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Revue Pamiatky a múzeá – Summary 2/2014

Ladislav Olexa – Tomáš Nováček
Bronze Age burial place near Nižná Myšľa
The burial ground of the famous archaeological site near the eastern-Slovak municipality of Nižná Myšľa covers the highest part of the Várhegy hill. The Nitra’s Archaeological Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences (SAV) started the systematic research of the site in 1977, and continued with it, in cooperation with the Eastern Slovak Museum in Košice, since 1988. During the thirty six seasons, they explored nearly half of the site (around 800 graves) within an area of some 3.5 hectares. The remainder still waits to reveal the testimony of our ancestral community, which perished more than 3500 years ago.
The first graves of the burial site were discovered in the summer of 1948, when part of the western slope collapsed after summer thunderstorms. A local teacher brought the findings to the Košice museum and the resident archaeologist Ján Pastor immediately visited the site. In autumn that year, he carried out a rescue research and uncovered five, relatively poor graves. It was not until thirty years later, during the research carried out by the Archaeological Institute of SAV Nitra, the area of the assumed burial ground was uncovered. This turned out to be the crucial moment of the whole research. At the same time, the archaeologists were also exploring the period’s fortified settlements.
The burials probably started to take place there at the turn of the 18th and 17th centuries BC, in the early Bronze Age. The necropolis was part of the older, smaller fortified settlement I. The burying at the ground ceased abruptly soon after 1500 BC, when the new, larger fortified settlement II was built. Some of the older graves were destroyed during the construction of the new wall and the digging of the ditch. The area with the older graves became part of the new fortified village.
The archaeological findings, acquired from the settlement and the bottom of the ditch, came from the same period as the burials, which could amount to one thousand. The cadavers had lots of posthumous gifts with them, mainly vessels and personal decorations. The archaeological relics from both discovery sites are typologically and culturally identical; they are the products of the same specialised craftsmen and workshops.
The individual graves at the burial site were most probably marked with wooden posts. These guaranteed that during the many years of burials the younger graves would not cover or damage the older ones. The systematic digging of graves in rows or separated groups reflected the extended family relationships of the following generations. The graves had a rectangular ground plan, quite sharp corners, almost vertical walls and flat bottoms. The dead were placed inside the graves in squat positions, with their faces turned to east. The women and girls, with a few exceptions, were lying on their left sides in the direction north to south, and men and boys were on their rights sides positioned from south to north. The differences in quality and amount of the accessories found in the graves placed their status in three groups: the higher class, the predominant middle class, and the group of subordinated or dependant people.

Ján Beljak – Noémi Beljak Pažinová – Michal Šimkovic
Lower Pustý castle in Zvolen
The ruins of the Pustý hrad (meaning “deserted castle”) extend across two peaks of the hill with the same name that is located south-west of the Zvolen town’s centre. The large castle complex consists of the Upper Castle (3.5 ha) and Lower Castle (0.7 ha), with a joining area of 0.5 ha. Modern research of the castle started in the 1990s at the Upper Castle. Today, the exploration activities focus on the Lower Castle. The Zvolen department of the Archaeological Institute of SAV Nitra has been carrying out an archaeological research at the Lower Castle during the summer months since 2009. Part of it is an international summer school of archaeology organised by the Department of Archaeology at the Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra, which annually welcomes over a hundred students primarily from Central European universities.
The research of the Lower Castle is done by a sector’s method with a unified size of sector of 5 x 5 metres. All findings are registered based on the sectors, which allows for the subsequent spatial analysis of their existence in individual periods.
From its beginning, the research focussed on the robust residential tower in the southern corner of the Lower Castle’s courtyard, which stands almost at the pinacle of the location (477 metres above sea level). The archaeological research gradually uncovered other objects – the castle’s fortification wall and entrance gates. Between 2009 and 2013, it explored the courtyard’s area of over 2,000 m2, which included the residential tower near the outer fortification and so-called joining wall. Simultaneously, the salvage works started on the exposed architecture, covering all of the dug up walls with pent roofs in the first phase.
The research of the Lower Castle revealed a primeval settlement, which is represented through unique remains of the constructions. The majority of findings from the early and late Bronze Age were found in the south-western part of the area, and the discoveries of late Stone Age items dominated the middle and northern parts of the site. The oldest part of the medieval castle complex was the residential tower that was built at the highest place of the Upper Castle at the end of the 12th century. The residential tower of the Lower Castle was probably built in the early decades of the 13th century and likely perished at the beginning of the 14th century.
The residential towers of exceptional sizes used to be part of royal castles in historical Hungary. In the Middle Ages, Zvolen was a place where the Hungarian kings, mainly from the Arpád family, often stayed and occasionally for a long time. Based on the research, the Upper Castle originated as an administrative residence of the Zvolen committee. The tower at the Lower Castle was likely an occasional royal residence. The Zvolen tower structure can relate to the prism donjons of the Srednyj castle (today Ukraine) and Bratislava castle; the large residential towers in Hungary include the six-corner tower of the Lower Castle in Visegrad and the so-called White tower of the Esztergom castle; Slovakia has the cylindrical tower of the Spiš Castle.

