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The Church and Cult of st. Domnius in Dol

Vilma Stojković
Ivica Moškatelo

Puni tekst: hrvatski pdf 4.710 Kb

str. 45-50

preuzimanja: 323



The church of St. Domnius (Dujam) which was situated at the north part of the village of Dol, is recorded in 1467 when mentioned as having a benefice. The place where it is stood is called by people from Dol Piski or Molo bardo (small hill). According to the cadaster of 1834, the church area was 14,4m2. During Valerius's visitation of 1571, it was already a ruin, so he ordered it to be pulled down and to mount a cross on the premises. At the beginning of the 17th c. the church rector is unknown, the church almost demolished, empty, without altar or door and it used to be the place to build up fire in and on occasions even animals were passing through it. The church was completely pulled down in the 19th c., and the remnants had inexpertly been excavated in 1991. Only the semi-circle, east-oriented apse is now visible and some bits of mortar. According to its position and size (cca 6x2 m) and titular, it is obviously an early Medieval church. During the preliminary investigation (May 2016), trying to locate the church foundations, Vilma Stojković, a conservator, Marko Matković an archeologist, and Ivica Moškatelo a historian, have succeeded to confirm the position of the apse and the south wall after the ground cleaning, the wall following the bedrock. Apart from some stone blocks, the remnant pieces of mortar have been found on the ground „within the church“, as well as on the stones scattered around. While inspecting the site, they noticed a piece of stone with relief representing a basket with berries. The fragment is 17 cm wide and 10 cm high, made of local carst stone. This important piece is probably the only thing by which we might date the church with precision.
It is interesting to take into consideration don Šime Ljubić's pondering for he thinks that the inhabitants from the mainland, fleeing the slaughter following the downfall of Salona that fell into Avars’ hands, took shelter on the neighboring islands and that this can explain the exact time of the church building and why it had been dedicated to St Domnius. Thomas the Archdeacon also mentions the matter.
Don Frane Bulić had also visited the site in 1898. He wrote that the parish priest Juraj Carić had told him of the villagers calling it „Greek church“ and that it had been pulled down in 1840. In his papers, Bulić mentions the case of the Abbot Martin, who after having collected the bones of the saints from the churches in the devastated Salona, had taken shelter from bad weather on his way to Rome in the safe part of Pharia (around 640 A.D.). So, the church on the hill so close to Stari Grad would be the memory of this event.
These thoughts of the eminent don Frane Bulić are followed by the local legend. The legend is preserved in the papers of the Dol teacher and chronologist Nikola Posinković, wherein it is written that there exists a legend about safekeeping the bones of St. Domnius in that church, and that previously to the church building they had been safeguarded at a secret location. Recent times legend connects the church to one Vranković, who had dug up treasure in front of the church entrance. Although there is no trace of the church on the location, except the scattered mortar and stones, the place deserves to be adequately marked. The parish priest of Dol don Mario Zelanović and the members of the Church Council heartily support the idea and will do so in cooperation with experts.

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