Status of monument -> National monument
Published in the “Official Gazette of BiH”,
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 4 to 11 September 2006 the Commission adopted
C I S I O N
archaeological site of the stone slab with the inscription of Radovac Vukanović
in Gornje Hutovo, Municipality Neum is hereby designated as a
National Monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina (hereinafter: the National
The National Monument is located in the
lapidarium of the Roman Catholic church in Gornje Hutovo, Municipality Neum,
Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The provisions relating to protection
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 the Federation of BiH nos. 2/02, 27/02 and 6/04) shall apply to the
The Government of the Federation of Bosnia
and Herzegovina (hereinafter: the Government of the Federation) shall be
responsible for ensuring and providing the legal, scientific, technical,
administrative and financial measures necessary for the protection,
conservation and presentation 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 basic details of
the monument and the Decision to proclaim the property a National Monument.
To ensure the on-going protection of the
National Monument on the area defined in Clause 1 para. 3 of this Decision the
following protection measures are
works are prohibited other than archaeological investigations and research and
conservation and restoration works, including those designed to display the
monument, with the approval of the Federal Ministry responsible for regional
planning and under the expert supervision of the heritage protection authority
of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina;
to preserve the
authenticity of the National Monument, it is recommended that it be returned to
its original location in Novkovića klanac (Carska kuća), cadastral plot 235/171
(old survey), coresponding to c.p. 1014 (new survey), cadastral municipality Hutovo,
slab shall not be removed from the lapidarium of the Roman Catholic church in
Gornje Hutovo until such time as appropriate conditions are provided for the
on-going protection and presentation of the National Monument in its original
The Government of the Federation shall be
responsible in particular for the implementation of the following measures:
repair of the National Monument;
up and implementing a programme for the presentation of the National Monument.
All executive and area development planning
acts are hereby revoked to the extent that they are not in accordance with the
provisions of this Decision.
Everyone, and in particular the competent
authorities of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Canton, and urban
and municipal authorities, shall refrain from any action that might damage the
National Monument or jeopardize the preservation thereof.
The Government of the Federation, the relevant
Federal ministry, the Federation heritage protection authority, 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 to 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
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. 432.
This Decision shall enter into force on the
day following its publication 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.
of the Commission
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 Inscription
of Radovac Vukanović and the mediaeval necropolis with churchyard in Hutovo
to the Provisional List of National Monuments of BiH under serial no. 432.
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 para. 4
of Annex 8 and Article 35 of the Rules of Procedure of the Commission to
Preserve National Monuments.
II – PRELIMINARY PROCEDURE
In the procedure preceding the adoption of a
final decision to proclaim the property a national monument, the following
documentation was inspected:
on the location and current owner and user of the property (copy of cadastral
plan and copy of land register entry).
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
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
Hutovo is located in a natural pass between
Popovo polje and the principal ridge of Mt Žaba, through which run all the
roads from Ston, Klek or Slano on the Adriatic to the Humland interior and
The living rock into which the inscription of
Radovac Vukanović is carved is at the western edge of the polje known as
Zablatak. Until the Trebišnjica system was constructed, the polje was often
flooded. Zablatak polje lies south of the main Stolac-Hutovo-Velja Međa (Popovo
polje) road, in Donje Hutovo, which is about 2 km from Gornje Hutovo. A narrow
field track known as Novkovića klanac, leading to the karst foothills, forks
right, to the south, by the last house in Donje Hutovo and a poultry-rearing
unit, now in ruins. The inscription was carved into one of the low rock faces
on the west side of the track, 150-200 m from the main road. Local residents
know where the inscription was before it was transferred to the churchyard of
the Roman Catholic church in Gornje Hutovo and installed as part of an open-air
lapidarium. In 1983, while preparing material relating to the mediaeval county
of Žaba for the Archaeological Lexicon,
P. Anđelić visited the site and found the inscription in situ. A slab in the churchyard in Hutovo records that the
lapidarium was set up in 1991, which is therefore likely to be the terminus post quem for the transfer of the
The area immediately below the rock face
where the inscription formerly stood is known as Carska kuća.
