Dubrovnik, meaning “village of oak,” seems to grow out of a walled peninsula jutting into the Adriatic Sea in southern Croatia. The original oak dwellings have long since burned, however, and for hundreds of years the town has been a rock fortress. Its rugged stone walls have protected it from attack from the sea since the 6th century. Dubrovnik has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979, its simple limestone buildings with their warm yellow and red roof tiles unified by a medieval building code.
Dubrovnik has been under attack by armies and by earthquakes many times, but careful restoration work has been a hallmark of the city ever since it was severely damaged in a 1667 earthquake. More recently, the Institute for the Restoration of Dubrovnik was founded in 1979 after another earthquake. This entity – with the help of donations from around the world – is responsible for restoring the city after the 1991 shelling by the Serbs. It was impossible, however, to match the color of the original tiles, since the original tile factory shut down in the 1950s.
PUBLISHED: July 3, 2013