Status of monument -> National monument
Published in the “Official Gazette of BiH” no. 29/08.
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 20 to 27 November 2007 the Commission adopted a
D E C I S I O N
The architectural ensemble of the Musluk (Atik Ali-pasha) mosque in Foča is hereby designated as a National Monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina (hereinafter: the National Monument).
The National Monument consists of the mosque and the harem with nišan tombstones.
The National Monument is located on a site designated as cadastral plot 762, registered as title deed no. 1426, cadastral municipality Foča, Municipality Foča, 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 providing the legal, scientific, technical, administrative and financial measures necessary for the protection 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.
Protection Level I covers the area defined in Clause 1 para. 3 of this Decision. To ensure the on-going protection of the National Monument, the following protection measures are hereby stipulated:
- conservation and restoration works shall be permitted, subject to 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,
- horticultural works in the harem are permitted,
- the presentation of remaining fragments not reintegrated into the building shall be arranged in the harem of the mosque.
Protection Level II covers the plots bordering the protected site of the National Monument. In this buffer zone the following measures are hereby stipulated:
- the construction shall be permitted of new buildings the use of which is not detrimental to the National Monument, of two storeys (ground + 1), maximum dimensions of 10 x 12 m and a maximum height of 6.50 m to the start of the roof frame, and standing a minimum of 10 m from the mosque,
- the use of the properties in the immediate vicinity shall not be detrimental to the religious nature of the National Monument.
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 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 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 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.
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.
21 November 2007
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.
On 22 May 2003 the Centre for Islamic Architecture, Sarajevo, submitted a petition to designate the Atik Ali-pasha (Musluk) mosque in Foča as a national monument.
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:
- Data on the current condition and use of the property, including a description and photographs,
- Details of war damage,
- Details of interventions and other works on the property,
- Copy of cadastral plan,
- 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 architectural ensemble of the Musluk (Atik Ali-pasha) mosque is in the northern part of Foča in a quarter known as Donje polje below the mouth of the river Ćehotina. The mahala was also formerly known by the same name. The property is now located between two streets, 8 March street to the east and Kasim Ćorić street to the north. The entrance to the mosque harem is from Kasim Ćorić street.
The Musluk fountain is to the north-east of the plot, at the intersection of 8 March and Kasim Ćorić streets.
The National Monument is located on cadastral plot 762, title deed no. 1426, cadastral municipality Foča, Municipality Foča, Republika Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The origins and development of the mediaeval settlement of Bosnia and Herzegovina named Hoča (Hotča) were based primarily on its geographical position on two rivers, the Drina and the Ćehotina, on the road linking Dubrovnik with the Morava-Vadar mountain-ringed valley and the central region of the Balkan peninsula.
Hoča came into being in mediaeval times on the site of Pazarište (Trgovište). Trgovište is the part of the mediaeval settlement in which the shops of tradesmen and artisans were located, along with a large open area for the weekly market.
Mediaeval Hoča (Hotča) saw various stages of development, from an open caravan post (platea) and market-place to an urban settlement. As the end of the road via Čemerno and Sutjeska, Foča was well located to become a major market and caravan station. People from Foča began to trade, initially with people from Dubrovnik. Local traders supplied animal products and wax to Dubrovnik, and imported cloth to eastern Bosnia. The large quantities of cloth that were imported testify to the advanced level of economic development of mediaeval Foča as well as to the requirements and purchasing power of its inhabitants. The presence of merchants and artisans (goldsmiths) from Dubrovnik in Foča increased the importance of the town itself, which by the 15th century had become the largest trading centre in eastern Bosnia.
The town flourished under Ottoman rule, particularly from the mid 15th to the end of the 16th century. Hoča came under Ottoman rule in 1465, and during that period was transformed from a kasaba or small town to a šeher or sizeable town and major administrative centre in Herzegovina. With the introduction of Ottoman rule, the economic orientation of Foča shifted, and the link with Dubrovnik (the Mediterranean) began to decline and was ultimately lost altogether. Instead, its connections with the commercial centres of the Ottoman Empire gained in importance, as was to be reflected in the architectural image of the town as well.
