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     The history of Trogir can be followed from the original inhabitants, Illyrians, who had their settlement on the grounds of today’s Trogir. The first colonizators of the Adriatic islands and coast were Doric Greeks from Syracuse who founded Issa on the island of Vis in 390 B.C., and in the 3 rd century B.C. the colony of Tragurion.. Greek historians and geographers Ptolomey and Strabo mention Trogir as an Isseian “island and city”.
After his victory over Pompey, Caesar punished Issa, by abolishing its independence and taking away its mainland properties, including Trogir.

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    Pliny the Elder, Roman historian, mentions Trogir-Tragurium in the 1 st century as Roman city, well-know for marble, whereas Peuntiger’s Table and Antoninus’s Itinerary show Trogir as an important port and state granary. With fall of the Western Empire, Trogir and other old Roman cities in Dalmatia became part of a special military province (temat) of the Byzantine Empire.

   In the chaos of the early Middle Ages, the Roman natives, with no strong Byzantine garisons, lived in fear of attacks by the barbarian nations, who unprotected, prayed to the new Cristian God. Due to its islet location between the mainland and the island of Ciovo, the town did not meet the tragic fate of Salona, destroyed during an attack of the Avars and Slavs. From the seventh century Croatian princes built their castles with the endowment church of St. Martha, not far from Trogir, in Biaci. Gradually, the Croats enter the town developing certain Roman-Croatian ethnic symbiosis. After the great conquests of Carlemagne (?814.), the Dalmatian cities, including Trogir, came under Frankish rule. The document on the foundation of the Monastery of St. Doimus (1064.) contains only Croatian national names. Croatian princes and kings after stayed in Trogir which enjoyed their protection and privileges. After the fall of the Croatian national dynasty, due to the diplomatic skills of the Bishop Ivan Orsini (1111.) the citizens of Trogir opened the city gates to the Hungarian king Koloman who was also crowned the king of Croatia in Biograd na moru.

   A difficult period for Trogir was the invasion of the Mongolians in pursuit of the Hungarian-Croatian king Bela IV who in 1242. rescued himself by escape to the safer Trogir. There he had an opportunity to admire recently finished portal of Master Radovan, the masterpiece of Middle Age Croatian Art.

   In the Middle Ages the town was ruled by the Statute (the oldest preserved one from 1322.). Members of the Great Council were elected from the Small Council and the Secret Souncil, which discussed the important security issues of the city. A pharmacy in Trogir is mentioned already in 1271., as the first one in this part of Europe. It shows the level of economic civilizational achievments of the free Middle Ages Comune with widespread. commercial and cultural relationships troughout the Mediterranean and Europe. In June 1420., after a bloody battle, the Venetian troops of Captain Petar Loredano entered Trogir. All the city’s liberties were abolished, and Venice took all the power which lasted till the end of the 18th century. After the brotherhoods were dissolved, the citizens united in citizens’ assemblies through which they tried to restrain the despotism of the governer and nobles.

   Many distinguished inhabitants of Trogir fled from their city. Among them was Petar Berislavic, later Viceroy (Ban) of Croatia and Bishop of Zagreb, who died by a Turkish sword in 1520., deceived and exausted by heavy fighting for the freedom of Croatia. The majority of nobles studied in Italian cities where they got humanistic education. Among them was Ivan Lucius-Lucic, the father of modern Croatian historiography.

   Turkish devastation in the near of Trogir from the 17 th century completely destroyed the town from the economic point of view. At the end of the 18 th century Venetian Republic was abolished. During Napoleon’s wars from 1806-1814., Trogir was annexed to the Illyrian provinces under Marshal Marmont. After Napoleon’s military defeat Trogir became the part of Austria-Hungary. In 1867., with the support of Bishop Strossmayer, the National Library was founded and became the focal point of national renaissance. Twenty years later, after long political struggles with Italy-oriented population demanding autonomy, the commune of Trogir passed into Croatian hands. With the fall of the Austrian Empire after the World War I in 1918., Trogir joins Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenians. General dissatisfaction and stagnation was gradually increasing. In April 1941., Italy occupies Trogir without resistance and in 1943., one-year German occupation of Trogir begins. Trogir gained its freedom in the end of 1944., after numerous victims and destroyed economy. The period of economical development, particulary shipbuilding and turism, follows, together with the increase of life standard of the citizens. But, the narrowness of the national awareness and democratic freedoms in South-Slavic Federation causes a great discontent of the citizens.

