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Samostan Mekinje Monastery

On the edge of the town of Kamnik, Slovenia, in the village of Mekinje, stands a huge monastery that would make an excellent setting for a vampire film. Its series of cloisters within had sheltered nuns since around 1300, shielding them from 16th-century Turkish raids, world wars, plagues, and everything that the last 700 years in central Europe could throw at them.

The story of the monastery began on October 9, 1300, when Seyfrid and Elizabeta Gallenberg donated their land. From that year until 1782, the monastery was in the hands of the Poor Clares and was overseen by the Franciscans. Through the Middle Ages, monasteries like this one functioned just like feudal estates run by lay lords.

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