Details provided by a defter dating from 1468/69 reveal that the Ottoman authorities took over the mediaeval division of the country into župas (counties), which they called nahijas. This document refers to the Foča kadi by the name of Kadija Drine, while from the 16th century on the kadiluk was known as the Foča kadiluk. In 1470 the Herzegovina sandžak was separated from the Bosnian sandžak, with its capital in Foča. The first sandžak-beg of Herzegovina was Hamza-beg, who held the post until 1474.
Foča remained the headquarters of the Herzegovina sandžak until 1574, except for a break between 1522 and 1530, when the headquarters moved to Pljevlja (Taslidža).
The second sandžak-beg of Herzegovina, Mustafa-beg, was principally responsible for the transformation of mediaeval Hoča, causing Foča to expand greatly by building a mosque on the right side of the Ćehotina in 1484, around which a new mahala took shape, so that the town now extended to the other side of the river. With the construction of the masjid (everyday mosque) and mahala of Princess Fatima, wife of the third sandžak-bega of Herzegovina Ahmed-beg, at the point where the Ćehotina flows into the Drina, the boundary of the new settlement to the north was determined. The 16th century was the golden age of building in Foča. The first record of the mediaeval name of Hoča being replaced by Foča is in a defter of 1519 (Redžić, 1983, 322-324).
During the Ottoman period the town consisted of two parts, the commercial quarter or čaršija and the residential quarters of mahalas. The main part of the čaršija consisted of the large square known as Pazarište, below the Careva (Imperial) mosque.
Seventeen mosques were built in Foča during that period, putting it in fourth place among the towns of Bosnia and Herzegovina, after Sarajevo, Banja Luka and Mostar. Among them are some that are works of art of Ottoman architecture, the best-known being the Aladža mosque, dating from 1551. Five of the mosques were destroyed during World War II, and the rest during the 1992-1995 war.
As regards the materials of which these mosques were built, eleven had stone minarets and stone walls, while the rest were built from timber and unbaked brick and had wooden minarets. Stone mosques were mainly built by craftsmen from the east or from Dubrovnik, and wooden ones by local artisans.
Evliya Çelebi was in Foča in 1664 and provided some valuable information about the town in his travelogue.(1)
The Muslim (Atik Ali-pasha) mosque was built by Atik Ali-pasha(2), a military leader. One of the mosque’s values is its elaborate decoration, very similar to that of the Aladža mosque.
The Musluk mosque was built in 1564 (952 AH), as recorded on the surviving inscription above the entrance.
The walls of the mosque were adorned with inscriptions from the Qur'an reading:
"Allah Almighty says: Truly Allah calls you to the house of salvation. Build mosques and support those who believe in Allah and the Day of Judgment, who pray, who give alms and who fear Allah. They shall know.“
"My homes on earth are mosques, and their visitors maintain them, and it is good when a servant [of God] cleanses himself at home and then visits me in my home, and the host is bound to provide for his guest.“ (Hadith-qudsi)
Autograph of Evliya Çelebi in the portico of the Atik Ali-pasha
Quite some time ago an inscription in the hand of the famous Turkish travelogue and world traveller Evliya Çelebi, who gave his views on the Aladža mosque and Foča in well-known Persian verses, was discovered in the portico of the Aladža mosque.
During restoration works on the Musluk mosque in the summer of 1973 yet another inscription by Evliya Çelebi was discovered beneath a coat of whitewash, reading:
"For the soul of God's favoured one [Muhammad and God's pleasure, [recite] Fatiha. Written by muezzin Evliya in 1074" (1664).
This inscription(3) was written in black ink in naskh script, covering an area of 14 x 17 cm.
During World War II, Italian troops turned the mosque into a military chapel, when the stone mimber was destroyed (Mujezinović, 1988, 30).
Repair works were carried out in 1973, but we have no knowledge of what these works were.
The Musluk mosque was left completely derelict in 1992 as a result of bombing and dynamiting. All that remained were the four outside walls to roof height. The hipped roof, with its wooden strructure, and the portico of the mosque were set on fire and completely destroyed. The minaret was destroyed by dynamiting and all that remained was part of the base section. The interior of the mosque was completely destroyed, as were all the windows and the portal, the mahfil and mimber; all that survived was the mihrab, which was quite badly damaged.
