Prešeren Square (Slovene: Prešernov trg) is the central square in Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia. It is part of the old town's pedestrian zone and a major meeting point, where festivals, Ljubljana carnival, concerts, sports, political, and protest events take place. It was renovated in 2007.
Located in front of the medieval town's entrance, the square is a funnel-shaped hub of streets that run from it into different directions.
To the south, across the Triple Bridge (Tromostovje), it is connected to Stritar Street (Stritarjeva ulica) which leads through a symbolic town gate formed by Kresija and Philip Mansion towards the city's town hall at the foothills of Ljubljana Castle Hill.
Prešeren Square gained its current appearance in the 17th century, when the baroque-style Franciscan Church of the Annunciation was built and was first known as St. Mary's Square after the church. In the 19th century, the crossroad was changed into a square and paved. After the 1895 Ljubljana earthquake, architect Max Fabiani designed the square as the hub of four streets. In place of the medieval houses which were damaged by the earthquake, a number of palaces were built around it. Between Wolf Street and Čop Street stands the Hauptmann House, built in 1873 and renovated in 1904 in the Secessionist style by the architect Ciril Metod Koch. The other palaces include the Frisch House, the Seunig House, the Urbanc House, the Hauptmann house, and thirty years later, the Mayer department store.
In the 1980s, Edvard Ravnikar proposed the circular design and the granite block pavement, with a circle and radiant lines of Macedonian Sivec marble. There was also a proposal by Ravnikar to put a fountain to the square, but was not accepted by residents of the city.
At the eastern side of the square, a bronze statue of the Slovene national poet France Prešeren with a muse was erected in front of the Central Pharmacy. The sculpture, designed by Ivan Zajec, stands on a pedestal, designed by Max Fabiani. Later, three birches were planted behind Prešeren Monument, indicating the energy centre of Ljubljana. Poplars were added in the 1930s next to the Triple Bridge, according to the plan by Jože Plečnik.
In June 1991, Prešeren Square and the Prešeren Monument were declared a cultural monument. In the same year, a bronze scale model of Ljubljana was set at the upper end of the square as a gift by the city's Urban Planning Institute. It has a form of a 2.2 by 2.2 metres (7 ft 3 in by 7 ft 3 in) square. It was created by a number of experts, whereas the banks around it, its pedestal, location, and coordination of work were taken care of by the architect Jadranka Grmek. In 2009, a white semi-circular bank was added to the model of Ljubljana.
In October 2005, the Prešeren Monument was renovated.
Prešeren Square was depicted on numerous postcards particularly at the turn of the 19th and the 20th centuries. Some of them present it at special occasions, like after the 1895 Ljubljana earthquake or at unveiling of the Prešeren Monument, whereas others present it as it was at an ordinary occasion.
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