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Towers of the six-pointed star

Castle in Krk

"“This is the work of the whole community in the year of Our Lord 1191. In the time of Ivan the Bishop of Krk and Bartol and Vid, the Counts of Krk, this work has begun”. Thus with the inscription of its creators the lunette on the gable of the oldest of the four towers that adorn the Frankopan castle located amidst the historical heart of the town of Krk also testifies to this day. Construction began after the death of Dujam the first Krk count, in an age when his sons as hereditary counts governed the island."

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The Counts of Krk built the castle over the centuries through their generations, from the 12th to the 15th century, and it gained its present shape during the Late Middle Ages. It is skilfully incorporated within the Roman town ramparts, and consists of four towers, walls and a spacious atrium with a cistern in which soldiers and citizens would hide in times of danger. Among the towers the so-called courthouse dominates. This is a rectangular tower that features lunettes on which the date is also located. It was originally built as the tower of Krk’s cathedral, but was subsequently incorporated into the castle. In the layers of its walls frescoes were found, so it is possible that it was also used for the liturgy, and later it became the courtroom. The second tower is called “Okrugla” (The Round) or “Venetian” because it was renovated during the period of Venetian rule, and in 1500 the Venetians subsequently added a plaque with the lion of St Mark and the inscription “Aureae Venetorum libertati” (“Sacred Venetian Freedom”). The round tower also has cannon recesses, not directed towards the town by accident. One of the customs of Venice postulated this in a way that they secure themselves from their vassals. The third tower is called “Austrian” because it was renovated during the period of Austro-Hungary. When it was incorporated into the castle, it took on the role of guardhouse, observation post and living quarters for the military leaders. On the top a Romanesque window was built facing the sea, whilst on the west side the door, which had served as a passage towards the ramparts or as an exit from the tower, was walled up. To the northwest of the castle, where one would expect the fourth corner tower to be, there is a machicolation, a guard area that was covered and fenced, and it does nothing to lessen the impression that this is “a real tower”. In the Frankopan castle, on the round tower, also noted is the count’s noble coat of arms before, due to the change of surname, they exchanged it with the famous two lions that share bread. The old coat of arms was a six-pointed star, and together with the new one, is it also noted in Krk cathedral.