The church and its inner equipment were entirely renovated in the first decade of the 21st century.
Bearing a mark of the saint’s footstep, St. Martin’s parish church is a part of the European cultural route of St. Martin of Tours, who started his journey in Szombathely in Hungary and finished it in Tours in France.
Gothic presbitery in St. Martin’s Church at Hajdina
In the 14th century, the church in Hajdina, dedicated to St. Martin, was vicariate church within the organisational framework of Hoče parish. In 1398, Bernhard of Ptuj obtained legal rights over the church which he had rebuilt in the first decade of the 15th century. Skilful stonecutters, engaged to build the pilgrimage church at Ptujska Gora, were asked to fulfil the task. The only remnant of rebuilding works accomplished under Bernhard is the presbytery which was incorporated as a side chapel into a new church building in the 19th century. The so-called short-choir had only one rib-vaulted bay ending in a five-sided octagon. The ribs descend onto consoles and six capitals carved in the shape of fantastic heads having human and animal features. Such figures were quite common in the central-European architecture and statuary work in the 14th and 15th centuries, but the ones in Hajdina are rather exceptional in their liveliness showing a great deal of masters’ imagination.