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FROM DIOCLETIAN TO SPLIT : legends and lore
; Institut za etnologiju i folkloristiku, Zagreb
Oral tradition also keeps alive the testimony of the Split earliest history which lacks any reliable literary tradition. Although it by no means is or can be considered reliable historical testimony, the common people imagination, based on authentic historical events and persons, has created a remarkable oral history with a great number of variations. The tales of Emperor Diocletian, collected by Frane Buliæ in the villages of the Split surrounding area at the beginning of the century, form the basis of the research. Some later oral literary records from those villages have also been taken into consideration. The tales of Diocletian are closely intertwined with oral literary themes and motifs which are also common in some other Croatian (and European) regions. However, by their local color, the language expressions (which are, unfortunately, not always retained), the first and second names of narrators, and by their strong conviction that through their stories the history of their country has been kept alive, the tales belong exclusively to Split and its surroundings. They deal with the Diocletian’s birth place, his ferocity and the killings of barbers, the miraculous election of Diocletian for a king, his divine characteristics, underground passageways between Solin and Split, Diocletian’s death and his grave that has not yet been found, gold hidden somewhere in the earth piles around Solin, and bewitched, cursed and unfortunate Diocletian’s daughter Priska. The paper also presents the most popular Split legends about St Doimus and Anastasius, through which Split and Salona seem to be brought together.
Hrčak ID: 108523
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