Curia with a secret tunnel

Zrinski Castle in Čabar

"Although the castle in Čabar bears the name of the Zrinski, because it was erected by Petar Zrinski in the 17th century, they received this possession after 1572 on the basis of a will with which Stjepan Frankopan Ozaljski left his estate to the nephews Nikola, Krsto and Juraj Zrinski. In Čabar today along with the curia parts of the defensive walls, a tower and the arches on the ground floor of the central part of the castle have been preserved, whilst the other rooms were renovated in the 19th century."

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From the 15th century the Frankopans developed a lively trade with the Littoral and Venice, and via Gorski Kotar they ran merchant caravans from the north of Croatia to the Littoral. Apart from the land, forests and transport situation the Counts of Krk also exploited the mineral wealth in their possessions; in the 15th century they began to dig and process iron ore in the highland village of Lič. The Zrinski castle is located in the western part of Čabar, in the centre of the town, and it is a complex of four buildings situated around a central courtyard and two towers interconnected by a defensive wall. The courtyard is entered by a monumental covered arched entrance. Apart from the castle, in 1651, the Zrinskis built an iron foundry, and in 1657 a mint. For economic needs, they built sawmills and mills. There is an interesting story about the secret tunnel that led from the ground floor rooms of the castle to the Tropetar rock above Čabar where there was an exit in the case of emergency. There is no kind of record about the tunnel, only the testimony of the old townsfolk about how, before the entrance to the tunnel due to safety was walled up, old weapons and human bones used to be found inside it. Due to the failure of the Zrinski-Frankopan Conspiracy of 1671 the further development of Gorski Kotar was completely transformed, a region which together with the Croatian Littoral, came under the rule of the Austrian court and the Hungarian feudal lords.