In mediaeval times, Hutovo belonged to the
Hum župa (county) of Žaba. The
earliest record of this county is in the Chronicles
of the Doclean priest, usually dated to the mid 12th century. Žaba county
included Mt. Žaba, the long spine of which runs east-west from the western end
of the Popovo plain to the delta of the river Neretva. The broad foothills of
the mountain reach to the sea at the Pelješac (Ston) channel to the south and
the Bregava and Krupa river basins to the north.(1) Until
1399, when the Republic of Dubrovnik purchased the New Lands from Bosnia’s King
Dabiša, which were registered in the detailed land register of the Littoral
(Republic of Dubrovnik) during King Ostoja’s reign, in 1405, the villages of
Ošlje, Stupa, Topolo, Imotica, Štedro, present-day Klek, Gradina in Mala
Neretva [where] Brštanik town/fort was built in or around 1382, and the Slivno
area belonged to Žaba county (Anđelić,
1983, 37, 39; Tošić, 1982, 49). Mt. Žaba divides the county into two equal
halves: the northern continental area and the coastal area south of the
Hutovo, which lies on a major road running
through the county, is in the northern, continental part, and belonged in
mediaeval times to the kotar
(district) of Hrasno. This district was subdivided into small areas
corresponding to the rural communities of Gornje and Donje Hrasno (now a small
group of villages sharing the same name) or to a manorial estate that was
probably in Hutovo (Anđelić, 1983, 40-42).
The territory of Žaba county was equated with
the Nikolić’s feudal lands at the time of lord of the county Nikola (after
1327). Although Nikola formally held the title of lord of the county, he became
the first feudal lord of Žaba county and vassal of Bosnia’s ban (governor) Stjepan II Kotromanić. The
Nikolić’s were the leading landowning family in Žaba county and direct
descendants of Hum’s Prince Andrija (1214-1217) who, at the time of the
break-up of the Hum state in the early 13th century, held Popovo, the Littoral
and Žaba. The Nikolić’s family burial ground, and probably their headquarters
too, was in Vranjevo village. Their family tree can be traced over eight
generations, right through to vojvoda (duke)
Vukačin (1436-1453). The status of the family altered with the passage of time.
At times they were direct vassals of the Bosnian king, but they were more often
vassals of the Sanković’s in Popovo and the Kosača’s. The landowning clan of
the Šimraks or Šimraković’s are known of in Žaba county in the 15th and 16th
centuries. There are also scraps of information about other figures, stewards
of the Nikolić feudal lords, in this mediaeval county.(2)
There were a number of temporary customs
posts belonging to the feudal lords of Žaba in Klek, Brštanik, Ledenice (at the
confluence of the Rivers Krupa and Neretva), Zelenikovac (on the south-western
edge of the county towards Popovo polje) and Hutovo (near Zablatak). A charter
issued in 1418 by knez Grgur Nikolić (1412-1436) relates to the Zablatak
customs post, which was abolished that year but seems to have been reactivated
in the 1530s or 1540s. In Anđelić’s view, the inscription carved into the rock
face in Novkovića klanac probably dates from that later period. Radovac
Vukanović was the customs officer of voyvoda Radoje (1430-1445) or Vukašin
Nikolić (1436-1453). Judging from the post he occupied as customs officer for a
Nikolić voyvoda, Radoslav Vukanović was probably a member of the landed gentry.
Anđelić is of the view that details in certain Dubrovnik documents and a
charter issued by Grgur Nikolić (1412-1436) relate to the customs post in
Zablatak, which was the outermost point of Popovo polje, the only possible location
for this customs post.(3)
Hutovo is the only place to stand out in
Hrasno, the northern part of Žaba county. It may be deduced from onomastics
that it was a mediaeval manorial estate belonging to some nearby, unidentified
landowner whose name is preserved in the place-name Hutovo. The estate must
have been a large one, probably extending from Popovo to Hutovo blato.(4)
The earliest sources pertaining to the Vlah
organization in this region date from the early Ottoman period. The villages of
Svitava and Hrasno are known to have belonged to the dukedom of Donji (Lower)
Vlah, which also took in the Vlah communities in the environs of Stolac and
Ljubinje (Ubosko, the Burmazi Vlahs). The Herzegovina sanjak was established in
early 1470, but a year earlier the first census of the vilayet of Herzeg, the
Herceg’s land, had been conducted. The sanjak was divided into three vilayets.
At first, the area between the Neretva, Tara and Piva rivers, belonged to the
Blagaj vilayet and kadiluk, and then to the large Drina kadiluk with its
headquarters in Foča. Documents dating from 1473 and 1500 refer to the Primorje
(Littoral) vilayet, extending from Gabela to Dračevica, which would mean that
it also included the former mediaeval Žaba county.(5)
2. Description of the
The inscription was originally on a natural
rock face to the west of the road, with a slight tilt forwards towards
passers-by. The rock face on which the Bosnian Cyrillic inscription was carved,
which forms part of the lowest rocky part of the nearby hill, is almost
horizontal, and irregular in shape, with a length of 1.9 m and a width ranging
from 2.0 to 0.60 m. The rock splits readily, which made it relatively easy to
lift off the topmost layer and take it to the lapidarium of the church in
Gornje Hutovo, set up in 1991.
