Stuplje Monastery

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Monastery of Stuplje

The Stuplje Monastery (Serbian Cyrillic: Манастир Ступље) is a Serbian Orthodox monastery located in the village of Gornji Vijačani near the town of Čelinac in north-western Republika Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The monastery's church is dedicated to Archangel Michael.[1] Folk tradition attributes the establishment of Stuplje to King Dragutin, a member of the Serbian Nemanjić dynasty, as is the case with other Serbian monasteries in northern Bosnia.[1][2] The earliest mention of Stuplje is found in a chronicle dated to the second half of the 15th century. The monastery was probably founded before 1450, and thus before the Ottoman conquest of the Kingdom of Bosnia in 1463. This conquest did not include north-western Bosnia, which then became part of the Kingdom of Hungary, to be conquered by the Ottomans in 1527 and 1528. During the 17th century, the monks of Stuplje were active in transcribing religious books. At some point during the Great Turkish War (1683–1699), the monastery was burned down by the Ottomans. Surviving monks fled north across the Sava River and found refuge in the Orahovica Monastery in Slavonia, bringing with them a number of their manuscript books, which thus became part of the Orahovica library.[1]

In time, all traces of the Stuplje Monastery disappeared from the face of the earth. In the 20th century, Stuplje was a historical term with an uncertain location, assumed to be somewhere in the area of Teslić and in the vicinity of the Liplje Monastery. In March 1994, this area was visited by archaeologists who searched for Stuplje in the village of Gornji Vijačani at a locality named Crkvište, near a stream called Manastirica and a hill called Kaluđersko Brdo. The toponyms Crkvište, Manastirica, and Kaluđersko are derived from the Serbian crkva, manastir, and kaluđer, meaning "church", "monastery", and "monk", respectively. The archaeologists uncovered the foundation of a church building in the form of a basilica, 14 metres in length and 7.5 metres in width. The uppermost layer of stones was 30 centimetres below the ground surface. Within and around the foundation, there was a layer of burned debris. The archaeologists revisited the site in 1997, when they uncovered the foundation of a monastic building to the north and west of the church foundation. Scholars concluded that these finds were remains of the Stuplje Monastery.[1]

Afterwards, on the initiative of the head of the Serbian Orthodox Eparchy of Banja Luka, it was decided to rebuild the monastery at the site of the archaeological finds, although some people demanded that the excavated foundations be conserved and the site protected from any disturbance. The Stuplje Monastery was rebuilt and consecrated at the end of 2008.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Ljiljana Ševo (1998). Nenad Novaković; Ranko Pavlović, eds. Манастир Ступље (in Serbian). Banja Luka: Glas srpski. pp. 7–22. 
  2. ^ a b Goran Đurić (6 January 2009). "Ponovo sija monaško kandilo u Stuplju" (in Serbian). Blic. 

Coordinates: 44°44′12″N 17°36′01″E / 44.736724°N 17.600386°E / 44.736724; 17.600386