Town name: Zalau (Zalău - correctly written with diacritics)
Town location: Sălaj (SJ) county.
- Zalău city, capital of the Sălaj County,
is situated in the central area of the county, in the hydrographic
basin of the Zalău River, at the meeting point with the depression with
the same name and the Meseș Crest.
- The Municipality of Zalău is
one of the most ancient cities with a documentary attestation on the
Romanian territory. There are archaeological proofs in the presence of
human settlings on the territory of the city, from the Neolithic period,
6500 years ago. The origin of the name may be attributed to the Dacian
word "brâu" (belt) (the Meseș Mountains surround the city like a
semicircle) or to the Dacian word "zil", meaning wine. If we consider
the hilly relief and the agricultural profile of the city, the Valley of
the Wine may be the right interpretation of the name.
- After the
conquest of Dacia by the Roman emperor Traian (106 AD), the
northern border of the Roman Empire crossed the Meseş Crest.
first written evidence concerning Zalău can be found in ”Gesta
Hungarorum”, also named the Chronicle of Anonymus – notary of the king
Bela the Fourth of Hungary – from the 12th century. However, the first
documentary attestation with a certain date is recorded in 1220 in the
Oradea Court Registry.
- On August
1st 1473, Matei Corvin, the king of Hungary and Bohemia, declared Zalău
for the first time a town-fair, "Oppidum Zilah", a privilege that
released the city from the shire’s domination, giving the right to free
trade with the whole country.
- In the 18-19th century, the city
was a famous pottery centre, through the famous “Zalău pottery”. Ceramic
pieces, which were discovered in 2011, prove that the potters from the
old town fair had been here since the Early Middle Ages. The clay was
extracted from small quarries, pits dug into the hill situated above the
old centre, then it was worked in the workshops on the street that
today is known as The Potters Street. The town’s potters were legally
operating their activity since 1738, when the first guild received its
authorization. Zalău pottery is considered an artistic example of
decorative art. The white ceramic objects, decorated with green, brown,
intense blue and dark purple, were glazed and beautifully ornamented
with floral, zoomorphic and geometric designs. The fact that they
remained intact until today shows that the potters took their work
seriously. The most important pottery product in Zalău was the unglazed
water jug, made in large quantities and sold in all fairs.
- In the
course of history, Zalău has known several names Zilah - Walthenberg -
Zălau, and since 1900 Zalău. It became the urban center and
administrative residence of Sălaj County in 1968, and in 1979 it was
- Zalău offers you the possibility to get
away from the city hubbub, to enjoy a clean and fresh air, thanks to the
forests that surround us, but also to visit tourist sites or to
discover tourist tracks on the Meseș Mountains and in Sălaj County.
Zalău city, Sălaj county, Romania (© www.apizal.ro)
The source of the texts/images/photos: CNIPT Zalău. Copyright© CNIPT Zalău
The local tourist information center click below for more details...
CENTRUL NAŢIONAL DE INFORMARE ŞI PROMOVARE TURISTICĂ ZALĂU
TOP 10 TOWNS IN ROMANIA
- Piaţa Iuliu Maniu 4 - 6, Zalău
- tel. 0360-566.100
- Program: 09:00-17:00 (Mon-Sun)
- E-Mail: email@example.com
- WEB: www.turismzalau.ro
Other important towns in Romania
- Alba Iulia
- Curtea de Argeș