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Photographer's Note

It's the interesting play of words: "mir" means "peace" in local language and the castle you see here stays near the small town Mir. Mir castle is the unique monument of Belarussian architecture. It was built by duke Ilinich in early 16th century instead of wooden feudal farmstead. This is a square-planned building with towers at the corners and the fifth tower which had a drawbridge and a forged grille chersa which could urgently stop a sudden attack. The castle was well adapted for gunshot defense. Its walls had two rows of loop-holes, and its towers were intended for heavy cannon shooting from them.

The basis of the volumetric castle's composition is its high towers which jut out beyond the wall-line. All of them have the same structure: tetrahedral core with octahedral top, but they differently decorated which gives original decorative value and beauty to the castle. The representational means were used for plastic decoration of the castle: gothic bricklaying with walled up bricks division of walls with plastered niches of various forms ornamental brick belts.

Since 1568 the Mir castle was owned by Dukes Radziwils, who finished its in Renaissance style by built the three-storied palace. Besides the earth walls were rised around the castle with bastions at corners and water moat surround them. Despite numerous destruction's (the heaviest were during 1812 war) the Mir castle survived till now when it was successfully restored. The monument is in UNESCO World Heritage list.

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Additional Photos by Denis Kabanov (Tracker) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 132 W: 0 N: 399] (1942)
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