Dry Stone Walls on Korcula Island

Dry Stone Walls on Korcula Island

Dry stone walls built a hundred years ago, are a feature of the Korcula island. Most of them are in Defora region of the island.

Having a lot of available stone on the island, people in Korcula villages continued for long years to built their houses and animal barns in the technique of dry stone walls.

To construct and erect such a wall, the locals are using a technique of building two parallel walls, one from inside and another form outside simultaneously filling the space in between with rubble, to make sure wall is sturdy and capable to endure weathering and heavy human and animal traffic.

meja-detail

These walls are used to mark edges of individual properties as well as to keep most precious fertile soil into one place. If one goes anywhere around the island of Korcula one will see numerous dry-stone walls built by locals. These stone walls are locally called ‘meja’ (pronounced ‘meya’). Tiny animal barns, usually built to make a home for goats, donkeys and chickens, are locally called ‘ kucice’.

There is a lot of ‘kucice’ around the island, but most attractive ones are in Pupnat and Zrnovo. The roofs of ‘kucice’ barns are covered by thin stone-tiles, specially dig-out from quarries for this purpose. Each of these animal houses is uniquely built with a lot of attention to details, carefully premeditated and adjusted to the environment.

Visual patterns created by ‘meje’ and ‘kucice’ are pretty and meditative. Those patterns remind us of the unintentional visual impact of human actions on the natural environment and for a viewer, they almost act as a basic land-art.

There are a couple of good places in the vicinity of Korcula town to view ‘meje’ and ‘kucice’ from above: Forteca and Sveti Anton hills as well as from Grubinjac , where the little cafe is made in similar style, but using concrete to keep walls together. Also, around Defora bays, especially Zaglav