Our Lady Of The Rocks – The Jewel Of Bay Of Boka

The little town of Perast, a treasure trove of valuable works of the cultural, historical, and artistic heritage of Boka Bay is nestled in one of the most beautiful areas of Boka Bay (Boka Kotorska, Бока Которска), at the base of the hill of St. Elias (Sveti Ilija, Свету Илија). Its valuable monuments, churches, chapels, slender bell-towers, the City Museum, exquisite palaces, balconies and coats of arms have all been well-preserved.

During the winter, it is protected from the northern winds, turned towards the sun and the sea, while a comfortable breeze from Verige (Вериге) helps cool down the town during the heat of the summer. Two picturesque islets stand guard before it. The natural islet of St. George (Sveti Đorđe, Свети Ђорђе) houses a 17th century church of the same name, as well as the Perast cemetery, dating from 1886, and an ancient Benedictine abbey, from the 12th century.  This secretive islet, over-grown with dense vegetation and slender cypress trees could have, perhaps, served as the inspiration for the painting The Island of the Dead by Swiss painter Böcklin. Not far away from it, lies the man-made islet, Out Lady of the Rocks (Gospa Od Škrpjela, Госпа Од Шкрпјела), with a sailors’ votive shrine by the same name. The islet was built by constant heaping up of stones that started in the middle of the 15th century, on the 22nd of July, 1452, to be more exact, and has been going on, to some extent, to this day. The islet covers an area of 3030 m2.

Special attention of numerous visitors is drawn to the smaller painting, which presents the top part of the main altar with the woven painting of Our Lady of the Rocks covered with a silver shackle.

 Goblen

This was a votive painting made by Jacinta Kunić, who, according to tradition, patiently wove the painting for 25 years. It is considered one of the most beautiful needle-point works in our country. It is especially interesting that, in addition to silk, silver, and gold thread, the artist used natural hair to weave the hair of the characters in the painting. From the signature, we learn that the panting was finished in 1828. The sketch displayed on the side shows that Jacinta Kunić was not only a very patient weaver, but also a talented painter.

The carved stern is a part of an elaborate little boat that was Perast on special occasions.