The Łęczyca Royal Castle was erected by Casimir III the Great as a fortification during 1357–1370. Immediately after its completion, the Castle became a residence of king, and then was the seat of the governor of Łęczyca. In 1406 it was burned by the Teutonic Knights and rebuilt in the following years to serve as a place of a conference in 1409, where decisions were taken in connection with the approaching war with the Order. After the Battle of Grunwald many of the Teutonic Knights were incarcerated here. In subsequent years, four diets were held here (1420, 1448, 1454 and 1462), and the castle became the seat of the king Casimir IV Jagiellon during another war with the Order (1454-1466).
After a great fire in the second half of the 15th century the castle remained in ruins till the early 1560s. Then, in 1563–1565, Jan Lutomirski, Grand Treasurer of the Crown completely rebuilt the castle. The cost of the entire project amounted to nearly 3,000 florins, derived from the royal treasury. The disasters that struck the stronghold in the first half of the 17th century helped the Swedish General Robert Douglas, Count of Skenninge to take the castle, which was defended by starosta Jakub Olbrycht Szczawiński, during the Deluge in 1655. The destruction was completed in 1707 during another Swedish occupation.
Over the next years local residents used the remains of the castle as a source of building materials. After the World War II, the castle became the seat of the scout troop, and in 1964 reconstruction started.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.