The Morosini-Grimani Castle is a medieval edifice with expressed Renaissance features. It was named after the two families, its owners.
Svetvinčenat was erected on the border which changed through history with the exchange of conquerors. It was first mentioned in 983 in the document by Oton II as the property of the Bishop of Poreč. Its ownership was first taken over by the Castropola family, and then by the Morosini family in 1384. Pietro Morosini was last mentioned as the master of Svetvinčenat in 1529. The new owners, the Grimani family, were being mentioned in the written documents since 1560. The Grimanis renovated the castle after the fire.
The castle is shaped as a square. There are two round towers on the corners of its northern walls, while a square tower is located on the southeast wall. The southeast part was used as the residential area. The entire palace was located within the defensive walls. The main entrance into the Marosini-Grimani castle is at the south facade, which used to be accessed by a drawbridge. Above the entrance are plates noting the year of the construction (1485) and the renovation (1589).
The Morosini family completed the renovation of the castle in the 15th century, which marked the transformation of the location into a Renaissance settlement with the square and the cistern in the centre, surrounded by the castle, the parish church and the loggia as well as by other public buildings. As the oldest structure on the square, the castle was constructed in the 3:5 ratio. The newly designed square, the Renaissance church as well as the entire urban network of the town were also designed accordingly. Therefore, the Morosini-Grimani castle represents a form of the late medieval construction with expressed Renaissance characteristics.References:
The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood is one of the main sights of St. Petersburg. The church was built on the site where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated and was dedicated in his memory. Construction began in 1883 under Alexander III, as a memorial to his father, Alexander II. Work progressed slowly and was finally completed during the reign of Nicholas II in 1907. Funding was provided by the Imperial family with the support of many private donors.
Architecturally, the Cathedral differs from St. Petersburg's other structures. The city's architecture is predominantly Baroque and Neoclassical, but the Savior on Blood harks back to medieval Russian architecture in the spirit of romantic nationalism. It intentionally resembles the 17th-century Yaroslavl churches and the celebrated St. Basil's Cathedral in Moscow.
The Church contains over 7500 square metres of mosaics — according to its restorers, more than any other church in the world. The interior was designed by some of the most celebrated Russian artists of the day — including Viktor Vasnetsov, Mikhail Nesterov and Mikhail Vrubel — but the church's chief architect, Alfred Alexandrovich Parland, was relatively little-known (born in St. Petersburg in 1842 in a Baltic-German Lutheran family). Perhaps not surprisingly, the Church's construction ran well over budget, having been estimated at 3.6 million roubles but ending up costing over 4.6 million. The walls and ceilings inside the Church are completely covered in intricately detailed mosaics — the main pictures being biblical scenes or figures — but with very fine patterned borders setting off each picture.
In the aftermath of the Russian Revolution, the church was ransacked and looted, badly damaging its interior. The Soviet government closed the church in the early 1930s. During the Second World War when many people were starving due to the Siege of Leningrad by Nazi German military forces, the church was used as a temporary morgue for those who died in combat and from starvation and illness. The church suffered significant damage. After the war, it was used as a warehouse for vegetables, leading to the sardonic name of Saviour on Potatoes.
In July 1970, management of the Church passed to Saint Isaac's Cathedral (then used as a highly profitable museum) and proceeds from the Cathedral were funneled back into restoring the Church. It was reopened in August 1997, after 27 years of restoration, but has not been reconsecrated and does not function as a full-time place of worship; it is a Museum of Mosaics. Even before the Revolution it never functioned as a public place of worship; having been dedicated exclusively to the memory of the assassinated tsar, the only services were panikhidas (memorial services). The Church is now one of the main tourist attractions in St. Petersburg.