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Radoslav Bužančić ; Državna uprava za zaštitu kulturne i prirodne baštine, Glavno povjerenstvo u Splitu

Puni tekst: hrvatski pdf 4.424 Kb

str. 39-49

preuzimanja: 528


Puni tekst: engleski pdf 4.424 Kb

str. 49-50

preuzimanja: 476



The Church of St. John in Postira on Brač, along with the known basilicas in Povlja and Supetar, belongs among the three-aisled basilicas of the northern coast of the island erected during Justinian's rule over Dalmatia. The reconstruction of the original appearance of the building was possible thanks to the regularities of the planned edifice and to the excavated fragments of its architectural sculpture. Measurements of distortions arising from adaptations to the newer building also helped in the reconstruction of the appearance of the church and in the understanding of its architecture. One of these deviations noticeable on the topmost step of the confessio suggests that in late antiquity St. John was subsequently given a ciborium above the main altar. The knowledge of its existence above the altar, emphasising its central position, is an important characteristic for the study of the furnishings of the Brac churches and the architecture of Justinian's period. The first research work in the apse of the church of St. John uncovered remains of L-shaped confessio, indicating that this unusual form is due to steps which were added subsequently. Technically speaking, the building of the confessio can be regarded as mounting and the same goes for the baptistery which in this example best represents the builder's concept and its realisation. 49 Vertical slabs were mounted into previously cut out grooves in the monolithic stone foundation , 14 cm thick, of the confessio which today reveal precisely the positioning of the lost pieces. The mounting was done in open, broad excavation which was later filled in. In order to ensure the stability of the vertical slabs, which themselves 12 cm thick and were sufficient to carry the superstructure, they were supported from the outside by an auxiliary wall up to the moment of the land in-fill. That wall is an auxiliary construction built when the slabs were mounted to support them in their upright position. Since the late antiquity technique of wall building used much limestone mortar, the texture and form of the stone slabs panelling were imprinted in it. At the same time this precious shell is a negative image of a stone mounting, which enables recognition of the parts of the construction which belong with it and which were not found in situ. It also enables it positioning in the place where it was originally found , with the precise insertion into its own imprint. Our attention is drawn to the narrowing of a small staircase in the side of the confessio which was reduced to a width of 40 cm at the first step, ensuring that it was of a purely symbolic nature. The widening of the same staircase after two steps to a width of 60 cm, which was the narrowest measure necessary for its functioning, is confusing. Two facts can be concluded from this: firstly, something once existed in that place which required that two steps be narrowed, and secondly, whatever was placed there was added as the last item after the completion of the building of the confessio. The existing wall and this widening became the base for the column of an additional construction. The reason for such a deformation of the most important element of the church must have been exceptionally significant, and also unchangeable. It may be supposed that the building of the ciborium above the altar of the church was the only sufficiently significant reason which could have required the narrowing of the steps leading to the tomb with fenestella reliquiarum. This broadening is most probably the base of the column of a ciborium of which the centre doubtless had to conform with the centre of the church, of the altar and of the reliquary.

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