One of the most significant monuments of profane architecture on the Croatian coast is the Rector's Palace, former administrative centre of the Dubrovnik Republic. Its style is basically Gothic, with the Renaissance and Baroque reconstructions. In the 15th century the Palace was destroyed twice in gunpowder explosions. Restored by Onofrio della Cava in the late Gothic style after the first explosion in 1435, the Palace got its present-day size with the central atrium and front portico. The capitals were carved in Renaissance style by Pietro di Martino of Milan, whose capital with Aesculapius has been preserved on the right half-column of the portico.

The second gunpowder explosion in 1463 destroyed the western facade of the Palace, and the two famous architects Juraj Dalmatinac and Michelozzo of Florence were engaged in the reconstruction for a short period.Although the design of Michelozzo was unfortunately rejected, his influence in the restoration of the facade and portico, mainly in Renaissance style, can not be denied. After the earthquake of 1667 the atrium was partially reconstructed with an impressive Baroque staircase.

During his one-month mandate the Rector of Dubrovnik lived in the Palace, which also housed the Minor and Major Council hall, the Rectors residence, the courtroom, administration office, prisons, an arsenal and gunpowder store-house. From the Rectors Palace one could enter the Great Council Palace.

Today the Rectors Palace houses the Cultural-historic Department of the Dubrovnik Museum with exhibition halls arranged to display the original setting with antique furniture and objects for daily use, as well as paintings by local and Italian masters.

The Museum also guards a collection of old coins used in the Dubrovnik Republic, a collection of arms and utensils of Domus Christi Pharmacy from the 15th century. Apart from being exceptionally beautiful, the Rectors Palace Atrium has excellent acoustics, and is often used as a concert venue.

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Founded: 15th century
Category: Palaces, manors and town halls in Croatia

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User Reviews

Mike (2 years ago)
Beautiful Serbian city of Dubrovnik Austrian census in 1906 saying that in Dubrovnik was no croats, just Serbian people, 100% of them declared as Serbs!
BakaRuffy AMVz (2 years ago)
Very beautiful, educational and historical. Has a lot to show, basically the most important things you need to know and it's quite cheap for locals (100kn for three people (in our case)).
MattD12027 (2 years ago)
The history both on display and also part of this palace is pretty incredible. You can really feel it seeping through the stones as you wander around the exhibits. I especially loved the sunny courtyard (at midday) and the Croatian War for Independence memorial. Beautiful and sublime.
Vangelis Koulogeorgiou (2 years ago)
Beautiful exhibition of the old time furniture and paintings
Louis Quaire (2 years ago)
Very insightful, particularly on the workings of the former republic of Ragusa and its era as a whole
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