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.