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The House of Lawyer B. Grebliunas-Grebliauskas

Kaunas, Lithuania
1 of 8
Z. Rinkselio nuotrauka, 2019 m.

The house on Maironio 36 was designed for lawyer Benediktas Grėbliūnas-Grėbliauskas. Born in 1902, Benediktas came from the village of Drąseikiai, Joniškis Valsčius, Šiauliai County. He graduated from Šiauliai Gymnasium and later studied at the Faculty of Law of Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas. He was an active nationalist, a neo-Lithuanian. In 1927, he became one of the founders of the Lithuanian National Youth Union "Jaunoji Lietuva" and a long-time (1927-1938) chairman, and later also its leader.

After graduating, he practised law in Kaunas. In 1938, he wanted to build his own home overlooking the nation's pantheon - the garden of the Vytautas, the Great War Museum. The building was designed by Bronius Elsbergas, a renowned architect of the time, who studied at the University of Lithuania, later at the University of Toulouse (France) and graduated from the School of Arts and Crafts of the University of Brussels. Like other residential houses designed by this architect, the house also bears a plaque on the façade with the architect's name and surname.

The building has an asymmetrical façade, with a passageway to the backyard and the main entrance at the side. It has a ground floor and three regular floors. On its front façade, there is a bay window, which starts from the first floor and goes up to the roof's eaves. Even though the building has a pitched roof, the slope is well hidden; therefore, the building has the impression of having a flat roof. The bay part of the façade is connected to the main surface with a semi-circle from one side, while on the other side, it connects with balconies with rounded corners. Between these balconies and the windows at the main façade, there are three vertical stripes on each floor, which were used as ornamentation. At the right axis of the building, there are small balconies with concrete bannisters and balustrades with circular metal elements. There are also various-sized balconies at the back façade of the building, with horizontal stripes made of plasters.

The owner of the house, Benediktas Grėbliūnas, was arrested by the Bolsheviks in 1940 for his active national and state activities, imprisoned in Kaunas hard labour prison, eventually convicted, and deported to Siberia on 6 April 1941. He was imprisoned in the Matygin concentration camp in Krasnoyarsk Krai. He returned from exile and died in Kaunas in 1980.

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