Matija Gubec Square is located on the cross-section of the Decumanus and Cardo Maximus streets in the center of old town. The square contains a park with playground and local business bars and restaurants.
During archaeological research conducted on the square in 1997, the entire surface was uncovered and many layers of architectural remains dating to Antiquity, Late Antiquity, and the Middle Ages were found.
Among them were two large stone anchors for olive presses with stone block counterweights. This was a strong, high-capacity mechanism and it was used to produce olive oil, regardless of the fact that no remains of a millstone, otherwise customary in such cases, were found.
The research discovered Early Roman pottery, while a little to the north of the square, at the intersection of Euphrasius street and the Cardo, prehistoric artifacts were also found. A grave monument bearing an inscription dated to the 1st century bears the name of the well-known Poreč notable Titus Abudius Verus, the vice admiral of the Ravenna naval fleet, who is known from earlier epigraphic sources to have been a rich investor in Parentium. This inscription mentions his wife Junia Varilla, to whom Abudius Verus raised the monument.
This city square changed its name the most from all Poreč squares. It was first called Piazza Grande (Grand Square), then G. Vergottini Square (after a Poreč mayor), Piazza dei Signori, Piazza Vittorio Emanuele III (after an Italian king), Piazza fratelli Visintini (after Mario and Licio Visintini brothers, war heroes from World War 2), the Red Square, and Matija Gubec Square in the end.
But Poreč residents have always known it by the Piazza dell’Orologio name, because of the street clock located on the former police station in the Austrian times (a big yellow building).
This was the main city square from the early Middle Ages until the early 19th century. The Podesta palace was located here, having been demolished in the 19th century, and today the palace of Danelon is in the same place. City hall has also been destroyed.
There was a building called Casino dei Nobili on the western side, built in the late 18th century, while there was another Baroque palace on the north side. Both of these buildings were damaged during the air raids on the city in World War II, and never rebuilt.
A large empty space, found at the square today, is completely unnatural for coastal towns, and this emptiness disrupts the historical course of two main streets Cardo and Decumanus. The city bears these war scars for the last 70 years.
- Robert Matijašić: “On the Discovery of Late Antique Presses in Poreč in 1997”;
- Bojan Horvat, historian and curator