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:
Kroměříž stands on the site of an earlier ford across the River Morava. The gardens and castle of Kroměříž are an exceptionally complete and well-preserved example of a European Baroque princely residence and its gardens and described as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The first residence on the site was founded by bishop Stanislas Thurzo in 1497. The building was in a Late Gothic style, with a modicum of Renaissance detail. During the Thirty Years' War, the castle was sacked by the Swedish army (1643).
It was not until 1664 that a bishop from the powerful Liechtenstein family charged architect Filiberto Lucchese with renovating the palace in a Baroque style. The chief monument of Lucchese's work in Kroměříž is the Pleasure Garden in front of the castle. Upon Lucchese's death in 1666, Giovanni Pietro Tencalla completed his work on the formal garden and had the palace rebuilt in a style reminiscent of the Turinese school to which he belonged.
After the castle was gutted by a major fire in March 1752, Bishop Hamilton commissioned two leading imperial artists, Franz Anton Maulbertsch and Josef Stern, arrived at the residence in order to decorate the halls of the palace with their works. In addition to their paintings, the palace still houses an art collection, generally considered the second finest in the country, which includes Titian's last mythological painting, The Flaying of Marsyas. The largest part of the collection was acquired by Bishop Karel in Cologne in 1673. The palace also contains an outstanding musical archive and a library of 33,000 volumes.
UNESCO lists the palace and garden among the World Heritage Sites. As the nomination dossier explains, 'the castle is a good but not outstanding example of a type of aristocratic or princely residence that has survived widely in Europe. The Pleasure Garden, by contrast, is a very rare and largely intact example of a Baroque garden'. Apart from the formal parterres there is also a less formal nineteenth-century English garden, which sustained damage during floods in 1997.
Interiors of the palace were extensively used by Miloš Forman as a stand-in for Vienna's Hofburg Imperial Palace during filming of Amadeus (1984), based on the life of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, who actually never visited Kroměříž. The main audience chamber was also used in the film Immortal Beloved (1994), in the piano concerto scene.