The Roman Bridge in Ustikolina is almost forgotten

December 12, 2018 3:30 PM

The Roman Bridge in Ustikolina is almost forgotten. No one takes special care of it, although it is on the list of national monuments of BiH since 2005, when the Commission for preservation of national monuments of BiH recognized its historical importance and significance.

This pearl built of stone is located on the mouth of Gabelski creek and the Drina River, on the right bank of the River in a settlement called Kožetin, only four miles away from Ustikolina.

It used to be a part of the path “Via Drinae” which connected these areas with the Adriatic Sea. It is preserved in its original shape, but due to bad condition, only pedestrians can use it.

The upper surface of the bridge is almost horizontal. In the arch of the bridge there are traces of lime mortar, which has been used as a binder during the construction.

“Sidewalls seem like the stone blocks were piled without a binder. That is not likely to be true and it is assumed that the reason behind such look of the side walls is their longtime exposure to unfavorable atmospheric influences, the rain which washed away the lime mortar over time,” said Eldin Baljević, President of the Association “Cultural heritage” of the Bosna-Podrinje Canton Goražde.

No decorations or inscriptions are seen on the Roman Bridge and it is mostly covered in moss.

According to the way of construction, construction material and the binder used, as well as the rusticity of the bridge, this bridge can be placed to late Middle Ages.

“Of course, the people’s tradition cannot be ignored. The old road that this bridge was built on, which led from Foča and crossed the creek here, is around 2.000 years old. Morphology of the terrain and route of this ancient road point to the fact that the bridge might have existed at this place already in the Roman period,” Baljević said.

Given that this bridge is preserved in its original shape and testifies to the rich history of BiH, its deterioration must not be allowed. Back in 2005, when it was included in the list of national monuments of BiH, the Government of FBiH reached a decision that the Bridge in Kožetina must be protected, as well as that conservation, restoration, presentation and a series of other activities, must be implemented.



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