   After the first democratic elections, held in 1990. by general plebiscitery of the Croatian for free and independent state of Croatia, Trogir gives new victims as the foundation of the freeedom of the Croatian people and the involvement of Croatia in European civilizational and economic prosperity.


The old town core has been formed between the 13 th and 15 th century inside defence wall that was restored by Venice in the 15 th century. They also added two forts that are still preserved: citadel Kamerlengo, and the tower of St. Mark. The Kamerlengo citadel, that is used to be connected with the city walls, is on the south-western part of the island. Its present shape it got in the 15th century. More in the south is the tower of St. Mark from the 15th century, and between the tower and the citadel, there is a gloriet built in the style of classicism, from the time of the French occupation. In the part of the town that developed on Ciovo there are a few interesting small churches. The older, eastern part of the town has developed around the main square with the cathedral. The western part, Pasika, was built later. In the past, the town was one of the cultural centres of Dalmatia: in the 13 th century master Radovan worked there, and in the 15 th century there were famous sculptors, architects, builders, humanists and historians (Ivan Lucius). The Radovan Portal finished in 1240, is a monumental and perhaps unique work of this great Croatian artist, of whom the inscription on the base of the lunette says he is "the best of all in this artisanship".

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    The entrance into the town from the north is through the renaissance town gates from the 17 th century with the sculpture of Blessed Ivan Ursini, the patron saint of the town. On the main square there is the cathedral from the 13 th - 15 th century with characteristics of both Romanesque and Gothic styles. The most important port of the cathedral, and the most valuable work of the Romanesque sculpture in Dalmatia is the portal of master Radovan from 1240. The sculpture of St. Lovro and triangular gable were added to it in the 14 th century. In the cathedral there are also: the baptistery from 1464, the most important preserved work of the sculptor Andrija Alesi; octagonal stone pulpit from the 13 th century; Gothic chorus benches; ciborium from the 14 th century; paintings of the local and Italian masters; Gothic chapel of St. Jeronim from 1438; and chapel of the Blessed Ivan Ursini, the most beautiful renaissance monument in Dalmatia, the work of Nikola Firentinac from the 15 th century.
The most beautiful objects from the treasury are embroideries, ivory Gothic triptych, and medieval illuminated codices.

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    On the square there is the town loggia from the 15 th century, clock tower, and the small church of St. Sebastijan that was built in the renaissance style. The small, early medieval church of St. Barbara, from the 9 th - 10 th century, is located behind the loggia and it is the oldest church in Trogir. The square is closed by the Cipiko Palace. Opposite to it, is the town hall from the 15 th century. The renaissance church of the St. John the Baptist from the 13 th century, with remains of the medieval frescos and the tomb of the Cipiko family, is on the coast. Further down the coast is part of preserved defence walls with tower and renaissance town gates from 1593.

Other interesting historical and cultural monuments:

fort of St. Nicholas
fort Vitturi
south City Gate
Benedictine Convent and Church of St. Nicholas
City Hall
Cathedral of St. Lawrence
baptistry and Chapel of the St. Ivan of Trogir
Chapel of the St. Ivan
Clock Tower
Chapel of St. Mary
Church of St. John the Baptist
old and new Cipiko Palaces
Lucuc Palace
Garagnin-Fanfogna Palace
Church of St. Peter
Andreis Palace
Church of Our lady of Mt Carmel
The relief of Kairos, the Greek god of the happy moment, probably from the 1st century B.C., is kept in the Benedictine nunnery with the church of St. Nikola. The Greek inscription from the 4th - 3rd century B.C., the oldest written monument in the area of Trogir, is also built in the wall of the cloister of this nunnery.

Trogir is a treasury of cultural and historical monuments, and beauties of the Mediterranean landscape with abundance of tourist possibilities.

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