Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Stolac necropolis

Stolac is an ancient center of history and culture in Bosnia that underwent brutal ethnic cleansing during the 1990s war. Croats were the bad guys here, destroying Muslim and Jewish sites.

Also damaged and demeaned by development in the area is this necropolis of stecci in Radimlja near Stolac that date to the 15th of 16th century. Stecci (one is a stecak ) have not appeared anywhere else even in the region, but were some kind of burial marker used in a Bosnian church that was an outbranch of Christianity.

The Stolac collection of 133 is supposedly the best in Bosnia -- though we've visited fields of them in Sarajevo and outside the city. The stecci have not been handled with care or respect, however. Some 50 stecci were destroyed by construction of a road through the field. A car wash and a garbage dump have been put in way too close. State preservation authorities have called for repair of a nearby restaurant that was popular before the war, clean-up and restoration to make this into a cultural attraction for tourists. In the meantime, we parked by the side of the road, went around a wire fence and crawled though a buggy field to see the carvings and varied shapes.

road through the middle

No comments:

Blog Archive