Preparatory works and clearing the site began in 2000, and on completion of the project documentation in 2003 work began on the reconstruction of the building. The building works on the Musluk mosque were completed and the mosque was reopened on 22 July 2007.
2. Description of the property
In terms of layout, the Musluk mosque(4) in Foča belongs to the type of single-space mosque with an open exterior portico, hipped roof and stone minaret(5). The entrance to the mosque is from the north-west, through the open stone sofas, which are about 45 cm high and stand on either sideof the entrance portal.
The mosque measures approx. 16.94 x 12.76 m on the outside, and the sofas approx. 12.76 x 5.00 m. The central interior hall of the mosque is square in plan, measuring 9,75 x 10.55. The walls are solidly built of limestone and are approx. 110 cm thick. The walls are rendered with lime plaster and limewashed inside and out.
The hipped roof has a wooden roof frame made of deal (fir wood), clad with double-overlapped fluted tiles. This roof also covers the portico to the north-west of the mosque, where the sofas are located. The portico structure rests on eight round wooden posts, six at the front and two at the sides. These posts, which have a radius of about 30 cm at the base, have moulded stone bases.
The building is approx. 12.12 m high from ground level to the top of the roof frame. The height of the prayer hall from floor to ceiling is approx. 7.34 m.
The building has 16 windows in all, in two rows, four on each side of the building (two upper and two lower windows). The lower windows are double casements, rectangular in shape with wrought iron bars, measuring approx. 1.5 x 2.4 m. These windows have stone frames and 80 cm high pointed arches above the window both inside and out. The upper windows terminate in pointed arches and measure approx. 0.75 x 1.8 m.
The stone portal of the mosque is massive, with a prominent tall, rectangular frame, The portal is approx. 3.3 m wide and 5.22 m high. The door has an arched stone frame with over it a place for a plaque with an inscription. Above this is a pyramidal section with stone stalactites.
The massive mihrab is made of stone, and is on the south-east wall of the mosque. It is approx. 2.93 m in width and 3.60 m in height and consists of the mihrab niche, which is semicircular in shape with a radius of approx. 1.0 m and a height of approx. 2.80 m. At the top of the mihrab niche is a stone decoration of the type known as muqarnas (stalactites). The entire surface of the mihrab around the niche is filled with a dense floral bas-relief. Much of this surface was damaged when the mosque was demolished and set on fire.
The mimber is by the south-east wall of the mosque, to the right of the mihrab. It is made of stone, with elaborate carved decoration. It is 4.20 m long, 1.10 m wide and 7.90 m high, and consists of three sections:
- the entrance portal with steps and stone railing,
- the upper pyramidal section supported by four pillars,
- the triangular side sections below the stair rail.
The outside of the mimber railing and the triangular side sections are decorated with bas relief geometric and floral designs similar to those on the mihrab and mahfil.
The mahfil measuring approx. 8.20 m in length and 1.97 m in width lies between the north-west and south-west walls of the mosque, in the west corner of the building. It is stone-built, with decoration, and is supported by five pillars with square bases. The capitals have stalactite decoration. Between the capitals are stone slabs with a carved decoration of ogee arches. The top part of the mahfil consists of a perforated stone balustrade with geometric designs formed by three rows of six-pointed stars and rather smaller hexagons.
The minaret of the Musluk is stone, abutting onto the south-west wall of the mosque. It is tall and slender, and made of cut stone. The entrance to the minaret is in the south-west wall of the mosque, inside the mosque just below the mahfil. The overall height of the minaret is approx. 31.5 m. The structure of the minaret consists of stone blocks forming rings that are circular on the inside and twelve-sided on the outside. Inside the minaret is a spiral stone staircase leading first to the mahfil and then to the šerefe (balcony) of the minaret. The stone šerefe railing is approx. 95 cm high. The conical roof of the minaret is clad with sheet lead and topped by an alem (finial).
