Posted by trajektman on Nov 1, 2009
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City or Place: Otok Vis
Skill Level: Beginner
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Will go from Split to Vis (check http://www.trajekti.info/ )
Island Vis, the beauty of limpid waters and protected submarine world rich with sunken ships and magic marine images that has been hidden for years.
The Mediterranean communities even in the Neolithic times, 3 thousand years BC, inhabited the island Vis. The name of the island Issa originates from that time and that is the name that the island still holds in the croatised version. In the 6-5th century BC Issa is ruled by Ionius who established the first Illyrian state in the Adriatic. The local Illyrian population Dalmati learnt the more sophisticated and advanced way of land cultivation from the Greeks who came later. At the times of rule of Dionysius Jr. Issa becomes a free democratic polis “city-state”. Spreading its commercial and trade network and establishing its colonies such as Lumbarda (at the island Kor?ula), Tragurion (Trogir), Epetion (Stobre?), and at last Salona (Solin), Issa gets very powerful. The part of sepulchral findings from that period consists of vases, vine jars and terracotta plastics. The ancient Issa represents the oldest urban nucleus in these parts of the world. It was situated on the north part of the bay, on the locality called Gradina. As other Greek towns, it was encompasses by walls that are partly preserved, and it is supposed that it had a regular street schedule as other towns of that period. Thanks to favourable circumstances, Issa flourished for a very long time, until the conflict with the Illyrian king Argon and with queen Teuta ca 229 – 219 BC. Assessing that it would not be able to confront the attack of queen Teuta, Issa asked the Roman republic to help. The alliance with Rome and its assistance in the conquests, Issa and its colonies prospered economically. From the Roman era there are partly preserved thermae and the foundations of the ancient theatre.
Judging by the size of the theatre that could take 3,500 spectators, it is assumed that in the city of Issa and surrounding fields lived 12-14 thousand people. There are three localities found outside city walls. The one next to west walls got Slavic name Matvilo, next to east walls Vlaška njiva, while the south locality was situated on the area today called Luka. The urns from 1st century BC are the oldest traces of burials by cremation in Dalmatia.
When barbaric tribes started bursting into the Roman Empire the economic power of big centres declined. This happened to Salona with which Issa was closely connected. The island gradually gets weaker, the life of the city slowly but surely extinguishes, and communities continue living in the Roman Villae Rusticae scattered on the whole island. Some of these Villae later became bigger rural communities.
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