Pejačević Castle is one of several country houses owned by the members of the Pejačević noble family in the region of Slavonia.
According to the sign located on the, facade above the entrance, the manor was built by count Sigismund Pejačević in 1801, with the actual construction beginning somewhere around 1796.
The Retfala Estate was acquired by the Pejačević Counts as a grant by the then Austrian Empress and Croatian-Hungarian Queen Maria Theresa in 1750. In the beginning it started out as a relatively small estate.
The refined classical manor is composed of three wings shaped in the form of the letter U. The internal space is organised around a central hallway with rooms aligned on either side. The central axis is highlighted by the grand hall and atrium within the great pavilion.
The central pavilion is raised on the first floor, whilst the remaining part of the manor, complete with its lateral wings, is at ground level.
At ground level, the pavilion is articulated by arcades and a great series of ionic pilasters, which was originally covered by a mansard roof, as was the remainder of the building. The manor is separated from the street by a triumphal entrance made from wrought iron railings. Despite the identity of the architect not being known, the manor is regarded as a significant work of classical architecture within Croatia.
Close to the vicinity of the manor at the Retfala Cemetery, the Pejačević Family chapel-mausoleum dates from the year 1891.
Previously set amongst a large pleasure garden, the manor is now in a neglected and decrepit state. Once a part of the pleasure garden which stretched all around the manor, the mausoleum set within the contemporary Retfala Cemetery shares the same fate.References:
The eight towns in south-eastern Sicily, including Ragusa, were all rebuilt after 1693 on or beside towns existing at the time of the earthquake which took place in that year. They represent a considerable collective undertaking, successfully carried out at a high level of architectural and artistic achievement. Keeping within the late Baroque style of the day, they also depict distinctive innovations in town planning and urban building. Together with seven other cities in the Val di Noto, it is part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In 1693 Ragusa was devastated by a huge earthquake, which killed some 5,000 inhabitants. Following this catastrophe the city was largely rebuilt, and many Baroque buildings from this time remain in the city. Most of the population moved to a new settlement in the former district of Patro, calling this new municipality 'Ragusa Superiore' (Upper Ragusa) and the ancient city 'Ragusa Inferiore' (Lower Ragusa). The two cities remained separated until 1926, when they were fused together to become a provincial capital in 1927.