Status of monument -> National monument
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 5 November 2002, the Commission adopted a
D E C I S I O N
The historic urban site of Počitelj is hereby designated as a National Monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The historic urban site specified in paragraph 1 of this Article comprises the area of cadastral plots nos. 2581 to 2779 inclusive and c. p. 2810, 2811, 2812, 2813, 2814, 2815, including the rocky cliffs to the north and south of the ramparts, cadastral municipality Počitelj, Municipality Čapljina.
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 the Federation of BiH nos. 2/02 and 27/02 shall apply to the National Monument specified in the preceding paragraph.
The Government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina shall be duty bound to ensure and provide the legal, scientific, technical, administrative and financial measures necessary to protect, conserve, display and rehabilitate the National Monument specified in Clause I of this Decision.
. The Government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina shall be duty bound to implement the Plan for the Permanent Protection of Počitelj adopted at its 63rd session held on 24 November 2002, the resolutions whereof placed it under obligation to draw up a detailed programme of protection of Počitelj.
Government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina shall be duty bound to provide funds for the drafting and implementation of the necessary executive urban planning documentation for the historic urban site of Počitelj. The historic urban site of Počitelj includes the area specified in Article I, paragraph 2, within protected zones I and II thereof as defined by this Decision.
The Commission to Preserve National Monuments of Bosnia and Herzegovina 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.
The Government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina shall be duty bound to ensure that a detailed programme for the protection of Počitelj is drawn up. The said programme shall relate to the ensemble and to individual buildings within the protected zone as specified in Article I of this Decision.
The following measures shall be applied to the site:
Protection Zone I, comprising the area specified in Article I para. 2.
The following measures apply to the whole of this zone and the buildings therein:
Ÿ all new construction of any kind is prohibited other than works of rehabilitation,
Ÿ all works of demolition, reconstruction, conversion or other architectural works are prohibited other than rehabilitation, conversion, conservation and presentation works carried out to an approved design project and under the expert supervision of the authorized professional authorities,
Ÿ during rehabilitation, conversion and presentation works on individual buildings, their original appearance shall be preserved,
Ÿ original materials should be used of the same kind as the materials used in the buildings and with the application of original methods of treatment of the materials and their use in construction;
Ÿ all methods and degrees of intervention applied shall conform to standards of clarity.
Ÿ the original exterior appearance of the buildings shall be preserved during the course of rehabilitation or conversion works,
Ÿ interior conversion works to existing buildings shall be allowed for the purpose of adapting them to meet modern housing standards or conditions of work or for new needs requiring internal alterations to the buildings and the provision of modern utilities installations, bathrooms and fixtures and fittings,
Ÿ the conversion of residential buildings for new catering, commercial, scientific, education or cultural use, or for traditional crafts that do not pollute the environment, shall be permitted, with the proviso that a minimum of 50 percent of the buildings shall be reserved for residential purposes.
Measures applicable to individual buildings:
Ÿ the Šišman Ibrahim-paša or Hadži Alija mosque shall continue to serve as a mosque after completion of rehabilitation works on the building;
Ÿ the Gavrankapetanović house shall continue to serve as an artists' colony after completion of rehabilitation works on the building;
Ÿ in regard to the Šišman Ibrahim-paša medresa, hamam, clock-tower and han (hostel), a design project for the rehabilitation of the buildings shall be drawn up and conservation works carried out on the remaining parts of the building and making good the damage that occurred during the 1992-96 war;
The buildings shall be reserved for the following uses:
Ÿ the han shall be reserved for its pre-war use as a restaurant;
Ÿ the Šišman Ibrahim-paša medresa shall be restored to its former cultural use;
Ÿ a cultural use is to be preferred for the hamam;
Ÿ the original use of the clock-tower shall be restored;
o a design project for the rehabilitation of the fortifications shall be drawn up, with the entire system conserved, the structural rehabilitation of the entrance gates and the rehabilitation of the Gavrankapetanović house
o the Gavrankapetanović tower shall preferably be reserved for cultural use
o archaeological investigations shall be carried out in the vicinity of the main parts of the fortifications
o possible recreational use of the fortification.
Infrastructure and urban mobility:
Ÿ draft a project to rehabilitate the former street network – complete the conservation and rehabilitation of side streets
Ÿ billboards, advertisement hoardings and signs detrimental to the view or the townscape are prohibited
Ÿ the construction of all other infrastructure facilities such as pylons for high voltage power transmission lines, transformer stations/power sub-stations etc. is prohibited. Parking lots intended for heavy vehicles should be provided on the other side of the main road, along the river.
Ÿ existing trees and tall shrubs shall be preserved,
Ÿ an urban planning design project shall be drawn up for the greening of public areas using plant species indigenous to the Počitelj region.
Protection Zone II, comprising the area of Gornje and Donje polje (“Upper and Lower Field”) and a strip with a width of 500 m from the outer boundary of Protection Zone II.
