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The Meshchii Tower
Georgi Yordanov

The Meshchii Tower

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The Meshchii Tower is one of the two well-preserved mediaeval towers in Vratsa. It is the bigger of them, being13 metres tall and having four floors – a ground floor and three other floors above ground. The ground floor used to serve as a storage room, while the upper floors were inhabited.

 

It is considered that the Meshchii Tower was built in the 16th century to serve the local “ayani” – influential residents of the Ottoman Empire. During the turbulent years of frequent uprisings, wars and riots they were in more and more desperate need of protection because they played an important role in establishing the tax rate, interfered crudely with the public life and were not particularly fancied by the local folk. That is why the tower had both housing and defense function. It is built with broken stones soldered with a mortar solution.

 

Towards the end of the 19th century the building was refashioned into a clock tower. It was reconstructed two centuries later. The Meshchii Tower is one of the symbols of Vratsa and is located in the centre of the town by the seat of the municipal administration. 

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