Monastery of the Dominican Nuns,
'prison' for (Ana) Katarina Zrinska (c 1625-16 November 1673), freedom fighter.

 A brief description.

I cannot find data about the monastery of the Dominican Nuns in Graz, where (Ana) Katarina Zrinska was isolated (1671), and died on 16 November 1673, having lost her reason.

(Ana) Katarina Zrinska, c. 1625-16 November 1673.

Ana Katarina Zrinska (c. 1625–1673) was a Croatian noblewoman, born into the Frankopan family. She married Petar Zrinski (6 June 1621-30 April 1671) and became known as "Katarina Zrinska.

Katarina was born in Bosiljev, c. 1625, to Uršula Inhofer and Vuk Krsto Frankopan of Tržac, a well-known commanding officer and warrior in the Military Frontier. She was the sister of Fran Krsto Frankopan, also a warrior and a statesman. In 1641, she married Count Petar Zrinski, with whom she had four children (three daughters and a son, Ivan Antun, who died in Austrian Prison in 1703). She became well known for her writing and poetry, in which she wrote in the Kajkavian dialect of the Croatian language, like her brother.

Her husband Petar Zrinski was involved with his older brother Nikola Zrinski and his brother in law Fran Krsto Frankopan, in the Zrinski-Frankopan conspiracy. The origins of the plot were in the shameful Peace of Vasvár treaty 1670, signed by the Habsburgs, in which not all victories of the previous war against the Ottoman Empire were exploited for any territorial gains. Together with numerous Croatians, the plot also involved many members of the Hungarian high nobility.
The death of the leader Nikola Zrinski in the woods near Čakovec disrupted the plans of the preparations of the plot. After the death of his brother, Petar became Ban (Viceroy) of Croatia. Petar’s wife Katarina Zrinska played an major role in organizing the uprising against Vienna and played a decisive part  in the negotiations with Louis XVI’s envoys and offered him protectorate over Croatia in return for his help to the conspirators. Her contemporaries thought her to be the main conspirator and initiator of the uprising.

Final revolt and suppression.

Petar and his brother-in-law Krsto Frankopan nevertheless continued planning the plot not knowing that the court was already following their moves. When they tried to trigger the revolt by taking the command of the Croatian troops, they were quickly repulsed and the revolt collapsed. Finding themselves in a desperate position, they finally went to Vienna to ask emperor Leopold I of the Habsburg dynasty for forgiveness. They were captured, put in Jai in Vienna, and promised not to be put to death in 1671.
This led the two men being tried in Vienna the next year. They were sentenced to death for high treason. Zrinski and Frankopan realized the treacherousness of Leopold and the crimes of Vienna, and spent their last hours awaiting their tragic fate, in complete devotion to God and in the belief that the idea of a liberated Croatia would nonetheless be realized.
All they regretted was that they should be executed so miserably, that they did not die like their glorious ancestors in battle. For Petar Zrinski the verdict was read, "he committed the greatest sins than the others in aspiring to obtain the same station as his majesty, that is, to be an independent Croatian ruler and therefore he indeed deserves to be crowned not with a crown, but with a bloody sword".

On April 30th, 1671, Petar Zrinski and Fran Krsto Frankopan were led to their place of execution. Both up to the last moment maintained their complete lucidity.
Petar wrote in his last letter to his wife Katarina, "Today we have pardoned each other our transgressions. Therefore, I ponder this letter and ask you for everlasting forgiveness. If I have mistreated you in some way, or offended you, forgive me. In the name of our Father, I am quite prepared to die and I am not afraid". Petar Zrinski's estates were confiscated, which also happened to belong to the Frankopans. The deaths of Zrinski and Frankopan were a great loss for Croatia because they were the leaders of the country's nobility.

The Zrinski family would be extinguished in the next twenty years, as Adam Zrinski was shot in the back in the battle of Slankamen, and his younger relative, same-named Petar Zrinski, died in the prison without any successors. Fran Krsto Frankopan was in the time of death the last male member of his famous family.

Text of Petar Zrinski’s final letter to his wife, 29 April 1671

My dear heart; Do not be too sorrowful and upset on account of this letter. God's will be done. Tomorrow at ten o'clock they will cut off my head and your brother's too. Today we pardoned each other with all our heart. Therefore I ponder this letter and ask you for everlasting forgiveness. If I have mistreated you in some way, or offended you, as well I know, forgive me. In the name of our Father I am quite prepared to die and am not afraid. I hope that the Almighty God who has humiliated me in this world will have mercy on me. I would pray to him and ask him to whom tomorrow I hope to come that we may meet each other in everlasting glory before the Lord. I know nothing else to write to you about, neither our son nor the rest of our poor possessions. I have left this to God's will. Do not be sorry, everything had to be so. n Wiener Neustadt, the day before the last day of my life, at seven o'clock in the evening, April 29th, 1671. May Almighty God bless you together with our daughter Aurora Veronika.

The future of Katarina Zrinski.

The Vienna Court targeted Katarina after the death of her husband, and  imprisoned her into seclusion in the Dominican nuns’ monastery in Graz, where she remained until her death on November 16, 1673, having lost her reason.


In 1999, the Croatian National Bank, along with the bank of Čakovec, issued a silver commemorative coin of Katarina. It was part of a series entitled "Famous Croatian Women." It described Katarina as "a writer, ardent patriot and a martyr, as well as a spiritual initiator of the liberation movement against foreign rule."
A Croatian women's organization from Toronto named themselves after Katarina Zrinska. There are also numerous schools and buildings named after her all throughout Croatia.
There is a square in Zagreb named after her (Katarinin trg), near the Jesuit church of Saint Catherine, built  in the baroque style between 1620 and 1632.

Sources: wikipedia and others.



Katarina Zrinska, c. 1625-167.11.1673.
Literator, freedom fighter.

Croatia 1996, Mi 380, Sc 297.  




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