Ÿ draw up a project for the “biological rehabilitation” of Gornje and Donje polje
Ÿ mezarje (burial ground) – Grand harem, Resulović harem, Kapić harem and Gavranović harem – carry out the conservation, rehabilitation and renovation of the mezarje
Ÿ buildings shall be restricted to two storeys maximum (ground floor and one upper floor) with maximum dimensions of 12 x 12 m, with the use of traditional materials (stone and whitewashed stuccoed masonry brick walls, stone slabs or light grey tiles for roof cladding, pitched roofs of wooden construction, with a gradient no steeper than 30 deg.
Ÿ the construction of industrial buildings and facilities the operation of which could be detrimental to the site, quarries and environmental polluters are banned
Ÿ infrastructural works shall be permitted only with the approval of the competent Federal Ministry and to the conditions and under the professional supervision of the authorized Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina heritage protection service
All executive and area development planning acts not in accordance with the provisions of this Decision are to be revoked.
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 specified in Clause I of this Decision or jeopardize the protection and rehabilitation thereof.
The Government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Federal Ministry of Urban Planning and the Environment, the Federal Institute for Protection of National Monuments, 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, III and IV 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 to Preserve National Monuments.
Pursuant to Art. V para 4 Annex 8 of the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina, decisions of the Commission to Preserve National Monuments of Bosnia and Herzegovina are final and enforceable.
This Decision shall enter into force on the date of its adoption and shall be published in the Official Gazette of BiH and the Official Gazette of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
This Decision has been adopted by the following members of the Commission to Preserve National Monuments: Zeynep Ahunbay, Amra Hadžimuhamedović, Dubravko Lovrenović, Ljiljana Ševo and Tina Wik.
21 January 2003
Chairman 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 (hereinafter referred to as the Commission) 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 (hereinafter referred to as Annex 8) and as 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.
At a session held from 1 to 2 July 1999 the Commission issued a Decision to add the site of Počitelj to the Provisional List of National Monuments of Bosnia and Herzegovina, numbered as 187. 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:
Ÿ Documentation on the location and current owner and user of the property
Ÿ Data on prior legal protection of the property
Ÿ 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.
Ÿ 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 are as follows:
1.Information on the historic urban site
The historic urban site of Počitelj is located on the left bank of the river Neretva, on the main Mostar to Metković road, to the south of Mostar, in the territory of Čapljina Municipality.
It comprises the area of cadastral plots nos. 2581 to 2779 inclusive and cadastral plots 2810, 2811, 2812, 2813, 2814, 2815, including the rocky cliffs to the north and south of the ramparts, cadastral municipality Počitelj, Municipality Čapljina.
In the middle ages, Počitelj was the administrative centre and centre of governance of Dubrava župa (county), and its westernmost point, which gave it major strategic importance. It is supposed that the fortified town and its attendant settlements were built by Bosnia's King Stjepan Tvrtko I in 1383 (Čelić, 1960, p. 6)
The walled town of Počitelj evolved over the period from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries. Architecturally, the surviving stone-built parts of the town are a fortified complex, in which two stages of evolution may be observed: mediaeval, and Ottoman.
The first documented reference to the town dates from 1444, in Charters issued by Kings Alfonso V and Friedrich III. During the period 1463-1471 the town held a Hungarian garrison. Following a brief siege in 1471, the town fell to the Ottomans, and was to remain within the Ottoman Empire until 1878. From 1782 to 1879 it was the centre of a kadiluk (area under the jurisdiction of a kadija or qadi – judge) and from 1713 to 1835 it was the headquarters of the Počitelj military district.
In written documents the town was firstly mentioned in 1444, and in the Charters of King Alfonso V and Fridrich III. In the course of time 1463-1471, the Hungarian garrison was situated in there. Thereafter a short siege in 1471, the town became a part of the Ottoman Empire, and would stay within it until 1878. In the time from 1782 to 1879 it was the center of the kadiluk (Tur. County), and in the course of 1713-1835, it was the seat of military district, (Kreševljaković and Kapidžić, 1954, p. 10).
The significance and appearance of the town has altered during the course of its history. Three periods seem to be significant for the development of Počitelj:
1. the time of the Hungarian King Matthias Corvinus when the town had significant strategic importance (1463-1471),
2. the period of development of the settlement under the Ottoman Empire with the erection of typical public buildings: mosques, mekteb (Muslim primary school), imaret (charitable kitchen), medresa (Muslim high school), hamam, Turkish baths, han (inn) and sahat-kula (clock-tower) (1471-1698). During this period military conflicts occurred in more remote areas.
3. the period of recovery of its strategic importance after the Venetians conquered and destroyed Gabela (1698-1878).
With the establishment of Austro-Hungarian rule in BiH in 1878, Počitelj lost its strategic importance and began to deteriorate rapidly. It was in this period that a section of the ramparts was pulled down at Donja kapija or Lower Gate and the road to Donje polje was laid. Later a further section of the ramparts was demolished, together with the smaller gate behind the hamam, and the road to Gornje polje was widened, thus destroying the continuity of the Počitelj ramparts. The loss of the town’s strategic role helped to safeguard the original urban architectural ensemble, so that the town has been preserved in its original form to this day. (Čelić, 1960, pp. 6-14)
Legal Status to Date
After a plan to renovate the old town of Počitelj was drawn up in 1971, Počitelj became a protected site pursuant to the Regional Planning Law of SO Čapljina, with the entire ensemble of the old town of Počitelj regarded as so protected.
