Novi Vinodolski is situated on a steep hill, above the mouth of river Suha Ričina, in the south-eastern part of the valley of Vinodol. The settlement follows the configuration of the land, and its silhouette dominates the valley.

Click for larger image Click for larger image Click for larger image
Novi Vinodolski
Novi Vinodolski

In the Middle Ages this small town defended the access to the valley. During the reign of the Frankopans, at the beginning of the 13th ct., a castle was built, with square inner yard, fortified with corner towers. Around it developed the new town (Novi) enclosed with walls, which have up to the present time kept the mediaeval structure of narrow and winding streets and arched passages, small squares and valuable ambiental units and town-planning solutions which still have their original conception and disposition.

Click for larger image
Novi Vinodolski - Castle with The Tower

The walls of the historical nucleus are partly preserved at the northern and southern part of town. The entrance gate to the town are pulled down in 1875. Only considerably restored mediaeval tower "Kvadrac" remained of "the castle of the Frankopans", where The Law of Vinodol was composed in 1228.

The remains of the old town Lopar (probably the Roman fort) are situated at the seaside, and also the church of Blessed Virgin Mary at Ops, with the ruins of Paulist monastery dating from the 15th ct. The church was raised by prince Martin Frankopan and it had their coat of arms above the entrance, which is now built into a wall at the front of the castle.

In the 16th ct. the Venetian blockade causes the cessation of life in Novi, the buildings and foundations are stopped. The last church donator belonging to that family is prince Vuk Krsto Frankopan, and Franjo Krsto Frankopan restores the residence in the Castle on the occasion of his marriage with a Roman countess Julia Naro.

After the conspiracy in 1671. the building goes to ruin, especially after the earthquake in 1750. In 1761. the two-thirds of the Castle are pulled down, and one-third is left as a residence for the castellan. In 1848. when the landed estate of Novi declines, the Castle becomes the property of county district, which alters it into school and administrative residence at the end of the 19th ct.

The chapel of St. George is built in 1716. at the cemetery below the fort, in the funnel-shaped hole in the limestone which is enclosed in a wall. The cemetery is interesting because of its stone sepulchral slabs built in the tradition of reduced standing tomb-stones which cannot be found in Vinodol.

Click for larger image Click for larger image
The Parish Church of
St. Philip and Jacob
The Bell Tower

The parish church of St.Stephen - one-nave Romanesque building with barrel - vaulting, is extended in the 14th - 15th ct., and in the newly-built section vaulted over with Gothic pointed vault. The bell-tower also served as a tower for protection of towns entrance gate. The townhall was leaning against the church.

The parish church of St. Philip and Jacob is probably built already in the 14th ct. For a period of time it serves as a cathedral. With the change of status, the polygonal sanctuary gets extended in 1520. in the style of Late Gothic, and in the 18th ct. it is reconstructed in the baroque style, with aisles.

A sepulchral slab bearing the figure of the bishop of Modruš - Krištofer, dating from 1499., is situated in the sanctuary floor. On the first side altar is a wooden Gothic Madonna dating from the 15th ct. In the 17th ct. the church gets valuable baroque, wood-carved pews, and a painting (pala) bearing figures of nominal saints is provided for the main altar. In church possession are two silver reliquaries and illuminated Glagolitic codexes, all dating from the 15th ct.

At the beginning of the 20th ct. the front of the parish church is generally reconstructed, the bell-tower at the entrance is knocked down. According to the project of the architect Vilim Rauscher, the facade is arranged in the historicistic style, and in 1909. begins the building of present bell-tower, which gives a strong vertical accent to the towns outline.

Click for larger image
Bishop Krištof's House
Detail (right)
Click for larger image

The house of bishop Ivan Krstitelj Ježić - "Biskupija" (Bishops palace) is situated on the square Precrikva in the old part of town. It is a building of widened gable, symmetrically divided facade with moderate relief ornament and a sun-dial at the first floor.
This building gives a special outlook to the old square which for centuries served as a centre of church life in Novi Vinodolski.

The brothers Mažuranić come from Novi Vinodolski. With their work they expressed aspirations of the members of the Illyrian Movement to the greatest extent and they contributed to the awakening of the Croatian national awareness. Their patriotic orientation was a reflection of homeland component based on a strong cultural tradition of Novi Vinodolski.

Novi Vinodolski
   The Town Of Novi Vinodolski

© Ineco, 1995./2005.