If you happen to find yourself near București, the capital of Romania, don’t miss the chance to visit a magical place, The Mogoșoaia Palace, situated only 15 km outside the city limits. It’s a masterpiece of architecture and specifically a good example of the unique Romanian Byzantine style also known as the Brâncovenesc style.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with the history of Romania, here’s a little refresher course. Before it became a country, there were three major regions which governed themselves:Transylvania, Moldavia and Wallachia. In the 17th century until early 18th century the ruler of Wallachia was Constantin Brâncoveanu, a great patron of culture and the founder of the Romanian Byzantine architectural style.
The Mogoșoaia Palace complex was completed in 1702. After the death of Brâncoveanu in 1714 by the ottomans, the palace and all his treasures were confiscated by the Ottoman Empire. The next ruler of Wallachia, Ștefan Cantacuzino bought the Mogoșoaia Palace from the Turks and gave it to Brâncoveanu’s nephew. It remained in this family until the early 19th century but was almost destroyed 2 times: once in the Russian-Turkish War (1768-1774) and then during the Revolution from 1821.
In 1832 the Mogoșoaia Palace came in the possession of the next ruling family of Wallachia: Bibescu. Between 1860 and 1880 they renovated it and built the family tomb in the palaces park along with the Elchingen Villa.
During World War II the palace was used as a meeting place for the Allied diplomats and rented to the Swiss Delegation in Romania. The communist regime took possession of the complex after 1945 and it was named a historical monument.
Nowadays the Complex comprises of the palace (The Museum of Brâncovenesc Art), the inner courtyard, the gate tower, cuhnia (the old kitchen), the Elchingen Villa (used as a restaurant), ghețăria (a small building used to house blocks of ice), the Bibescu Family Tomb and the greenhouse. Outside of the complex walls, one can find the Saint Georg’s Church, the orchard, and the adjacent gardens.
I definitely recommend visiting the Mogoșoaia Palace, where one can escape the overcrowding of the capital and enjoy a nice day getting to know a part of Romania’s culture but also relaxing in the beautiful landscape that surrounds the complex.
The history is imprinted in the Mogoșoaia Palace near the capital of Romania, because it is one of the few landmarks that can show you the beauty of the unique Romanian Byzantine style.
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