An emblematic personality for what Romania represents today, Mihai Viteazu (Michael the Brave) was the ruler of Wallachia (Țara Românească) between 1593 and 1600. For a period, in 1600, he was de facto leader of the three mediaeval states that make up Romania today: Țara Românească, Transylvania, and Moldova.
Thus, the voivode became an important precursor to the unification of Romanians, which was to take place in the 20th century.
Mihai Viteazu’s grave is also here, in the immediate vicinity of the city of Turda. The body of the great voivode was buried here. The chapel was made in the form of a cross, as represented on a watercolour made in 1820, acquired by historian István Téglás (1853– 1915) from Turda and then by Count József Kemény (1795–1855) from Luncani.
The cross placed in the past on the tomb of Michael the Brave (currently here is an obelisk)
At the recommendation and request of King Ferdinand I, expressed on the occasion of his visit through Turda together with Queen Mary in 1919, a wooden Holy Trinity cross was made in the place of the former chapel. Built in 1923, Troița (wooden cross), currently exhibited at the History Museum in Turda, is created in a popular style. It has the inscription engraved: “The great voivode Mihai Viteazul was killed here on 9 August 1601.”
The new monument – the obelisk – was inaugurated on 5 May 1977. With a height of 1601 cm, to evoke the year of the ruler’s death – 1601, the obelisk is the work of sculptor Marius Butunoiu. It is made of reinforced concrete, plated with Rușchița travertine, on a rectangular base of volcanic tuff-stone. It has three sides, symbolizing the three Romanian principalities united under Mihai Viteazu in 1601. At the base of each side there are the emblems of the three Romanian principalities, executed in Simeria white marble by an artist from Cluj, Vasile Rus-Batin.
In the vicinity of Mihai Viteazu’s tomb there reigns the Mihai Vodă Church, a copy of the church under the same name, erected in Bucharest by Mihai Viteazu himself.
The current obelisk on the tomb of Michael the Brave
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