Technical tour - Research Institute for Fruit Growing Pitești - Mărăcineni
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The Research Institute for Fruit Growing
The Research Institute for Fruit Growing - Photo gallery
Curtea de Argeș
The name, literally The Court upon Argeș, refers to the former status of the town as the
capital of Wallachia. Some historians identify the river with ancient "Ordessos", however
the name is unlikely to be derived from this name.
The Cathedral of Curtea de Argeș (early 16th century) is a Romanian
Orthodox cathedral in Curtea de Argeș, România. It is located on the grounds of the
Curtea de Argeș Monastery, and is dedicated to Saint Nicholas. The cathedral is faced
with pale grey limestone, which was easily chiselled then hardened on exposure. The
interior is of brick, plastered and decorated with frescoes. Nearby on the grounds stands
a large Moorish style royal palace:
- The building resembles a very large and elaborate mausoleum, and was built in
the Byzantine style, with Moorish arabesques.
- One traditional legend describes how Neagoe Basarab, while a hostage
in Constantinople, designed a splendid mosque for the sultan, returning to build the
cathedral out of the surplus materials.
A legend tells of Radu Negru employing ,,Master Manole" or ,,Manoli" as architect.
With Manole being unable to finish the walls, the prince threatened him and his
assistants with death. At last Manole suggested that they should follow the ancient
custom of placing a living woman into the foundations; and that she who first
appeared on the following morning should be the victim. The other masons warned
their families, and Manole was forced to sacrifice his own wife. Thus the cathedral
When Manole and his masons told the prince that they could always build an even
greater building, Radu Negru had them stranded on the roof so that they could not
build something to match it. They fashioned wooden wings and tried to fly off the roof,
but, one by one, they all fell to the ground. A spring of clear water, named after
Manole, is said to mark the spot where he fell.
This motif is widespread in South-East Europe, most notably also in Russia, like the
blinding of the Masons of Saint Basil's Cathedral by Ivan the Terrible.
Popular ballad "Monastirea Argeșului" illustrates the aesthetic myth in folkloric
literature and is based on the belief that nothing durable and unique can be built
without the creator's self-sacrifice, making this creation a philosophical poem.
The artistic value of these folk creations was - probably - the reason for which
Alecsandri placed at the beginning of the collection of popular "gems" a quotation
which became renowned: "The Romanian is born a poet".
The Cathedral of Curtea de Argeș (early 16th century)
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