The Deserted Castle
The Deserted Castle lost its importance in the middle of the 15th century. Its towers, palaces and bastions served only as a dwelling for the large troops of Ján Jiskra of Brandýs. At the time of conquering the castle by Ján Huňady the castle buildings were destroyed by fire and since then the Deserted Castle has been in ruins.
The first systematic excavation work in the Deserted Castle was realized in the year 1886. Since 1992 the archaeological research has been systematically financed within a framework of the budget of the town of Zvolen.
Gradually discovered and preserved castle ruins in the town forest park surroundings are a frequently visited place of relax and experience.
The castle had several owners. King Matthias Corvinus with his wife Beatrix liked to come here, it was also a residence of Ján Jiskra of Brandýs, and it was kept in Ján Thurzo´s possession as well.
On the ground floor there are the most precious rooms with the stone rib vaulted ceiling lit up by narrow apertured windows. In its eastern wing there is situated originally Gothic two-storeyed chapel with beautiful portals. The first bigger reconstruction in 1491 – 1510 added the outside stony fortification to the castle. Since 1548 the Renaissance reconstruction of the castle has started. The castle was made one floor higher, corner oriel keeps were built to it, the third storey was equipped with shooting openings and completed by the attica.
In the second half of the 18th century the castle experienced the second distinct reconstruction. During this Baroque reconstruction was created the coffered ceiling in the Royal Hall with the portraits of 78 Roman emperors. It had been the king’s possession till the middle of the 17th century.
Nowadays Zvolen Castle is a national cultural heritage and it’s the seat of the Slovak National Gallery.
The Roman Catholic St. Elizabeth’s Church
The Evangelical Church of the St. Trinity
In the northern part of SNP Square there is a building of Finko curia (mansion house). This initially Renaissance one-storeyed yeoman curia was gradually rebuilt in the Baroque style. An interesting building in the town centre is also a former burgher’s house with Renaissance arches and the Baroque fireplace. Nowadays this building is a seat of the Forestry and Wood sciences and Technology Museum with the expositions of historical furniture, clocks, glass, porcelain, and folk costumes. In the centre of the town there are also other precious burghers´ houses from the Renaissance period.
Finko curia and Forestry and Wood Sciences and Technology Museum
In the village founded in the second half of the 13th century is preserved initially early Gothic St Matthew Apostle Church, having been reconstructed in the following centuries. The church nave and presbytery are decorated by the Gothic murals dated from the 14th century. Due to the preserved medieval murals the Church in Zolná belongs to precious cultural heritage.
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A dominant historical place of the village are the ruins of the castle built in the last decade of the 14th century following the example of the nearby Zvolen Castle. The original ground plan disposition - three residential wings around the oblong castle courtyard – was changed in the 16th century by building a fortification with four corner bastions up to it. The castle was exploited last time in the interwar period.