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 Seaplane Harbour is the newest and one of the most exciting museums in Tallinn. It tells stories about the Estonian maritime and military history. The museum’s display, that comprises of more than a couple of hundred large exhibits, revitalizes the colourful history of Estonia.
British built submarine Lembit weighing 600 tones is the centrepiece of the new museum. Built in 1936 for the Estonian navy, Lembit served in the World War II under the Soviet flag. It remained in service for 75 years being the oldest submarine in the World still in use until it was hauled ashore in 2011. Despite its long history, Lembit is still in an excellent condition offering a glimpse of the 1930s art of technology.
Another exciting attraction is a full-scale replica of Short Type 184, a British pre-World War II seaplane, which was also used by the Estonian armed forces. Short Type 184 has earned its place in military history by being the first aircraft ever to attack an enemy’s ship with an air-launched torpedo. Since none of the original seaplanes have survived, the replica in Seaplane Harbour is the only full-size representation of the aircraft in the whole World.
Simulators mimicking a flight above Tallinn, around-the-world journey in the yellow submarine, navigating on the Tallinn bay make this museum heaven for kids or adventurous adults.
Seaplane Harbour operates in architecturally unique hangars built almost a century ago, in 1916 and 1917, as a part of Peter the Great sea fortress. These hangars are the World’s first reinforced concrete shell structures of such a great size. Charles Lindbergh, the man who performed the first solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean, landed here in 1930s.
On the outdoor area visitors can tour a collection of historic ships, including the Suur Tõll, Europe's largest steam-powered icebreaker.