Permanent Display 13. The Main Portal of the Cathedral
The old stone figural portal is as a whole an exceptionally important monument from the 17th century. It is a remarkable example of Baroque proto-historicism, a blend of Neoromanesque and mature Baroque. It was commissioned by Bishop Benedikt Vinković in 1640, who signed a contract with the mason Kozmo Muller of Krško. The bishop wanted it to look like the portal of the Cistercian Abbey in Ják, Hungary, where he had himself once been Abbot. Some parts of the arch of an older portal were built into the new portal, and guardian lions in the lower part. The figural decoration was centered on the massive architectural frame, which imparts a strict iconographic hierarchy. The statues of the royal saints Ladislav and Stjepan, the latter the patron saint of the cathedral, are on the left and right hand sides of the entrance. Above them are reliefs of Mary and the Archangel Gabriel in the scene of the Annunciation. On the gable, in niches divided by pillars, are the apostles who represent the whole Church, the founder of which, Jesus Christ, is at the very top of the portal. The portal was finished in 1643. The sculptures and reliefs manifest considerable stylistic and typological differences, and they were not carved by the same craftsmen. This monumental portal was removed and dismantled during Bollé’s renovation of the Cathedral.