Mirogoj Cemetery and History

Here below we describe the short history of Mirogoj Cemetery. 

In the 60’s of 19th century,  according to the writings of newspapers, all cemeteries in Zagreb were overcrowded and it was necessary to find a space for the new graveyard. In comparison, at that time (approx.  in 1876) there were 24,000 inhabitants in Zagreb and the city had ten cemeteries. For comparison, Zagreb today has 21 cemeteries and much more inhabitants. In this respect, it was obvious that city government signed the agreement  in 1872 with the Archdiocese to close the cemetery of St. Rok (today’s Rokov perivoj), St. Tomas and St. George.

According to the same agreement, the chapels of St. Rok and St. George gave  their money to purchase a new land dedicated to build  a new graveyard, and in return, the municipal district commits to build a beautiful burial chapel in Mirogoj. 

 January 24th, 1873 could be considered as the day of the foundation of Zagreb’s Mirogoj. The official opening of the cemetery was on November 6th, 1876.

mirogoj zagreb

Collective Burial Statute

Shortly after the opening, Mirogoj received the Statute of a Collective Cemetery where this cemetery is marked as a general cemetery for members of all religions. It also points out that each of the religions is assigned a special space appropriate to its followers. It is particularly emphasized that followers of all religions have a cemetery of equal rights and duties. 

Graves from all religions can be found on Mirogoj Cemetery as Catholic, Orthodox, Muslim, Jewish, Protestant, Latter Day Saints and also atheist graves.

Architectural and Natural Treasure

Mirogoj Cemetery is designed by Hermann Bollé. It is the same architect that renovated Zagreb’s Cathedral and St. Marks Church.  The green oxidised copper domes, with their intricate, pastel coloured inner designs are magnificent. So too are the tiled arcades that appear to stretch into infinity. The arcades are especially striking in the summer time when they clad in bright green ivy and the sun patterns the innumerable columns and arches. Bollé is buried here alongside plenty of notable local figures. You can find some interesting monuments of Croatian history as follows:

  • Wall of Pain (dedicated to fallen victims in Croatian War for Independence)
  • Memorial Cross to Croatian Home Guard Soldiers
  • The Monument to Fallen Croatian Soldiers in World War One
  • Monument to the Victims of Bleiburg and the Way of the Cross
  • Grave of Petar Preradovic, famous Croatian poet
  • Grave of Drazen Petrovic, famous Croatian basketball player
  • Grave of Franjo Tudjman, first Croatian President
  •  Sculptures of Ivan Mestrovic and many more
mirogoj architecture

Mirogoj Cemetery and History Lessons

Visitors will notice certain dates engraved on the gravestones. Those with love for history will be able to link these dates to the significant wars of the 20th century.

mirogoj art

Explore more by yourself

If you wish to see Mirogoj in its full glory, visit it  on the All Saints’ Day or Remembrance Day that is 1st November. The locals visit their family graves on that day, decorating them with flowers and candles.

For more information click here –>>
Visit more on Mirogoj Cemetery in Incredible Croatia

For more information click here –>>
Learn more on Croatia in Incredible Croatia

mirogoj cemetery croatia