According to M. Vego, the inscription reads
WAS WRITTEN BY RADOVAC VUKANOVIĆ WHO USED TO RUN THE VOYVODA’S CUSTOMS POST AND
LOST NO FRIENDS UNTIL HE TREATED HIM ILL.
Radovac Vukanović was forced by his voyvoda
to write the inscription when it was found that as customs officer he was not
handing over to the voyvoda the customs dues he had collected. Anđelić believes
that the customs post in Zablatak was set up by voyvodas of the Nikolić family
between 1430 and 1450 in response to a weak central government and the
wide-ranging powers of local feudals, whereas Vego expresses the view that the
customs post belonged to Sandalj Hranić, who ruled Popovo from 1404, after the
violent death of voyvoda Radić Sanković.(6) The
slab bearing the inscription measured 1.9 x 2.0 (0.5) x 0.2 m when it was
transferred to Gornje Hutovo.
Since the inscription of Radovac Vukanović in
Novkovića klanac was about 2 km from the site of the mediaeval necropolis at
Crkvina in Gornje Hutovo, and was transferred to the churchyard of the Roman
Catholic church in Hutovo in 1991.
3. Legal status to date
The property is on the Provisional List of
National Monuments of the Commission to Preserve National Monuments under the
heading Neum-Hutovo Inscription of
Radovan Vukanović and mediaeval necropolis with churchyard, under serial
4. Research and conservation
and restoration works
The monument has been known since the late 19th century, and was published by
Vid Vuletić-Vukasović in Starinar Srpske
akademija nauka in 1884 and by
N. Jorga in Notes II, 61. The
monument was visited and described by Šefik Bešlagić in the early 1960s(7), and
published with commentary by M. Vego.(8) A
few local residents of Donje Hutovo still know where the inscription was
located, but those Gornje Hutovo no longer know. The inscription was in situ until 1991.
5. Current condition of the
During an on site inspection in June 2006 it was found that the rock
face on which the inscription was carved had been moved to the Roman Catholic
churchyard, where it had been mounted on a plinth consisting of a natural slab
of local stone. The surface has been eroded over time, making it hard to
decipher. It is one of the inscriptions carved in stone that corroborates a
historical fact, the existence of a customs post in Zablatak near Hutovo.
6. Specific risks
inscription has been removed from its original location
of the elements on the stone
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
The Decision was based on the following
location and setting
unique or rare example of a certain
The following documents form an integral part
of this Decision:
of cadastral plan
Copy of land register
16 photographs taken by the Commission in July 2006
During the procedure to designate the
monument as a national monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina the following works
1961. Vego, Marko. “Novi i revidirani natpisi iz
Hercegovine” (New and revised inscriptions and epitaphs from Herzegovina) in Jnl of the National Museum in Sarajevo,
Archaeology, new series, vol. XV-XVI/ 1960-1961. Sarajevo: 1961.
1966. Bešlagić, Šefik. Popovo. Sarajevo: 1966.
1971. Bešlagić, Šefik. Stećci, kataloško-topografski pregled (Stećak tombstones, a catalogue
and topographical survey). Sarajevo: Veselin Masleša, 1971.
1982. Šabanović, Hazim. Bosanski pašaluk: postanak i upravna podjela (The Bosnian pashaluk:
origins and administrative division). Sarajevo: Svjetlost, 1982.
1983. Anđelić, Pavao. “Srednjovjekovna humska župa
Žaba” (Žaba Mediaeval County of Hum), Hercegovina
3. Mostar: 1983.
(1) Pavao Anđelić,
“Srednjovjekovna humska župa Žaba,” Hercegovina
– periodical for the cultural heritage, no. 3, Mostar: 1983, 38.
Pavao Anđelić, op.cit., Mostar: 1983, 37-38, 42.
(3) Pavao Anđelić, op.cit., Mostar: 1983, 52,
(4) Pavao Anđelić, op.cit., Mostar: 1983, 46.
(5) Hazim Šabanović, Bosanski pašaluk, postanak i upravna podjela, Sarajevo: Svjetlost,
1982, 156-159, 161.
(6) Marko Vego, “Novi i revidirani natpisi
iz Hercegovine,” in Jnl of the National
Museum in Sarajevo, Archaeology, new series, vol. XV-XVI/ 1960-1961,
Sarajevo: 1961, 282; Pavao Anđelić, op.cit., Mostar: 1983, 42.
(7) Šefik Bešlagić, Popovo, Sarajevo: 1966, 56.
(8) Marko Vego, op.cit., Sarajevo: 1961, 281.