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:
The Castle of Gruyères is one of the most famous in Switzerland. It was built between 1270 and 1282, following the typical square plan of the fortifications in Savoy. It was the property of the Counts of Gruyères until the bankruptcy of the Count Michel in 1554. His creditors the cantons of Fribourg and Bern shared his earldom. From 1555 to 1798 the castle became residence to the bailiffs and then to the prefects sent by Fribourg.
In 1849 the castle was sold to the Bovy and Balland families, who used the castle as their summer residency and restored it. The castle was then bought back by the canton of Fribourg in 1938, made into a museum and opened to the public. Since 1993, a foundation ensures the conservation as well as the highlighting of the building and the art collection.
The castle is the home of three capes of the Order of the Golden Fleece. They were part of the war booty captured by the Swiss Confederates (which included troops from Gruyères) at the Battle of Morat against Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy in 1476. As Charles the Bold was celebrating the anniversary of his father's death, one of the capes is a black velvet sacerdotal vestment with Philip the Good's emblem sewn into it.
A collection of landscapes by 19th century artists Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Barthélemy Menn and others are on display in the castle.