Trip Start Jun 06, 2012
3Trip End Oct 31, 2012
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Today Bill and I took an afternoon trip to Skrip and visited the official museum of Brac.
The museum building itself is a story of history. At its base is a wall built by the Romans in the 4th century AD. Notice the uniform blocks and their symmetrical placement in contrast to the construction of the Bronze Age wall. Then on top of the Roman wall is a tower, built by the islanders in the 16th century to defend against invading Turks.
The tower is not the only fortified structure in the village. The Cerinic Castle
But what is truly amazing to me about Skrip in particular and Brac in general is that things used in Medieval times were still being used in recent island history. The press below, first used as an olive press and later as a wine press, is located in the courtyard of the museum.
Due to Andrea's excellent, in-depth commentary, the tour of the museum took almost two hours. We learned a lot about the history of Brac and saw numerous artifacts dating from pre-historic times to the not-too-distant past. In fact, there was so much information, we decided that we will have to go back and hear it again - maybe more than once. I am going to include some pictures from the inside tour. With some, I will be able to tell you a little about them, but with others, the pictures will have to speak for themselves because I do not remember their stories.
Hercules was an important god to the Romans and often decorated the tombstones of more prominent citizens.
To the left is the prow of a battleship. The figure of the woman lost her arm during a sea fight. Below is a cannon carriage, which was used to move a merchant ship's cannons to wherever they were needed most.
A home mill was an asset and set a villager apart from the rest because it gave her the opportunity to get a portion of the grain of others who asked to use it as opposed to having to pay to use someone else's.
The swords in the case were used by Croatian police officers in the 19th century.
The plaques to the left were once attached to buildings. They alerted the fire department that the owner had pre-paid for fire protection. In case of a fire in the village, the fire fighters would save the buildings with the fire plaques first.
Villages often formed community co-ops. This was one village's bank. It was a community safe where all the villagers would lock up their valuables.
Among Croatia's many rulers was the Austrian Empire. To the left is a bust of the Emperor Franz Joseph and a chest decorated with the empires' crown.
After we left the museum, we strolled along a path away from the village where I shot some photos of the back of the museum, a valley on one side, and the Adriatic and the Mosor Mountains on the other.
Facing back toward the village, you can see the Chapel of the Holy Spirit, the original Skrip chapel, and behind it, the steeple of the church of St. Jelena (Helena) the Crusader. Walking back toward the village, we stopped to get better pictures of the chapel and discovered that there was another one right next to it. The original chapel was built in the 4th century. The one next to it was built in the 7th. Neither one is in use today.
St. Jelena's, dedicated to the mother of the Emperor Constantine, is the current village church.
The last thing we saw before we left were Roman sarcophagi. I have no idea who had been buried in them nor do I know what happened to the bodies. If Andrea told us, I missed it. As I said earlier, there was such a ton of information that I just don't remember it all. I will go back next year.
I don't know how many of you reading this will ever get to Brac, but if you do, a morning or afternoon in Skrip will be well worth the time.