Located in the hinterland of Littoral Dalmatia, 20 km from the Adriatic coast, near Šibenik, between Split and Zadar, Bribirska Glavica is one of the largest archaeological sites, referred to as ‘Croatia’s Troy’. Inhabited from the Neolithic period up until the 17th AD, our focus of excavation is Late Antiquity (4th c.) and Early Middle Ages (5th-10th c.)
Bribir played a significant role during the later Middle Ages. It was the seat of the Croatian noble family, the Šubići, who were at the peak of their power in the late 13th and early 14th century. This was the time of the rule of prince Paul (Pavao) I Šubić. He became the viceroy (ban) of Croatia and Dalmatia, to which he later added the title the Lord of Bosnia (Dominus Bosniae). His territory spread from Modruš, Gacka, and Senj, all the way to the Livno region in southwestern Bosnia. He exercised influence over Trogir, Split, Omiš, and Šibenik due to the support of his brothers who ruled these cities.
There are many documents preserved from that time, which give evidence of the significance and richness of Bribir. There were as many as seven churches, a manor, lodgings, and guesthouses. The public notaries of that time, doctors, artisans of different occupations, servants and others are mentioned. The Hungarian-Croatian king Bela IV Arpad stayed with his suite for several weeks in Bribirska Glavica in 1245. The most important find from this time is a building complex which comprised of Franciscan monastery and the Church of St. Mary on Dol, which was used as a burial place for the Šubići.
The excavations are led by Dr Victor Ghica (Macquarie University) and Dr Ante Milošević (Muzej hrvatskih arheoloških spomenika). The team is made of Dr Danijel Dzino (Macquarie University), Nikolina Uroda (MHAS), Dr Andrea Di Miceli, Dr Tommaso Mattioli (Centro di Eccellenza S.M.A.Art, Perugia), Željko Krnjčević (Šibenik Museum), Yann Beliez (independent archaeologist), students of Macquarie and Zagreb Universities.
The project is a result of the partnership between Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts (Sydney, Australia), Muzej hrvatskih arheoloških spomenika (Split, Croatia), the Croatian Studies Foundation (Sydney, Australia), Muzej grada Šibenika (Šibenik, Croatia), Università degli Studi di Perugia (Perugia, Italy), Centro di Eccellenza S.M.A.Art (Perugia, Italy), and Institut za arheologiju (Zagreb, Croatia).
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