The Baška tablet – “The most valuable monument of Croatian literacy”

Reading our blogs it’s no secret the island of Krk is an ideal destination for vacation for all generations due to its offer personalized to all ages. But this time, besides the natural beauties, we wish for you to get to know Croatian history and culture through one of the most important Early Croatian monuments written in Glagolitic.

The Baška tablet is the most important Croatian monument. It was discovered in 1851. in the church of St. Lucy in Jurandvor, not far from Baška, on the island of Krk. It is a piece of stone with Glagolitic carving of, among other things, the Croatian national name, in Croatian. It is considered the tablet was carved around the year 1100. Discovering the Baška tablet started the exploration of the history of Croatian language and literature.

The tablet is 199×99,5x9cm big and weighs about 800 kg. The writing on the tablet consists of two parts and is written in 13 lines. The first part is about the Croatian king Zvonimir giving land to a Benedictine Monastery of St. Lucy. The second part is about the end of construction of a small church belonging to St, Lucy Monastery. The Glagolitic used in the Baška tablet is a transitional form between round and angular Glagolitic, and also, some Latin and Cyrillic letters appear.

When it was discovered, it was in rather bad shape-broken in 3 pieces, a part of the tablet was torn off and quite worn out in some parts. Since 1934. the tablet has been kept in Zagreb in the atrium of Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts where it has been washed off from the salt and preserved until today.

In the church of St. Lucy on the island of Krk there is a copy of the tablet. If you come by Jurandvor, you can see how it looks. Also, there is an archaeological park around the church, and there is a Benedictine Monastery. A well-known tourist attraction is the Baška Glagolitic path-a path with stone sculptures with carved Glagolitic letters.

The Baška tablet represents an archaeological and linguistic monument, as well as a piece of literary work. It is the oldest known document with the Croatian name written in Croatian language and in Croatian Glagolitic writing. It’s been about 920 years since it was carved out, and next year will be 170 years since it has been found.

This is just a small part of what you can see and learn by exploring the rich history of the island. There are plenty more small churches and convents, archaeological finds and Early Christian remains telling ancient stories of the island. It’s on you to discover them.