Harem by the Musluk (Atik Ali-pasha) mosque
The harem by the Musluk (Atik Ali-pasha) mosque is surrounded by a concrete wall of recent date. It previously contained several nišan tombstones, the most valuable of which is that of Ibrahim, son of Huseijin, dating from 1546, indicating that burials were conducted here from the time the mosque was built.
EPITAPH ON THE NIŠAN TOMBSTONE OF IBRAHIM, SON OF HUSEJIN
The tombstone bearing this epitaph is of Skopje crystal stone. It is 90 cm in height and 14 x 14 cm in section. The nišan has a pleated, folded turban with a rose carved on it and zigzag lines below it. The epitaph is in Arabic prose, in 12 rectangular panels in naskh script.
"The deceased, may Almighty God have mercy on his soul, [is]
Ibrahim, son of Husejin. This occurred in the year 953.“ (1546/47.)
(Mujezinović, 1988, p. 34)
Musluk fountain by the Ali-pasha mosque
The Musluk fountain is one of the better-known features of its kind in Foča. It was presumably made by the founder of the mosque, with the mosque named after it. It was badly damaged during World War II, but was repaired in 1970.
A small stone plaque on the fountain bears a damaged inscription of which only part can be made out:
"Legacy of hajji Jusuf, son of Sulejman, may Allah forgive his sins. . . Renovated ... in the year....“ (Mujezinović, 1988, p. 35).
The Musluk fountain was built for the needs of the mosque and the local residents alike. It is in the north-eastern part of the mosque plot, at the corner of two streets, Kasim Ćorić and 8 March street. It is square, with sides of approx. 2.5 x 2.5 m, and has stone walls and a hipped roof clad with tiles (it was originally clad with sheet metal). Inside the building is an abdesthana (premises for ritual ablutions before prayer) for those who use the new mosque, while on the outside the fountain where the local residents used to draw water has been reinstalled.
3. Legal status to date
There are no details of any legal protection applicable to the property.
4. Research and conservation and restoration works
Repair works on the Musluk mosque were carried out in 1973, but we have no details of what these works entailed.
The Atik Ali-pasha mosque in Foča was left in a completely ruinous state as a result of the 1992-1995 war in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The property has been rehabilitated on the basis of a project for stage 1 repairs of the Atik Ali-pasha mosque in Foča drawn up by the Institute for the Protection of Monuments of the Federal Ministry of Culture and Sport in November 2003. The rehabilitation works were completed in July 2007.
The technical description of this project reveals that the Musluk mosque was left completely derelict in 1992 as a result of bombing and dynamiting. All that remained were the four outside walls to roof height. The hipped roof, with its wooden strructure, and the portico of the mosque were set on fire and completely destroyed. The minaret was destroyed by dynamiting and all that remained was part of the base section. The interior of the mosque was completely destroyed, as were all the windows and the portal, the mahfil and mimber; all that survived was the mihrab, which was quite badly damaged.
The project for stage I repairs to the Atik Ali-pasha mosque provided for the following works:
- detailed clearing of the property,
- removal of plaster and dismantling damaged parts of the walls,
- building new walls,
- making and reconstructing the wooden ceiling and roof frame,
- roofing works, with tile cladding,
- reconstructing the sofas, making wooden pillars with stone bases,
- making copper guttering and downpipes.
The technical description of the project specifies the materials and conditions of rehabilitation of the property:
- local limestone to be used for building the walls and laying the floor,
- natural slaked lime and local river sand to be used for plastering,
- timber structures to be of deal, naturally seasoned and hewn, 1st grade.
5. Current condition of the property
- the Musluk mosque in Foča was reopened in July 2007,
- all the building and artisanal works on the mosque have been completed,
- the Musluk mosque was built to the same size, proportions and structural elements as the original and traditional building materials were used,
- the mosque harem has not yet been laid out horticulturally,
- the harem of the mosque contains many fragments that were not reintegrated into the building and which require presentation.
6. Specific risks
There are no specific risks that might endanger the Musluk mosque.
