Monday, 25 September 2017

Millenary Benedictine Abbey of Pannonhalma and its Natural Environment

This abbey is known for its library with lots of first editions of many books, but because is not only the mind that need to be fed, the region is also known for the great wine produced by the monks

Library of Pannonhalma Archabbey

The Benedictine Pannonhalma Archabbey or Territorial Abbey of Pannonhalma is a medieval building in Pannonhalma, one of the oldest historical monuments in Hungary. Founded in 996, it is located near the town, on top of a hill (282 m).

The library was finished in the first third of the 19th century. The longitudinal part of the building was planned and built by Ferenc Engel in the 1820s. Later János Packh was commissioned with extending the edifice, and the oval hall is his work. Joseph Klieber, a Vienna master was asked to ornament the interior of the building.
On the four sides of the oval hall's ceiling the allegories of the four medieval university faculties can be seen: Law, Theology, Medicine and the Arts. The holdings of the library have been increasing ever since. Manuscripts from the time of Saint László have been catalogued in Pannonhalma. As of today, 360,000 volumes are kept in the collection. - in: wikipedia

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Thracian Tomb of Sveshtari

It's curious to think that the Thracian tombs were only a mound of earth seen from the outside, so maybe there are a lot more tombs like this to be discovered 

Thracian Tomb of Sveshtari
This postcard was sent by Tsveti

Discovered in 1982 near the village of Sveshtari, this 3rd-century BC Thracian tomb reflects the fundamental structural principles of Thracian cult buildings. The tomb has a unique architectural decor, with polychrome half-human, half-plant caryatids and painted murals. The 10 female figures carved in high relief on the walls of the central chamber and the decoration of the lunette in its vault are the only examples of this type found so far in the Thracian lands. It is a remarkable reminder of the culture of the Getes, a Thracian people who were in contact with the Hellenistic and Hyperborean worlds, according to ancient geographers. - in:

Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak

The paintings in this tomb are Bulgaria's best-preserved artistic masterpieces from the Hellenistic period.

Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak

Discovered in 1944, this tomb dates from the Hellenistic period, around the end of the 4th century BC. It is located near Seutopolis, the capital city of the Thracian king Seutes III, and is part of a large Thracian necropolis. The tholos has a narrow corridor and a round burial chamber, both decorated with murals representing Thracian burial rituals and culture. These paintings are Bulgaria’s best-preserved artistic masterpieces from the Hellenistic period. - in:

Monday, 18 September 2017

Struve Geodetic Arc

This is one of the few sites that are shared by several countries. It's curious to think that when this chain was made it crossed only two countries, now it crosses ten! It's not easy to find postcards of all...

Struve Geodetic Arc point in Belarus
This postcard was sent by Kate

The Struve Geodetic Arc is a chain of survey triangulations stretching from Hammerfest in Norway to the Black Sea, through ten countries and over 2,820 km, which yielded the first accurate measurement of a meridian.

Simuna and Võivere points in Estonia
This postcard was sent by Pihlakas

The chain was established and used by the German-born Russian scientist Friedrich Georg Wilhelm von Struve in the years 1816 to 1855 to establish the exact size and shape of the earth. At that time, the chain passed merely through two countries: Union of Sweden-Norway and the Russian Empire

Tartu Observatory (top right), Estonia
This postcard was sent by Marco

The Arc's first point is located in Tartu Observatory in Estonia, where Struve conducted much of his research.

Oravivuori Triangulation Tower, Finland
This postcard was sent by Arja

In 2005, the chain was inscribed on the World Heritage List as a memorable ensemble of the chain made up of 34 commemorative plaques or built obelisks out of the original 265 main station points which are marked by drilled holes in rock, iron crosses, cairns, others.

Rudi Geodetic Point, Moldova
This postcard was sent by Hanko

Measurement of the triangulation chain comprises 258 main triangles and 265 geodetic vertices. 

Fuglenes point in Hammerfest, Norway
This postcard was sent by Jo

The northernmost point is located near Hammerfest in Norway and the southernmost point near the Black Sea in Ukraine. - in: wikipedia

Hogland, Z point in Russia
This postcard was sent by Vadim

The Struve Geodetic Arc is an extraordinary example of the interchange of human values in the form of international scientific collaboration, as well as an outstanding example of a technological ensemble. - in:

Stara Nekrasivka point in Ukraine
This postcard was sent by Sergii

I'm still missing postcards from Latvia, Lithuania and Sweden

Curonian Spit

The Curonian Spit is a UNESCO World Heritage site shared by Lithuania and Russia and is famous for its sand dunes. But there's a lot more to see than sand in this region.

