A narrow passageway leads from St Saviour's Church to the fourteenth-century Franciscan monastery (Franjevački samostan) complex, whose intriguing late Romanesque cloister is decorated with rows of double arches topped by a confusion of human heads and fantastic animals.The attached treasury is also worth a look, with some manuscripts tracing the development of musical notation, together with relics from the apothecary's shop at the entrance to the cloister. Established in 1317, and still in business, it calls itself the oldest pharmacy in Europe.

Among the Gothic reliquaries, a smooth, silver-plated fourteenth-century receptacle for St Ursula's head looks far too small and dainty to contain a human skull. On the Stradun itself, on the right-hand side of the entrance to the monastery cloister, a small stone embellished with a gargoyle-like face juts out of the wall just above pavement height. For some reason, it has become a test of male endurance to stand on this stone - which is extremely difficult to bal¬ance on - facing the wall, bare chested and with arms outstretched, for as long as possible before falling off. A few steps beyond is the entrance portal to the monastery church, above which is a moving relief of the Pieta, carved by the Petrovič brothers in 1499.


 


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