The closed city of Dubrovnik in Croatia - District of the Cathedral

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The Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin (Katedrala Uznesenja Marijina)
The Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin (Katedrala Uznesenja Marijina), that the inhabitants of Dubrovnik call the “Large Madonna” (Velika Gospa), draws up itself in the center of the place Marin Drzic, in the vicinity immediate of the Palace of the Vice-chancellor and the episcopal Palace.

Its green and blue cupola overhangs the roofs of the old houses and constitutes, with the ramparts, the first visual reference mark of Dubrovnik.

Cathedral seen since the ramparts north. Click to enlarge the image in Fotolia (new tab).Cathedral of the assumption. Click to enlarge the image.Cathedral of the assumption. Click to enlarge the image.
Vestiges church bysantine. Click to enlarge the image.On the site of the cathedral, several churches followed one another.

Excavations. Click to enlarge the image.On April 15th, 1979, a new earthquake damaged the cathedral, by basking in the sun the walls, the cupola and the frontage; the repair of the cathedral, following this earthquake, asked for the consolidation of its foundations, and, during excavations, the archeologists discovered under the nave, with a few meters of depth, the walls and the foundations of a Byzantine basilica, 30 m length on 15 m broad, with three naves with three apses. The archeologists locate the approximate date of its construction at the 7th century. On his old walls one found beautiful frescos dating from the 9th century. These invaluable vestiges were preserved and made available to the visitors.

Before the current cathedral, a first cathedral of Romance style occupied this site until the earthquake of April 6th, 1667 during which it was completely destroyed. This cathedral of Romance style, which adopted the plan of a basilica, had been built between 12th and 14th centuries, work being spread out over more than one century.

According to the chronicles of Dubrovnik and the chronicles English, the ship of the king d’ Angleterre Richard 1st, “Richard the Lionheart”, on its return of the 3rd crusade in 1192, made shipwreck in a terrible storm close to the island of Lokrum, opposite Dubrovnik. It found refuge on the island, and, having miraculously survived this shipwreck, made wish, as a sign of thanks with the Virgin, to offer to the town of Dubrovnik a considerable sum of ducats for the construction of a large votive church.

The old cathedral was one of most beautiful and the richest European churches of its time, with five sumptuous gates on the frontage, a large cupola and masterpieces of sculptures out of stone.

After shakebeing shaken by the earthquake of 1520, the Romance cathedral fur destroyed by that of 1667. The only part which had survived the earthquake was a separated baptistry, builds at the 14th century, out of red and white stone. This Romance vestige was shaved by the Austrian occupant in the middle of the 19th century.

After the catastrophic earthquake, the authorities of Raguse decided to take as a starting point what was done in Rome according to the architectural standards of the time, i.e. in style baroque. One of the most educated sons of Raguse, Stjepan Gradić, which was vice-chancellor of the library of the Vatican, obtained from the assistance for its birthplace disaster victim attached to the European governments, and made come in Raguse, via the pope, the best architects Italian, who contributed with their projects and their councils to the rebuilding of the destroyed city.

Stjepan Gradić made engage celebrates it Italian architect Andrea Buffalini d’ Urbino whose project of new cathedral will be carried out by the Italian manufacturer Paolo Andreotti. This last began the construction of the new cathedral in 1673. Work lasted several decades with the collaboration of many Masters, like P.A. Bazzi and the Father Tommaso Napoli; the completions were carried out in 1713 by the local Master Ilija Katičić.

Cathedral assumption. Click to enlarge the image.Cathedral of the assumption. Click to enlarge the image.Cathedral seen from the Palace of the Vice-chancellor. Click to enlarge the image in Fotolia (new tab).
The cathedral illustrates the style baroque of the end of 17th - beginning of the 18th century, and points out the churches of Rome. Capped with a dome bored of windows, decorated pediments, cornices and columns which put rhythm into the frontage, of punctuated balustrades of statues of saints, it presents a rich external decoration which contrasts with the simplicity of the interior.

The cathedral of the Assumption is perhaps the most beautiful church baroque of Dalmatia.

Cathedral assumption. Click to enlarge the image.Dome of the cathedral. Click to enlarge the image.Rule on the cathedral. Click to enlarge the image.
The interior of the cathedral, built in the shape of cross, astonishes by its sobriety and its clearness which almost make forget the heavy retables baroques out of stone and marble.

