Bridge on the Drina Bridge on the Drina Picnic in the banks of the Drina Picnic in the banks of the Drina River Drina River Drina Local Local Ivo Andric (photographer unknown) Ivo Andric (photographer unknown)

Bridge on the Drina

“Here, where the Drina flows with the whole force of its green and foaming waters from the apparently closed mass of the dark steep mountains, stands a great clean-cut stone bridge with eleven wide sweeping arches,”  Ivo Andrić.

Ivan “Ivo” Andrić, October 9, 1892 – March 13, 1975, was a Yugoslav novelist, short story writer, and the 1961 winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature. His writings dealt mainly with life in his native Bosnia under the Ottoman Empire. His most famous novel, the Bridge on the Drina used this bridge, constructed by Sokollu Mehmed Pasha in the 16th century bridge in Višegrad, as a symbol of Ottoman occupation.

Emir Kusturica, the renowned film director, is currently engaged in a controversial project to construct Andrićgrad [Andrić-town] close to Višegrad in Republika Srpska, Bosnia. Andric was a Bosnian Croat, so Kusturica (who ironically converted to Serbian Orthodox Christianity, having started life as a Bosnian Muslim) laying claim to him as a Serb is a neat little microcosm of the divides between different nationalities and religions in this part of the Balkans.