Theme Week Latvia – Rēzekne

Thursday, 26 May 2022 - 12:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
Reading Time:  9 minutes

Creative Centre Zeimuls © panoramio.com - Sirujs Enobs/cc-by-sa-3.0

Creative Centre Zeimuls © panoramio.com – Sirujs Enobs/cc-by-sa-3.0

Rēzekne is a city in the Rēzekne River valley in Latgale region of eastern Latvia. It is called The Heart of Latgale. Built on seven hills, Rēzekne is situated 242 kilometres (150 miles) east of Riga, and 63 kilometres (39 miles) west of the Latvian-Russian border, at the intersection of the Moscow – Ventspils and Warsaw – Saint Petersburg Railways. It has a population of 31,216 (2016) making it the 7th largest city in Latvia. Rēzekne was rebuilt after the war with an emphasis on industrial development. Rēzekne had the 5th highest industrial output in the Latvian SSR, including a dairy processor (Rēzeknes Piena konservu kombināts), a lumber mill, and an electric-instrument factory (Rebir). During this time, many Russians moved to the city, making up a large part of the population (48.5% in 2007).

A Latgalian hill fort is known to have existed at Rēzekne from the 9th to the 13th centuries, until its destruction at the hands of German crusaders of the Livonian Order. In 1285, the knights built a stone fortress on the site, which is today known as Rēzekne castle ruins, to serve as a border post on their eastern frontier. The name Rēzekne was first documented in 1285. Throughout its early history, Rēzekne was attacked many times by Russian and Lithuanian forces. The town became part of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth after the Peace of Jam Zapolski in 1582 during the Livonian War. Rēzekne received Magdeburg rights from Poland in the 17th century, but fell to the Russian Empire during the Partitions of Poland. In 1773, Rēzekne received city rights. Known as “Rezhitsa” during Russian rule, it was an uyezd center first in Pskov Governorate between 1772 and 1776, then Polotsk between 1776 and 1796, Belarus between 1796 and 1802 and finally in Vitebsk Governorate between 1802 and 1917. During the 19th century, the construction of the Moscow-Ventspils and Saint Petersburg-Warsaw railways transformed Rēzekne from a sleepy country town into an important city with two stations. In the spring of 1917, the first Latgalian congress was held in Rēzekne, in which Latgale was declared to unite with the other Latvian regions. Following Latvia’s declaration of independence in 1918, the Latvian War of Independence and the driving out of both the German and Red armies from Latvia, the city became a cultural centre for all of Latgale.

Due to Rēzekne’s multi-ethnic character throughout the centuries, many religious communities have settled in the city. Ethnic differences were often distinguished on religious lines; the Germans brought Christianity to Latvia in the 13th century, as well as Lutheranism during the Reformation Period. The Polish influence over Latgalia in the 17th and 18th centuries strengthened Catholicism among the native Latgalians. Incoming populations of Russian Old Believers introduced Russian Orthodoxy, and up to the 1940s, Rēzekne had a very large Jewish population, and therefore, many synagogues.

One of the most famous statues in Latvia, known as “Latgales Māra”, is found in Rēzekne. It was designed by Leons Tomašickis and first unveiled on 8 September 1939. The bronze statue commemorates the liberation of Latgale from the Red Army in January 1920. The central figure, the woman, is popularly associated with Māra the ancient Latvian goddess of motherhood, fertility, and earth. The cross in her outstretched arm symbolizes the deep importance of Catholicism to Latgalian culture. The words “Vienoti Latvijai” beneath the statue (meaning “United for Latvia”) designates the decision to reunite with the rest of Latvia during the Republic’s formation in 1918, even though Latgale had been politically separated from the rest of Latvia for 300 years. Because the statue symbolized Latvian nationalism, the Soviets toppled it in November 1940 during the first Soviet occupation of Latvia. Under German occupation the local residents restored it on 22 August 1943. The reinstated Soviet government pulled it down again in June 1950. After that, the fate of the original statue is unknown. After Latvia regained its independence in 1991, the statue was reconstructed using old photographs and blueprints, and unveiled on 13 August 1992. Though Soviet rule greatly changed Latgale, Latgales Māra still symbolizes a Catholic Latgale united with Latvia, free of foreign domination.

