Pleterje Charterhouse is the only extant monastery of Carthusian order in Slovenia. The monastery was founded in 1403 by Count Hermann II of Celje, and its construction completed by 1407. In 1471 an Ottoman raid destroyed the buildings, which were reconstructed in a much stronger and more easily defensible manner.
After a long period of decline Archduke Ferdinand II of Inner Austria gave the monastery in 1595 to the Jesuits of Ljubljana. When the Jesuits were suppressed in 1772, Pleterje became state property. In 1839 it passed into private hands.
In 1899 the Carthusians reacquired the site and began construction of a new monastery, which was completed five years later. During World War II the charterhouse suffered severe damage when in 1943 it was set on fire by Communist partisans.
The charterhouse has remained a Carthusian monastery to this day. The buildings date from the second foundation in the late 19th century, except for the Gothic church, dedicated to the Holy Trinity, which survives from the earlier monastery.
The monks cultivate 30 hectares of land, mostly for fruit and honey, which they sell, and from which they also produce wine, fruit spirits (especially pear brandy), mead and beeswax candles.
The monastery accommodates a display of items from the collections of the Dolenjska Museum of local history, and on part of its lands stands the Pleterje Charterhouse Open Air Museum of typical Slovenian buildings. The paintings date from the 17th and 18th centuries, and are attributed to Flemish, French, Italian and German artists. They seem mostly to have reached Pleterje with refugee monks from Bosserville Charterhouse in Lorraine, who were given shelter in Pleterje in 1904.References:
Augustusburg Palace represents one of the first examples of Rococo creations in Germany. For the Cologne elector and archbishop Clemens August of the House of Wittelsbach it was the favourite residence. In 1725 the Westphalian architect Johann Conrad Schlaun was commissioned by Clemens August to begin the construction of the palace on the ruins of a medieval moated castle.
In 1728, the Bavarian court architect François de Cuvilliés took over and made the palace into one of the most glorious residences of its time. Until its completion in 1768, numerous outstanding artists of European renown contributed to its beauty. A prime example of the calibre of artists employed here is Balthasar Neumann, who created the design for the magnificent staircase, an enchanting creation full of dynamism and elegance. The magical interplay of architecture, sculpture, painting and garden design made the Brühl Palaces a masterpiece of German Rococo.
UNESCO honoured history and present of the Rococo Palaces by inscribing Augustusburg Palace – together with Falkenlust Palace and their extensive gardens – on the World Heritage List in 1984. From 1949 onwards, Augustusburg Palace was used for representative purposes by the German Federal President and the Federal Government for many decades.
In 1728, Dominique Girard designed the palace gardens according to French models. Owing to constant renovation and care, it is today one of the most authentic examples of 18th century garden design in Europe. Next to the Baroque gardens, Peter Joseph Lenné redesigned the forested areas based on English landscaping models. Today it is a wonderful place to have a walk.