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Kamičak Fort, the historic site

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Status of monument -> National monument

Published in the Official Gazette of BiH, no. 25/11.

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 on 26 October 2010 the Commission adopted a

 

D E C I S I O N

 

I

 

The historic site of the Kamičak Fort in Ključ 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.7/150 (old survey), corresponding to c.p. 1307 (new survey), title deed no. 102, cadastral municipality Kamičak (13), Municipality Ključ, 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, 6/04 and 51/07) shall apply to the National Monument.

 

II

 

The Government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (hereinafter: the Government of the Federation) shall be responsible for 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.

 

III

 

To ensure the on-going protection of the National Monument on the area defined in Clause 1 para. 2 of this Decision, the following protection measures are hereby stipulated:

-          all works are prohibited other than conservation-restoration works, routine maintenance works and works 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;

-          works that could have the effect of altering the site are prohibited, as the erection of temporary facilities or permanent structures not designed solely for the protection and presentation of the monument;

-          the dismantling of the masonry structures and the removal of fragments are prohibited;

-          the dumping of waste is prohibited.

 

The Government of the Federation shall be responsible for conducting a geodetic survey of the National Monument and for drafting a project for its repair, restoration, conservation and presentation.

The repair, restoration, conservation and presentation project shall cover:

-          archaeological investigations;

-          clearing the walls of self-sown vegetation posing a danger to their structure;

-          structural repairs to and consolidation of the damaged walls, crown of the towers and ramparts;

-          making good the access paths to the National Monument;

-          installing benches, litter bins, signposts and directional signs.

 

On all the plots (c.p. 1302, c.p.1305, c.p. 1306 and c.p.1308) bordering the protected site, the reconstruction of existing buildings is permitted subject to retaining their existing footprint and height. Infills of residential properties of no more than two storeys or a maximum height of approx. 6.50 to the eaves may be permitted.

 

IV

 

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.

 

V

 

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.

 

VI

 

The Government of the Federation, the Federal Ministry responsible for regional planning, 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.

 

VII

 

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.kons.gov.ba). 

 

VIII

 

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. 301.

 

IX

 

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.

 

X

 

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, Martin Cherry, Amra Hadžimuhamedović, Dubravko Lovrenović and Ljiljana Ševo.

 

No: 05.1-02.3-71/10-17

16 October 2010

Sarajevo

 

Chair of the Commission

Amra Hadžimuhamedović

 

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 Kamičak Fort, Municipality Ključ, to the Provisional List of National Monuments under serial no. 198.

On 10 April 2003 Ključ Municipality submitted a proposal/petition to designate the historic site of the Kamičak Fort, Municipality Ključ, as a national monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina. On 25 September 2008, the Bihać Institute for the Protection of the Cultural Heritage submitted a proposal/petition to designate the historic site of the Kamičak Fort, Municipality Ključ, as a national monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

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.

       

Statement of Significance

The ruins of several forts stand around the town of Ključ, indicative of its strategic military significance: the Ključ Fort itself, above the present-day town, the Kamičak Fort in the eponymous town, some 20 km downstream from Ključ, and the fort in Vrpolje, at the confluence of the Sanica and the Sana. All these forts were built to safeguard the road that ran close by.     

Written evidence of the mediaeval Kamičak Fort goes back only to the 18th century, when it had a garrison, and ends in 1824. By 1833 it had been abandoned. No written evidence dating from mediaeval times is currently available.

In layout, the finish of the stone, the masonry style and the type of mortar, Kamičak is a typical mediaeval fortified town, consisting of a substantial keep to the south-west and a long, irregularly-shaped bailey to the south-east. 

 

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:

-          Documentation on the location of the property and the current owner and occupants (copy of cadastral plan and copy of Land Register entry).

-          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.

-          Letter ref. 05.1-35.2-10/10-1/1 of 12 July 2010 requesting documentation and views on the designation of the Kamičak fort, Municipality Ključ, as a national monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina, sent to the Institute for the Protection of Monuments of the Federal Ministry of Culture and Sport and Ključ Municipality, Department of Spatial Planning, Housing and Utilities, Proprietary Rights, Geodetics and Cadastral Affairs.

