2 - SEAT OF POWER

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When the Morosini dalla Sbarra family came into possession of the estate, the systematic transformation of Svetvinčenat began and turned it into a planned settlement of predominantly Renaissance features. The transformation began with the construction of the castle built on the structures of the old domus. The castle was finished in 1485, as the year carved above the main entrance informs us. Most of the structures built during the Renaissance period have been preserved to this day, but we learn about the functioning of the castle from the few descriptions in the archival documents of the later periods.

A moat and a drawbridge secured the entrance to the castle. Another drawbridge at the level of the second out of five floors additionally secured the palace. The ground floor and the first floor were intended for economic activities, the collecting of tithes of grain and wine, while the second floor was the captains’ working area and a weapon storage area. The third floor was the captain's apartment. The captain, as the owners’ representative in charge of the governing of the estate, lived in the castle with his family. The square tower or the so-called clock tower was the main surveillance tower equipped with weapons and an alarm bell in addition to the clock. The other two towers also served as armories and watchtowers. The edifice leaning against the palace did not yet exist at that time, but in the courtyard of the castle, other auxiliary facilities are mentioned, such as a granary and a wine storage, as well as a woodshed, a barn, and a watchtower. There were also two prisons in the castle. The one for minor offenses was located under the staircase leading to the palace, while the prison for more serious offenses was in the basement of the square tower.

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