November 21, 2020 - The first volume of the edition "Monumenta Montenegrina Vaticana", published by historians Slavko Burzanović and Boban Batrićević, has been published by the Ministry of Culture. It is a valuable collection of documents on the Concordat of the Principality of Montenegro and the Holy See from 1886. "Monumenta Montenegrina Vaticana" is a capital work that testifies to the long and rich history of our state, law, and culture in the broadest sense of the word.
The Ministry of Culture, with the help of the Embassy of Montenegro at the Holy See, recognized the importance of cooperation with the Vatican Archives and took steps to pave the way for Montenegrin researchers. The result of these efforts is the first book from the edition "Monumenta Montenegrina Vaticana", which is a documentation of the agreement between the Principality of Montenegro and the Holy See that regulates the position of the Catholic community in Montenegro. This rare act of an Orthodox monarchy speaks of the modernity of the political thought of King Nikola, who laid the foundations of coexistence with others - said the Minister of Culture, Aleksandar Bogdanović.
He assessed that this edition is the best proof of the inter-confessional relations on which Montenegro rested and on which it should rest still today.
"Illuminating the paths of existence is a duty and a privilege for every researcher and institution. Only a clear picture of who we were allows us to complete the Montenegrin mosaic and answer the questions of who we are today. This book is not only a documentary presentation of the development path of signing the agreement between the two sovereign states but also a confirmation of the development of diplomacy," Minister Bogdanović pointed out.
The edition, prepared in honor of almost 120 years since the contractual relations between the two independent states, as he emphasized, deserves the attention not only of professional and academic circles but also of the wider lay audience.
Everyone will find in it something new and unknown, a tile that proves or refutes the basic assumptions, but also a broader picture of the depth of relations between two different states. A careful reader, leafing through the pages of this book, will better understand the essence of Montenegrin freedom, under whose light there was enough space for everyone. On the other hand, this project speaks of awareness of the importance of collecting historical material about Montenegro in foreign archives, which begins to eliminate a shortcoming in the research of our past - said Bogdanović.
"The book "Monumenta Montenegrina Vaticana" is the first in a series of editions to be printed by the Ministry of Culture, as well as other Montenegrin scientific and cultural institutions, in the coming period. It is worth mentioning that Montenegro is very present in all three major Vatican archives - in addition to the Vatican State Archive and the Fide Propaganda Archive, there is also the Apostolic Archive, which until recently was usually called the "Secret Archive." Accordingly, working with rich documentation will be a challenge for Montenegrin historians and archivists for many years to come.
The organizers consulted material from the archives of Propaganda Fide and material from other funds of the State Archives, as well as material from the State Archives of Montenegro, the Archives and Library Department of the National Museum of Montenegro, and the archives of the Bar Archdiocese. The collection is the result of the collective engagement and cooperation of a large number of people, and the creation of the work in a relatively short time would not have been possible without the organizational support of the Embassy of Montenegro at the Holy See. We especially emphasize the activity of the Director of the State Archives in the Vatican, Dr. Johannes X, whom we thank on this occasion for his exceptional attention and support. All this was possible thanks to the Secretary of the Holy See for Relations with States, Monsignor Paul Gallagher. His kindness gave us access to the Vatican archives, which was another expression and confirmation of the excellent relations between Montenegro and the Holy See."
The organizers of the edition expressed special gratitude to the Minister of Culture Aleksandar Bogdanović as he initiated and supported the realization of this long-term project, which represents the first step in systematic research and publication of material from the Vatican archives related to the history of the Montenegrin state.
The coronavirus pandemic made it impossible for us to present this significant edition, printed by Cetinje's "Obod," earlier in both Montenegro and the Vatican. We hope that the presentation of the book "Monumenta Montenegrina Vaticana" will be organized with the participants when the conditions make it possible, as this is what the work certainly deserves," reads the Ministry of Culture's statement.
Source: RTV Cetinje