Blansko (Czech pronunciation: [ˈblansko]; German: Blanz) is a town in Blansko District in the South Moravian Region of the Czech Republic. Blansko is the biggest town in Blansko District to which it lends its name. Blansko is situated in the valley of the river Svitava. The centre of Blansko is 276 metres above sea level, with the majority of the city situated on a slope above the left bank of the Svitava. Blansko currently occupies an area of 18.29 km2 (7.06 sq mi) and has approximately 20,800 inhabitants as of 2015 . The town is notable for the proximity of the Moravian Karst.
Blansko was mentioned for the first time as the site of a dispute between Jindřich Zdík, the bishop of Olomouc and Prince Vratislav of Brno regarding the construction of a church in the village on the right bank of the Svitava in 1136. In 1277 the Bishop of Olomouc at the time, Bruno von Schauenburg founded a village on the left bank of the Svitava. Originally known as 'New Blansko' it became the core of the modern city. After the founding of New Blansko, the villages went through a succession of feudal owners. In 1526 the two villages were merged to form Blansko.
From 1698 the Gellhorn family founded the first ironworks in Blansko. After 1766 it belonged to the Salm family, who patronized many artisans and scientists, including Josef Dobrovský. Blansko also underwent significant expansion in tandem with the ironworks under the guidance of Hugo František Salm. In 1905, Franz Joseph I of Austria granted Blansko the status of City, and produced a commemorative certificate which contained the situation in Blansko at that time as relating to industry, education, associations etc. In 1918 Blansko was connected to the Brno-Česka Trebova railway line. In 1949 Blansko became the capital of Blansko District.
Blansko today still has many factories though the significance of the town as an employer locally has dropped. Many manufacturers are still operational in Blansko including: mechanical engineering concern ČKD Blansko, measuring instrument manufacturer Metra Blansko and a Českomoravsky Beton cement factory.
Parts of town
- Blansko-město ((Blansko Town))
- Staré blansko (Old Blansko))
- Staré bytovky (9. května)
Memorial devoted to the Battle of Zborov
- Klamova hut'. From 1855, this is a preserved ironworks. It was also a museum of metal-casting and currently once again a production facility.
- Château Blansko, likely built in 1431 but first mentioned in a reliable source in 1532. Currently the site of the Blansko Museum. The following exhibitions are permanent: Moravian Karst, The Oldest Ironworks, Ironworking in the 19th and 20th century, the castle's history and the history of Blansko in relation to developing improved measurement devices. There are also exhibitions, cultural events and music concerts held on a regular basis.
- Baroque Church of St. Martin. Built between 1672-1691. Originally a Romanesque church built in the 12th century by Jindřich Zdík. It has one of the oldest belltowers still extant in Moravia and is an important stop on the pilgrimage route 'Via Sancti Martini' for Martin of Tours.
- A wooden church built in the 17th century and transported to Blansko in 1936 from Transcarpathian Ruthenia (present day Ukraine).
- The only memorial to the Czech Legionaries who were present at the Battle of Zborov in the world.
- Municipal Library Blansko - District Library
- City Gallery Blansko - exhibition of fine art
- City Club - club facilities with a large hall and stage, small halls and clubrooms; part of the club's restaurant with summer garden
- Cinema Blansko
- Karel Jezek (1851–1919), founder of the thriving industrial company in Blansko, longtime mayor Blanska, contributed to his promotion of the city in the year. 1905
- Karel Jaroslav Masek (1851–1916), archaeologist, explorer world-famous archaeological sites Předmostí by Přerova and cave arrow near Štramberk
- Vaclav Hugo Sáňka (1859–1929), speleologist, archaeologist, chronicler of Blansko
- Jaroslav Bakeš (1871–1930), a physician, a prominent surgeon, founder of the Institute for cancer patients in Brno
- Josef Pilnáček (1883–1952), an important Moravian historian and genealogist
- Rudolf Barak (1915–1995), government official, Interior Minister 1953-1961
- Ludvik Danek (1937–1998), Olympic champion in discus throw
- Roman Meluzín (born 1972), hockey player
In addition to the natives of the city there are also other personalities who stayed there for some time and have some link to the city:
- Carl Reichenbach (1788–1869), chemist, metallurgist and industrialist who in 1833 invented the paraffin in Blansko
- Ludwig Georg Treviranus (1790–1869), engineer, designer of the first industrially usable steam engines manufactured in the Czech Republic and in Central Europe
- Jindrich Wankel (1821–1897), doctor, Moravian archaeologist and speleologist
- Karel Absolon (1877–1960), a leading researcher in the Moravian Karst
- Erich Roučka (1888–1986), inventor and founder of a factory for the production of electrical measuring instruments (later Metra Blansko)
- Miloslav Kala (born 1963), economist and politician
- Jaromir Blazek (born 1972), soccer goalkeeper and former representative of the Czech Republic
- Yvetta Hlaváčová (born 1975), Czech Republic national team in the long-distance swimming and occasional model
At the church of St Martin there is a memorial plaque for Caroline Meineke, who was supposed to be the first wife of William IV of the United Kingdom. She spent the last years of her life at the Château in Blansko, where she died in 1815.
Twin Sister Cities
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