Monastery of St. Francis Assisi

Zadar, Croatia

The Monastery of St. Francis Assisi in Zadar, along with a church of the same name, was built around 1221. It was consecrated on October 12, 1282 by bishop Lovro Periandar. Throughout the centuries of its history the monastery was the focal point of religious life in the city of Zadar. It was also home to the Franciscan school, precursor to today's University of Zadar. It had rich picture gallery as well as a collection of codices and parchments. In this monastery Saint Jakov of Zadar was first ordained.

The church and monastery lie in the western part of the city. The church is the oldest Gothic church in Dalmatia. The inside is relatively plain. Behind the main altar dating from 1672 lies what was once a shrine and inside choir seats richly decorated with fretwork in gothic style from 1394 by Giacomo da Borgo Sansepolcro.

The sacristy, which follows from the choir area, is important in Croatian history, as in 1358 the Venetian Republic and the Hungarian-Croatian king Louis I signed the Treaty of Zadar in which the Venetians gave up their Dalmatian holdings.

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Details

Founded: 1221
Category: Religious sites in Croatia

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

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4.8/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Владислав Цанков (4 months ago)
The view from the square of the Zagreb Cathedral to the Catholic Church of St. Francis is unique!
Tomislav Turkalj (2 years ago)
It is a monastery "" where one can hear Croatian jal, "" how the Croats died for their state from King Tomislav, well, the December Victims, the Homeland War.
Tin Kojundzic (2 years ago)
In the shadow of the Zagreb Cathedral, among the canonical curia at Kaptol, stands a Franciscan monastery, one of the oldest in Croatia. According to an unconfirmed tradition, its founding is related to the residence of St. Francis in our region. The Franciscans most likely settled in Zagreb before the invasion of the Tatars (1242), perhaps in a former Benedictine monastery. Upon the departure of the Tatars, they built a new church, an early Gothic, preaching, one-nave, court-room with a long bark, as the sanctuary of the present-day church reveals. The Zagreb monastery first belonged to the Hungarian province of Sv. Mary was the center of the Zagreb Custody, which included monasteries in Zagreb, Virovitica, Nasice, Pozega, Kostajnica, and in the place of "Gurbonich", today Kloštar Podravski, from the end of the 14th to the mid-16th centuries. In the mid-17th century, this monastery became central to the Illyrian Custody of Sts. Ladislav, King ”, established in 1655 and soon central in the province of the same name. At the end of the 19th century it was again the seat of the so-called. The Commissariat of the Province of Sts. Ladislava (1897-1899), and since 1900 the seat of the Provinces of the Croatian Franciscan Province. The Franciscans at Kaptol are deeply embedded in the church life of Zagreb. Their church is a religious center for all ages, especially high school and university students, the site of catechumens and a meeting place for Franciscan evangelistic seminars. It is the abode of both our seminary students (1951-1964, again since 1981) and young Franciscans studying at the Theological College in Zagreb. In addition, the Franciscan monastery manages the monthly "Brother Francis" (since 1982) and runs the provincial publishing library of the same name. Since 1900, the provincial administration has been located here.
Boris Khalfin (2 years ago)
A statue of book. Sadly, no translation to English.
o Sosic (5 years ago)
Super
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From 1239, Raynaud, the Bishop of Quimper, decided on the building of a new chancel destined to replace that of the Romanesque era. He therefore started, in the far west, the construction of a great Gothic cathedral which would inspire cathedral reconstructions in the Ile de France and would in turn become a place of experimentation from where would later appear ideas adopted by the whole of lower Brittany. The date of 1239 marks the Bishop’s decision and does not imply an immediate start to construction. Observation of the pillar profiles, their bases, the canopies, the fitting of the ribbed vaults of the ambulatory or the alignment of the bays leads us to believe, however, that the construction was spread out over time.

The four circular pillars mark the start of the building site, but the four following adopt a lozenge-shaped layout which could indicate a change of project manager. The clumsiness of the vaulted archways of the north ambulatory, the start of the ribbed vaults at the height of the south ambulatory or the choice of the vaults descending in spoke-form from the semi-circle which allows the connection of the axis chapel to the choir – despite the manifest problems of alignment – conveys the hesitancy and diverse influences in the first phase of works which spread out until the start of the 14th century.

At the same time as this facade was built (to which were added the north and south gates) the building of the nave started in the east and would finish by 1460. The nave is made up of six bays with one at the level of the facade towers and flanked by double aisles – one wide and one narrow (split into side chapels) – in an extension of the choir arrangements.

The choir presents four right-hand bays with ambulatory and side chapels. It is extended towards the east of 3-sided chevet which opens onto a semi-circle composed of five chapels and an apsidal chapel of two bays and a flat chevet consecrated to Our Lady.

The three-level elevation with arches, triforium and galleries seems more uniform and expresses anglo-Norman influence in the thickness of the walls (Norman passageway at the gallery level) or the decorative style (heavy mouldings, decorative frieze under the triforium). This building site would have to have been overseen in one shot. Undoubtedly interrupted by the war of Succession (1341-1364) it draws to a close with the building of the lierne vaults (1410) and the fitting of stained-glass windows. Bishop Bertrand de Rosmadec and Duke Jean V, whose coat of arms would decorate these vaults, finished the chancel before starting on the building of the facade and the nave.

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The west porch finds its natural place between the two towers. The entire aesthetic of these three gates springs from the Flamboyant era: trefoil, curly kale, finials, large gables which cut into the mouldings and balustrades. Pinnacles and recesses embellish the buttresses whilst an entire bestiary appears: monsters, dogs, mysterious figures, gargoyles, and with them a whole imaginary world promoting a religious and political programme. Even though most of the saints statues have disappeared an armorial survives which makes the doors of the cathedral one of the most beautiful heraldic pages imaginable: ducal ermine, the Montfort lion, Duchess Jeanne of France’s coat of arms side by side with the arms of the Cornouaille barons with their helmets and crests. One can imagine the impact of this sculpted decor with the colour and gilding which originally completed it.

At the start of the 16th century the construction of the spires was being prepared when building was interrupted, undoubtedly for financial reasons. Small conical roofs were therefore placed on top of the towers. The following centuries were essentially devoted to putting furnishings in place (funeral monuments, altars, statues, organs, pulpit). Note the fire which destroyed the spire of the transept cross in 1620 as well as the ransacking of the cathedral in 1793 when nearly all the furnishings disappeared in a « bonfire of the saints ».

The 19th century would therefore inherit an almost finished but mutilated building and would devote itself to its renovation according to the tastes and theories of the day.