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Ljutomer ( Prekmurian: Lutmerk, ) is a municipality in northeastern Sloveniamarker, some 40 km east of Maribormarker. Traditionally it was part of the region of Styria. It is now included in the Pomurska statistical region. Before 1918 it had a substantial German population. (Population data for 1880 gives: 608 Slovenes and 468 Germans).

The Ljutomer area was the birthplace of the ethnologist Stanko Vraz (1810-1851), the philologist Franc Miklošič (1813-1891), the pioneer of film making Karel Grossmann (1864-1929), the painter Ante Trstenjak (1894–1970), and is home to the bowler Miro Steržaj (b.1933).

The economy of Ljutomer largely is based around grape farming and wine making.

History

Ljutomer lies at the heart of the area known as Prlekija. It is first mentioned as a settlement in written documents dating to 1242. In 1265 it was granted market right. It was devastated by the plague and numerous fires and it had to defend itself against Ottoman and Hungarian raids. The concept of the United Slovenia was embodied here in the first mass meeting of Slovene nationalists in 1868. Ljutomer was given town status in 1927. The tradition of the Slovenian national awakening of the 19th century is continued by the library, the museum, the art gallery.

Architecture

There are three main squares in the city centre, each boasting its own shrine. On Stari trg square there is a small chapel dedicated to Saint Anne. It was built in 1756 and remodelled in 1853 with wall paintings of Saint Anthony and Saint Florian on the side walls. On Glavni trg square the monumental shrine is dedicated to Mary and apart from the virgin on the top of the column, bears statues of Saint Roch and Saint Sebastian at its bease. It was erected in 1729 by the then mayor Matjaž Petek. It was renovated in 1854. On Miklošič square is a small chapel dedicated to Saint Florian. It was built in 1736 as part of the church walled enclosure.The parish church in the town is dedicated to John the Baptist. It is an originally Gothic building which was adapted in the late 17th century to a tripple naved Baroque building with a walled enclosure.

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