Curonian Spit
This postcard was sent by Kristina

The Curonian Spit is a unique and vulnerable, sandy and wooded cultural landscape on a coastal spit which features small Curonian lagoon settlements. The Spit was formed by the sea, wind and human activity and continues to be shaped by them. 

Neringa Dunes
This postcard was sent by Marco

Rich with an abundance of unique natural and cultural features, it has retained its social and cultural importance. Local communities adapted to the changes in the natural environment in order to survive. This interaction between humans and nature shaped the Curonian Spit cultural landscape.

Curonian Spit
This postcard was sent by Alexandra

The most valuable elements and qualities of the Curonian Spit cultural landscape are its unique size and general spatial structure, demonstrating the harmonious coexistence between humans and nature; the characteristic panoramas and the silhouette of the Curonian lagoon; cultural elements including the remains of postal tracks, trade villages from the 10th and 11th centuries, traditional fishermen villages and other archaeological heritage covered by sand; the spatial-planned structure and architecture of ancient fishermen villages turned into resort settlements (ancient wooden fishermen houses, professionally designed buildings of the 19th century, including lighthouses, piers, churches, schools, villas); and elements of marine cultural heritage; natural and human-made elements including the distinctive Great Dune Ridge and individual dunes, relics of ancient parabolic dunes; a human-made protective coastal dune ridge; relics of moraine islands, seacoast and littoral forests and littoral capes; ancient forests, mountain pine forests and other unique sand flora and fauna including a bird migration path; and the social-cultural traditions, spirituality, and the social perception of the area, which reflect the local lifestyle formerly centred on fishermen, artists, scientists, yachtsmen and gliders, travellers and other visitors. - in:

Dancing Forest on Curonian Spit
This postcard was sent by Anastacia

The Dancing Forest  is a pine forest on the Curonian Spit in Kaliningrad Oblast, Russia noted for its unusually twisted trees. Unlike drunken forest, the trees in the Dancing Forest are twisted into several patterns, such as rings, hearts and convoluted spirals bending to the ground. The exact cause of the trees' distortion is unknown. According to one version, the distortion is caused by the activity of the caterpillar of Rhyacionia buoliana. In the folk version, the Dancing Forest follows the movement of the sands. The trees were planted in the 1960s. - in: wikipedia

Kernavė Archaeological Site (Cultural Reserve of Kernavė)

Kernavė was a medieval capital of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Today is known by the hill-fort mounds.

Kernavé (in some pictures)
This postcard was sent from Portugal by Martinha

Kernavė Archaeological Site, situated in the valley of the River Neris in eastern Lithuania, provides evidence of human settlements spanning some 10 millennia. Covering an area of 194.4 ha, the property contains archaeological evidence of ancient land use from the late Palaeolithic Period to the Middle Ages. It comprises a complex ensemble of archaeological elements, including the town of Kernavė, a unique complex of impressive hill forts, unfortified settlements, burial sites and other archaeological, historical and cultural monuments.

This postcard was sent by Jason

The property contains an extraordinarily rich concentration of archaeological evidence, encompassing natural processes of glacial retreat within a long and continuous period of human occupation and activity. The earliest evidence of human occupation between the 9th and 8th millennia B.C., and subsequent permanent inhabitation until the Late Middle Ages, can be found in several cultural layers and burial sites.

This postcard was sent by Marco

The spectacular complex of five hill forts dates back to the 13th century, when Kernavė was an important feudal town of craftsmen and merchants who required the protection of such a complex defence system. The town of Kernavė was destroyed by the Teutonic Order in the late 14th century, but the site continued to be used until modern times. - in:

Blenheim Palace

This wonderful palace his known for being the birthplace and ancestral home of Sir Winston Churchill.

Blenheim Palace
This postcard was sent by Lucy

Blenheim Palace is a monumental country house situated in Woodstock, Oxfordshire, England. It is the principal residence of the Dukes of Marlborough, and the only non-royal non-episcopal country house in England to hold the title of palace. The palace, one of England's largest houses, was built between 1705 and circa 1722.
Designed in the rare, and short-lived, English Baroque style, architectural appreciation of the palace is as divided today as it was in the 1720s. It is unique in its combined use as a family home, mausoleum and national monument. - in: wikipedia