Republication from np-krka.hr  (Krka NP)

A powerful 17th and 18th centuries artillery weapon mačkula was guarded for centuries by the Nečven fortress

A greatly preserved mačkula, still used today to celebrate the victory at the traditional manifestation Sinjska alka was found at one of the two gatekeepers of Krka River, the Nečven medieval fortress, in the near future connected by a hanging hiking bridge with the fortress Trošenj on the opposite side of the River bank.

During conservation works on the Nečven medieval fortress in Krka National Park in March archaeologists were exalted by a valuable finding of a powerful artillery weapon – the mačkula. The extraordinarily conserved bronze specimen, precursor of today’s mortar, was used to invade fortified settlements and ennemies in deep cover. Mačkula (mortar, merzer) is a weapon that holds a special place in the Croatian warrior heritage. During the traditional manifestation Sinjska alka, every goal „u sridu“ (‘in the middle’) is celebrated by a shot from the mačkula. It’s value is enhanced even more during the ceremony of the winner proclamation  when several mačkula are shooting from Sinj’s old fortified walls.

Systematic archaeological research of Nečven fortress started in 2011. and along with archaeological excavations conservation works of the fortress were accomplished. Metal and stone findings were conserved at the Krka NP conservation workshop.

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