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Mercy Palace


7 Proclamţia de la Timişoara St.

Dating and historical names

“County House and Jail” designed in 1804.

In 1808 – the land was still open and not built on.

1812 – the current building appears on city plans

Architectural style

Classicist style with some Baroque reminiscences: the double Ionic columns marking the ground floor entrance and the doubling of the above pillars, upstairs, correspond to the plastic processes of Baroque architecture.

Legends, stories

In 1722, on this site there was the “Generalate House” where the Count of Mercy lived. It was the so-called “Mercy Palace” of Timişoara’s folklore. How the city of Timişoara’s new street tram, the one existing today, was not yet designed or even drawn, the building was placed “rotated” and had a completely different shape (it was much smaller) than the existing nowadays building.

In 1734, the old building, placed rotated unto the current building, was called the “Interim Generalate”; in 1752 – the “Old Generalate house”, made of good bricks, but bound in clay. In 1754, here functioned the “Provincial Court”.

It functioned at the same time as the court and prison, and could have been complete without the usual torture chamber. Although we might expect to see such methods used for acts of political police, in fact torture was a standard procedure for interrogations in worldly cases. Documents report the case of a classic passionate murder, the details of it being found out by means of “crushing fingers” and use of “Spanish boots” (for both there were special devices).

Classified as “dilapidated” in 1768, most of the old building was demolished in 1779, except the east corner, which was demolished after 1788.

After 1788 and until 1812, the land of the old buildings remains open and fully not built.


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