In the heart of Cesis is the ancient market place known as Rožu laukums – Rose Square. The square was used as a market place from the 13th century and is once again at the heart of life in the Old Town. Retaining features of the medieval square, the area was regenerated in 2008 and features a paved area of granite, boulder and concrete.
Carl Gustaf von Zievers was born in 1771 and was owner of Cesis Castle manor estate. In 1832 he established the Castle Park creating a tranquil landscape setting incorporating the castle ruins, streams and bridges.
In 1908, Carl’s son Emanuel had the above bronze bust placed upon a podium paying tribute to his father’s creation. The bust is located on Carl Hill in the castle park grounds.
In the garden of the Kristus Apskaidrošanas pareizticīgo baznīca are the tombstones where two members of the Sievers family are buried. The Sievers family owned the manor of Cesis Castle from 1777 for the next 140 years. Emanuel Graf von Sievers was born in Cesis and entered the Russian civil service. He became steward of the Russian Empire and married Countess Elise Koskull. Emanuel died at his castle estate in 1909. The plain marble tombstones are where Emanuel (above left) and his wife Elise (above right) are laid to rest.
Located high on a slope overlooking Cesis Castle Park is Kristus Apskaidrošanas pareizticīgo baznīca – Christ Transfiguration Orthodox Church. On the orders of Earl Karl Sievers, the church was built in 1842 on the foundations of a former temple on the site.
The highly colourful church features two raised pinnacled domes and plain engaged pilasters on each facade of the building.
The Neue Wache (New Guard House) is located on the north side of Unter den Linden. The building was constructed in 1816-1818 as a guard house for the troops of the Crown Prince of Prussia, King Friedrick William III. Karl Friedrich Schinkel, the Prussian architect, furniture and stage set designer and city planner was commissioned to design the building. Schinkel was known for his Greek Revival style of architecture which can be seen with the Doric order of columns and the portrayal of the Greek Goddess Nike in the statuary of the pediment.
Until the end of World War I, the building continued to serve as a royal guard house. The German architect and urban planner Heinrich Tessenow was commissioned in 1931 to redesign the building as a war memorial for the fallen during the war. Tessenow added an oculus to the building which then became known as the ‘Memorial for the Fallen of the War’. The sculpture ‘Mother with her Dead Son’ is the work of Kathe Kollwitz who was a German sculptor, painter and printmaker. Directly under the oculus, the sculpture is symbolic of the suffering of civilians during World War II.
Outside St John’s church along Torna Iela stands the sculpture of an old man carrying a lantern. The bronze sculpture is called Gadsimtiem ejot which translates as The Centuries. It was created in 2005 to mark the 800th anniversary of Cesis (2006) and is the work of the Latvian sculptor Matiass Jansons.
Located in Maija Park in Cesis is the bronze sculpture Cīņa ar kentauru – Battle with centaur. The sculpture was originally a plaster model by the Latvian sculptor Kārlis Jansons which was kept in storage until 1977.
The plaster sculpture was subsequently moulded in bronze and placed in the square on Lielās Katrīnas Street.
Located in Narodni Trg (People’s Square) is the City Guard or “Gradska straza” as it is known by the locals. The Narodni Trg is the main square of the town, platae magna (large square), and is the centre of public life in Zadar. The foundations to municipal buildings were laid in the square during the early Middle Ages. During the Venetian reign in the 15th century, the church of St Peter and the Municipal Loggia which had been built here, were destroyed. Designed in the 16th century by the Venetian architect Michele Sanmicheli, the building is now home to a modern art gallery.
The building is of late Renaissance style having a large central clock tower and is surrounded by a stone wall with holes for cannons, both later additions. Michele Sanmicheli was a Mannerist architect and famed for his numerous military fortifications. Born in 1484 he travelled from 1537-1539 to Corfu, Crete and Dalmatia to design such fortifications.
Founded by the first Emperor Augustus, the Roman Forum in Zadar was the largest on the eastern shore of the Adriatic. To the side of a raised area where once a temple dedicated to Jupiter once stood, stands the 15m high Pillar of Shame (above). During the Middle Ages, this is where sentenced people were chained and humiliated. It was used for this purpose until 1840. The Lion of St Mark was a later addition to the top of the column by the Venetians.
The Square of Five Wells (Trg Pet Bunara) is located between the medieval city walls and the park named after Queen Jelena Madijevka. Built to withstand the Turkish sieges of the 16th century, the square features five ornamental wellheads from where the square acquired its name.
The venetians built a large drinking water cistern to supply the five wellheads. A remnant of the city’s defence system, the Captain’s Tower, is located on one corner of the square.