Under the terms of the Regional Plan of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina to 2002 the site was registered and evaluated as a Category I urban-rural ensemble. The urban-rural ensemble of Počitelj at that time was taken to include the area of the towers, ramparts and bastions (tabija), the armoury (džebana), the mosque, the medresa, the han, the hamam, the clock-tower, and a large number of residential buildings. In addition to the ensemble as a whole, a number of individual buildings and structures – the mediaeval fortifications as a Category II monument, the Šišman Ibrahim-paša mosque and the Šišman Ibrahim-paša medresa as Category I monuments, the clock-tower (also Category I), the Gavrankapetanović konaks (hostels) and the Kapetanović house (all Category II) – were also registered as protected buildings under the terms of this Regional Plan.
The historic urban site of Počitelj is listed in the Provisional List of National Monuments under number 185 as the “Počitelj ensemble.“
The Šišman Ibrahim-paša or Hadži-Aliija's mosque was protected as a cultural monument pursuant to a Ruling by the Institute for the Protection of Cultural Monuments of PR BiH, No.: 02-673-3/62 dated 23 October 1962.
At its 63rd session, held on 24 November 2000, the Government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina adopted a Plan for the Permanent Protection of Počitelj, thereby undertaking to draw up a detailed plan for the protection of Počitelj.
The Federal Ministry of Urban Planning and the Environment issued a Ruling (No. UPI/02-23-2-47/02, 17 June 2002) on the rehabilitation of Hadži-Aliija/Šišman Ibrahim-paša's mosque in the historic site of the town of Počitelj, (cadastral plot no. 2665, cadastral municipality Počitelj, Municipality Čapljina, with a total area of 659 sq. m., owned by the Islamic Religious Community's Vakuf Commission, Počitelj.)
The Federal Ministry of Urban Planning and the Environment issued a Ruling (No. UPI/02-23-2-46/02, 17 June 2002) on the rehabilitation of the group of buildings of the Gavrankapetanović House (cadastral plot 2709, cadastral municipality Počitelj, Municipality Čapljina, with a total area of 793 sq. m., registered in the land register as 100 percent socially (publicly) owned, with a charge registered against the property according the right of use to ULUBiH (the Association of Visual Arts Artists of BiH) – the Artists Colony of Počitelj.)
In 1996, Počitelj was named by World Monuments Watch as one of the world's 100 most endangered cultural heritage sites, as proposed by the University of York, United Kingdom, and the University of Sarajevo, in the light of its outstanding value.
1. Description of the Monument
URBAN CONCEPT OF DEVELOPMENT OF THE SETTLEMENT
The historic urban site of Počitelj forms a spatially and topographically self-contained ensemble.
Počitelj was built on a rocky cliff sloping steeply down to the bank of the river Neretva. It belongs to the group of mediaeval geomorphological fortified towns of small size with a single tower. The rocky slope above the river determined the outline of the fortifications, forming as it does a solid foundation for the ramparts.
The site is structured into different zones serving different purposes. The čaršija or bazaar, with its rows of small Oriental shops, a large inn and the public baths is located alongside the Neretva. Close behind the inn is the medresa and the imaret or soup-kitchen. Above the medresa is the mosque, connected with the bazaar and school through one of its entrances/exits and with the residential area through the other. The residential area is laid out like an amphitheatre on the slopes. The entire group of buildings in Počitelj is surrounded by the ramparts. The minaret and the clock-tower form two bold vertical accents in the landscape. Gornje and Donje polje or Upper and Lower Field are the gardens of Počitelj.
Unlike other towns dating back to the same period, there are no burial grounds within the town walls, nor does the mosque have a graveyard – the dead were buried outside the ramparts. The graveyard known as the Great Harem is located on the hillside outside the ramparts. The majority of nišans (Islamic headstones) are of recent date. The cemetery is surrounded with a dry stone wall up to one metre in height. The oldest epitaph on a headstone dates from AH 1211 (1796 CE). All the epitaphs are simple prose inscriptions. The dead were alsoo buried in the harem of the Resulović family in Donje polje. Remains of cemeteries also survive: the Kapić harem at Strmac and the Gavranović harem in Donje polje. (M. Mujezinović, 1998, p. 413).
The differentiation of the areas of the site gave rise to a concomitant differentiation of roads. The framework consists of the road that runs downhill to the river, meets the ramparts at a tangent, skirts the mosque to the south and west, runs between the school and the Gavrankapetanović house, and continues through the lower gate down to Donje polje. A side road runs from the mosque to the school, the imaret and the hamam and then through a small gate into Gornje polje. All the major public buildings other than the mosque and the clock-tower stand within the triangle formed by the principal roads (Čelić, 1960, p. 18)
During the 1992-96 war in BiH the entire historic urban site of Počitelj and all its various buildings suffered extensive war damage.
