Status of monument -> National monument
Published in the „Official Gazette of BiH“ no. 97/07.
Pursuant to Article V para. 4 Annex 8 of the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Article 39 para. 1 of the Rules of Procedure of the Commission to Preserve National Monuments, at a session held from 16 to 22 May 2006 the Commission adopted a
D E C I S I O N
The site and remains of the historic building of the Catholic Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Nevesinje is hereby designated as a National Monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina (hereinafter: the National Monument).
The National Monument is located on a site designated as cadastral plot no. 154, title deed no. 530 (new survey), corresponding to c.p. nos. 1082/3 and 1085/2 (old survey), Land Register entry no. 768, cadastral municipality Nevesinje, Municipality Nevesinje, Republika Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The provisions relating to protection and rehabilitation measures set forth by the Law on the Implementation of the Decisions of the Commission to Preserve National Monuments, established pursuant to Annex 8 of the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina (Official Gazette of Republika Srpska no. 9/02) shall apply to the National Monument.
The Government of Republika Srpska shall be responsible for ensuring and providing the legal, scientific, technical, administrative and financial measures necessary to protect, conserve, rehabilitate and display the National Monument.
The Government of Republika Srpska shall be respoonsible for providing the resources needed to draw up and implement the necessary technical documentation for the rehabilitation of the National Monument.
The Commission to Preserve National Monuments (hereinafter: the Commission) shall determine the technical requirements and secure the funds for preparing and setting up signboards with the basic data on the monument and the Decision to proclaim the property a National Monument.
To ensure the on-going protection of the National Monument, the following protection measures are hereby stipulated:.
Protection Zone I consists of the area defined in Clause 1 para. 2 of this Decision. The following protection measures shall apply in this zone:
- The Catholic church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary shall be rehabilitated on its original site, in its original form, with the use of the original or the same type of material and the original building methods, on the basis of documentation on its former appearance, with the approval of the Ministry responsible for regional planning in Republika Srpska and under the expert supervision of the heritage protection authority of Republika Srpska,
- All original fragments of the demolished building found on the site or on other sites to which they were removed after the demolition of the building shall be registered, recorded and reintegrated into the reconstructed building. Until such time as they are so reintegrated they shall be properly preserved,
- Fragments that are too badly damaged to be reintegrated shall, following laboratory analysis, be conserved and displayed appropriately within the architectural ensemble.
In order to ensure the conditions for the rehabilitation of the National Monument, the following measures are hereby stipulated:
- the garbage containers close to the churchyard shall be removed;
- the remains of the churchyard wall shall be conserved and restored;
- the demolished sections of the churchyard wall shall be reconstructed on the model of the remains of the original churchyard wall;
- the churchyard area shall be cleared;
- the surface soil shall be removed in order to uncover the original foundations;
- the original sections of the foundations and walls shall be repaired and consolidated.
Protection Zone II consists of the parish office building located on c.p.no.222 and the buildings in the contact zone immediately adjacent to the National Monument.
The following protection measures shall apply to the parish office building:
- the parish office shall be renovated; during renovation the original dimensions of the building, the doors and windows and the roof pitch shall be taken into consideration;
- during the renovation of the building, all interventions that will ensure that they are suitable for modern living conditions shall be permitted;
- the building shall be restored to its original use as premises to be used as the parish office.
Alterations to the height of the buildings surrounding the National Monument are prohibited, and the height of new buildings shall not exceed two storeys (ground floor + 1), with a maximum height of 6.5 m to the roof cornice and maximum dimensions of 10 x 8 m.
All executive and area development planning acts not in accordance with the provisions of this Decision are hereby revoked.
Everyone, and in particular the competent authorities of Republika Srpska, and urban and municipal authorities, shall refrain from any action that might damage the National Monument or jeopardize the preservation, restoration and rehabilitation thereof.
The Government of Republika Srpska, the Ministry responsible for regional planning in Republika Srpska and the heritage protection authority of Republika Srpska, and the Municipal Authorities in charge of urban planning and land registry affairs, shall be notified of this Decision in order to carry out the measures stipulated in Articles II – V of this Decision, and the Authorized Municipal Court shall be notified for the purposes of registration in the Land Register.
