Monday 6 March 2017

Glavica cemetery

Holy oak grove covering Glavica (Head) hill in South Western Serbia hides a mysterious medieval Serbian cemetery. Thousands of huge stone monuments of unusual shapes cover the conical hill. They are all placed in circles around a huge ancient oak tree which grows on the hill's summit. Next to the oak trunk stands a stone altar table. 

People were buried in this necropolis between 12th and 18th century. Monuments are of various shapes and sizes and some are truly enormous. A lot of them are finely carved with religious (Christian or Pagan or Fusion???) images

The most unusual ones are the huge carved stone blocks in the form of fish, like this one. 

Similar fish shaped tombstones were also discovered in medieval Serbian cemetery in Mali Zvečan near Kosovska Mitrovica.

The cemetery is located at the very end of a fertile Deževo valley below the steep slopes of Mount Golija, near the village of Ljuljac. The valley is locally known as the "Valley of the kings" because it once was the location of the court of the Serbian Nemanjić family. 

The only reason this cemetery has remained intact and undisturbed by the treasure hunters is the fear of disturbing the holy ground protected by the holy oak forest and the ancient holy oak in its center. The hill is considered a taboo place by the local villagers. 

Unfortunately there is no money, or interest, for any further archaeological investigation of the site. 


  1. It’s hard not to think of the biblical tree of life and the Christian fish symbol. Either way, beautifully fused Christian and Pre-Christian symbolism.

    1. Yes I think we are here looking at early mix of Christianity and paganism. In Serbian medieval texts these people were called "poluverci" (halfbelievers) and in Russia they were called "dvoverci" (double believers, believers in two things at the same time)