|About the museum:
The Ethnographic Museum of Istria is located in the Castle of Pazin, a mediaeval fortress built above a karst chasm called Pazinska jama (the Gorge of Pazin). The fortress, massively built and well preserved, has a long and stratified architectural history (from the 10th to the 19th centuries AD). It was mentioned for the first time as Castrum Pisinum in 983. The Castle represents a unique example of feudal fortification architecture. Apart from having a defensive role, the Castle was also used as the seat of the authorities, and therefore had both public and residential use.
The museum keeps ethnographic material; it has more than 5,000 items in its holdings, primarily textiles, agricultural tools, and items of everyday use from the Istrian peninsula dated to the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century (pottery, carpenter’s and blacksmith’s products, and examples of traditional handicrafts). The museum also houses a large collection of souvenirs.
The ethnologist-curators specialise in the study of everyday life, including the areas of clothing, economy, children’s games, music, food, religion, housing, folklore, multicultural convergence, and modern cultural phenomena.
The permanent exhibition starts at the ground floor of the Castle where the carpenter’s and blacksmith’s workshops are located. The smithy exhibits a forge and various tools and products.
The museum's second floor houses exhibits such as the traditional clothing from Istria: costumes from Ćićarija and Labin whose elements reflect archaic influences; complete female attire of the Montenegrin population that settled in Peroj in the 17th century, and had maintained the authentic characteristics of traditional dress until the mid-20th century; and Vodnjan female attire which reflects Baroque influences.
Musical instruments, mostly wind instruments, were used to perform archaic music.
A traditional Istrian kitchen from the end of the 19th century has also been reconstructed.
Original Istrian hand-made products such as pottery, baskets, and textile art works typical of the regional culture follow. Basic economic branches of the pre-industrial area are also represented (agriculture, viticulture, cattle breeding, and fishing), some of which include cultural elements typical of Istria.