Memorial island of Jean-Jacques Rousseau in the park of Vecdrustu manor in Vidzeme and lost historical buildings of the manor
Keywords: History of Latvian architecture and art, manor architecture, cultural heritage, studies of rural cultural and historical environment
Language: In Latvian

The article deals with the park of Vecdrustu Manor with the memorial urn of Jean- Jacques Rousseau on the lake island, which was depicted in a drawing by Johann Christoph Brotze in 1791. Such urns dedicated to the great philosopher and enlightener have also been installed in several European parks, such as the Ermenonville Manor Park near Paris, the Dessau-Wörlitz Manor Park in Germany, and elsewhere. The so-called Urn Island of Vecdrustu Manor is a fairly early monument of this kind. It was created during the management of Nikolaus Christoph von Hagemeister, who was an enlightener and writer.

The construction of Vecdrustu Manor comprised a number of different buildings, of which the threshing barn, which is known from 1928 and 1949 surveys, has not survived. The loss of this impressive building in the Latvian cultural landscape is invaluable. Also, the manor house (1787), the original appearance of which has not been preserved, can be considered lost. It was a one-storey building with a mansard roof. During the Soviet time, the second floor of the building was built, creating an inexpressive flat gabled roof. The planning and layout of openings have also been changed. The manor house is seen in early 20th century and 1949 photographs. The so-called Cavalier House has been restored. The study of Vecdrustu Manor shows that this place has a rich cultural history.