Krisztina Ilkó
Identification of medieval frescos in Nitra’s Cathedral of St. Emmeram
The frescos that were recently discovered (in 2012) in the Cathedral of St. Emmeram in Nitra, which depict the Death and Coronation of the Virgin Mary, have been discussed in the articles of Jozef Medvecký and Vladimír Plekanec in the Monuments and Museums revues No 4/2012 and 3/2013. The author of this article focuses on specifying the style and dating of these medieval wall paintings. She thinks that the origins of the Nitra’s paintings can be found in the works of the Italian Trecento. The analysis of the style and iconography, however, points to the fact, that the main master of the frescos’ workshop came from the Central Europe, probably from the north of the medieval Hungarian kingdom. The author dates the origin of the lower nave and fresco’s wall to the second half of the 14th century, as based on the sources of the vertical wall which was built in 1360 – 1370. It could have been bishop Štefan Fraknói (Szigeti, de Insula, 1350 – 1367) or Dominik Újhelyi (1373 – 1384), who ordered the frescos.
The painting is on the western side of the wall that divides the lower church from the Romanesque chapel. J. Medvecký shares the opinion of the Hungarian art historian Géza Entz, who dates the origin of the lower church (with the mentioned wall) based on a document from 1378 and the construction research of Sándor Tóth, who compared the arcade type of the lower nave’s bracket with the brackets from around 1400 (Veszprém cathedral). This form, however, had already existed in the 1330s – 1340s (Predigerkirche in Erfurt, Stiftskirche in Herrenberg, Benedictine monastery in Sázava). In this case we may talk of the first example in Slovakia, which later became popular across the country, e.g. parish church in Zvolen, Church of St. Nicholas in Pukanec, and Church of St. Francis in Poniky.
Regarding the iconography of the wall paintings Last Prayer (Death) and Coronation of the Virgin Mary, this is a specific type of depiction, which evolved in the middle of the 14th century only in Central Europe: Czech Republic, Silesia, Austria, Hungary, Poland, Slovenia and southern Germany. The origin of the paintings in 1360 – 1370 influenced their style, which in comparison to the fragments from Varadin, Zagreb and Esztergom, is a remarkably complete example of fresco decoration of Central European cathedrals in the 14th century.

František Gahér – Daniel Gahér
Gravestone’s fragments in Pezinok’s parish church
The counts of Svätý Jur and Pezinok founded the construction of the parish church in Pezinok at the beginning of the 14th century. As the owners of the Svätý Jur and Pezinok estates, they tried to build a decent place for religious services as well as for burying their family members.
A burial chapel with crypts for the Svätý Jur family branch was built in the Church of St. George (Juraj) in the nearby municipality of Svätý Jur, probably in the 1440s. The burial chapel of the counts’ Pezinok family branch, which was built inside the parish Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary in Pezinok, has unfortunately not been preserved. Its existence was only recently confirmed by an archaeological research in the church’s southern nave. It was probably built at the end of the 14th century. Traditionally, the underground part, the crypt, was created for the eternal rest of the family members and the part above ground was dedicated to memories. The gravestones from this place, however, were moved to different places in the church during the destruction of the old family chapel and the construction of the new one at the beginning of the 17th century
Four grave memorials of the counts’ family members, including their wives, have been discovered. In the summer of 2012, during the rescue works on the columns between the northern and main naves of Pezinok’s parish church, three fragments of a red gravestone were found. The cleaning of the first fragment exposed an inscription, probably with the name of a deceased female (…a Ursula…). The second fragment, with an embossed fraction of a coat of arms with a six-pointed star that belonged to the counts of Svätý Jur and Pezinok, helped to identify the owner of the gravestone. The last fragment, with the embossed star in a shield, complimented the previous one.
The dating of the fragments was aided with the palaeographic analysis of writing, which is specific for the late-gothic minuscule that appeared in Central Europe after the first third of the 15th century. Based on this, the broken gravestone could be dated to the 1450s – 1460s. The fragments of the epitaph are from dark red marble, which could come from the late medieval quarries of Gerecse hills near Esztergom (Gerecsei vörös marvány) or near the Austrian town of Adnet near Salzburg.
Around the middle of the 15th century, the gravestones in Central Europe were mainly written in Latin or sometimes German. They contained basic information about the buried people, including their social status, family relationship and date of death. The fragments of the Pezinok’s discovery, however, make it impossible to detect its language. The preserved name Ursula could be the name of the deceased woman, who according to the preserved coat of arms came from the Pezinok branch of the count family. There were several members of the family with this name, so to specify the correct person could only be possible after finding other fragments from the tombstone, which were used as cheap construction material in the Pezinok church or its close surroundings.

