The Erdödy Castle is the oldest building in Jastrebarsko. The castle is located in a beautiful old park that is actually a monument of horticulture. It was originally a water castle, a lowland fort surrounded by moats that are now filled and covered with grass, but still visible in the outlines of the landscape. According to records, the castle was built by Matija Gereb between 1483 and 1489. The Erdödy family came into possession of the Jastrebarsko land, which included the castle, in the first half of the 16th century and remained in possession until 1922.
The castle building has a rectangle shape and it is located on a knoll surrounded by moats, as a lowland fort. The wings of the building have different heights, and the highest of them is closed by the two remaining towers. The internal courtyard contains arches and baroque columns. The old castle was built by Ban Matija Gereb in the late 15th century. Early in the 16th century, the castle fell to the possession of the Erdödy family, under which it remained until 1922. In time, the castle saw several reconstructions, and the rectangle castle reinforced by two round towers was one of the keeps during Ottoman invasions. The plate left of the entrance was added in 1592 by Ban Toma Erdödy. Stjepan Erdödy, who loved nature and hunting, founded a natural museum in the castle. It was then bought by businessman Ehrman. In 1936, after the businessman’s bankruptcy, the estate was bought by the municipality for a children’s home. It also held the Regional Museum for a while.
Today, the castle is in very poor condition and the interior is not open for visitors. It is, however, to be completely renovated soon so it would once again shine in all its glory. Until then, you can only visit the exterior while strolling on the beautiful grounds of the Erdödy Castle.
The Jastrebarsko Town Museum holds an interesting collection with items related to the castle and history of the Erdödy family. It also includes a small collection of photographs, hunting items and trophies won by Count Stjepan Erdödy, who was a passionate hunter and a photography pioneer in the region.References:
Heraclea Lyncestis was an ancient Greek city in Macedon, ruled later by the Romans. It was founded by Philip II of Macedon in the middle of the 4th century BC. The city was named in honor of the mythological hero Heracles. The name Lynkestis originates from the name of the ancient kingdom, conquered by Philip, where the city was built.
Heraclea was a strategically important town during the Hellenistic period, as it was at the edge of Macedon"s border with Epirus to the west and Paeonia to the north, until the middle of the 2nd century BC, when the Romans conquered Macedon and destroyed its political power. The main Roman road in the area, Via Egnatia went through Heraclea, and Heraclea was an important stop. The prosperity of the city was maintained mainly due to this road.
The Roman emperor Hadrian built a theatre in the center of the town, on a hill, when many buildings in the Roman province of Macedonia were being restored. It began being used during the reign of Antoninus Pius. Inside the theatre there were three animal cages and in the western part a tunnel. The theatre went out of use during the late 4th century AD, when gladiator fights in the Roman Empire were banned, due to the spread of Christianity, the formulation of the Eastern Roman Empire, and the abandonment of, what was then perceived as, pagan rituals and entertainment.
In the early Byzantine period (4th to 6th centuries AD) Heraclea was an important episcopal centre. A small and a great basilica, the bishop"s residence, and a funerary basilica and the necropolis are some of the remains of this period. Three naves in the Great Basilica are covered with mosaics of very rich floral and figurative iconography; these well preserved mosaics are often regarded as fine examples of the early Christian art period.
The city was sacked by Ostrogoth/Visigoth forces, commanded by Theodoric the Great in 472 AD and again in 479 AD. It was restored in the late 5th and early 6th century. When an earthquake struck in 518 AD, the inhabitants of Heraclea gradually abandoned the city. Subsequently, at the eve of the 7th century, the Dragovites, a Slavic tribe pushed down from the north by the Avars, settled in the area. The last coin issue dates from ca. 585, which suggests that the city was finally captured by the Slavs. As result, in place of the deserted city theatre several huts were built.
The Episcopacy Residence was excavated between 1970 and 1975. The western part was discovered first and the southern side is near the town wall. The luxury rooms are located in the eastern part. The 2nd, 3rd and 4th rooms all have mosaic floors. Between the 3rd and 4th rooms there is a hole that led to the eastern entrance of the residence. The hole was purposefully created between the 4th and 6th century.