The elucidation and accompanying documentation form an integral part of this Decision, which may be viewed by interested parties on the premises or by accessing the website of the Commission (http://www.aneks8komisija.com.ba)
Pursuant to Art. V para 4 Annex 8 of the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina, decisions of the Commission are final.
On the date of adoption of this Decision, the National Monument shall be deleted from the Provisional List of National Monuments of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Official Gazette of BiH no. 33/02, Official Gazette of Republika Srpska no. 79/02, Official Gazette of the Federation of BiH no. 59/02, and Official Gazette of Brčko District BiH no. 4/03), where it featured under serial no. 435.
This Decision shall enter into force on the date of its adoption and shall be published in the Official Gazette of BiH.
This Decision has been adopted by the following members of the Commission: Zeynep Ahunbay, Amra Hadžimuhamedović, Dubravko Lovrenović, Ljiljana Ševo and Tina Wik.
17 May 2006
Chair of the Commission
E l u c i d a t i o n
I – INTRODUCTION
Pursuant to Article 2, paragraph 1 of the Law on the Implementation of the Decisions of the Commission to Preserve National Monuments, established pursuant to Annex 8 of the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina, a “National Monument” is an item of public property proclaimed by the Commission to Preserve National Monuments to be a National Monument pursuant to Articles V and VI of Annex 8 of the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina and property entered on the Provisional List of National Monuments of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Official Gazette of BiH no. 33/02) until the Commission reaches a final decision on its status, as to which there is no time limit and regardless of whether a petition for the property in question has been submitted or not.
The Commission to Preserve National Monuments issued a decision to add the Catholic church in Nevesinje to the Provisional List of National Monuments of BiH under serial no. 435.
Pursuant to the provisions of the law, the Commission proceeded to carry out the procedure for reaching a final decision to designate the Property as a National Monument, pursuant to Article V of Annex 8 and Article 35 of the Rules of Procedure of the Commission to Preserve National Monuments.
II – PROCEDURE PRIOR TO DECISION
In the procedure preceding the adoption of a final decision to proclaim the property a national monument, the following documentation was inspected:
- Documentation on the location of the property and ownership documentation (title deed, Land Register entry and copy of cadastral plan),
- Data on the current condition and use of the property, including a description and photographs, data of war damage, data on restoration or other works on the property, etc,
- Historical, architectural and other documentary material on the property, as set out in the bibliography forming part of this Decision.
The findings based on the review of the above documentation and the condition of the site are as follows:
1. Details of the property
The site and remains of the historic building of the Catholic church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Nevesinje are located on the northern outskirts of the town, on a site designated as cadastral plot no. 154 (new survey), corresponding to c.p. nos. 1082/3 and 1085/2 (old survey), title deed no. 530, Land Register entry no. 768, in sole ownership of the Roman Catholic parish office in Nevesinje, cadastral municipality Nevesinje, Municipality Nevesinje, Republika Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Access to the National Monument is from the east.
The main axis of the Catholic church lies east-west, with a slight deviation to the north. The entrance is at the east end.
In the early 19th century, at the time Herzegovina was separated from the Bosnian sandžak and acquired the status of a pashaluk, the Franciscans of the Bosnian Province who were natives of Herzegovina came together with the intention of building a monastery in Herzegovina. On 6 February 1844 the congregation for the propagation of the faith issued a decree on the erection of a Franciscan monastery in Herzegovina. The foundation stone of the new monastery was laid in Široki Brijeg on 23 July 1846. The leadership of the Province of Bosnia Argentina was opposed to the building of a new monastery, believing that it would cause unrest in the Province and be detrimental to the monastery in Kreševo (almost the whole of Herzegovina, with the exception of Duvno [now Tomislavgrad] and Roško Polje, was dependent from the pastoral point of view on the monastery in Kreševo). The conflict within the Province was resolved by separating Herzegovina from Bosnia: on 30 April 1856, two apostolic vicariates were established out of the former apostolic vicariate of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The new vicariate of Herzegovina consisted of only the part of Herzegovina to the west of the river Neretva, since the old Trebinje-Mrkanj bishopric was already in existence on the left bank of the river. The custodiate of the Friars Minor was established in Herzegovina on 27 July 1852. The decree on the establishment of the custodiate was promulgated on 3 October 1852. In time, another three monasteries were built, in Humac, Ljubuški, in the suburbs of Mostar known as Vukodo, and in Mostar itself. In the light of the advancement of the custodiate, on 18 March 1892 the general visitor of the Custodiate, fr. Augustin Zubac, applied to the General of the Order for the Herzegovina custodiate to be elevated to a province. The Herzegovina Franciscan Province of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary was established on 27 April 1892 (Šematizam franjevačke provincije Uznesenja Blažene Djevice Marije u Hercegovini, historical overview by Dr. fr. Bazilije Pandžić).
