KAUNAS - JUNE 2008
Kaunas, located at the confluence of the two largest Lithuanian rivers, the Nemunas and the Neris, is the second largest city in the country and was between WWI and WWII the temporarary capital of Lithuania.
"KAUNAS CASTLE, a Gothic building at the confluence of the Nemunas and Neris rivers with two rows of protective walls, was first mentioned in 1361, when the Teutonic Knights were preparing to attack it"
"KAUNAS PRIEST SEMINARY, the biggest in Lithuania, serving the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Kaunas, is part of the Faculty of Theology of the Vytautas Magnus University"
"OLD WOODEN SCULPTURES"
"FOUNTAIN - It probably has something to do with Napoleon, who traversed this land, but the reference was lost..."
"STATE DRAMA THEATRE - Started in 1920, it is the biggest in Kaunas, and one of the oldest in Lithuania"
"TELEFONAS & BMW"
"THE WHITE SWAN - The Town Hall’s construction began in 1542 with Gothic, Baroque and early Classicism elements. In the Medieval times, the Town Hall and the main market place were the centre of Kaunas. After its latest reconstruction in 1970, it became the Wedding Palace with the Ceramics Museum in its basement"
"ST. FRANCIS XAVIER - Constructed in late Baroque style in the early 18th century, it was given to the Franciscan Monks in 1787, to be later used as an Orthodox Church, as A. Nevsky's Cathedral and as a technical college. In 1990, it was returned to the Jesuits"
"CATHEDRAL - The first Gothic church here was first mentioned in writing sources in 1413. The construction of the largest Gothic church in Lithuania 84m long by 34m wide - was concluded in 1624 and its present-day form comes from the 1800 renovation"
"GERMAN MERCHANT HOUSES - From the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries"
"VYTAUTAS CHURCH (The Church of taking Holy Virgin Mary into Heaven) - One of the first Gothic brick churches in Kaunas, it was built in the 15th century and belonged to Franciscan monks. During the Napoleonic Wars it was used as an ammunition warehouse..."
"HOUSE OF PERKUNAS - One of the most original examples of flamboyant Gothic architecture in Lithuania, the building was constructed in the late 15th century for Hansa merchants. In the 19th century, a statue of Perkunas (Thunder/Zeus) was found, leading to the assumption that a pagan sanctuary existed in the site. It was home to the first Drama Theatre of Kaunas in 1844 and belongs presently to the Jesuits"
"MUSEUM - The Mikailojus Konstantinas Ciurlionis National Art Museum hosts most of the paintings of the painter and composer, perhaps the most famous Lithuanian artist of all time, whose name was used to name the asteroid 2420 Ciurlionis. The museum is also home to Ciurlionis' memorabilia, Lithuanian folk art, 17th-20th century fine and applied art, Ancient Egypt art, numismatics..."
"DEVIL MUSEUM - The museum, a well-kept secret, hosts a collection of sculptures and carvings of more than 2000 devils from Lithuania and the whole world. When the museum opened in 1966, it housed 260 statues, property of the artist Antanas Zmuidzinavicius (1876-1966), who was obsessed by the number 13, also known as the devil's dozen"
"LAISVÈS AVENUE - Built in the 19th century and running in the East-West direction, the 1.7 km long Liberty Avenue connects the old and new parts of the city. At its end, the Neo-Byzantine-style St. Michael, the Archangel, Church may be seen"