The enigmatic story of the Virgin Mary statue in Benesat

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A mysterious statue ensemble having a stone carved statue of Virgin Mary as central piece can be found in a household in Benesat locality, Sălaj County. The historical monument made almost two centuries ago is hidden in a courtyard, half buried in the ground and covered by vegetation.

The statue depicting Virgin Mary has made Benesat famous, being on the list of historical monuments for years. Yet, its story is surrounded by mystery not yet explained either by locals or by experts.

Photo credit: Sebastian Olaru, Agerpres
Photo credit: Sebastian Olaru, Agerpres

It seems that the year of birth is 1882, but no one knows why this monument has been designed and how it had ended up in the courtyard of this house where the family of Florea Ungur lives. They bought the house 15 years ago from an old lady who also didn’t know much about the mysterious stones.

According to an archaeologist within the County History and Art Museum in Zalău, the ensemble could be a tomb dedicated to a wealthier local at that time.

Benesat is also known for other two historical monuments: the Orthodox Church built in the 17th century, around 1700 by the first 15 families settled down around here and the church’s cemetery, dating in the 16th– 17th centuries.

The cemetery hosts several stone crosses similar to Celtic tombs, which has the circle shape and central cross. Other tombs in the cemetery unveil some masterly designed shapes depicting angels or other religious figures.

There is also a Reformed Church in the locality, built later on in the 20th century, in 1909.

Benesat view
Benesat view

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