Žitomislić Monastery

Žitomislić Monastery

Žitomislić (Serbian: Житомислић) is а monastery of the Serb Orthodox Church located near Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Its church is dedicated to the Annunciation of the Mother of God.

In 1566 the Ottoman Empire, as represented by the kadija (qadi) in Nevesinje, granted the Miloradović-Hrabren family a permit to build monastery at Žitomislić over the ruins of an older church. The monastery took more than forty years to complete with the first reference to monks at Žitomislić in 1606. The monastery boasted a highly artistic iconostasis, and housed a scriptorium of considerable activity and renown in its time. At the height of its existence the monastery was supported by large land holdings worked by the monks themselves.

Early in the 19th century, the prior Simeon Miljković, took on improvements to the monastery that included guest quarters, local water, and a new vineyard. A seminary was opened in 1858.

On June 26, 1941 a detachment of Croat fascists (Ustaše) tortured and killed the monks of Žitomislić and threw their bodies into a pit. The buildings were plundered; the church was razed and the rest of the compound burnt to the ground. The monastery was rebuilt after the war and the bodies of the martyrs were exhumed and placed in a tomb.

In 1992 Žitomislić was intentionally destroyed by Croatian Defence Council (HVO) militia as part of the ongoing warfare after the collapse of Yugoslavia. At that time the library contained dozens of old manuscripts from the 16th and 17th centuries including a small archive of Turkish documents. The treasury was plundered and the buildings, including the cemetery were dynamited and bulldozed to the ground. The stones were left where they fell, however, and when reconstruction of Žitomislić officially began in April 2002 its prior architecture was meticulously reconstructed. In May 2005 the regular session of the Holy Assembly of Bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church began in the fully restored Žitomislić Monastery.

See also

  • List of Serb Orthodox monasteries
  • Serbs of Mostar

External links

Coordinates: 43°11′23″N 17°46′50″E / 43.18972°N 17.78056°E / 43.18972; 17.78056

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