The cathedral of St. Jacob is the biggest and the most valuable object of the architectural heritage of the Town of Šibenik and one of the most important architectural monument of the Renaissance the eastern Adriatic. It was built during the 15th and the 16th century and was constructed entirely of stone. No wooden or mortar architectural elements were used for its building. It is also the first construction in the whole Europe based on a unique system of intergrooved stone plates, other constructions based on this system originate from the 19th century. It is interesting that this cathedral has no bell-tower. Ar first, the construction of the Cathedral was led by the Venetian architects Francesco Giacomo, Antonio Busato and Lorenzo Pincino and Šibenik’s stonemasons Grubiša Statčić and Andrija Budčić. In 1441 Juraj Dalmatinac was appointed protomaster and worked on the construction until his death in 1475. The cathedral of St. Jacob is well known for its frieze of 74 head sculptures, individual portraits of the contemporaries of Juraj Dalmatinac. The dome of the church was heavily damaged during the war in Croatia and shelling of Šibenik in September 1991. It was quickly repaired with no damage visible. It was added to UNESCO List of World Heritage Sites in 2000.
Europe is generally agreed to be the birthplace of western culture, including such legendary innovations as the democratic nation-state, football and tomato sauce.The word Europe comes from the Greek goddess Europa, who was kidnapped by Zeus and plunked down on the island of Crete. Europa gradually changed from referring to mainland Greece until it extended finally to include Norway and Russia.Don't be confused that Europe is called a continent without looking like an island, the way the other continents do. It's okay. The Ural mountains have steadily been there to divide Europe from Asia for the last 250 million years. Russia technically inhabits "Eurasia".Europe is presently uniting into one political and economic zone with a common currency called the Euro. The European Union originated in 1993 and is now composed of 27 member states. Its headquarters is in Brussels, Belgium.Do not confuse the EU with the Council of Europe, which has 47 member states and dates to 1949. These two bodies share the same flag, national anthem, and mission of integrating Europe. The headquarters of the Council are located in Strasbourg, France, and it is most famous for its European Court of Human Rights. In spite of these two bodies, there is still no single Constitution or set of laws applying to all the countries of Europe. Debate rages over the role of the EU in regards to national sovereignty. As of January 2009, the Lisbon Treaty is the closest thing to a European Constitution, yet it has not been approved by all the EU states. Text by Steve Smith.