Jelgava

Jelgava Palace

Jelgava Palace

Jelgava(Mitau Palace) is the most significant historical monument in Latvia. This is the largest palace in the country and the entire Baltic, the winter residence of the Kurzeme Duke Ernst Biron. Like the Rundale Palace, the Jelgava Palace was designed by Baritolomeo Rastrelli. Originally, the palace consisted of 3 buildings in the shape of a horseshoe, but in 1937 the fourth building was built on the site of the former stables of the palace, which closed the courtyard. In the palace, founded in 1738, Biron himself almost did not live because of the disgrace that began after the death of Anna Ionannovna. But it is known that in 1779, when construction was already completed, his successor, Peter Biron, received the famous Count Cagliostro in the palace. The interior of the palace, on the order of Biron, worked by F.H. Barizien, I.M. Graf and the Italian artist d’Angeli, died in 1918 when the Jelgava Palace was looted and burned by the retreating parts of Bermondt-Avalov. The palace was badly damaged during the military operations of 1944. The restoration, carried out in 1956-64, practically did not affect the interiors.

Detailed information has not been preserved on the original interiors of the Mitava Palace. Obviously, in the decoration of the facades festoons, masks and stucco parts intended for the Rundale residence were used. In the decoration of these palaces you can find a lot in common. Of greatest historical interest is the tomb of the Courland dukes, located in the southeast of the basement in 1820. It contains three dozen sarcophagi made for the dukes of the Ketler clan from 1569 to 1743. Today in the palace is the Latvian Agricultural University and the Jelgava Museum of History and Art. G. Elias. In 1740, a tomb for the representatives of the Ketler and Biron dynasties was arranged in the basement of the palace, which is also available for inspection.

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