Ancient Recycling in Zadar, Croatia

In times gone by, builders often recycled materials from previous structures in their own projects. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the Church of St Donat in Zadar, Croatia.

The round Church of St Donat in Zadar

St Donat (which coincidentally is circular, like a donut) was built in the 9th Century by the Byzantines. It was constructed on, and to a large extent out of, the earlier Roman Forum, which predates it by around 1000 years.

Part of the Roman Forum

A Roma column, which was reused as a Pillar of Shame in the Middle Ages

The church rests directly on the paving stones of the Roman Forum.

St Donat resting on the paving of the Roman Forum

Pieces of Roman columns used as part of the church’s foundation

The massive entrance to the church

Upright Roman columns inside the Byzantine church

360 image of the main floor of St Donat

More Roman columns and other stonework used inside St Donat

Reused Roman inscription tablets

A similar intact tablet on display in the Forum outside St Donat

Another Roman tablet, this time used as a bench, just inside the door of St Donat

Running around the entire church is a balcony, which was once the Women’s Gallery.

Women’s Gallery viewed from the main floor

Steps up to the Women’s Gallery

The Women’s Gallery

More recycled Roman columns in the Women’s Gallery

Looking down from the Women’s Gallery, it’s easy to see how St Donat rests on the original paving of the Roman Forum

Sue demonstrating how the Women’s Gallery worked 🙂

Although the entire interior of the church is now painted cream, complimenting the stone from which it is constructed, the walls were probably originally decorated with colourful frescos.

I was surprised to discover that St Donat hasn’t been used as a church for over 200 years, since 1797, although it still hosts music performances to this day.

Looking down on the Forum from St Donat

The bell tower of St Mary, across the Forum

Window honouring R2D2?

Our last view of St Donat as we head out to sea

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This post was inspired by this photo themes of Cream from Ailsa of Where’s My Backpack? and All One Color from Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge.

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About Jaspa

Star of my own award-winning adventure novels, Jaspa's Journey. Geocaching addict & F1 fan. Adventure Journeyer & blogger extraordinaire. Check out my website: www.jaspasjourney.com And don’t forget to download the books and see what the buzz is all about!
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12 Responses to Ancient Recycling in Zadar, Croatia

  1. Cee Neuner says:

    Wonderful post for all these challenges. 😀

  2. ghostmmnc says:

    Such an interesting old church building. It looks huge! I like how they re-used parts of the older structures to build this one. 🙂

  3. cristina61 says:

    Great post! Thanks for sharing all those wonderful images. 😀

  4. Awesome architectural shots. That is a lot of white stone.

  5. Björn Gedda says:

    Thats no column! Anyone can see that it’s the cogwheels in the bottom part of the spaceship that brought the ancients to Earth!!

    All hail the Ancients!!!!!

    Death to the unbelievers!!!!!!!!!!!

    /Björn

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