The fort of Počitelj was built between the fifteenth and eighteenth centuries, with intervals when construction was suspended. The original mediaeval nucleus of the fort is the oldest walled section, where two stages of construction can be identified: the older, inner town or fortress (a donjon tower with a small ward or bailey) from the late fourteenth century, with later additions, alterations and reinforcements dating from the second half of the fifteenth century. Within the fortifications are a donjon (the Gavran Kapetan tower), polygonal in cross-section, of which only the lower parts are original, with walls some 2 m thick, and a small walled yard with the entrance to the south. Since the ground on which it was built slopes steeply down to the river, the fortress had no fosse. To judge from the layout of the oldest parts of the fortress it may be assumed that there was a small settlement below the fortifications, dating from an earlier or the same period as the fortifications themselves (Sanković, 1981, pp. 213-214)
Between 1464 and 1471, King Matthias Corvinus of Hungary, the Pope, Dubrovnik, and Vladislav Herzegović joined forces to fortify the town of Počitelj. It was at this time that the second bailey was surrounded with ramparts. A small square tower to the left of the main entrance, and part of the west wall, south of the cistern within the fortress, belong to this second mediaeval stage of building.
Somewhat prior to 1698, the fortress was considerably enlarged and fortified with a stronger system of defence. The town was walled so as to form an inner bailey from the square tower, two bastions (Mehmed-paša's and Delibaša's), Dizdar’s house, a granary, the fort’s mosque and a “water-tower” – a cistern with an entrance and steps leading to the water, two large gateways and two small ones.
The mediaeval parts of the fort were incorporated into and remain recognizable amid the later alterations and additions dating from the Ottoman period. All that now survives of the mediaeval fort is the lower part of the main tower, the small square tower to the left of the entrance to the fort and a part of the ramparts west of the cistern.
The central part of the complex of the fortress, where the Dizdar house stands, to judge from the details of its windows and gateways, as well as the fact that it is structurally unconnected with the older parts, dates from the Ottoman period, while the upper section of the main tower may be dated to the late seventeenth century, on the evidence of written sources.
During the 1992-96 war in BiH the fortress suffered no serious damage. The Gavrankapetanović tower was given a new roof and a cross was erected on top of the tower.
MOSQUE OF ŠIŠMAN IBRAHIM-PAŠA
The mosque of Šišman Ali-paša or Hadži Alija’s mosques is one of the finest achievements of the classical Ottoman style of single-room domed mosques in BiH. According to its chronogram, it was built in 970 AH (1562-63 AD) by Hadži Alija (M. Mujezinović, 1998, p. 405).
It stands on cadastral plot 2655, cadastral municipality Počitelj, and is owned by the Islamic Religious Community.
The enclosed area of the mosque measures 12 x 12 m, and is roofed with a spherical dome, the top of which is 15 m above floor level. The open area of the sofa or exterior porch, some 4 m wide, has three small domes. The stone minaret, a twelve-sided column, stands to the right of the entrance. The shape and disposition of the windows gives the facades a classical image. There was formerly a wooden canopy supported on posts in front of the sofa, which was removed in 1952; only the stone bases of the posts survive (Čelić, 1960, p. 405).
The transition from the walls to the dome was achieved structurally by means of trompes and eight pendentives ending in a drum. The exterior sofas have four round stone columns between them and are joined to the front wall with pointed arches, supporting three domes on low octagonal drums over pendentives. The walls of the building are made of symmetrical ashlar, and are some 110 cm thick. The exterior façades are stone, and the walls are plastered on the interior. The dome and minaret are clad with sheet lead.
The central interior space beneath the dome has a stone mihrab, a mimber (pulpit) and a mahfil (gallery) to the right of the entrance, of classical style. The stone portal has door-jambs with an arched opening for the door, a triangular finishing above the door within a moulded rectangular frame.
The decorative elements of the building are of classical style: stalactite-like ornaments in the trompes, on the capitals of the columns, beneath the balcony of the minaret and in the mihrab; decorative pierced panels in the window arches; moulded and bas-relief ornamentation on the minber, mihrab and mahfil. The wooden door of the portal is decorated with a geometrical design.
In 1952 the mosque had thirteen stone mukava which were used to light the interior (oil was poured into a hollow in the top of each mukava), of which the oldest dated from 1259 AH (1843 CE) ( Mujezinović, 1998, p. 407)
The harem or burial ground belonging to the mosque is enclosed by a stone railing with two gates: the lower, leading via steps to the level area of the courtyard, and the upper serving as an entrance from the main footpath.
The mosque occupies a prominent position in the urban fabric of the town and its natural surroundings. Other public buildings located by the mosque are the mektebs, the imaret, the medresa, the hamam, the han and the clock-tower.
The mosque was blown up in 1993: the dome and minaret were demolished, and the rest of the building was badly damaged.
The Plan for the permanent protection of the historic urban site of Počitelj provides for the rehabilitation of the mosque of Hadži Alija/Šišman Ali-paša as a priority. On 5 August 2001 an experts’ group appointed by the Government of the Federation, pursuant to its resolutions of 24 November 2000, set out the programme guidelines for the rehabilitation of the Počitelj mosque, which is being carried out according to the renovation project drawn up by the Institute for the Protection of the Cultural, Historical and Natural Heritage, Mostar, no. P-02/2002, in May 2002.