Karol Strelec
Renaissance and baroque wafer irons
The ceremonial bakery products, wafers, have long played a significant role in the rituals of the religious, family and calendar customs. The origin of their production tool – a wafer iron, which could be tongs, iron casts, reaches back to medieval times. It is closely related with the expansion of Christianity, which connected the history and culture of the entire European civilisation.
The preparation and baking of wafers has developed from making the Host – a yeast-free liturgical bread that was part of the religious rituals of the western-Christians of Latin rite. By the beginning of the 9th century, the latest, the wafer irons begin to appear in Europe. These tools are only used for making the altar bread. Later, other kinds of wafers start to be produced as well. In Slovak museums, the wafer irons are one of the oldest evidence of material culture. Most of them can be found in the collections of the Slovak National Museum (SNM) in Martin and SNM-Historical Museum in Bratislava. The largest collection of the highest quality can be seen in the Bratislava City Museum.
In the course of several centuries, the wafer irons had barely changed in the Slovak territory. When it comes to construction, this was a simple manual tool of a tong-type, made of metal. It had long straight handles that were connected with a joint into opposite-facing round, oval or rectangular forms. The inner sides of one, or both of these forms had decorative motifs of mostly Christian iconography carved into them. Heraldic or other secular motifs used in the social lives of individuals or corporations were used later as well.
The author describes wafer irons from the times of Renaissance and Baroque, which are mostly represented in the Slovak museums. The renaissance wafer irons feature religious emblems, as well as quite frequent family and personal coats of arms. These were often complimented with a circularly-written legend, which contained names of the owners and their statuses. The wafer irons were often made by commissions, but sometimes during a significant life or anniversary event. In this sense they served a significant, social-representative function mainly in the upper societal classes and church hierarchy.

Michaela Haviarová – Daniela Pellová
Kumšt in Prešov
The waterworks of the Prešov town, generally known as Kumšt, is located in the centre of the town’s monument reservation, at the north-western end of the oval-shaped (lenticular) main square, on Ku Kumštu street. The archival research along with the architectural-historical research carried out at the end of 2013, brought new information, based on which, the elevated tank can be considered to be a unique water-tower in Central Europe.
The Kumšt had three important functions in its history; it was a wall bastion, water-tower and Jewish museum. King Louis I granted the right to Prešov for building its town walls in a document from May 1, 1374. Extensive works on the fortification took place from 1435 until the beginning of the 16th century. Back then, the Kumšt water tank was one of the towers of the town’s fortified system. The old masonry with a gun-pit has been preserved from this period in the basement.
The construction of a simple water conduit and canal system started in Prešov in the second half of the 15th century. The technical equipment for water distribution is archived from the middle of the 16th century, in the original German name – Wasser Kunst, which became locally known as Kumšt. The technology of the mechanical pumping was used until the end of the 19th century. In 1884 – 1885, they prepared plans for building new water mains and electric street lights. The original water tower was replaced with a new tank in 1907. The Kumšt building and its equipment ceased to fulfil its function.
Prešov opened its Jewish Museum, which was the first in Slovakia, in 1928. Two years later, the town decided to offer the unused building of Kumšt to the Jewish Museum Association. The founder of the museum, building engineer Eugen Bárkány, designed the new eastern addition and reconstruction of the tower with a large central room and timbered ceiling, which still bears some visible Hebrew writing. The Jewish associations were prohibited from continuing their activities in September 1940. The exhibits, however, did not leave the museum. The town cancelled the rental contract with the Jewish Religious Community in 1945. The collections were transported to the State Jewish Museum in Prague and only returned to Prešov in 1993, when the activities of the Jewish Museum were restored in the synagogue at Jarkova street. Kumšt became the home of the new Town Museum, which is administered by the Regional Museum in Prešov.