As a result of the large number of incomers, officials, military personnel and engineers of the Austro-Hungarian army, by 1880 there was a considerable number of Catholics in the Trebinje-Mrkanj bishopric. It was at this time that the churches in Trebinje and Stolac were built or their construction began, along with numerous parish houses. Nevesinje had 250 Catholic inhabitants at this time. Since the pastoral was unable to keep up with the growing congregation, in 1883 the bishop granted jurisdiction to the military chaplains in Avtovac, Bileća, Trebinje, Nevesinje and Gacko, giving them wide powers. By 1880 serious talks had already begun on the establishment of a parish in Nevesinje to cover the entire north-eastern region (Nevesinje, Gacko, Foča). In order to build a parish house, the houses of the Bašagić beys, for whom a papal order had been procured, had already been purchased in 1871. Despite efforts to maintain the independence of the bishopric, in 1890 the Trebinje-Mrkanj bishopric was handed over to the administration of the Mostar-Duvno bishopric (Trebinjsko-mrkanska biskupija u 19. stoljeću [The Trebinje-Mrkanj bishopric in the 19th century] – Ivica Puljić MA, paper published in Studia Vrhbosnensia I).
The parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Nevesinje was founded by the Franciscans in 1899, during Bishop Buconjić's time, when the parish house was also built. The parish house was built between 1901 and 1903.
In terms of the area it covered, Nevesinje was the largest Catholic pareish in Herzegovina, taking in almost the whole of two municipalities, Kalinovik and Nevesinje. From 1944 on the parish priests usually carried out their duties from Mostar. After World War II they had at their disposal three rooms in the parish office. The remaining rooms were allocated by the municipality to tenants, when four families moved in.
During World War II the church was damaged. It was repaired between 1958 and 1973, when it was fully renovated and «refurbished on the outside and tastefully painted on the inside.»
The church registers of the parish in Nevesinje from 1899 to the present day have been preserved.
The Nevesinje parish also had a smaller subsidiary church in Ulog, built in 1937, destroyed in World War II and rebuilt in 1973 (Šematizam franjevačke provincije Uznesenja Blažene Djevice Marije u Hercegovini, 66-68.)
The work and dedication of the Franciscans in the Nevesinje parish is evidence by their involvement in child care. In the 20th century, the Franciscan sisters in Nevesinje set up a playschool for children and were engaged in the education of children and orphans(1).
The parish church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Nevesinje was dynamited and totally destroyed in 1992. The rubble from the church was removed to an unknown location. Presumably some of the fragments, along with the remains of the Careva (Imperial) mosque in Nevesinje, were dumped in Ždrijela near the village of Čitluk, on the Nevesinje – Sopilji road. The remains of the foundations of the church were covered over with gravel to level the site, which was used as a parking area. All that remained where the church once stood were parts of the surrounding wall.
2. Description of the property(2)
In terms of its spatial organization, the church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Nevesinje belongs to the type of single-nave church of rectangular ground plan, with a semicircular apse and a belltower abutting onto the front of the church.
Elements of the neo-Romanesque can be seen in the architectural form of the church: the rectangular ground plan, solid stone walls with few openings, simple tall, arched windows, biforae and triforae on the belltower, rosettes above the portal and the arched stone portal.
The church was rectangular in ground plan, with exterior dimensions of 11.80 x 25.65 m, or 15.80 x 28.75 m including the side altars and abutting belltower. The part of the vaulted apse at the west end that was spatially distinct from the main part of the church was semicircular in ground plan. The height of the building from ground level to the roof cornice was about 11.00 m, and that of the apse was about 8.90 m.
