Back To Medieval Times Once Again
Roaming around medieval cities you may find yourself in front of a few surprises you have never imagine exist. It's always good to find these surprises, especially if you like these times and you are open to trying out places you've never been to.
Today I was roaming around the medieval city center of Mediaș, that is situated in Sibiu county and came across a place that left me with a lot of nice photos. The city is more than 700 years old, has a wall that once surrounded the old city center and a fortified church that is not only wonderful as architecture and treasures it is holding, but it is now home for cultural events like concerts during summer.
The first perimeter fortification of Medias was made using waves of earth reinforced with wooden palisades, which in turn were doubled with water ditches. This measure was taken in 1477, in the desire to support Medias’ defense capacity. At the same time, there have been decreases in terms of taxations and exemptions from the obligation of military duties. Thus, only 32 people were required to participate in the royal army.
The current fortified enclosure of the city was built of brick and stone, at the orders of the Hungarian king Matei Corvin. In 1486, he ordered all city residents to participate in the works, regardless of their social position. The actual construction began in 1490, and five years later, Vladislav II obliges all the inhabitants of the city, as well as those in the villages of the Two Seats – Medias and Seica – to participate in the raising of the walls, to hurry completion of the construction. The fortress was completed in 1534, a period from which dates the change of the city’s title from “villa” to “civitas”, which will remain permanently granted to Medias.
The fortifications have a total length of 2360 m, with a thickness of 0.8 m and a height of about 7 m. The fortress has three main gates, reinforced with defense towers: to the north is the Gate of Steingasser, to the east Gate Zeckesch, and to the south is the Forkesch Gate. The fortress was further fortified, the maximum point being reached in the 18th century when there were 19 towers and bastions, and four main gates were added to the three main gates. source
This is the Forkesch Gate, which still stands today and it is an important part of the city's history. As always, I standing in front of the gate, wondering how those inside must have felt, when the enemy was attacking the gate and the walls from outside, knowing that if the enemy gets in, their life will be over. Today it is a tourist attraction and the subject of photography. However, today I went there for a different reason.
Right next to the tower, on the left there are some hidden beauties you may not see anywhere else. The brick wall and the wooden balcony is alone a wonderful thing to look at, let alone the book shelves full of books.
To make things more rustic, there was this hand painted wooden drawer and the wheel of a chariot, in the corner.
Seeing all these books was bitter sweet. In a way I was happy a place like this exists, as people can borrow books, but was also a bitter moment as I know these books have landed here because no one wants them. Unfortunately no one is interested in printed books or have time to read these books.
The board says:
take a book, enjoy it and bring it back or put another book on the shelf.
The place is called Mediensis Bar Library and I'm going to show you the bar as well.
But before that, I need to show you this piano and the bench next to it.
Seeing this piano really broke my heart. This is a musical instrument that costs a lot when it's new and definitely deserves better treatment. Staying outside, regardless of the weather can only deteriorate it and as you can see, it looks terrible already.
If the first owner would see it ...
This bench also must have seen better days and must be a couple of hundred years or so.
This is the bar, that the books and all these antiquities belong to. I did not want to go in though.
It has a few tables outside as well. So the concept is good, but still, my heart is aching when I see objects left to deteriorate like that.
Going on, the street takes you to more wonderful places.
This is the Forkesch tower, seen midway to the other tower, walking on Gheții Street.
Unfortunately parts of the wall is missing, but the rest is well restored, like this part, where there's an old well.
There were times when there was no tap water and everyone in the neighborhood was using these wells. Today you rarely see wells like this.
An old and cute house, that is preserved well. It's an office now.
Here is a map of the old city center, on which you can see the fortress' wall, drawn with yellow.
The yellow dot is where I was standing.
Which was the Blacksmith's Tower.
There's an Art Cafe at the ground floor for those who'd like to enjoy the medieval feeling.
This tower has a totally different design than the previous one.
It's not easy to read, bit it says 1641 on the front. Please note the decoration around the numbers :)
The wall continues on the other side.
Here's my route, where I walked today.
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