Novi Dvori of Zaprešić is a feudal estate consisting of a manor house, an old granary renovated into a museum, a circular threshing machine, a neo-gothic chapel and the Jelačić family tomb.
According to a document dated in 1852, the Novi Dvori manor was first constructed in 1611 as an ordinary one story manor house mostly made of wood. This initial 17th century concept of a manor, consisted of what is today a western part of the building and its shape has been preserved only in the cellar. Throughout the history, the owners of this estate were Zrinski family, Čikulin family, Sermage family, Festetics family and Erdödy family. Almost each of these owners gradually expanded the manor to the east. In second half of 18th century Peter Troilo Sermage turned the manor house into a castle and added several economic buildings such as barns, granaries and circular threshing machine to the estate. By 19th century, castle became the property of Alexander Erdödy. The same family eventually sold the estate to ban Josip Jelačić in 1851.
Written agreement on sale of the estate was made on March 23, 1852, despite Jelačić de facto buying the estate a year earlier. The new owner had both estate and the castle reconstructed and annexed. He also further extended the castle 18 meters eastwards adding the east wing, while cellar, façade and the upper level were decorated In 1855 construction of Neo-gothic chapel of St. Joseph started and it was finished after some two months of work. Following completion, the chapel was blessed on May 25, 1855. by an archbishop of Zagreb Juraj Haulik.
The same year, on Christmas, Josip Jelačić's wife - countess Sofia, gave birth to their daughter Anica on the estate, for which occasion, the banner was raised on top of the manor. However, little Anica soon died as an infant so Jelačić had her body buried Inside St. Joseph chapel. He also planned to build the family tomb on the estate, but died in 1859, before being able to execute this. In his last will, he expressed a wish to be buried next to his daughter in the estate chapel. After the death of Josip Jelačić, the estate became the property of his brother Đuro, who continued managing it and finally completed tomb wished by Josip in 1884. The design for this was made by prominent Austrian architect Hermann Bollé. The construction of the tomb was made out of unused stone, taken from reconstruction of Zagreb cathedral, which was badly damaged in 1880 Zagreb earthquake. After Đuro's death, the castle was inherited by his daughters Anka and Vera. In 1919. countess Vera Jelačić donated the family collection of weapons and paintings from Novi dvori, to what was then Croatian People's Museum. The daughters bequeathed the estate to the Croatian people in 1934.vAlthough Đuro, Hermina, and much of the Jelačić family were initially buried in family arcade in Zagreb's Mirogoj cemetery, their remains were taken to the tomb in Novi Dvori in 1933, by the wish of countess Anka Jelačić. During the night on July 24, 1935, the tomb was looted by unknown vandals.
After the Yugoslav defeat in the April War of 1941, and formation of Nazi puppet state Independent State of Croatia, the castle became a residence of Ante Pavelić. In that period a terrace was added to the southern side of the manor. After the end of war, the estate was turned into an Agricultural High School. The castle was renovated during the 1960s, while school continued to operate on this location until 1977., when it relocated to Zagreb leaving the estate empty. The tombs were looted again by vandals in 1987. who also, in this occasion desecrated the remains of Josip Jelačić, his brother Antun and his little daughter Anica.
In May 2017, it was announced that City of Zaprešić secured 40 million HRK from European Union funds in order to completely renovate the manor. After the restoration, the manor will be used as a residential space for ceremonial occasions and various exhibitions.References:
The Church of Saint Demetrius, or Hagios Demetrios, is the main sanctuary dedicated to Saint Demetrius, the patron saint of Thessaloniki. It is part of the site Palaeochristian and Byzantine Monuments of Thessaloniki on the list of World Heritage Sites by UNESCO since 1988.
The first church on the spot was constructed in the early 4th century AD, replacing a Roman bath. A century later, a prefect named Leontios replaced the small oratory with a larger, three-aisled basilica. Repeatedly gutted by fires, the church eventually was reconstructed as a five-aisled basilica in 629–634. This was the surviving form of the church much as it is today. The most important shrine in the city, it was probably larger than the local cathedral. The historic location of the latter is now unknown.
The church had an unusual shrine called the ciborium, a hexagonal, roofed structure at one side of the nave. It was made of or covered with silver. The structure had doors and inside was a couch or bed. Unusually, it did not hold any physical relics of the saint. The ciborium seems to have been a symbolic tomb. It was rebuilt at least once.
The basilica is famous for six extant mosaic panels, dated to the period between the latest reconstruction and the inauguration of the Byzantine Iconoclasm in 730. These mosaics depict St. Demetrius with officials responsible for the restoration of the church (called the founders, ktetors) and with children. An inscription below one of the images glorifies heaven for saving the people of Thessalonica from a pagan Slavic raid in 615.
Thessaloniki became part of the Ottoman Empire in 1430. About 60 years later, during the reign of Bayezid II, the church was converted into a mosque, known as the Kasımiye Camii after the local Ottoman mayor, Cezeri Kasım Pasha. The symbolic tomb however was kept open for Christian veneration. Other magnificent mosaics, recorded as covering the church interior, were lost either during the four centuries when it functioned as a mosque (1493–1912) or in the Great Thessaloniki Fire of 1917 that destroyed much of the city. It also destroyed the roof and upper walls of the church. Black-and-white photographs and good watercolour versions give an idea of the early Byzantine craftsmanship lost during the fire.
Following the Great Fire of 1917, it took decades to restore the church. Tombstones from the city"s Jewish cemetery - destroyed by the Greek and Nazi German authorities - were used as building materials in these restoration efforts in the 1940s. Archeological excavations conducted in the 1930s and 1940s revealed interesting artifacts that may be seen in a museum situated inside the church"s crypt. The excavations also uncovered the ruins of a Roman bath, where St. Demetrius was said to have been held prisoner and executed. A Roman well was also discovered. Scholars believe this is where soldiers dropped the body of St. Demetrius after his execution. After restoration, the church was reconsecrated in 1949.