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Original scientific paper

Journey to Jerusalem, 1752 – the Establishment of the Itinerary Genre in Croatian Literature

Cvijeta Pavlović orcid id ; Faculty of philosophy in Zagreb

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page 139-158

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Journey to Jerusalem, 1752, is the first (preserved) Croatian itinerary, written in the context of many European itineraries of related topics and with awareness of the existing genre cannon. The author, Jakov Pletikosa (1704 – 1769), Franciscan priest and missionary, lived in the Holy Land from 1752 to 1756 and was the abbot of St. John’s Monastery »in Montana« close to Jerusalem. He presented himself, with his story about the journey and the first year he spent in israel, as erudite and »enlightened« pilgrim with an extreme interest in cultural-historic landmarks on one side, and in everyday life on the other side. Pletikosa’s descriptions are authentic, they can be measured and verified, the descriptions of a reliable story-teller who legitimates himself on several levels. His Journey, which is compositionally divided in two parts, fits into itinerary literature of the 18th century, which points out monuments’ heritage and historiographic aspect as »realistic« content within the metaphysical frame of a starting point and destination from human life from the Christian perspective.
The unquestionable place which the itinerary of jakov pletikosa takes in the development of Croatian literature is in this analysis placed through the narrational category of the subject of itinerary discourse (traveler, observer, narrator), as well as through borrowed European models through which the realistic itinerary in the century of rationalism and detailed topography was determined: travel description story-telling as »thematic structure of long duration«, in the 18th century found its base for showing the time dimen- sion in different aspects of spatiality. Pletikosa’s immanent question »Quo vadis?« is resolved in the tense curve from Bethlehem, through the Mount of Olives to Emmaus, although in different chrono – topic sequence. journey to jerusalem, 1752, is the sample copy of Croatian prose of the 18th century, and at the same time firmly established itinerary genre.


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