Krakow and its surroundings - a region with outstanding achievements, international sightseeing attractions:
Wieliczka – a mining town with a 1000-year-old salt mine; Swoszowice - a suburban health resort and Tyniec - with a Benedictine abbey, which they are composed of: gothic church from the 15th century. rebuilt in the 16th and 18th centuries. and a Romanesque monastery also rebuilt in the 15th and 17th centuries.
Cracow – tourist center, provincial city, science Center. They are here: the oldest in Poland, the Jagiellonian University, a branch of the Polish Academy of Sciences with several research units and institutes, one of the oldest and most valuable libraries - the Jagiellonian Library, university botanical garden, zoo of didactic importance, cultural facilities (rich collections of monuments and monuments of culture, theaters, philharmonic, radio and TV station, museums). It is an industrial center (Ironworks, machinery industry plants, grocery, chemical, printing), as well as a communication and tourist center, cultural facilities (rich collections of monuments and monuments of culture, theaters, philharmonic, radio and TV station, museums). It is an industrial center (Ironworks, machinery industry plants, grocery, chemical, printing), as well as a communication and tourist center.
According to the Kadłubek chronicle, the city was founded by the prince of Wiślan - Krak. Already in the 10th century. it becomes a populous trading settlement in the voyages of Ibrahim ibn Jacob (965 r.) the first mention of the city is found by the Slavic countries.
Krakow - the stronghold of the Vistula tribe - already in the last years of the 10th century. was part of the Polish state. During the reign of Bolesław the Brave, it became the seat of the Kraków bishopric, and then the ducal seat. Bolesław the Chaste in 1257 r. granted the city a location privilege under the Magdeburg Law.
The greatest increase in the importance of the city occurred during the reign of Casimir the Great. On the site of the former stone castle of Władysław the Short, a magnificent defensive gothic castle was built - Wawel.
W 1364 r. The first Polish university was established - the Krakow Academy. However, the university collapsed after the death of King Casimir the Great and only thanks to the foundation of Queen Jadwiga in 1399 r. it started working again, a w XV w. one of the first universities in Europe flourished.
W 1964 r. The 600th anniversary of the Jagiellonian University was officially celebrated.
During the reign of Sigismund the Old (in the years 1502—1536) the construction of the Renaissance Wawel Castle and the Sigismund Chapel were initiated. Italian architects made a great contribution to the development and architectural design of Wawel, and artists brought by Queen Bona from Italy - decorated it with works of art.
After Sigismund III c 1596 r. capital city to Warsaw, there was a gradual decline of the city intensified by the Swedish invasion. Also in the 18th century. numerous fires, raids, contributions and plagues have decimated the population many times, caused the destruction of the city.
During the partitions of Poland, Krakow came under the rule of Austria, however, it has not ceased to be the center of Polish science and culture. Scientists and artists worked and created here, as K. Estreicher, J. Matejko, St. Wyspiański and many, many others.
During the occupation, the first repressions hit the scientific world painfully. In November 1939 r. were taken to camps 186 professors and research workers at the Jagiellonian University and the AGH University of Science and Technology. The Nazis robbed numerous works of art, they annihilated science. Nevertheless, the city was one of the most important centers of underground struggle.
The first pre-Romanesque buildings were built in the 10th century., e.g.. the four - apse Chapel of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Wawel and the Church of Salvador.
W X—XIII w. Romanesque architecture flourished, e.g.: the first Wawel cathedral preserved to this day in fragments, St.. Andrew and St.. Wojciech, the castle and the second Wawel cathedral. W 1241 r. Tatars destroyed the city. Plan of Krakow, which was developed after obtaining the location in 1257 r., it is an excellent model of a spatial solution, a obecne śródmieście niewiele od niego odbiega. Pod koniec XIII w. wzniesiono mury obronne z czworobocznymi wieżami i basztami.
W XIV w. nastąpił rozkwit gotyku. Powstały w tym okresie różne budowle municypalne i sakralne, e.g.. katedra na Wawelu [1322 – 1364] kościoły: Mariacki, Dominikanów, Bożego Ciała, st. Catherine, st. Marka, st. Cross; na Wawelu wzniesiono zamek gotycki z dziedzińcem arkadowym, a na Rynku Głównym — Sukiennice i ratusz z wieżą. Budynki uniwersyteckie (m.in. Collegium Maius) powstały w XV w. Ponadto w tym czasie zmodernizowano mury obronne, several towers and a barbican were built. The royal tombstones in the Wawel Cathedral are also in the Gothic style. Creator of the famous altar in St. Mary's Church, Wit Stwosz, represents late gothic. Late Gothic painting also achieved a high level.
On architecture and art of the 15th century. The Renaissance had a huge impact.
Zygmunt I became the patron of this style, and the king was followed by a new style of magnates, nobility, rich bourgeoisie and clergy. The first great works of the Polish Renaissance were created at Wawel: Sigismund Chapel, west and north wing of the castle and the tombstone of Jan Olbracht in the cathedral.
Numerous mansions and tenement houses were built at that time. The horizontal attic has replaced the sharp ones, soaring lines of Gothic. The attic of the Cloth Hall is one of the greatest works of Renaissance art.
At the end of the 16th century. baroque reached Krakow, whose influence was visible in the construction industry of the 17th century. Magnate palaces and churches were built in this style.
Moving the capital to Warsaw had a negative impact on the importance of Krakow. At the end of the 17th century. St.. Anna, decorated with beautiful carvings and stucco. W 1702 r. there was a fire in the Wawel Castle, which coincided with the fall of the city again. At the time, in the style of late baroque, churches were built: Piarists, missionaries in Stradom, Carmelites, Pauline Fathers, tenement houses and palaces.