Montenegro’s Royal Capital Bids for World Heritage Status

30 Jan 15

Montenegro’s Royal Capital Bids for World Heritage Status

The country’s old royal capital has been recommended as Montenegro’s next World Heritage site nomination in 2016, the Culture Ministry announced .

Dusica Tomovic


Montenegro on Friday will submit an application for the historic core of Cetinje to join the UNESCO heritage list.

Once the nomination has been submitted, it will then undergo a process of scrutiny and evaluation by UNESCO and its advisory body, the International Council on Monuments and Sites.

“No later than in a year-and-a half we will know whether Cetinje will join the world heritage list,” a Ministry of Culture official, Lidia Ljesar, said on Thursday.

Cetinje’s historic core dates back to the 1480s when it became the capital of the tiny country. It became the centre of Montenegrin life and both a cradle of Montenegrin culture and of the Orthodox faith during the rule of the Petrovic dynasty.

Filled with memories of Montenegro’s turbulent history, Cetinje is home to a number of Christian relics. A fragment of St John the Baptist’s Right Hand and Particle of the True Cross are housed in the Cetinje Monastery Treasury, as well as the Icon of Our Lady of Phileremos.

Under the country’s last monarch, King Nikola, there was a period of rapid expansion which included the building of a number of imposing European embassies and legations.

The town lost its diplomatic and political importance in 1918 when the Petrovic dynasty was dethroned and the country lost its independence and was absorbed into the new state of Yugoslavia.

UNESCO has listed 1,007 sites worldwide of special cultural or physical significance and which have an “outstanding universal value”.

Montenegro already has two sites on the UNESCO list that are identified as significant historical and natural monuments.

The Bay of Kotor was inscribed in 1979, a year after the list’s conception, as the first Montenegrin site under UNESCO protection. The site had been listed as endangered following damage caused by an earthquake in 1979.

The entire area of Durmitor mountain and the Tara river canyon is protected as a national park was listed as a UNESCO world heritage site in 1980.

Source: Balkan Insight (Montenegro)