Inštitut za arheologijo  ZRC SAZU



The Bestoen bishopric in the light of prior research


The aim of this article is to locate the Bestoen bishopric, its central area and the see of its bishop, on the basis of the results of the analysis of archaeological, epigraphic, literary and other sources. The Bestoen bishop Andreas co-signed acts of the Salona synods in the years 530 and 533 AD, and tried to bring about its division into two bishoprics. He was forced to do so, on account of both its size and its poverty, which prevented the bishopric from providing help for the poor and for its clergy. This resulted in diminished pastoral care for the Christian population that was entrusted to him. Andreas’ request was not fulfilled. His bishopric was situated in the mountainous inland of Roman Dalmatia, most probably in the area of the Rama River (northern Herzegovina), as well as along the upper Vrbas, the valley of the river Lašva and the area of Zenica (central Bosnia). The possibility that its centre was at the ancient settlement of Grudine (Crkvina) in Æipuljiæ-Bugojno (central Bosnia), where a Roman brick with the stamp Bistues was discovered, is not entirely to be excluded.

Keywords: Roman Dalmatia, Early Christianity, Bestoenian bishopric

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