Sisak Fortress was built following the increasingly threatening and devastating Turkish attacks on the Kingdom of Croatia. The construction works were ordered by the Bishop of Zagreb, the owner of the estate, and lasted from 1544 until 1550.
Having become Bosnian pasha in 1591, Hasan Pasha Predojević launched a few attacks on Sisak. During his last campaign in June 1593, his army of around 12.000 Ottoman soldiers suffered on 22 June 1593 a heavy defeat against the defending joint Croato-Slovene-Austrian forces and he himself lost his life. This battle was a turning point, which meant interruption of further Ottoman conquest.
After slackening of Ottoman pressure on Croatian lands in the 17th century, the fortress changed its owners for a couple of times, being sometimes damaged, but immediately repaired. The last major damage occurred during the Second World War, as the fortification was hit by shells and the northwest tower was partially destroyed.
Present-day fortress houses some collections of the Sisak Town Museum (established in 1951), which include holdings of archaeology, ethnology, cultural history and numismatics.
Sisak Fortress is a triangle-shaped structure, mostly made of brick and supported by stone parts. Each corner of the fortress is reinforced with a round tower covered by conical roof. Towers are connected by the more than 30 metres long thick walls with loopholes. Being on the river bank, the fortress has a natural line of defense from the west-southwest, while the other sides are partially protected by the Sava River in the immediate vicinity, flowing southeast.References:
The first historical record of Lednice locality dates from 1222. At that time there stood a Gothic fort with courtyard, which was lent by Czech King Václav I to Austrian nobleman Sigfried Sirotek in 1249.
At the end of the 13th century the Liechtensteins, originally from Styria, became holders of all of Lednice and of nearby Mikulov. They gradually acquired land on both sides of the Moravian-Austrian border. Members of the family most often found fame in military service, during the Renaissance they expanded their estates through economic activity. From the middle of the 15th century members of the family occupied the highest offices in the land. However, the family’s position in Moravia really changed under the brothers Karel, Maximilian, and Gundakar of Liechtenstein. Through marriage Karel and Maximilian acquired the great wealth of the old Moravian dynasty of the Černohorskýs of Boskovice. At that time the brothers, like their father and grandfather, were Lutheran, but they soon converted to Catholicism, thus preparing the ground for their rise in politics. Particularly Karel, who served at the court of Emperor Rudolf II, became hetman of Moravia in 1608, and was later raised to princely status by King Matyas II and awarded the Duchy of Opava.
During the revolt of the Czech nobility he stood on the side of the Habsburgs, and took part in the Battle of White Mountain. After the uprising was defeated in 1620 he systematically acquired property confiscated from some of the rebels, and the Liechtensteins became the wealthiest family in Moravia, rising in status above the Žerotíns. Their enormous land holdings brought them great profits, and eventually allowed them to carry out their grandious building projects here in Lednice.
In the 16th century it was probably Hartmann II of Liechtenstein who had the old medieval water castle torn down and replaced with a Renaissance chateau. At the end of the 17th century the chateau was torn down and a Baroque palace was built, with an extensive formal garden, and a massive riding hall designed by Johann Bernard Fischer von Erlach that still stands in almost unaltered form.
In the mid-18th century the chateau was again renovated, and in 1815 its front tracts that had been part of the Baroque chateau were removed.
The chateau as it looks today dates from 1846-1858, when Prince Alois II decided that Vienna was not suitable for entertaining in the summer, and had Lednice rebuilt into a summer palace in the spirit of English Gothic. The hall on the ground floor would serve to entertain the European aristocracy at sumptuous banquets, and was furnished with carved wood ceilings, wooden panelling, and select furniture, surpassing anything of its kind in Europe.