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Karojba

Roman Quadruvium

The wooded hills surrounding Karojba, around the springs of Valigaštar and Vrućak, still abound in historical sites that have not been fully researched. Hadum - brig, Krč, Liretov brig, Glogovac, Šublenta... All these hills have been inhabited since prehistoric times but razed to the ground on several occasions making it difficult for the historians to put the fragments together into a unique story. The majority of them, however, agree that, at Roman times, the area around the spring of Valigaštar contained a Roman military camp near which Roman roads crossed – the modern-day name of Karojba probably derives from the Roman name Quadrivium  – a crossroads.

The church of St. Andrew

The church of st. Andrew is located at the cemetery, at some distance from the present-day village, built on the site of a former Roman necropolis. A sarcophagus from the Roman times has been preserved in front of the entrance into the cemetery and a Roman gravestone was used to build the church door head. Numerous antique inscriptions found when the graveyard was extended some hundred years ago were taken to Motovun and are exhibited in its Lapidarium (stone collection).

The path of the Istarski razvod
THE PATH OF THE ISTARSKI RAZVOD – THE ISTRIAN BOOK OF BOUNDARIES – a thematic path arranged by the local association Valigaštar, features interpretation boards written in four languages. The paths starts at the Chapel of Our Lady of Lourdes (1898) and takes us seven centuries back into history, to the Middle Ages, a period when Istria was divided between two masters – the Patriarch of Aquileia and the Count of  Gorizia and Pazin. An important legal document, written in the Croatian language and in the Glagolithic alphabet, known as the Istarski Razvod – The Istrian Book Of Boundaries has been preserved from that time.
 
This document witnessed a 21-days long establishment of boundaries undertaken by the representatives of the government and the local inhabitants organised in village municipalities or komune headed by the local elected representatives – župani. The committee visited 44 municipalities and kept minutes on the demarcation in three languages – Croatian, German and Latin. The Committee was followed by the elders who had knowledge of the boundaries, but also by children to learn them and keep them for future generations. The places of demarcation were marks easily seen in the nature: ponds, brooklets, springs, trees, roads, most of which can still be seen today or only whose names have been preserved. 

VALIGAŠTAR is one of the springs mentioned in the Istrian Book of Boundaries. It can be reached if we turn left into the fields after about one hundred meters. Today there is just a stone neck of a deep well, while previously the springing water used to fill the nearby pond of the same name, where the local inhabitants would water their livestock.  The Book of Boundaries set here the boundary between the municipalities of Motovun and Trviž and the spring was to not only be used but also maintained by both sides. They then made a sign of the cross with nails on the service tree and signs on the walnut tree. 

Badavca

BADAVCA – another spring described in the Istrian Book of Boundaries as the point of demarcation between the municipalities of Motovun and Trviž. On the occasion of the demarcation the participants engraved a cross in the stone, which can still be seen. Around the spring several rustic stone monuments were erected. These were engraved with certain remarkable thoughts written down 700 years ago: “Therefore the Justice cried out for the Injustice to be eradicated. Twelve large stone carrying the names of the nearby komune surround the central stone which symbolizes a table and has the following words engraved on it: And here all municipalities joined together in peace.
Unfortunately, the peace to which the participants of the bygone demarcation described in the yellow stained pages had sworn to, did not last long.

The path which follows the solemn and romantic campaign of the Committee, leads us along a local field road to the south to the village of Kvešti, then to the pond Trnova lokva and away to Sveti Lovreč and further on.
When the Istrian Book of Boundaries was drafted, and, according to the historians, this could have been between 1275 and 1325, Istria had already been politically divided. The majority of its territory was owned by the Patriarch of Aquileia, but as early as 1150 the towns on the Istrian west coast, Rovinj, Poreč, Umag, Novigrad, Piran...started one by one to align with Venice. At the same time Pazin saw the formation of an independent County encompassing Trviž, Kašćerga and Tinjan, later also Sveti Lovreč, Dvigrad, Pićan and some estates around Motovun. Owing to a marital link, this County came into the ownership of the Counts of Gorizia in 1185, only to pass to the private ownership of the Austrian Habsburg Family in 1374 through an inheritance contract.

Countless conflicts of the three quarrelsome neighbours, in which two would fight and the third would join first one then the other, culminated in 1420 when finally all the estates of the Patriarch passed to the rule of Venice. Nevertheless conflicts did not come to an end and the next year Venice attacked and razed the Austrian Lindar and conquered Grimalda, and razed Žminj, Ružar, Vižinadu and Draguć. During the great War of the League of Cambrai (1508 – 1516) Venice attacked the County of Pazin from the direction of Motovun. The first in the line of attacks was the nearby Trviž where fighting went on to the last man. Pazin was attacked with canons, conquered and looted, Beram and Tinjan surrendered without fighting... The entire Istria and Rijeka fell for a short while into the hands of Venice (1508-1509). Following the arbitration in Trento in 1535, Barban, Rakalj, Račice, Sovinjak, Marčenegla, Draguć, Vrh, Hum, Buzet, Kostanjevica, Vižinada, Ružar and Momjan came under the rule of Venice. After the war, both sides (Austria and Venice) encouraged population mostly by refugees from the Turks. During that time, refugees from Dalmatia inhabited the area of Badavca and established the village of Bados. Near Bados Venetians organised the annual parade of their černidi – the black army consisting of the local inhabitants. In the Uskok War that followed in 1612- 1616 Austria burnt down Karojba and razed Bados, which was never reconstructed after that. Only the Church of St. Mary of Bados remained near Sopajac.

Sopajac


SOPAJAC or Veli dol is the largest and deepest karst swallow hole in Istria. The legend says that, after a special and precise ritual in the bottom of Veli dol, one can become invisible.
The church of St. Mary used to stand along this road above the Dol. The market was held once a year around it until one year there was a bloody fight and a murder. It is said that the statue of the Mother of God in the church cried because of that crime. After that deplorable event the church was demolished and the statue of the Mother of God was moved to Karojba. However, the statue would return to Sopajac every night, kneeling and praying on the nearby stone. The legend says that this went on until the statue was transferred to the church of Karojba, where it still stands, in a solemn procession celebrated by numerous priests. Where the Mother of God would kneel and pray knee and footprints of the Mother of God can still be seen. The shepherds when passing along this place were accustomed to kneel in the same spot and say ten Hail Marys.

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