Although this serves as the church's key draw there’s several other features of note to tempt the visitor inside this astonishing Baroque creation. The church's history originally dates from the 15th century when a small wooden chapel stood on the site. Destroyed during the Swedish Deluge of the 1650s, the church was rebuilt in 1682, with the cornerstone being ceremoniously laid by Prince Jakub, son of King Jan III Sobieski. Designed by the royal architect, Jakub Bellotti, it was completed in 1696 though over time would see numerous additions to its shape. The most notable of these would come in the following century when Józef Fontana added two Baroque crowns to the square-cut twin towers. His son Jakub would later extensively refurbish the façade with Jan Jerzy Plersch adding elaborate decorative touches to the interior.
Throughout history the church has played its role in Warsaw’s glories and calamities. It was here that the last Polish King forged the Order of the Knights of St Stanislaus, and it was directly outside in 1861 that Russian troops brutally suppressed a patriotic protest. It was this bloodbath that lit the touchpaper for the January Uprising of that year. Devastated during the Warsaw Uprising in 1944 the church was painstakingly rebuilt at the end of the war and is today a feast for the heart, eyes and soul. The organ (built in Salzburg in 1925) is the largest in Warsaw, and other points of note include an urn with the remains of Nobel Prize winning author Władysław Reymont, and tablets honouring various Polish icons including poet Juliusz Słowacki and WWII hero Władysław Sikorski.