The rectangular belltower, measuring 4.10 x 3.10 in ground plan, was built against the outside wall the axis of the east, entrance facade. The belltower was about 20 m in height to the roof cornice.
The church was raised five steps above ground level. The basal plinth of the building was at the level of the steps on the east, entrance facade. The church had stone walls 60 to 80 cm thick. The structure of the walls (unusually regular-cut stone blocks with cement pointing) was left visible on the outside. The walls terminated in a simply-moulded cornice.
Two side altars on each of the side facades stood out from the single interior space of the church. The side altar areas were rectangular, measuring 4.20 x 2.00 m (the area of each side altar projecting outwards from the wall plane of the church by 2.00 m). The side altars were vaulted on the inside with a pent roof on the outside.
The apse, baptistery and sacristy formed separate areas at the west end. Seen from the outside, these premises were lower than the main body of the church. The side areas of the baptistery and sacristry had gabled roofs.
The church had a gabled roof clad with sheet metal.
The windows on the side facades of the building were set in a single horizontal row.
The north and south facades each had three arched windows. On the outside, these windows were framed by stone window jambs without moulding, set level with the wall.
The south facade of the building had a rectangular door into the baptistery. The door was 1.00 m wide and framed with a stone doorjamb with no moulding, set level with the wall.
The side altar areas were accentuated not only by standing out from the main body of the church but also by the facades of the church being set back into the width of the side altars.
The west facade of the building had six windows at various heights. The apse had three arched windows in a single horizontal row. The sacristy and baptistery each had one rectangular window. The gable end of the church had a rosette. All these windows were framed on the outside by stone windowjambs without moulding, set level with the wall.
The east, entrance wall was divided into three levels by simply-moulded stone string courses.
The first level had a side entrance to the church on either side of the entrance portal. These were arched, and had no doorjambs.
The second level had arched triforae to either side of the entrance portal.
The third level had a stepped finish. The corners of the building were in the form of pillars, accentuated by projecting slightly outwards from the wall plane. There were crosses at the tops of the corners.
The east walls of the side altars, visible on the entrance facade, also had stepped finishes.
The belltower on the east front was built of regular-cut stone with cement plaster pointing. The structure of the belltower rested on four massive pillars, two of which were «sunk» into the thickness of the wall. These pillars measured 130 x 110 cm.
The ends of the steel ties set at the corners of the belltower were executed in the form of a stylized floral cross.
The belltower had a hipped roof clad with sheet metal.
Simply-moulded stone string courses divided the belltower into four levels.
The first level of the belltower had three round-arched openings, 180 cm wide on the entrance facade and 100 cm wide on the side facades. These were accentuated by being set back into the wall and also in shape – the pillars with bases and capitals bearing the arches were left undecorated.
The second level had a rosette in a stone frame on the entrance facade of the belltower. The side facades of the belltower had triforae with no window jambs, and with the sills projecting out from the wall plane. On the entrance facade, there was a row of arched blind arcades below the stone string course.
The third horizontal level of the belltower had a single window, on the entrance facade. This window was arched and had a stone frame with no moulding. Above it was a clock set in a square panel. There was a row of arched blind arcades below the roof cornice.
The church was entered from the east, by a cross-vaulted passageway through the ground floor of the belltower. The arched entrance portal of the church was 1.50 m wide. The portal was identical to the arched entrance of the belltower – pillars with bases and capitals supporting the moulded arch were set into the thickness of the wall of the building. The portal had double doors.
The interior of the church was longitudinal, measuring 20.00 x 10.00 m.
There was an L-shaped, double-flight stairway against the south wall of the church(3).
The side altar areas, measuring 3.00 x 2.20 m, were accentuated by being set back into the wall plane and by being surrounded by shallow pilasters. The entrances to the side altars were arched.
The apse area was three steps (45 cm) higher than the nave of the church. The rectangular altar measured 3.80 x 2.50 m.
To the left and right of the apse area were the sacristy (on the north facade) and the baptistery (on the south facade). The sacristy and baptistery, measuring 3.75 x 3.45 m, were separated from the apse by a wall. A door led from each of these premises into the apse. The baptistery could also be entered from the outside, through the side door in the south facade.