Rēzekne castle mount with Livonian Order castle ruins © Harald Hansen Our Lady of Sorrows Roman Catholic Church © panoramio.com - Janis Sedols/cc-by-3.0 Sacred Heart of Jesus Cathedral © Rabanus Flavus/cc-by-sa-3.0 Centre of culture Gors © vilnisr/cc-by-sa-3.0 Creative Centre Zeimuls © panoramio.com - Sirujs Enobs/cc-by-sa-3.0 The Green Synagogue © Otto Magnus/cc-by-sa-3.0
<
>
Our Lady of Sorrows Roman Catholic Church © panoramio.com - Janis Sedols/cc-by-3.0
The Castle Ruins, situated on the hill by the river, are the remainders of the ancient fortified residence of ancient Latgalians which existed there from the 9th to 13th centuries. At the end of the 13th century the Livonian Order built a stone castle (Rozitten castle). It was situated in a strategically important place, so the Russians, Lithuanians and Poles were seeking to conquer it. The castle was completely destroyed during the Polish-Swedish war (1656-1660). A model of Rēzekne castle by Edmunds Smans is located near the castle hill.

The Latgale Culture and History Museum (Latgales Kultūrvēstures muzejs) was opened in 1959. The museum offers exposition of the town history, art exhibitions, and pedagogical activities for children. The exposition of Latgale ceramics is the only permanent exposition in Latvia to reflect Latgalian ceramics in its history from the beginning of pottery in the Neolithic period until the achievements of present-day Latgalian ceramists and modern developments. Ceramics collection includes 2000 ceramic wares, made by the renowned Latgalian ceramicists, such as Andrejs Paulāns, Polikarps Čerņavskis, Polikarps Vilcāns, Jānis Backāns, Ādams Kāpostiņš and others. At the moment the museum stock collection has about 70 thousand items.

The building which is now the Art House was built in the last quarter of the 19th century for the merchant Vorobjov. It features rich woodcarvings on its façade, decorated in an eclectic style. It soon became the property of the city, and was used as a teachers’ institute, a school, a tuberculosis centre and a military registration office. This frequent change of users almost totally destroyed the original rich interior. In the middle of the 1990s it was acquired by the Rezekne Art College. Due to the efforts of the students and teachers, the Art House got back its original outlook. It houses the exposition “Latgalian painting” from the reserves of the Latgale Culture History Museum.

The Eastern Latvia’s Center of Creative Services “Zeimuļs” houses classes of interest and non-formal education for children and youth. The opening of the center was on 1 September 2012. The architects were Rasa Kalniņa and Māris Krumiņš who used Latvian ethnographic motifs in their design. The main construction materials are concrete, glass, metal and wood. It is the largest building with a green roof in the Baltic countries. The towers offer one of the best views in Rezekne, over the Castle Hill and the historical center of the city.

The multifunctional culture centre “Gors” (The Embassy of Latgale) was opened in 2013. In addition to the main 1000-seat concert hall, it includes a 220-seat concert hall, Registration of marriages hall, exhibition space, repetition halls and a restaurant. The centre is used for a variety of purposes, including concerts, conferences, film, ballet and theatre.

Here you can find the complete Overview of all Theme Weeks.

Read more on Rēzekne, latvia.travel – Rēzekne, Wikivoyage Rēzekne and Wikipedia Rēzekne. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.






Recommended posts:

Share this post: (Please note data protection regulations before using buttons)

Leiria in Portugal

Leiria in Portugal

[caption id="attachment_217138" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Fulviusbsas[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Leiria is a city and a municipality in the Centro Region of Portugal and in the historical province of Beira Litoral. It is the capital of Leiria District. The population in 2011 was 126,879, in an area of 565.09 square kilometres (218.18 sq mi). It is the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Leiria-Fátima. Leiria is located in the Centro Region and sub region of Pinhal Litoral, about halfway between Lisbon and Por...

[ read more ]

Theme Week Uzbekistan - Bukhara

Theme Week Uzbekistan - Bukhara

[caption id="attachment_208725" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Poi Kalon Ensemble © flickr.com - Fulvio Spada/cc-by-sa-2.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Bukhara is a city in Uzbekistan. Bukhara is rich in historical sites, with about 140 architectural monuments. The city served as the capital of the Samanid empire and Khanate of Bukhara and was the birthplace of Imam Bukhari. The nation's fifth-largest city, it had a population of 247,644 as of 31 August 2016. But according to the Statistics of O’zStatQo’m Department the City...

[ read more ]

Palazzo Madama in Rome

Palazzo Madama in Rome

[caption id="attachment_229613" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Fratello.Gracco/cc-by-sa-4.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Palazzo Madama in Rome is the seat of the Senate of the Italian Republic, the upper house of the Italian Parliament. After the extinction of the Medici in 1743, the palace was handed over to the House of Lorraine and, later, to Pope Benedict XIV, who made it the seat of the Papal Government. In 1849, Pius IX moved here the Ministries of Finances and of the Public Debt, as well as the Papal Post Offices. In 1...

