Serbs, settled from Bosnia, built the Dragović Monastery in 1395. In 1480 the Ottoman Turks invaded the region, raided the monastery, and expelled its residents. For full twenty years it was abandoned, until restored and renewed. Forced by the hard times of Ottoman-conquered southern Croatia with lack of supplies, five monks left to Hungary and founded Monastery Grabovac in 1555. In 1590, a year of famine, the monks abandoned Dragović and all spent the year in Grabovac. It was deserted again, this time for seventy years.
Bishop Nikodim Busović renewed the entire monastery in 1694. However, only 4 years afterwards the Ottoman Turks made another breakthrough into the region and the monks found refuge in Venetian territory. The Venetian government secured them a resting place in the village of Bribir with good lands for a new monastery, where they built a small church. The Venetians also gifted the monks community with 50 acres (200,000 m2) of land around Kistanje. In 1699 according to the Treaty of Karlowitz the Ottomans lost most of southern Croatia, so the monks were free to return to Dragović. Soon Bishop Nikodim died, and their Church in Bribir was taken over by the Venetians for Roman Catholic services.
The grounds on which Dragović rested was highly unstable and this, together with increasing moisture, convinced the monks to move the monastery to a better location. With Venetian permission, in 1777 hyeromonk Vikentije Stojisavljević began to build the new monastery in the Vinogradi. The monastery's reconstruction was very long and financially exhausting, until prior Jerotej Kovačević finally supervised its completion. It eventually opened on 20 August 1867.
In 1959, when the artificial lake for the hydroelectric power station Peruća had been made by the Yugoslav Communists, monastery Dragović was moved on a hill not far from the old fortress called Gradina.
Between 1991 and 1993, during the Croatian War of Independence, the monastery was broken into several times, and in 1995 it was abandoned, after which the church was devastated and desecrated, making it uninhabitable. Later, Bishop Fotije gave his blessing to Father Đorđe Knežević to begin with the reconstruction of the monastery. In autumn 2004, basic conditions were achieved for the return of monks. Thus with the decree of Bishop Fotije, on 15 September 2004 monastery Dragović received a new brotherhood, and hieromonk Varsonufije (Rašković) was appointed their Father Superior. On the same day due to the feast of the Nativity of the Theotokos, the first Holy Hierarchal Liturgy was served in the reconstructed monastery’s church.
Monastery Dragović used to have a rich treasury, in which was kept a number of manuscripts from 16th-18th centuries, as well as very old books written in Greek, Latin, Italian, Russian and Church Slavic.
There were also very rare antimens, among which was one made by Hristofor Zefarović dating from 1752. A great number of sacral objects mainly made in silver granulation and filigree from the 18th century were also a part of this rich treasury.References:
The Palazzo Colonna is a palatial block of buildings built in part over ruins of an old Roman Serapeum, and has belonged to the prestigious Colonna family for over twenty generations.
The first part of the palace dates from the 13th century, and tradition holds that the building hosted Dante in his visit to Rome. The first documentary mention notes that the property hosted Cardinal Giovanni and Giacomo Colonna in the 13th century. It was also home to Cardinal Oddone Colonna before he ascended to the papacy as Martin V (1417–1431).
With his passing, the palace was sacked during feuds, and the main property passed into the hands of the Della Rovere family. It returned to the Colonna family when Marcantonio I Colonna married Lucrezia Gara Franciotti Della Rovere, the niece of pope Julius II. The Colonna"s alliance to the Habsburg power, likely protected the palace from looting during the Sack of Rome (1527).
Starting with Filippo Colonna (1578–1639) many changes have refurbished and create a unitary complex around a central garden. Architects including Girolamo Rainaldi and Paolo Marucelli labored on specific projects. Only in the 17th and 18th centuries were the main facades completed. Much of this design was completed by Antonio del Grande (including the grand gallery), and Girolamo Fontana (decoration of gallery). In the 18th century, the long low facade designed by Nicola Michetti with later additions by Paolo Posi with taller corner blocks (facing Piazza Apostoli) was constructed recalls earlier structures resembling a fortification.
The main gallery (completed 1703) and the masterful Colonna art collection was acquired after 1650 by both the cardinal Girolamo I Colonna and his nephew the Connestabile Lorenzo Onofrio Colonna and includes works by Lorenzo Monaco, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Palma the Elder, Salviati, Bronzino, Tintoretto, Pietro da Cortona, Annibale Carracci (painting of The Beaneater), Guercino, Francesco Albani, Muziano and Guido Reni. Ceiling frescoes by Filippo Gherardi, Giovanni Coli, Sebastiano Ricci, and Giuseppe Bartolomeo Chiari celebrate the role of Marcantonio II Colonna in the battle of Lepanto (1571). The gallery is open to the public on Saturday mornings.
The older wing of the complex known as the Princess Isabelle"s apartments, but once housing Martin V"s library and palace, contains frescoes by Pinturicchio, Antonio Tempesta, Crescenzio Onofri, Giacinto Gimignani, and Carlo Cesi. It contains a collection of landscapes and genre scenes by painters like Gaspard Dughet, Caspar Van Wittel (Vanvitelli), and Jan Brueghel the Elder.
Along with the possessions of the Doria-Pamphilij and Pallavacini-Rospigliosi families, this is one of the largest private art collections in Rome.