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The History of Sveta Nedelja

Although Sveta Nedelja is the newest addition to Zagreb County its historical monuments are nevertheless preserved with pride, and show how the region unfolded over the ages. Civilisations in this area date as far back as the Roman Empire.

Although Sveta Nedelja is the newest addition to Zagreb County its historical monuments are nevertheless preserved with pride, and show how the region unfolded over the ages. Civilisations in this area date as far back as the Roman Empire. Sveta Nedelja was once part of Pannonia, which once consisted of the cities of Emona and Siscia, which are now known to us as Ljubljana and Sisak. At Jagnjić Dola a bronze Roman brooch, dating back to the second and third centuries, was found. Proof of a Roman settlement in Novaki came in the form of a lidless sarcophagus, fragments of Roman bricks, and some coins from the time of Emperor Constantine the Great. The most important evidence, however, was the unearthing of a large, third century stone monument in Kerestinec. This was discovered in the late nineteenth century and a replica can be seen on exhibit within the town. It is believed that Kerestinec was home to a Roman cemetery, as well as a number of military posts.

Kerestinec was also home to a fortress, built by the first known nobles in the area, at the beginning of the Late Middle Ages, in the twelfth century. From 1193 until 1293 this was managed by the reigning Duke of Okić, and from the thirteenth to the sixteenth centuries the Okić family controlled Kerestinec, Kalinovica, Mala Gorica, and Jagnjić Dol. In 1493 their estate was purchased by the Earl of Erdödy for 6,000 gold forints, and would remain the new owners until 1860. The Earl expanded the fortress into a castle, using Renaissance style architecture, and it would be Petar Erdödy, who became Earl in 1565, who further expanded the castle and fortress by surrounding it with a moat. Construction continued well into the sixteenth century.
The now-famous Peasant Uprising affected this particular area; Ivan Pasanac’s peasant army was defeated by Gašpar Alapić’s aristocrats on the sixth of February, 1573. Almost 500 villagers were executed at the Castle of Erdödy.