Before the St. Catherine's was built, a 14th-century Dominican church occupied the area. When the Jesuits arrived in Zagreb in the early 17th century, they thought the original church too rundown and inadequate, and worked to build a new church. Construction began in 1620 and was completed in 1632. A monastery was built adjacent to the church, but now the spot is home to the Klovićevi dvori art gallery.
St. Catherine's church was victim to fire twice in history: once in 1645 and again in 1674, devastating the interior. The church was refurnished with help from wealthy Croatian nobles, and in return, they were allowed to display their family coat-of-arms or have the honour to be buried or entombed in the church.
After the disestablishment of the Jesuits, St. Catherine's became part of the parish of St. Mark's in 1793. Since 1874, St. Catherine's has been a Collegiate church.
The church was severely damaged by the 1880 earthquake. After 6 months of repairs, it was reconsecrated in November 1881.References:
Dating from the 15th century, Kisimul is the only significant surviving medieval castle in the Outer Hebrides. It was the residence of the chief of the Macneils of Barra, who claimed descent from the legendary Niall of the Nine Hostages. Tradition tells of the Macneils settling in Barra in the 11th century, but it was only in 1427 that Gilleonan Macneil comes on record as the first lord. He probably built the castle that dominates the rocky islet, and in its shadow a crew house for his personal galley and crew. The sea coursed through Macneil veins, and a descendant, Ruari ‘the Turbulent’, was arrested for piracy of an English ship during King James VI’s reign in the later 16th century.
Heavy debts eventually forced the Macneil chiefs to sell Barra in 1838. However, a descendant, Robert Lister Macneil, the 45th Chief, repurchased the estate in 1937, and set about restoring his ancestral seat. It passed into Historic Scotland’s care in 2000.
The castle dates essentially from the 15th century. It takes the form of a three-storey tower house. This formed the residence of the clan chief. An associated curtain wall fringed the small rock on which the castle stood, and enclosed a small courtyard in which there are ancillary buildings. These comprised a feasting hall, a chapel, a tanist’s house and a watchman’s house. Most were restored in the 20th century, the tanist’s house serving as the family home of the Macneils. A well near the postern gate is fed with fresh water from an underground seam. Outside the curtain wall, beside the original landing-place, are the foundations of the crew house, where the sailors manning their chief’s galley had their quarters.