 

The findings based on the review of the above documentation and the condition of the property are as follows:

 

1. Details of the property

Location

Kamičak Fort stands on a slight elevation on the left bank of the River Sana, in the eponymous village, in Ključ Municipality.

The National Monument is located on a site designated as cadastral plot no.7/150 (old survey), corresponding to c.p. 1307 (new survey), title deed no. 102, cadastral municipality Kamičak (13), Municipality Ključ, Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Historical information

In the late 12th and early 13th century the župa (county) of Banjica was held by the family of knez Hrvatin. His son, knez Vukoslav Hrvatinić, issued a charter in 1305 or 1315 in Sanica, which features in 1446 as a village in the county of Banjica. About ten years later, in 1325, the lord’s son issued his second document in the Ključ Fort, making this the earliest reference to the town in historical sources. The name of the county derives from a right-bank tributary of the Sana, which it flows into at the village of Ljubinje; there was also a village of the same name in the Banjica valley. The county town was Ključ(1). Bosnia’s ban (governor) Stjepan II confirmed the Hrvatinići’s authority over the county in 1323/26 when he formally bestowed the town of Ključ and the county of Banjica on them. The town was soon to fall into the hands of the Hungarian king, however, when knez Vlatko Vukoslavić exchanged Kljuć for the Slavonian town of Bršljanovac in 1363. This included not only the town but also all the villages belonging to Ključ. The Hungarian state continued to hold them until 1382, after the death of King Louis I (Lajoš) when voyvoda Hrvoje successfully took military action to regain his family property. The walled town and the borough below are referred to in a charter of King Stjepan Tomaš of 1446(2).

Ključ appears to have been the only town in the county of Banjica, though the ruins of several forts are still to be seen. On the same left bank of the Sana is the Kamičak Fort, while the fort in present-day Vrpolje was at the confluence of the Sanica and Sana. Both these forts would have been built to safeguard the road that ran close by on the left(3). 

In one of the appendices to “Povijest Jajca (banovine, grada i varoši),” Lajoš Taloci provides a list of forts in the Jajce banate(4). In his view, these were Banja Luka, Bilaj, Bočac, Čerepvar, Greben, Grmeč-grad, Jajce, Jezero, Komotin, Kamengrad, Kotor, Kozara, Krupa on the Vrbas, Oštregrad (Istregrad), Perga, Prusac, Sokol on the Pliva, Travnik, Vinac, Vrbenac-grad and Zvečaj. Jelena Mrgić-Radojčić believes that Ključ on the Sana should be added to these(5),  since this, the last refuge of the king of Bosnia, could not have remained in the hands of the Turkish army after King Matthias’ counter-offensive, after 1463 or early 1464, surrounded as it was on all sides by Hungarian-held territory. The approaches to Ključ were defended from the south-east by Sokol on the Pliva, and beyond by Vesela Straža in Uskoplje and Livno. The last reference to Kamičak Fort, located in the eponymous town on the left bank of the River Sana about 15 km downstream from Ključ, appears just before its fall to the Ottomans in 1495, while Kamengrad is known to have fallen in 1499. Ključ must also therefore have been taken in or around the final decade of the 15th century. At first, then, the Jajce banate consisted of Vrbaški Grad, Levač, Kozara, Banja Luka, Kotor, Zvečaj, Greben, Bočac, Komotin, Peć, Jajce, Vinac, Jezero, Sokol, Ključ, Kamičak and Kamengrad. This formed a single territory which, with the exception of the county of Uskoplje, corresponded to the territory of Donji Kraji, the lower marches(6). In 1491 the Ottomans occupied Vinac, after which they bypassed Jajce and Sokol in the direction of Livno and Glamoč to focus their attacks on the Sana valley, where they took Ključ, Kamičak and Kamengrad by the end of the 15th century.

The Kamengrad kadiluk [area under the jurisdiction of a cadi, an Islamic judge-administrator] was founded in or around 1541,  It would appear that it originally included the area that was until recently the district of Sanski Most. Between 1565 and the mid 17th century it increased in size, all the way to Cetingrad. In the mid 16th century the nahijas [minor administrative units] of Ključ and Bilaj probably also belonged to this kadiluk(7). In the late 16th century Kamengrad was in the Bosnian sanjak, but later, until after 1626, it was in the Bihać sanjak(8).