The inside walls of the church were plastered and whitewashed.
3. Legal status to date
The Catholic church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Nevesinje is on the Provisional List of National Monuments of the Commission to Preserve National Monuments under serial no. 435.
4. Research and conservation and restoration works
No research or conservation and restoration works have been carried out on the property under the supervision of the heritage protection authority.
During World War II the building suffered some damage. It was repaired between 1958 and 1973(4).
5. Current condition of the property
The Catholic church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Nevesinje was dynamited and totally destroyed in 1992. All the fragments were removed from the site. Presumably some of the fragments, along with the remains of the Careva (Imperial) mosque in Nevesinje, were dumped in Ždrijela near the village of Čitluk, on the Nevesinje – Sopilji road. The remains of the foundations of the church were covered over with gravel to level the site. For a long time the site was used as a parking area. Garbage containers were placed at the edge of the plot.
6. Specific risks
- possible changes to the immediate environs of the church.
III – CONCLUSION
Applying the Criteria for the adoption of a decision on proclaiming an item of property a national monument (Official Gazette of BiH nos. 33/02 and 15/03), the Commission has enacted the Decision cited above.
The Decision was based on the following criteria:
A. Time frame
B. Historical value
C. Artistic and aesthetic value
D. iv. evidence of a particular type, style or regional manner
E. Symbolic value
E.ii. religious value
E.iii. traditional value
E.v. significance for the identity of a group of people
F. Townscape/ Landscape value
F.ii. meaning in the townscape
The following documents form an integral part of this Decision:
- copy of cadastral plan no. 4, title sheet no. 530 and Land Registerentry no. 768;
- photodocumentation (photographs of the building received from don Ante Lubirić and photographs of the condition of the building at the time the documentation was being prepared for drafting a final decision to designate by the Commission, December 2005);
- technical documentation (ground plan of building, obtained from don Ante Lubirić, and photographs of documentation held by the Archives of Herzegovina – ground plan and entrance facade of the building).
During the procedure to designate the site and remains of the historic building of the Catholic Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Nevesinje as a national monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina the following works were consulted:
1977 Various authors, Šematizam franjevačke provincije Uznesenja Blažene Djevice Marije u Hercegovini (Schematism of the Franciscan Province of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Herzegovina), Provincialate of the Herzegovinian Franciscans, Mostar, 1977.
1986 Various authors, Studia Vrhbosnensia I – Katolička crkva u Bosni i Hercegovini u XIX i XX stoljeću, povijesno teološki simpozij prigodom stogodišnjice ponovne uspostave redovite hijerarhije u BiH, Sarajevo, 1. i 2. srpanj 1982. godine (Studia Vrhbosnensia I – the Catholic Church in BiH in the 19th and 20th centuries, historico-theological symposium on the occasion of the centenary of the re-establishment of the hierarchy of the order in BiH, Sarajevo, 1 and 2 July 1982), Vrhbosna Theological College, Sarajevo, 1986.
Documentation of the Bishop's Ordinarite of Mostar received from don Ante Luburić
Documentation of the Archives of Herzegovina
(1) Dr. fr. Andrija Nikić, „Političko-pastoralno i prosvjetno-karitativno djelovanje hercegovačkih franjevaca od 1878. godine do 1918. godine“ (Political, pastoral, educational and charitable works of the Herzegovinian Franciscans from 1878 to 1918), 236, paper published in Studia Vrhbosnensia I.
(2) The description of the building is based on photographs of the church obtained from don Ante Luburić and technical documentation of the church located in the Archives of Herzegovina in Mostar.
(3) No choir is indicated on available technical documentation of the church. Available photographs of the building show walls above the entrance to the building (where an extension of the structure of the belltower inside the building could have been) to which this stairway led. However, these walls are not indicated on available technical documentation. Since the visible wall structure is of the same width as the flight of stairs, i.e. about 90 cm, it is possible it belonged to the structure of the belltower. This would have been the only possible entry to the belltower.
(4) Šematizam franjevačke provincije Uznesenja Blažene Djevice Marije u Hercegovini, 68.