The cathedral conceals many tables of great artistic value, among which works of the Italian painters dominate (Padovani, J. Palma the Young person, G.G. Savoldo, Parmigianino, Bordone and others), but where one also finds some tables of local and Flemish painters.

In the chorus, temperately emphasized, the polyptyque one of “the Assumption of the Virgin” paints in 1552, allotted to Titien, surmounts the high altar.

On the sides: saints Blaise and Lazare, holy Nicolas and Antoine the Abbot.

Visit: 8:00 at 17:30; Sunday of 11:00 to 17:30.

Cathedral assumption. Click to enlarge the image in Fotolia (new tab).Cathedral assumption. Click to enlarge the image in Fotolia (new tab).
Cathedral assumption. Click to enlarge the image.
The Treasury of the Cathedral (Riznica Katedrale)
The treasure of the cathedral is preserved in a chapel baroque of Gropelli, closed by three enormous entrusted keys, at the time of the Republic of Raguse, with three distinct personalities: the first was entrusted to the archbishop, the second with the vice-chancellor of the Cathedral, and the third with the secretary of the Republic. To open the treasure, one was to use the three keys. Today, the third key is entrusted to the cultural Institute of the heritage protection of Dubrovnik.

The old Romance cathedral of Raguse had, before the earthquake in 1667, one of the treasures of church richest in Europe. At the time of the earthquake, most of relics and valuable articles were destroyed, and what one succeeded in saving finds preserved today in the treasure of the cathedral.

The room of the Treasury presents, in a decoration exuberant baroque overloaded of gildings and cherubs chubby-checked fellows, many reliquaries (138), objects crowned manufactured for the majority by craftsmen of the city and several paintings of an extraordinary artistic value.

The most invaluable objects of the Treasury of the cathedral are the relics of the patron saint of the city: the skull, an arm and a leg of Saint Blaise, preserved in invaluable reliquaries of Byzantine style (12th century), out of money and gold, enchased painted precious stones and enamels, with extraordinary details in filigree, works of the craftsmen ragusains of 11th and 12th centuries. These are these reliquaries that one carries in procession the feastday of saint Blaise.

In addition to these reliquaries one notices a marvellous silver cross of the goldsmith ragusain Jeronim Matov of the 16th century, a pretty Madonna allotted to Raphaël (on the right), an icon Romano-Byzantine of the Virgin to the Child (13th century).

Visit: opened the every day, of 8:00 to 20:00; Sunday, of 11:00 to 17:30.

The Treasury presents also a large basin of toilet, with its jug, out of gilded money, which represents the flora and the fauna of Raguse (a work of W. Jamnitzer, around 1550).

Entry on the left of the high altar of the cathedral.

Kneza Damjana Jude 1

Paying entry: 10 kunas.

The Archbishop’s palace
On the side is Place Sailor Držić, the old palace of the Sorkočević family, Renaissance style, vis-a-vis the cathedral, resisted the earthquake of 1667, as most houses of the district of Pustjerna, whose lanes besides are often arched. The building lodges the episcopal palace today.
The Place Sailor Držić (Poljana Marina Držića)
Carry place drzic. Click to enlarge the image.Opening on the esplanade of the Cathedral, a door bored in the walls gives access to the port and the arsenal.

On the frontage of a given up vault, one notices the framing of the old gate préroman to the reasons for interlacing, a rare vestige in Dubrovnik (11th century).

The Church Our-Lady-of-Karmen (Gospa Od Karmena)
The church Our-Lady-of-Karmen is a building baroque (1628-1636). One of paintings, allotted to C. Regio, represents the residence of summer of the Sorkočević family on the peninsula of Lapad.
Our Lady of Karmen. Click to enlarge the image in Fotolia (new tab).Our Lady of Karmen. Click to enlarge the image in Fotolia (new tab).
Our Lady of Karmen. Click to enlarge the image in Fotolia (new tab).Our Lady of Karmen. Click to enlarge the image in Fotolia (new tab).Our Lady of Karmen. Click to enlarge the image in Fotolia (new tab).
The Skočibuha Palace
The street Restičeva leads to the Renaissance palace of the family Skočibuha (Bizzaro-Ohmučević, built by Josip and Ivan Andrijić in 1549-1553, according to the plans of Antoine de Padoue), the most beautiful private building built before the seism of 1667, which was preserved. One also finds in this street the Gothic palace Zamanjina.

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