Viera Obuchová
Former spa at Železná studnička in Bratislava
The former spa, (later turned into a hotel with a restaurant), which no longer exists at Železná studnička (Little Iron Well) in Bratislava’s forest park, used to be located in the upper Mlynská dolina (Mill Valley). The archival sources talk about mills in this area since the 14th century. The plan from 1734 documents nine of them around the Vydrica stream. The ninth mill was in the locality of Železná studnička and because in the second half of the 19th century the mills lost their original functions, it was transformed into a recreational facility.
The ferric mountain water of the city’s spring of Železná studnička was first used for spa business in the 1820s. The original small wooden spa later received a masonry building, which was open to the public in 1830. The Bratislava City Archives retains a situation plan of the spa area at Železná studnička from the 19th century (Ortslage des Badhauses beim Eisenbründel).
The area of the former spa house has preserved two foundation stones – one with a date of 1833 and the Bratislava coat of arms, the other with no visible dating or writing. These stones are also featured on the mentioned plan, but in different places today. The cellar and ice-house, also present on the plan, still exist in the slope. The owner of the inn in the spa building, the Bratislava wine merchant Jakub Palugyay, stored wine and Jaqueson Champagne in them since 1844, as they were largely popular among the Hungarian nobility and government members, who used to meet there.
The city bought Železná studnička from the Forray family on 6th June 1904, for 42,000 korunas. Many postcards from the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries capture the spa building also with the name, Ferdinand’s spa (in German and Hungarian) as well as the wooden glass pavilion with a pointed roof, where visitors would sit at tables in the evenings. The terrace was illuminated with lamps (the wall with stairs leading to the pavilion is still preserved). People walked or travelled in hackney-carriages to Železná studnička. Since 1909 they could also use trolleybuses. This means of transportation, however, only functioned until the beginning of 1915, when the Vydrica Electrical Track was closed during the First World War. The company staff was discharged and called up to the army. The spa was reconstructed in 1938, but in the 1960s, the building was so dilapidated that in 1970 it was pulled down.

Drahomír Velička
Non-existent wooden churches in Kysuce
The written evidence registers 19 wooden churches in 16 localities of Kysuce region, mainly in the upper Kysuce part. Only four wooden churches existed in the lower Kysuce, in Horný Vadičov, Lutiše, Ochodnica and Nesluša. None of them, however, have been preserved up to today. Most of them were replaced with brick buildings.
The Kysuce wooden churches, in general, were simple sacral constructions, usually made of fir wood. It was only their larger size and sometimes a tower that differentiate them from other village buildings. They were between 15 to 20 metres long and 6 to 11 metres wide. In many cases, the churches were built without a tower, which was added later. A nearby belfry often served the function of the missing tower. The churches were covered with a shingle roof, in some cases the shingles were also used on the buildings’ walls. The Kysuce wooden churches were often built in haste, and thus needed frequent repairs, which gave the impression they were just temporary, before the stone ones were built. The wooden church in Stará Bystrica was an exception, and the sources repeatedly mention its quality work.
The wooden churches were used for religious needs for more than half a century (Zákopčie, Nová Bystrica, Turzovka – first wooden church, Skalité – second wooden church) and even longer (Krásno, Čadca, Stará Bystrica, Lutiše, Riečnica). Only a few villages managed to build a stone church earlier (Oščadnica, Horný Vadičov and Nesluša) and only two Kysuce villages, where the parish was founded before the end of the 18th century, did not have a wooden church (Vysoká nad Kysucou and Javorník-Čierne, today Makov).
Only some fragments have been preserved from the wooden churches’ movable times until today, such as sculptures, crosses and bells. The Madonna from Krásno nad Kysucou, made by an unknown artist probably at the end of the 15th century, a renaissance bell from Turzovka cast in 1614 and a baroque painting with candleholders from Riečnica are among the most valuable ones.