All the public buildings date from the sixteenth and seventeenth century and belong to the Islamic Ottoman school of monumental architecture (Sanković, 1981, p. 215).
MEDRESA - MUSLIM RELIGIOUS HIGH SCHOOL OF ŠIŠMAN IBRAHIM-PAŠA
Evlija Čelebi’s travel chronicle makes it clear that the Šišman Ibrahim-paša medresa in Počitelj dates from before 1664.
It belongs to the standard type of smaller religious school, with five classrooms and a lecture room ranged along the two sides of an inner courtyard. The exterior dimensions of the medresa are 15 x 17 m. The medresa is stone-built, with walls about 80 cm thick. The lecture room is more prominent than the classrooms, set asymmetrically at the end of the row of rooms, and larger in size. All the rooms are square, the classrooms measuring about 3.5 x 3.5 m internally and the lecture room about 5 x 5 m. The classrooms are roofed with five small domes and the lecture room with one large one. The domes are clad with sheet lead. Outside is a 3 m deep canopy formed of a pent wood-construction roof resting on seven stone columns and clad with stone slabs.
The assumption is that the canopy was originally clad with lead. (Čelić:, 1960I, pp. 31-32).
The exterior features the use of matching elements: a horizontal row of rectangular windows (with stone frames and iron bars) on the façades, a series of domes and vertical chimneys, with alems (crescents on vertically stacked balls) on the domes.
The entrances to the rooms have stone doorjambs with arches and wooden doors. The interior walls of the rooms are plastered. Each room has a fireplace, and there are shallow rectangular niches in the walls.
During the 1992-96 war in BiH the medresa was damaged by shelling (all six chimneys were damaged to a greater or lesser extent, with two of them completely destroyed and one in part, and all the alems destroyed and removed. The domes did not suffer any major structural damage or displacement. Where the shells landed they breached the structure of the domes, which resulted in the inner layers being exposed to weathering. The walls suffered no major structural damage, and the doors and windows were removed.)
HAMAM – THE BATHS
It may be concluded from Evlija Čelebi’s travel chronicle that the baths were built prior to 1664, and that they were built by craftsmen sent from Istanbul for the purpose.
The hamam is typical of smaller public baths, albeit somewhat differently arranged.
The ground plan is of a series of rooms functionally linked one with another: 1) šadrvan (baths with a fountain), 2) kapaluk (with a privy and a halvat, a strictly private room in Muslim houses), 3) a halvat, 4) a hazna (cashier’s room) and 5) ćulhan (heating room).
There is some inconsistency in the arrangement of the premises. A smaller halvat is located in the kapaluk, which results in the kapaluk being markedly reduced in size in relation to the other rooms. Access to the small halvat is through the larger one, so that it is rather far from the hazna, and there is a break in the passage to the small halvat and a long corridor in the kapaluk leading to the privy is formed. The single-vaulted room above the kapaluk, small halvat and passage to the privy, and the fact that the vault is not structurally connected to the walls of the small halvat, suggest that the small halvat did not form part of the original design (Čelić, 1960I, pp. 32-33)
The overall dimensions of the building are approximately 23 x 8 m. It was built of stone with walls 80-100 cm thick. The šadrvan and halvat are domed, while the kapaluk and hazna are vaulted.
The basic features of the building are the interplay of the varying room sizes, the variations in light intensity and the height of the individual rooms, and the effect of the prism of the kapaluk (minus the small halvat), set laterally between the two central, top-lit areas.
HAN (INN) OF ŠIŠMAN IBRAHIM-PAŠA
The han was built around 1665. (H. Kreševljaković, 1991, p. 674)
Little has survived of the original structure of the han: the remains of an arched gate of finely dressed cut stone with parts of the outside walls to the left and right of the entrance, parts of the outside wall opposite the entrance; some remains of the raised podium (for travellers to take rest) around 2 m. wide; all of this recorded prior to 1960. (Čelić, 1960, p. 34)
It may be concluded, by a process of analogy, that it was of the single-storey han type, built around a central area where horses were stabled.
“One gains the impression of a raised surrounding podium . . . on which travellers would sit or lie. Fireplaces at intervals served as focal points for individual groups of travellers. Their horses were stabled in the same area – in the central area – while it may be assumed that off-loaded goods were also deposited on the podium.” (Čelić, 1960, p. 34)
From the remains of the walls that have been preserved, it may be assumed that the exterior dimensions were around 28 x 13 m. The size of the rooms and the treatment of the entrance also suggest that this was a substantial building.
The object was renovated in the 1970s to be used for catering purposes. (Sanković, 1981, p. 216)
SAHAT-KULA – CLOCK-TOWER
Since Evlija Čelebi’s travel chronicle makes no reference to the sahat-kula, it is assumed that it was erected at a date later than 1664. It is typical of clock-towers in Herzegovina, which arose under the influence of Mediterranean-Dalmatian architecture. The tower is of square prismatic shape, measuring some 3.22 x 3.26, with a height of about 16 m. It is stone-built, with dressed quoins and ending in a stone pyramid. There are four pointed arches on the four sizes above the opening near the top of the tower. This type of sahat-kula is to be found in Počitelj, Mostar, and Stolac (Čelić, 1960, pp. 35-36).
