Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Nitra (in German: Neutra, in Hungarian: Nyitra [in the past frequently Nyitria]) is a city in western Slovakia (and fourth largest urban settlement in Slovakia) situated at the foot of Zobor Mountain in the Nitra river valley. Seat of a region (kraj ) or Higher Territorial Unit (VÚC) and of a district (okres).
A city of extraordinary importance in terms of its history: Inhabited since time immemorial, it was an important center of the Celts (last centuries B.C.), seat of the first known rulers of what is today Slovak territory (Quadi 396?, Nitrian Principality around 800, Great Moravia 824?, Frontier Duchy of Nitra [within the Principality of Poland 1000-1030 and the Kingdom of Hungary 970/1048 1077/1108 ).
Site of the first known Christian church in central and eastern Europe, which was built in 828 during the time of Nitrian Principality. Methodius and St. Cyril, creators of the Glagolitic alphabet, an early precursor of the modern Cyrillic alphabet, participated actively in the formation of the church and the first bishopric in Slovakia (since 880).
Notable religious structures located in Nitra are the St. Emmeram Cathedral, a Piarist church, a Roman Catholic religious congregation founded by Saint Joseph of Calasanza and a monastery founded in 1701. The monastery church was completed in 1716. It was later destroyed by a fire and remodeled from 1742-1748 in the baroque style. Two towers were also added on to the church. The church interior was renovated in 1940 with three modern frescos being created that showed the themes of Slavic history in Nitra.
The old town (Staré Mesto) is dominated by a castle (Hrad), which is one of the most interesting ancient complexes of buildings in Slovakia. The castle currently serves as the seat of one of eight dioceses in Slovakia.
Near Nitra there is the most powerful mediumwave transmitter of Slovakia, running on 1098 kHz. The reception of this transmitter is easily possible at nighttimes in whole Europe.
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