HISTORY TALKS...

Protecting the golden vaults of Kremnica

THE CENTRAL Slovak town of Kremnica has been fortified by these massive walls ever since the Middle Ages. No wonder, because over its long centuries Kremnica has always had to solve a central problem: how to protect its wealth from many different enemies.

THE CENTRAL Slovak town of Kremnica has been fortified by these massive walls ever since the Middle Ages. No wonder, because over its long centuries Kremnica has always had to solve a central problem: how to protect its wealth from many different enemies.

All mining towns had a similar need but in Kremnica it was felt even more dramatically as it was always among the richest towns, along with Banská Štiavnica. Gold and silver were mined in the town’s vicinity and its mint began to operate from the middle of the 15th century.

Based on a decree issued by Sigismund of Luxembourg town walls were built beginning in the 15th century. The bulwark consisted of palisades, a moat, a stone wall fortified by bastions and these were finished with town gates guarding all the entrances to the town.

In this postcard from the 1950s, the so-called Red Bastion can be seen. Apart from defence, it served as a prison. Among its most famous residents was Slovak revolutionary Ďurko Langsfeld who was executed in Kremnica on June 22, 1948.

The Red Bastion looms on the eastern side of the town and on the opposite, western side, stands the Black Bastion. Kremnica is among the towns with the most-preserved and most-compact town walls in all of Slovakia.


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