The clock-tower has wholly retained its stylistic and historical features (Sanković, 1981, p. 216).
Stylistically, the residential architecture of Počitelj is a blend of Mediterranean and Oriental elements with certain local features. The influence of Mediterranean architecture is to be seen in the use of gable roofs, the pronounced stone wall structure, small, widely separated windows, and the arrangement of the rooms in fairly small, single-storey buildings. The influence of Oriental architecture is reflected in the use of hipped roofs, doksats or oriel windows, rows of close-set windows, the arrangement of rooms with a hajat (anteroom) on the ground floor and an open divanhan (sitting room) on the first floor, and the interconnected enclosed courtyard and interior living quarters. The basic building material was stone. Typical common features are round chimneys and roof cladding of irregularly shaped stone slabs. All the houses had privies in the courtyard and a hamamdžiluk (small bathroom) in the musandera (built-in carved wooden structure incorporating cupboards and occupying the entire wall of the main room). Wealthier households had a bathroom in every room (Sanković, 1981, p. 210).
The houses as a whole may be divided into four basic groups:
1. small houses with one or two ground-floor rooms and a small cellar, a design prompted by the configuration of the sloping ground,
2. houses with a number of rooms and a divanhana on the ground floor, a storeroom and a stable on the lower ground floor, and a stone-walled avlija or courtyard,
3. two-storey houses with several living rooms on the upper floor with divanhana and musandera, and with a hajat on the ground floor and a few living rooms,
4. housing ensembles – the Gavrankapetanović house with two separate buildings, the haremluk (reserved strictly for women in Muslim houses) and the selamluk or men's rooms, and two courtyards (Sanković, 1981, p. 211).
All the houses in the town were laid waste during the 1992-96 war in BiH. All movable items were looted, along with all interior and exterior fittings. Some buildings were reduced to mere shells with only the outer walls still standing, while others were set on fire and burned to the ground (Sanković, 2001).
THE GAVRANKAPETANOVIĆ HOUSE
The Gavrankapetanović house is a group of buildings consisting of two smaller and one larger building (with the division into selamluk and haremluk) built during the course of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. In size it is the largest and most highly evolved example of the residential architecture of Počitelj.
A characteristic of the building is the use of arched windows on the west facade. The building's shorter axis lies north-west/south-east, which is reflected in the structure of the building (niches in the walls along this axis).
By the mid twentieth century the buildings had been abandoned and were deteriorating badly, as a result of which, in order to preserve and renovate the building, a project to convert it to an artists' colony was launched in 1961 and completed in 1975. During the course of conversion the project to renovate the buildings was not fulfilled. The central building was converted to accommodation for the artists. One of the major changes to the original state of the building was that the doksat in the central north-west facade was given arched windows, where previously the windows had been rectangular. This was highly detrimental to the building's authentic architectural value. Among other changes was the structural reinforcement and renovation of the walls with quarry stone (plastered on the inside), with reinforced concrete ring beams, but the wooden beams and rafters of the floors and ceilings and of the roof were retained. A roof cladding of combined stone slabs and hollow tiles was used on the main building (the haremluk). Sanitary facilities were added to each room in the haremluk on the ground and first floors (8). Only the upper floors had musanderas with hamamdžici (small bathrooms); the ground floor rooms had none. On the upper floor, the sanitary facilities were installed in the corner room on the façade.
During the war the complex was set on fire and laid waste in 1993. The most serious damage was to the haremluk, to the wooden post-and-pan construction and wooden cladding (Hadžimuhamedović, 2001).
The plan for the permanent protection of Počitelj provides for the rehabilitation of the Gavrankapetanović housing ensemble as one of the priority tasks. On 5 August 2001 the experts’ group appointed by the Government of the Federation, pursuant to its resolutions of 24 November 2000, set out the programme guidelines for the rehabilitation of the Gavrankapetanović housing ensemble artists' colony. The rehabilitation is being carried out strictly in conformity with these guidelines. During the first stage, the rehabilitation of the ensemble is being carried out according to the main rehabilitation project drawn up by the Institute for the Protection of the Cultural, Historical and Natural Heritage, Mostar, no. P-01/2002, in March 2002. This project was drawn up under the supervision of the Government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina's team of experts.
2. Research and works of conservation and restoration
Research and conservation work has been carried out on a number of occasions:
1963-64: Conservation of donjon,
1966: Conservation of the ramparts of the old town,
The Mosque of Šišman Ibrahim-paša
Since 1955, within the jurisdiction of the Institute for the Protection of the Cultural and Historical Heritage of SRBiH, some restoration work has been carried out in a number of stages: replacement of the lead sheeting on the domes, restoration of stone window transomes, etc. The interior was painted, with a new composition by Nihad Bahtijarević completed in 1988.