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
C.v. value of details
E. Symbolic value
E.ii. religious value
E.v. significance for the identity of a group of people
F. Townscape/ Landscape value
F.ii. meaning in the townscape
F.iii. the building or group of buildings is part of a group or site
The following documents form an integral part of this Decision:
- Copy of cadastral plan;
- Photodocumentation (photographs taken by a Commission staff member);
- Project for stage I of repairs to the Atik-pasha mosque in Foča drawn up by the Institute for the Protection of Monuments of the Federal Ministry of Culture and Sport in November 2003.
During the procedure to designate the Musluk (Atik-pasha) mosque in Foča as a national monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina the following works were consulted:
1956. Bejtić, Alija, Povijest i umjetnost Foče na Drini (History and art of Foča on the Drina), Naše starine, Annual of the Institute for the Protection of Cultural Monuments and Natural Rarities of N.R. Bosne i Hercegovine, IV, 23-75, Sarajevo, 1956.
2000. Ayverdi Dr Ekrem Hakki, Avupra’da Osmanli Mimari Eserlera Yugoslavya II, 3 kitab, Istanbul, 2000.
1983. Redžić, Husref, Studije o islamskoj arhitektonskoj baštini (Studies on the Islamic architectural heritage), Cultural Heritage Series, Sarajevo, 1983.
1996. Čelebija, Evlija, Putopis (Travelogue), Sarajevo Publishing, Sarajevo, 1996.
1997. Muftić, Faruk, Foča: 1470-1996, Sarajevo, 1997.
1998. Mujezinović, Mehmed, Islamska epigrafika Bosne i Hercegovine, Knjiga 2, Istočna i centralna Bosna (Islamic epigraphics of BiH, Bk 2, Eastern and central Bosnia), 3rd ed, Sarajevo, 1998.
1999. Bećirbegović, Madžida, Džamije sa drvenom munarom u Bosni i Hercegovini (Mosques with Wooden Minarets in BiH), Sarajevo Publishing, 1999.
2003. Project for stage I of repairs to the Atik-pasha mosque in Foča drawn up by the Institute for the Protection of Monuments of the Federal Ministry of Culture and Sport in November 2003.
(1) “The šeher of Foča was conquered by Abul-Fath Sultan Mehmed Khan in 1465 (869 AH). Foča extends along the banks of the great river Drina from east to west. The great šeher is in a valley in a spacious, level area. It has 18 mahalas and 2166 solidly built two-storey houses. Ten of them are Muslim and the remainder Bulgarian, Serbian and Latin. It has seventeen Islamic places of worship. Prominent among them is the mosque of Sultan Bayezid the Great in the old čaršija. It is an old-fashioned place of worship, built of solid materials in the classic style. It has a wooden dome clad with lead, and one minaret.” (Çelebi, 1996, 403-404).
(2) There is an Atik Ali-pasha mosque in Istanbul, possibly the same Atik Ali-pasha as the one from this part of the world, who paid his dues to his homeland by building the mosque in Foča. Tradition has it that Atik Ali-pasha purchased an estate from the bishop in the village of Vladikovo between Ustikolina and Foča, which he endowed for his mosque. (Mujezinović, 1988, 31)
(3) Evliya signs himself here as a muezzin, and he is known to have been the official muezzin of some dignitaries. His melodic voice brought him to the Ottoman court, where he was noticed by Sultan Murat IV, and Evliya continued his education at court. Probably, when visiting the Atik Ali-pasha mosque, Evliya represented himself as a muezzin when reciting the text inscribed on the wall of the portico to the left of the entrance to the mosque (Mujezinović, 1988, 33).
(4) The description of the mosque is based on old photographs and, to some extent, on the current condition of the property.
(5) “There are many more such mosques in Bosnia and Herzegovina than there are domed mosques. According to the 1933 figures, there were 36 domed mosques in Bosnia and Herzegovina and 223 with a hipped roof and stone minaret. In this part of the world, mosques with stone minarets have been built without a break since the mid 15th century. In architectural and overall significance they are second only to domed mosques. In Foča there were some architecturally valuable buildings among the nine mosques with hipped roofs and stone minarets, in which the interior elements were also of stone and elaborately decorated, evidence that they were built by highly-skilled craftsmen.”(Bećirbegović, 1999, 43).