Ivanec region through history
History of Ivanec
Origin of Ivanec are connected to order of St. John of Jerusalem, Fratres hospitalis sancti Johannis Iherosolimitani, better known under the name - Knights hospitaller. Ivanec has got it's name by St. John Baptizer chapel that the Knights hospitaller were raised on the region on the today's Ivanec. Original name of the settlement was municipality Saint John, and from that time there left the toponimes Ivanec and Ivančica.
There is a mention of „villa of Knights Hospitaller“ (villa hospitalariorum) in 1201. together with estate of Zagrabian biocese Jalkovec, thus it is supposed that Knights hospitaller were in possession of the complex around Ivančica and Ivanec as soon as of 12th century.
Knights hospitaller are also mentioned in the region of Ivanec in charter of Bela IV from 1238. Their huge estates were on the mountain Ivančica and under/below it. Their seat was in the fortified town Bela (today's Pusta Bela). Besides Bela, the estate of Knights hospitaller, was including a few smaller economic units in Cerje, Jurketinec and Ivanec. Punikve, as an estate have been mentioned as soon as of 1304, and Cerje Tužno as soon as of 1306.
Ivanec itself was mentioned for the first time in the charter of Knight hospitaller Ivan Paližna jr., prior of Bela. This charter was issued on 22. June of 1396., and it is saved in the transcription of Albert de Naghmihal, Prior of Vrana and Banus of Croatia and Dalmatia from 1421.
The charter was not the first mention of Ivanec, but also a proof that Ivanec as a settlement existed even before the written record of it. Ivan of Paližna mentions the town whose freedoms and documents were seized by certain enemies and which has suffered a lot (of damage) because of it.
After the demise/department of Knights hospitaller from Croatia, whose order was abolished by pope Innocent VII. in 1405. , at the beginning of 15th century the estate of Bela comes over into the profane hands.
From 1439. the first profane owner of the Bela estate was Croatian banus Matko Talovac, and from 1446. Jan Vitovac and his sons. Hungarian king Matija Korvin has confiscated in 1480. huge estates of disobedient nobles, amongst which was Bela itself. His son, count of Zagorje Ivaniš Korvin, has sold Bela estate, around 1500, to a Hungarian count family Petheö de Gerse with lien of 5600 gold coins.
Ivanec in the hands of(under) Petheö de Gerse family
Petheö de Gerse family has been ruling Ivanec up to 1738. Ivanec was their ruling and economic center, and Bela has slowly begun to loose it's significance. Supported with a favorable position, numerous population, fertile arable land and city-fortress raised by Petheö de Gerse family in the middle of 16. century, Ivanec was developed into the central place of the whole region, and such a status it kept up to our time.
We first read about existence of a fortified town in Ivanec from the banus order from 1558. by which Fraksija Choron was introduced into the posession, after the lawsuit that brothers Petheö de Gerse had with a noble Toma Salaj.
The reason for the building of the fortress were more frequent Turkish raids and each manor were to encircle themselves with a defending wall or a building where the inhabitansts could hide themselves and defend themselves. King Ferdinand has issued a charter to Petheö de Gerse family in 1564. in which he confirms the original ownership and in which there are enlisted villages and settlements Rusakovec, Završje, Lovrečan, Lukavec, Vitešinec, Gačice, Margečan, Seljanec, Ivanečki Vrhovec, Šaturnjak, Punikve, Prigorec, Ivanec, Vuglove and Stažnjevec. In the same charter there is a mention of rebuilding of the castle, thus it can be concluded that it was rebuilt from a building worn down.
Archeologic research conducted few years ago on the locality of Stari grad (Old town) have discovered the remnants of the family Petheö de Gerse fortress, the remnants of the chapel of the Petheö family in the east defending wall, but also the remnants of an older chapel of St. John the Baptist in the court of the town. This chapel was mentioned for the first time in the visitation from 1649., and in 1674. it was torn down.
According to the remnants found the chapel belongs to the gothic period, and in its wall there has been found a fragment of a roman tombstone with portrait of male figures dressed into patrician clothes. The chapel was partly built of rough-stone, thus it can be concluded that in this area there must have been an older version of the chapel, whose material has been used for its building.
The old town Ivanec was a defending castle consisting of 4 wings that were closing a circle. It was separated from the environment by a deep water trenches from Bistrica, and the entrance in the castle was across the bridge over a grabbing place full of water.
After death of Ivan Petheö, the last male descendant of Petheö de Gerse family in 1728., the estate was managed by it's widow Barbara Falussy. After her death in 1730. the estate comes into possession of the King. King Karlo IV in 1740. sells the estate to Ladislavu Erdödy Novomarofski who renews manor economy, brings water into the trenches around the city, builds the second floor and upgrades Ivanec's castle.
However, Ivanec hasn't stayed under the ownership of Erdödy because the women inheritors of Petheö de Gerse family in 1763 have initiated the lawsuit considering that their ownership was unrightfully taken off, since their ancestors bought the estate with the money, and it wasn't a charter present to them. The lawsuit in regards of inheritance has lasted as long as 54 years, that is until/ to 1817 when the inheritance of Petheö de Gerse family was distributed amongst 15 families of nobles in blood relationship to the Petheö family.
Ivanec has been handed into possession of baron Adam Peharnik-Hotković which left it as inheritance to his daughter Katarina, married to a lawyer in Ivanec Nikola pl. Faller. Their daughter has been married to Filip pl. Šarlay. She has inherited castle Ivanec from her mother, the land and the forest. In 1867. Šarlays sold the whole estate and the city to Ladislav Kukuljević, son of Frano Kukuljević who inherited the estate Ivanečka Kaniža with forests and the land, where he has raised a smaller countryside court and economy buildings.
Ivanec under Kukuljević-Sakcinksi family
Ladislav Kukuljević has finally arranged the old town of Ivanec, and the well managedmanor he leaves to his nephew Božidar Kukuljević, son of Ivan Kukuljević Sakcinski. Božidar has transformed the rusty pond and meadow into English park, today's park in Ivanec.
His son Radovan, due to debts, disposes of the majority of the estate to dr. Josip Šaban, who for the purpose of returning the debt sells the estate of which there was left only the castle with the garden, mill and a certain forest areas.
The castle was devastated in World War II. It was set to firein 1943. and was heavily damaged in the fire. The damaged castle and the rest of the state were nationalized in 1946. The contemporary authorities haven't though it important to renew the castle thus it was left to decay, and in 1959. the two towers that were preserved were torn down.