The Medresa of Šišman Ibrahim-paša
Some conservation works were carried out in the 1960s, preserving the building's authentic architectural value. It was approved for a change of use to a catering facility.
During the 1970s, the conservation and restoration of the missing parts of the hamam was carried out. The restoration was carried out unprofessionally. Resulting in alterations detrimental to the authentic value of the building. (Sanković, 1981, p. 215).
The Han was rebuilt in the 1970s on the principle of analogy, in the absence of reliable scientific grounds. There was not enough of the original remaining to allow for authentic restoration. As a result of these works, the building has lost its value as a monument. It may be regarded as a new building with some remains of the original (Sanković, 1981, p. 216).
The Gavrankapetanović house
During the conversion of the ensemble for use as an artists' colony, completed in 1975, the project for the renovation of the ensemble was not followed.
3. Current state of the site
An on-site inspection in October 2002 led to the following findings:
Ÿ The implementation of the plan for the permanent protection of Počitelj is under way, under the auspices of which works of rehabilitation are being carried out on the Šišman Ibrahim-paša mosque, the Gavrankapetanović house and nine houses within the historic ensemble,
Ÿ The site is at risk from the construction of new buildings in Počitelj polje,
Ÿ The site is exposed to specific risks (traffic, pollution, weathering),
Ÿ Individual buildings that are not covered by rehabilitation projects, and indeed the site as a whole, are subject to rapid deterioration as a result of the lack of regular maintenance.
The medrese has been renovated and is currently intended for residential use; the treatment and types of wood used for the doors and doorframes and the aerials on the roof impair the building's appearance.
The hamam has been out of use for a long time, and is greatly overgrown, which poses a threat to the structure and makes any detailed inspection impossible.
The han is not seriously damaged and is currently in use as a church.
The clock-tower shows evidence of minor damage to the exterior parts of the walls. A vertical crack is visible on the east face, but shows no signs of recent movement; there is damage to the interior wooden structure, with certain landings missing and the staircase broken down.
The houses that have been renovated by the humanitarian organization UMCOR do not accord with the principles of conservation and preservation, as a result of which the ensemble as a whole is devalued.
The houses of Počitelj as a whole can be classified into three groups, based on the degree of damage they have suffered:
Ÿ Buildings that have been abandoned and not used for a long period, with structural deterioration,
Ÿ Buildings that are in permanent occupation but are barely or not at all maintained,
Ÿ Buildings that have been restored, converted or newly built.
In the majority of cases, stone walls are structurally stable, unlike the wooden elements (roof beams and joists, ceilings, floors, divanhanas, windows, doors, stairs etc.), which were badly damaged or never ever existed. Movable items are missing, along with interior and exterior fittings. Some buildings have been reduced to shells with only the outside walls standing, while others have been burned to the ground.
III – CONCLUSION
Applying the Criteria for the adoption of a decision on proclaiming an item of property a national monument, adopted at the fourth session of the Commission to Preserve National Monuments (3 to 9 September 2002), relating to the immovable and movable heritage of Bosnia and Herzegovina, with regard to time frame (A), historic value (B), artistic and aesthetic value (C iii, iv), clarity (Dii, iv, v), symbolic value (E), townscape value (F), authenticity (G) uniqueness and rarity (H.i, ii), and integrity (Ii, ii, iii) of the site in question, the Commission has enacted the Decision cited above.
This Decision is based on the following criteria:
A. Time frame
B. Historic value
C. Artistic and aesthetic value
ii. evidence of historical changes
iv. evidence of a certain type, style or regional manner
E. Symbolic value
i. ontological value
ii. sacral value
iii. traditional value
iv. relation to ritual or tradition
v. significance for the identity of a group of people
F. Townscape value
i. relation to other parts of an ensemble
ii. significance in the townscape
iii. the building or group of buildings are part of a group or site
i. form and design
ii. materials and content
iii. use and function
iv. traditions and techniques
v. location and setting
vi. spirit and feeling
vii. other internal and external factors
H. Uniqueness and rarity
i. unique or rare example of a type or style of building
ii. outstanding work of art or architecture
i. physical coherence
iii. completeness (self-containment)
The following documents and photographs form an integral part of this Decision:
1.1. Protection zones of the historic urban site of Počitellj,
1.2. Decision on the rehabilitation of the Hadži-Alija/Šišman mosque in Počitelj issued by the Federal Ministry for Urban Planning and the Environment,
1.3. Decision on the rehabilitation of the ensemble of the Gavrankapetanović house in Počitelj, issued by the Federal Ministry for Urban Planning and the Environment,
1.4. Plan for the Permanent Protection of Počitelj,
1.5. Copy of the land register entry for the Hadži-Alija/Šišman mosque in Počitelj,
1.6. Copy of the land register entry for group of buildings of the Gavrankapetanović house in Počitelj,
1.7. Copy of the land register entry for three houses,
1.8. Layout of Počitelj,
1.9. Fort: ground-plan, cross-sections and appearance, (Čelić, 1960, Pašić, 1991),
1.10. Šišman Ibrahim-paša mosque: ground-plan, cross-sections and appearance, details of minber, windows and doors and column of porch, (Čelić, 1960),
1.11. Šišman Ibrahim-paša medrese: ground-plan, cross-section and appearance (Čelić, 1960),