[ read more ]

Royal Palace of Brussels

Royal Palace of Brussels

[caption id="attachment_233199" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Matthias Zepper/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Royal Palace of Brussels is the official palace of the King and Queen of the Belgians in the centre of the nation's capital, Brussels. However, it is not used as a royal residence, as the king and his family live in the Royal Palace of Laeken in northern Brussels. The website of the Belgian Monarchy describes the function of the Royal Palace as follows: The Royal Palace is where His Majesty the K...

[ read more ]

Theme Week West Jerusalem - The King David Hotel

Theme Week West Jerusalem - The King David Hotel

[caption id="attachment_185682" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Michael Plutchok/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The King David Hotel is a hotel in West Jerusalem. Opened in 1931, the hotel was built with locally quarried pink limestone and was founded by Ezra Mosseri, a wealthy Egyptian Jewish banker. It is located on King David Street in the centre of West Jerusalem, overlooking the Old City in East Jerusalem and Mount Zion. Today it is one of Israel's leading 5-star hotels and member of The Leading Hotels of the Wo...

[ read more ]

The Israeli Independence Day

The Israeli Independence Day

[caption id="attachment_189043" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Independence Hall in Tel Aviv © Deror avi[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Israeli Declaration of Independence took place on May 14, 1948 or on 5 Iyar 5708, according to the Hebrew calendar, in the Independence Hall of the Israeli de jure capital city Tel Aviv, mostly as a direct result of the Holocaust and the Évian Conference. On the same day, the British Mandatory Palestine ended. The Independence Day (Hebrew "Jom haAtzma'ut" for "Day of Independence") was introd...

[ read more ]

Bath on River Avon

Bath on River Avon

[caption id="attachment_153724" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Abbey of Bath © Nikater[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Bath is a city in the ceremonial county of Somerset in South West England. It is situated 97 miles (156 km) west of London and 13 miles (21 km) south-east of Bristol. The population of the city is 83,992. It was granted city status by Royal Charter by Queen Elizabeth I in 1590, and was made a county borough in 1889 which gave it administrative independence from its county, Somerset. The city became part of Avon whe...

[ read more ]

Hamra Street, Beirut's Champs Elysées

Hamra Street, Beirut's Champs Elysées

[caption id="attachment_222732" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Hamra Street © flickr.com - Lolinka/cc-by-2.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Hamra Street or Rue Hamra is one of the main streets of the city of Beirut, Lebanon, and one of the main economic and diplomatic hubs of Beirut. It is located in the neighborhood of the same name, Hamra. Its technical name is Rue 31. Due to the numerous sidewalk cafes and theatres, Hamra Street was the centre of intellectual activity in Beirut during the 1960s and 1970s. Before 1975, Hamra Str...

[ read more ]

Hamburg's warehouse district, the largest historic warehouse complex in the world

Hamburg's warehouse district, the largest historic warehouse complex in the world

[caption id="attachment_25354" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Thomas Wolf - www.foto-tw.de/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Speicherstadt (meaning warehouse district) in Hamburg is the largest warehouse district in the world where the buildings stand on timber-pile foundations. It is located in the the HafenCity quarter and was built from 1883 to 1927. The Speicherstadt is located in the port of Hamburg and 1.5 km (0.93 mi) long and pervaded by loading canals. The district was built as a free zone to trans...

[ read more ]

White Villages Route of Andalusia

White Villages Route of Andalusia

[caption id="attachment_27454" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Cuesta de Alhacaba - Typical house in the province of Granada © Claudio Landi/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The White Towns of Andalusia, or Pueblos Blancos, are a series of more then 30 places, towns and large villages in the northern part of the provinces of Cádiz and Málaga in southern Spain, mostly within the UNESCO biosphere reserve Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park. All of the villages are characterised by whitewashed walls and red or brown tiled ro...

[ read more ]

Return to TopReturn to Top
Town Hall © geograph.org.uk - Stephen Richards/cc-by-sa-2.0
Grimsby in Lincolnshire

Grimsby, also Great Grimsby, is a port town and the administrative centre of North East Lincolnshire, England, on the south...

Durbe Manor © panoramio.com - Igors Jefimovs/cc-by-3.0
Theme Week Latvia – Tukums

Tukums is a town in the Courland region of Latvia. Three regions of Latvia meet in the vicinity of Tukums...

© Krapulat/cc-by-sa-4.0
Portrait: Ludwig von Mises, Austrian School economist, historian, logician, and sociologist

Ludwig Heinrich Edler von Mises was an Austrian School economist, historian, logician, and sociologist. Mises wrote and lectured extensively on...

Close