The Ključ captaincy, with its headquarters in Ključ on the Sana, covered two kadiluks of the Klis sanjak, Ključ and Jezero, with the Ključ, Kamičak and Jezero Forts, and marched with the captaincies of Kamengrad, Džisri-Sanski, Petrovac and Jajce. The earliest reference to the Ključ captaincy dates from 1694(9).

Written evidence of the mediaeval Kamičak Fort goes back only to the 18th century, when it had a garrison, and ends in 1824. By 1833 it had been abandoned. No written evidence dating from mediaeval times is currently available(10). 

         

2. Description of the property

In the 14th and 15th centuries the system of defences of the mediaeval states of South-East Europe, including Bosnia and Herzegovina, consisted of a limes of fortresses of which the location, layout and nature of fortifications were designed to protect their inhabitants. These forts reflected the social relations between feudal lords or noble families, and even kings, as patrons and overlords, and the peasantry. The forts were the mainstay of this system, and their function was mainly defensive, though they could also be important to the state or have a military administrative role, protecting roads or mining areas, the settlements within the ramparts and, far more frequently the settlements that developed on their outskirts. Finally, some were simply the castles of the nobility, with a guard tower and surrounding walls(11).

Most of the fort is now overgrown with rank vegetation, making access to it very difficult. It stands on a slight elevation surrounded by relatively level ground, with houses and fertile arable land in its immediate vicinity. A narrow footpath no more than 20 metres or so in length leads from the nearest house to the mediaeval fort.

No detailed description of the mediaeval Kamičak Fort has ever been written, nor has it been fully surveyed. There is a brief description in Srednjovjekovni gradovi u Bosni i Hercegovini by Professor Husref Redžić(12), whose investigations and drawings of the ground plan of the fort, the treatment of the stone, and the type of masonry and mortar, suggest that it was a mediaeval fortified town.

Kamičak Fort lies north-east/south-west, with the entrance to the fort in the south-east wall of the bailey. It consists of a substantial keep to the south-west and a bailey to the south-east. The keep, which projects out from the elongated irregular shape of the bailey, is circular in plan, with walls of about 2.50 to 3.20 m thick at the base, narrowing towards the top, an interior diameter of approx 6 metres and an exterior diameter of approx. 11.50 m. Its original height to the roof was about 12 to 15 metres; the walls now survive to a height of about 8 metres, and those of the bailey to about 7 metres. The walls of the tower and bailey are of quarry stone set in lime mortar. The roof of the tower was pyramidal, and clad with shingles. The substantial ramparts, some 0.90 m thick, extend to the north-east and south-east of the keep, forming a slight curve towards the end of the bailey, which is about 26.15 m wide at the south-east end. The end of the bailey is partitioned off by a transverse wall of the same thickness; the partitioned section is about 8.10 m wide. The bailey measures approx. 36.15 x 26.15 m on the outside, with the larger part measuring approx. 25.50 x 21.00 m on the inside. This part of the bailey contains no remains of masonry or of wooden buildings. A stone buttress abutted onto the south-east wall of the bailey, the remains of which can still be seen.

 

3. Legal status to date

According to the Institute for the Protection of Monuments of the Federal Ministry of Culture and Sport, the historic site of the Kamičak Fort was listed and protected by the Institute for the Protection of Cultural Monuments of SR BiH (21 April 1969, ruling no. 05-815-3) under the heading “Mediaeval Kamičak Fort in the village of Upper Kamičak, belonging to the mediaeval and Ottoman periods.”

The Regional Plan for BiH, 1980-2000, phase B – Valorization, lists the Kamičak Fort as a Category III monument, under serial no. 126.

 

4. Research and conservation-restoration works 

The available documentation on the site suggests that no investigative or conservation-restoration works have ever been carried out on the monument.

