04 Jun Time Travel Dubrovnik: 10 Interesting Facts About Dubrovnik City Walls
Galleon Tirena is awaiting to take you for an unforgettable journey in space and time, a true Time Travel! Elegant and evocative, this accurate replica of 16-the century Dubrovnik merchant ship provides much, much more than another sea trip. Tirena’s crew, led by legendary captain Miho Pracat, is ready to reveal the secrets and amazing tales permeating the white walls of their beautiful city.
After cruising around the mysterious Lokrum, Tirena will sail on around the majestic Dubrovnik City Walls. You will see and learn so many things about this, one of the biggest and most astounding fortifications in the whole of Europe. Dubrovnik City Walls protected the freedom and safety of the Dubrovnik Republic which flourished in total peace and prosperity for some five centuries. While sailing aboard Tirena, you will not enter the city through one of its 5 gates, as now you will travel by sea and in time. If you’re ready, here’s a little spoiler affront of our unique Time Travel Dubrovnik!
10 FUN FACTS ABOUT CITY WALLS AND FORTRESSES
- Dubrovnik City Walls were constructed in the period from the 8th to 16th century. In some places, walls are 6 meters thick and reach a height of up to 25 meters. The total length of Dubrovnik City walls is 1940 m.
- Each new danger to the Republic led to substantial improvements and the addition of yet another fortress or tower. Over time, Dubrovnik City Walls were reinforced by 3 circular and 14 quadrangular towers, 5 bastions, 2 angular fortifications, and the large St. John’s Fortress. Land walls were additionally reinforced by one larger bastion and nine smaller semi-circular ones. The outside of the walls was heavily armed by over 120 cannons.
3. Minčeta Fortress was built at a time when the stone was scarce. Hence, by the order of city authorities, every citizen coming from the direction of Gruž or Ploče had to bring along a stone in accord with her/his physical capability. Once a quadrangular, today a round edifice, Minčeta became one of the central city’s symbols, a token of Dubrovnik’s invincibility.
4. Bokar Fortress often served as a polygon for testing cannons’ reach and various artillery exercises.
- St. John’s Fortress protected the city’s port. It was connected with a smaller St. Lucca’s fortress with a strong chain that prevented the entry of attacking ships into port. Once upon a time a warehouse for gunpowder, today St. John’s Fortress houses the valuables of the Maritime Museum and is home to Aquarium.
- Revelin Fortress was built to repel the attacks of the then-rising Ottoman Empire.
7. After the great earthquake in 1667, which demolished most of the city except for Dubrovnik City Walls, Revelin became the administrative center and home to Republic’s and Cathedral’s treasury.
8. Rising 37 meters above the sea, Lovrjenac Fortress is also known as Dubrovnik’s Gibraltar. The walls of Lovrjenac facing the sea are up to 12 meters thick. This fortress was also the home to the most famous city’s cannon, whose nickname because of its green patina was – Lizard.
9. During their active use as a defensive fortification, Dubrovnik City Walls were manned 24 hours a day by the citizens themselves, as the Republic didn’t have a standing army. Each fortress was under the care of a different commander.
10. Inscription carved above the entrance to Lovrijenac Fortress says: “Non Bene Pro Toto Libertas Venditur Auro” (“Liberty is not to be sold for all the riches of this world”). Known in its short version as “Libertas”, this was and remained the motto of Dubrovnik.
That’s all for now from the merry crew of Galleon Tirena… See you aboard!