Kristína Zvedelová – Marián Samuel
Fragments of early-gothic portal from church in Kláštor pod Znievom
This article presents the analysis of four architectural fragments from the no longer existing early-gothic portal from the parish Church of St. Nicholas in Kláštor pod Znievom. The church was built in the 1260s (the parish is mentioned in 1268), at the same time, or shortly after the Premonstratesian Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary was built in the village as well. Three fragments were found dropped behind the fence in the church area, the fourth one was revealed during the removal of coatings in the nave’s southern wall. The stone fragments come from the portal’s lining. The portal’s basic profile is offset at a right angle and a round column has been inserted into it. The lowest of the fragments has a conical-shaped base, ending with a ring and a slightly protruding claw-like element.
The found fragments apparently come from the no-longer existing southern portal of the church, from which only an interior niche with a segmented crown of an arch and slightly slanted scuntions with the holder for a wooden latch has been preserved. The entrance from the exterior was rebuilt, mainly in the upper part, which makes it impossible to detect its original finish. The fragment discovered in the eastern lining of the portal, which leads from the sanctuary to the church’s sacristy, comes from the same period. During the removal of coatings in 2012, the whole stone structure of the portal was revealed, which was until now partially covered with a thick coating. This completely covered the stone block with saw-tooth edging and relief decoration. Similar saw-tooth edging of the lining was found in the sculptural work of the tabernacle from the second half of the 13th century of the mentioned monastery church. Its stone decoration was analysed by older scholars of fine art as remains of the Burgundian-Cistercian gothic tradition. Modern research relates it to the so-called polygonal form style, finding the examples in the Lower-Austrian and South-Moravian gothic buildings.

Zuzana Zvarová – Tomáš Janura – Miroslav Matejka
Malinovo Manor House – changes of castle
The castle in Malinovo (before Eberhard) was one of four western-Slovak castles owned by the rich family of counts from Svätý Jur and Pezinok. The other three castles were in Pezinok, Svätý Jur and Šintava. The Malinovo castle was originally the smallest and over the centuries was gradually modified into a manor house. The architectural-historical research found out that the oldest part of the castle was built in the second half of the 14th century. The castle grew in size in modern times and changed into a manor house. Esztergom bishop Juraj Szelepchényi influenced the look of the castle in the 1660s. Count Juraj Apponyi and his wife Countess Anna Zichy rebuilt it into the modern classicistic manor house after 1820.
Based on the research, the oldest part of the manor house is the central part of the southern wall in the southern wing, dated to 1343 – 1390. It was probably a medieval fortification and hypothetically, it might have been an original entry to the castle. The description from 1420 depicts the Malinovo castle as less monumental, more similar in size to the Pezinok or Svätý Jur castles. The fortress was smaller and without the outer wall. The southern construction was extended eastwards and the ground level had another floor added in the second half of the 16th century.
The extensive rebuilding of the castle is documented on the coat of arms of archbishop Szelepchényi from 1677 and relief of the Virgin Mary the Helper from 1680. This period had also seen the building of the chapel with an octagonal sacristy. The preserved details (e.g. the early-baroque mascaron ornament) bear evidence of the high quality of the participating, probably Italian artists. In the second half of the 18th century, the castle was radically reconstructed into a “modern” residence, with expressive renaissance features, for aristocrat Juraj Apponyi. He used the castle as his summer house. This phase saw the rebuilding and extension of several wings, and the installation of new windows, stairs and trusses, which followed the rules of the classicistic architecture of the first quarter of the 19th century. In the second half of the 19th century, the manor house acquired the elements of eclecticism, possibly thanks to the builder Ignác Feigler Jr. from nearby Bratislava.
The last owners left the manor house in 1921. They took some of the movable items with them, some were dismantled or destroyed. The manor house, farmyard and part of the land were bought for the needs of the agricultural educational centre, which had its school as well as dormitory there after 1945. The unused manor house is now in the ownership of the Bratislava self-governing region, which is preparing its reconstruction.