1.12. Hamam: ground-plan (Čelić, 1960),
1.13. Han: ground-plan (Čelić, 1960),
1.14. Sahat-kula: ground-plan, cross-section and appearance (Čelić, 1960),
1.15. Housing architecture: ground-plans and cross-sections of typical houses (Čelić, 1960),
1.16. The Gavrankapetanović house: ground-plans, cross-sections (Čelić, 1960).
2. RESTORATION PROJECTS (Institut for the Protection of the Cultural, Historical and Natural Heritage Mostar)
2.1. Project for the restoration of the Hadži-Alija mosque, stage I:
2.1.1. Preliminary design project – Mosque restoration,
2.1.2. Main design project – stage I,
2.1.3. Construction project,
2.1.4. Structural analysis;
2.2. Project for the restoration of the Gavrankapetanović house:
2.2.2. Technical description,
2.2.3. Bill of quantity of work
2.2.4. Design of current state
2.2.5. Design project for the restoration of the ensemble
3. THE CONSERVATION OF POČITELJ OLD TOWN (PLAN BY A. PAŠIĆ, 1991)
3.1. Layout of Počitelj, 1783,
3.2. Layout , 1991,
3.3. Number of floors of buildings,
3.4. Chronological and stylistic classification
3.5. Valorization of buildings,
3.6. Exterior finish of buildings,
3.7. Treatment of roof cladding of buildings,
3.8. Current state of preservation,
3.9. Proposal for protection of buildings
3.11. Use of buildings as at 1975
3.12. Use of buildings as at 1991
3.13. Proposed use of buildings
4.1. Photographs of Počitelj and individual buildings prior to 1992,
4.2. Photographs of Počitelj, 2001 – prior to the start of rehabilitation works,
4.3. Photographs of individual buildings, 2001 – prior to the start of rehabilitation works:
4.3.2. Šišman Ibrahin-paša mosque,
4.3.3. Šišman Ibrahin-paša medresa
4.3.6. Housing architecture,
4.3.7. Gavrankapetanović house,
4.4. Photographs of Počitelj, 2002,
4.5. Photographs of individual buildings, 2002:
4.5.2. Šišman Ibrahim-paša mosque,
4.5.3. Šišman Ibrahim-paša medresa,
4.5.7. Housing architecture,
4.5.8. Gavrankapetanović house.
The documentation annexed to the Decision is public and available for view by interested persons on written request to the Commission to Preserve National Monuments of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Čelebija, Evlija, Putopis (Travel chronicle), Sarajevo, 1973.
Čelić, Džemal, Naše starine VII, Počitelj na Neretvi - Urbanističko-arhitektonska studija s osvrtom na problematiku održavanja (Počitelj on the Neretva: Urban planning and architectural study with reference to maintenance issues), Sarajevo, 1960.
Čelić, Džemal, Počitelj grad-muzej, (Počitelj, a museum town) Čapljina, Mogorjelo Tourist Association, 1961.
Federal Ministry of Urban Planning and the Environment, The Revitalisation of the Historic Settlement of Počitelj, Sarajevo.
Hadžimuhamedović, Fehim, Program restauracije ansambla Kuće Gavrankapetanovića (Programme for the restoration of the ensemble of the Gavrankapetanović house) , Sarajevo, 2001.
Institute for Architecture, Urban Planning and Regional Planning of the Faculty of Architecture, Sarajevo, Stage B – valorazation of natural, cultural and historical valuables, Regional Plan of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo, 1980.
Kreševljaković, Hamdija Izabrana djela II, Počitelj na Neretvi (Selected Works II: Počitelj on the Neretva), Sarajevo, 1991.
Kreševljaković, Hamdija, Kapidžić, Hamdija, Naše starine II, Stari hercegovački gradovi (Old Herzegovinian Towns), 1954.
Mujezinović, Mehmed, Islamska epigrafika Bosne i Hercegovine (Islamic epigraphy of Bosnia and Herzegovina), bk. III, Sarajevo Publishing, Sarajevo, 1998
Mulabegović, Ferhat, Program revitalizacije Hadži Alijine džamije u Počitelju (Programme for the renovation of the Hadži Alija mosque in Počitelj), Sarajevo, 2001.
Pašić, Amir, Programme – Research of Intermixing Islam and Christianity in Architecture, The Conservation of Počitelj Old Town, Mostar-Počitelj, 1991.
Plan for the Permanent Protection of Počitelj, Government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo, 2002.
Vjekoslava Sanković, Naše starine XIV-XV – Revitalizacija starog grada Počitelja (Restoration of the Old Town of Počitelj), Sarajevo, 1981.
V. Sanković-Simčić, Prijedlog odabira stambenih objekata starog grada Počitelja (Proposal for the selection of residential buildings of the old town of Počitelj), Sarajevo, 2001.
H. Šabanović, Pašaluk, Sarajevo, 1982.