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Grgur Ninski

One of the most recognizable features of the city of Split is the statue of Grugur Ninski. It can be found in front of the Palace's Golden Gate in the Palace's northern section. It was sculpted by our most well-known artist, Ivan Mestrovic, and stands at the height of more than six meters.

Since he played such a pivotal role in developing the old Slavic language and Glagolitic script, the bishop of Nin holds a special place in the hearts of Croatians. Legend says that if you make a wish while touching his toe on the statue, he will grant it.

Throughout history, Croatians have constantly fought amongst themselves, like in Gregory's case, which has prevented us from moving forward. In the wake of the Great Assembly in 926, he, a bishop from the 10th century, rebelled against the Pope and instituted the use of the Croatian language in religious services. Before that time (and even up until the late 1960s! ), the Roman Catholic Church's official language was Latin, which was incomprehensible to most of its followers. This was very significant for the Croatian language and culture. Nonetheless, it did help strengthen religion in the Kingdom of Croatia.

However, Gregory of Nin could not accomplish this because the Pope and the other Dalmatian bishops exerted enormous pressure on King Tomislav and the rest of the clergy, effectively isolating him. As the archbishop of Split assumed full authority over the church, he also lost all influence and power.
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Friday, 22 September 2023