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Camp Galeb

Vukovarska b.b. 21310 Omiš Hrvatska
Split, Dalmatia
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Camping Stobreč Split

Sv. Lovre 6, Stobreč, 21000 Split
Split, Dalmatia
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History of Split

Although the beginnings of Split are usually linked to the building of Diocletian's Palace, there is evidence that this area was inhabited as a Greek colony even earlier. The area's urban tradition is, thus, many thousands of years old, not least due to the proximity of Salona, the capitol of the entire Dalmatia province during the time of the Roman Empire.

Diocletian was a Roman emperor who ruled between AD 284 and 305 and was known for his reforms and persecution of Christians. He ordered the work on the palace to begin in 293 in readiness for his retirement from politics in 305. The palace faces the sea on its south side and its walls are 170 to 200 m (570 to 700 feet) long and 15 to 20 m (50 to 70 feet) high, and it encloses an area of 38,000 m² (9½ acres). This massive structure was long deserted when the first citizens of Split settled inside its walls. In 639, the interior was converted into a town by the citizens of Salona who escaped the destruction of their town by the Avars. Over the centuries, the city has spread out over the surrounding landscape, but even today the palace constitutes the inner core of the city, still inhabited, full of shops, markets, squares, with even a Christian cathedral (formerly Diocletian's mausoleum) inserted in the corridors and floors of the former palace. Although part of Byzantine Empire, the town had political autonomy.

The rise of the early Medieval Croatian state in neighbouring littoral (coastal cities) and the hinterland provoked in the following centuries Split developed a Croatian character, which can be seen in the architecture of churches in the city and surroundings, and which led to the unity of the church with Split at the center in 928; it is important to mention that there was a big church synode, where a clerical jurisdiction over Croatia and relations of Latin-rite and Croat (slavic)-rite in church in Croatia were discussed.

At that time Split was also the capital city of medieval Croatian duchy and later, kingdom; Croatian duke/king ruled from this city, as well as from some other nearby townlets: Solin, Klis, Biaći and Omiš.

On the peninsula, position on the west of the southern city port there was a medieval benedictine monastery of "St. Stephen under pines" (San Stephanus de Pinis), or in Croatian "Sveti Stipan pod borima". The peninsula got the name after that monastery - Sustipan. Most famous inhabitant of that monastery was the son of Croatian king Demetrius Zvonimir (in Croatian: Dmitar Zvonimir), Stephen (in Croatian: Stipan). The founder of that monastery was the archbishop of Split, Lovre (in English: Lawrence), a big friend of the king Zvonimir. The monastery was founded in 1069.

At the beginning of the 12th century Split was led by nobility of Kingdom of Croatia-Hungary. The city however maintained independence, as in 1312 it issued statues and had currency of its own. The Venetian Republic took control of Split in 1420, when the population was almost exclusively Croatian. The autonomy of the city remained, though somewhat reduced: the highest authority was a prince-captain who was always of Venetian birth.

During the Middle Ages and under Venetian rule Split developed into an important port city with trade routes to the interior through the nearby Klis pass. Culture flourished as well, Split being the hometown of Marko Marulic, a classic Croatian author. Marulic wrote Judita (1501) in Split, and published it there (1521). It is widely held to be the first modern work of literature in Croatian.

Still, all those achievements were reserved mostly for aristocracy, illiteracy rate was extremely high, because Venetian ruler showed no interest in educational and medical facilities.

Venice held Split until its own downfall in 1797. The city fell to Austria-Hungary after a brief period of Napoleonic rule (1806–1813). Big investments were undertaken during that time; some new streets were built, as well as some old fortification objects were removed.

Under Austria, however, Split stagnated. But, that stagnation was still much bigger growth and development, compared to Venetian rule. The general upheavals in Europe starting in 1848 gained no ground in Split.

Split in the 20th century

After the end of World War I and the dissolution of Austria-Hungary, the province of Dalmatia, along with Split, became a part of The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (which in 1929 changed its name to Yugoslavia). After both Rijeka and Zadar, the two other large cities on the eastern Adriatic coast, were annexed by Italy, Split became the most important port in Yugoslavia.

In new country, Split has became the seat of new administrative unit, Littoral Banovina.

The Lika railway, connecting Split to the rest of the country, was completed in 1925.

After the agreement Cvetković-Maček, Split became the part of new administrative unit (merging of Sava and Littoral Banovina plus some Croat populated areas), Banovina of Croatia in Kingdom of Yugoslavia.

In April 1941, following the invasion of Yugoslavia by the Axis, Split was occupied by Italy and formally annexed one month later. Italian rule met heavy opposition from the Croat majority, and almost a third of the population joined Tito's Partisans. The local football clubs refused to compete in the Italian championship; Hajduk suspended its playing, while all the members of RNK Split joined the Partisan forces.

In September 1943, following the capitulation of Italy, the city was liberated by Partisans only to be occupied by the Wehrmacht a few weeks later. During the occupation, some of the port facilities as well as parts of the old city were damaged by Allied bombing. Partisans finally liberated the city on October 26 1944. On February 12 1945 the Kriegsmarine conducted a daring raid on the Split harbour, using explosive boats and damaging the British cruiser Delhi in the process. Until the end of war Split was the provisional capital of Partisan-controlled Croatia.

After WWII, Split became a part of Croatia, itself a constituent republic of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. It continued to grow and develop as an important commercial and cultural center. The city drew a large number of rural migrants who found employment in the newly built factories, a part of a large-scale industrialization effort. In the period between 1945 and 1990, the population tripled and the city expanded, taking up the whole peninsula.

When Croatia declared independence in 1991, Split had a large garrison of the Yugoslav People's Army (JNA), as well as facilities and the headquarters of the Yugoslav Military Navy (JRM). This led to a months-long tense stand-off between the JNA and Croatian military and police forces, occasionally flaring up with various incidents.

The most spectacular such incident occurred in November 15 1991, when the JRM, including the light frigate Split, fired a small number of shells at the city. No part of the city was seriously damaged, but there were human casualties. It is important to note that exclusively the old town was shelled, because in that part of Split were Croat cultural and historical monuments. Also, that part of town was exclusively Croat-populated. This was the only time in history that a city was bombarded by a military vessel bearing its name. On the same day of the attack, Croat forces damaged the frigate Split, forcing it later to be abandoned. One sailor who had refused to fight was left in the vessel's brig.

The JNA finally evacuated all of its facilities in Split during January 1992.

Modified: 2007-02-17 20:35:43+01
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Split


Image Gallery

Roman walls in SplitHistorical Complex of Split with the Palace of DiocletianStatue of Gregory of Nin by Ivan Meštrović, 1929The famous bell tower of the Cathedral

Roman walls in Split

Roman walls in Split

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Split


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