Eva S. Kotláriková
Two hand-written records of Vincenzo della Greca’s lectures
Until the beginning of the 17th century, the architects in Italy received their education in the way of the medieval guild school system, mainly in the masters’ workshops (botteghe). In the course of the century, the system got more institutionalised and the role of the quality guarantee and “correctness” of the style norms was taken over by academies. This article talks about teaching architecture at the Academy of Saint Luke (Accademia di San Luca) in Rome in the 1630s, as original records of Vincenzo della Greca’s lectures at the academy were discovered in the archives of two museum institutions – Eastern Slovak Museum in Košice and Courtauld Institute in London.
The principles of teaching at the Roman artistic Academy of Saint Luke, or Accademia del Disegno dei pittori, scultori e architetti di Roma, preserved in the school’s statutes from 1617, focus on the dominant painting art and sculpture. References to architectural studies first appear in the 1630s. Architect Vincenzo della Greca came to teach the academy students in 1636, and the architecture is established as an individual study. Its importance in education is growing.
Vincenzo della Greca worked in Roma in the first half of the 17th century as the architect of the Holy Angel’s Castle and assisted with important fortification projects commissioned by Pope Urban VIII. In 1633, his name appeared for the first time in the documents of the Saint Luke’s Academy. Apart from his academic work, he was named the principe dell’Accademia di San Luca on 25th April 1638. One of his first students was probably his son Felice, who later also became an architect. This time saw a massive production of “practical manuals”, which offer the basic technical know-how for everyday practical needs of an architect.
The records of della Greca’s lectures could have been documented and preserved for the purpose of the manuals’ production. His lectures are preserved in two known records – one is in the collections of the Eastern Slovak Museum in Košice and the other one in the Courtauld Institute in London. Both are hand-written documents. The text is mostly written on the left page (verso), and the right one has a drawing that documents the contents (recto). The London manuscript is clearly more integrated and the drawings have a plastic, 3D impression, while the Košice document has simple technical 2D drawings.
The specification of the authors is not explicit as both records are assumed to have at least two authors. One of them is Vincenzo della Greca himself, signed on the first pages. He was also most probably behind the illustration drawings, as their descriptions bear his writing. Anthony Blunt thinks the second author of the London document is Flemish priest Grimaldo de Nuvelar, who was della Greca’s student in 1638 and later the Canon at the Church of Saint-Jean in Liège.

Jiří Kubáček
Cog-railway Tisovec – Pohronská Polhora
The growing economic significance of railway transportation in the last quarter of the 19th century meant an extension of the main tracks with a dense network of local railways. The new tracks led through terrain with sharper curves and steeper climbs, for which the use of cog-railways was ideal. One of such track sections was Bánovo – Pohronská Polhora, of the local railway Podbrezová – Tisovec, which started its operation in 1896 in order to connect the ironworks in Tisovec, Podbrezová and Hronec. The ridge of the Slovenské rudohorie mountains was a big land obstacle on its route and therefore it applied the cog system in two sections. The track climbed an elevation difference of 166 metres. It ran through two big viaducts, several shorter bridges and retaining walls.
Four steam cog-wheeled locomotives operated on the Tisovec – Pohronská Polhora track. They were made in an Austrian Floridsdorf locomotive factory in 1896 and 1900. The cog-railway was used for passenger as well as freight transport. The main transported goods included coal, raw and processed iron, and wood for fire and construction. After the First World War, when the cog-wheeled locomotives were dragged to Hungary, the track was operated by a similar machine from the Czech cog-railway Tanvald – Kořenov. The cog-wheeled steam trains were replaced in May 1933 by adhesive motor carriages, which significantly shortened the ride between Bánovo and Pohronská Polhora.
At the end of the Second World War, the transportation on this section was interrupted by battles between the partisans and the German army, which, during its retreat, from January 27 to 28 in 1945, damaged the big viaduct Pod Dielom. After the end of the war, it was replaced with a provisional wooden structure. Its worsening state, however, caused the end of the cog-railway’s freight run and later also the passenger transport, on 22nd July 1955 and 11th August 1958, respectively. The remaining locomotives were destroyed during the 1960s.
At the beginning of the 1990s, the Tisovec cog-railway was one of the last three existing cog-railways of the normal gauge (i.e. 1,435 mm) in Europe and one of the last five in the world. A group of enthusiasts from the Slovak Railways companies acquired and transported two Romanian cog-wheeled steam engines to Bratislava, which were identical with the original ones. In 2013, when the Slovak Ministry of Culture announced the Tisovec – Pohronská Polhora track a national cultural monument, the years of volunteering work on repairing the engines were capped by opening the route for tourists and establishing a museum for the cog-railway.