        

5. Current condition of the property

The findings of an on-site inspection on 13 July 2010 are as follows:

-          the National Monument is in poor structural condition and the site is completely overgrown with self-sown vegetation, making access to the fort, let alone a detailed survey, almost impossible, particularly in the summer months when the vegetation is at its most lush;

-          the walls of the keep have survived to a height of about 8 metres and those of the bailey to about 7 metres, and are almost completely covered with vegetation posing a threat to their structure.

 

6. Specific risks

The site of the Kamičak Fort is completely overgrown with dense vegetation which has caused considerable damage to the structure of the walls.

If steps are not taken to protect the walls as a matter of urgency, there is a risk that they will collapse.

 

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.iii.      proportions

C.iv.      composition

C.vi.      value of construction

D.         Clarity

D.i.       material evidence of a lesser known historical era

D.ii.      evidence of historical change

D.iv.      evidence of a particular type, style or regional manner

F.         Townscape/landscape value

F.i.       relation to other elements of the site

F.ii.       meaning in the townscape

G.         Authenticity

G.i.       form and design

G.ii.      material and content

G.v.      location and setting

 

The following documents form an integral part of this Decision:

-          Ownership documentation

-         Copy of cadastral plan, scale 1:25 000, issued on 29.07.2010 by the Municipal Geodetics Authority, Ključ, c.m. Kamičak, plan no. 3.

-         Transcript of title deed no. 102 for plot no. 7.150, NAR. no. 26/03, c.m. Kamičak (13), issued on 29.07.2010 by the Sector for Geodetics and Cadastral Affairs, Municipality Ključ, Una Sana Canton, Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bosnia and Herzegovina

-          Photodocumentation

-         Photographs taken on 13.07.2010 by architect Arijana Pašić using Canon 1000D digital camera

-          Drawings

      

Bibliography

During the procedure to designate the monument as a national monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina the following works were consulted: 

 

1959     Kreševljaković, Hamdija. Naše starine VI. Sarajevo: 1959

 

1980     Kreševljaković, Hamdija. Kapetanije u Bosni i Hercegovini (Captaincies in BiH). Sarajevo: Svjetlost, 1980

 

2002     Mrgić-Radojčić, Jelena. Donji Kraji, Krajina srednjovekovne Bosne (Donji Kraji, the military frontier of mediaeval Bosnia). Belgrade: 2002

 

2009     Mujadžić, Mirzet, Maslaka, Nijazija. Stari gradovi Unsko-sanskog kantona (Forts of Una Sana Canton). Bihać: Bihać Institute for the Protection of the Cultural Heritage and Una Sana Cantonal Museum, 2009

 

2009     Redžić, Husref. Srednjevjekovni gradovi BiH (Mediaeval forts of BiH). Sarajevo: Sarajevo Publishing, 2009

 

(1) Jelena Mrgić-Radojčić, Donji Kraji: Krajina srednjovekovne Bosne, Belgrade: 2002, 231.

(2) Jelena Mrgić-Radojčić, op.cit., Belgrade: 2002, 231.

(3) Jelena Mrgić-Radojčić, op.cit., Belgrade: 2002, 236.

(4) Jelena Mrgić-Radojčić, op.cit., Belgrade: 2002, 126

(5) Jelena Mrgić-Radojčić, op.cit., Belgrade: 2002, 127

(6) Jelena Mrgić-Radojčić, op.cit., Belgrade: 2002, 128

(7) The Kadiluk was divided into six nahijas

(8) Hamdija Kreševljaković, Naše starine VI, Sarajevo: 1959, 28.

(9) Hamdija Kreševljaković, Kapetanije u Bosni i Hercegovini, Sarajevo: 1980, 150.

(10) Husref Redžić, Srednjevjekovni gradovi BiH, Sarajevo: Sarajevo Publishing, 2009, 122.

(11) Mirzet Mujadžić, Nijazija Maslaka, Stari gradovi Unsko-sanskog kantona, Bihać: 2009, 4.

(12) Husref Redžić, op.cit., Sarajevo: Sarajevo Publishing, 2009, 123.



Kamičak fortPlan of the fortWallsRemains of the fort
View on towerSouthwest view The remains of the stone buttresses 


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