Rab ( Latin : Arba , Italian : Arbe , German : Arbey ) is an island in Croatia and a town of the same name located just off the northern Croatian coast in the Adriatic Sea .

The island is 22 km (14 mi) long, has an area of ​​93.6 km 2 (36 sq mi) [1] and 9,328 inhabitants (2011). [2] The highest peak is Kamenjak at 408 m. The northeastern side of the island is mostly barren, karst , while the southwestern side is covered by one of the last oak forests of the Mediterranean.

Ferries connect the island of Rab with the mainland port of Stinica and the neighboring islands of Krk and Pag . European Coastal Airlines offers multiple daily connections by seaplane from Rab to Zagreb to Rijeka via Rijeka Airport in Omišalj on the neighboring island of Krk .


The island of Rab was first mentioned in a Greek source Periplus of Pseudo-Scylax (360 BC) and then by other Greek and Roman geographists by the name Arba . That name belonged to the Liburnians , so far the oldest known inhabitants of the island. Arba was also the name of the Liburnian settlement in the modern city of Rab. It is not certain how old this name is; It may be as old as the settlement, which means from the beginning of the Iron Age , since the Liburnians did not build the city walls on the island. The Illyrian-Liburnian word Arbmeant ‘dark, dark, green, forested’. Therefore, name Arba should be understood as “black island”, due to the rich pine forests that grow on the island.

After the 1st century AD It was Recorded by Many other Greek and Roman authors by the names Arba and Arva .

Its Medieval Dalmatian speaking population used Arbe , Arbia , Arbiana , Arbitana and most frequently Arbum in the documents written in the Latin language .

Arbe also became the Venetian name of the city in the 15th century when it fell under the authority of the Republic of Venice .

In the Croatian language it est devenu Rab , a form qui probably goes back as far as the 7th century dubious – the Chat ] When the Slavs Began to settle on the island. However, the first record of the name of the Franciscan Monastery of St. Eufemija, since the major establishment of the Croatian inhabitants in the city did not occur before the 10th century, unlike the rest of the island and region.


The island is first heard in Illyrians in 360 BC. It was part of Liburnia and then part of the Roman Empire . The emperor Octavian Augustus built the city walls and gave Rab the title of Municipium .

San Marinus , the founder of the mini-state of San Marino , originated on Rab, and is the most famous of the Emperor Diocletian (this ancient tie is commemorated in the twin-city agreement between Rab and San Marino).

The earliest bishop of Arba whose name is preserved in an extant document is Titianus, a participant in a council held in 532 Salona , the metropolitan see of which Arba was a suffragan . On 17 October 1154, Arba was attached instead to the archdiocese of Zadar . By the papal bull Locum Beati Petri of June 30, 1828, the history of the diocese as a result of Krk . [3] [4] No longer a residential bishopric, Arba is now listed by the Catholic Church as a titular see . [5]

During the Middle Ages , Rab remained as part of the Roman Empire (or Byzantine Empire , as it would be known by this point). Although, for a short time, it is a part of the Kingdom of Croatia . In 1000 the island, together with the many other islands and cities of Dalmatia , submitted to the Republic of Venice . In 1358 the island came under the rule of King Louis the Great , the Angevin ruler of Hungary .

During the Renaissance it was ruled by Venice from 1409 until the end of the 18th century followed by a brief interlude under Napoleon . It was eventually annexed by the Habsburgs in 1815 and remained under Austrian rule till 1918.

Since a majority of its residents have been Italian-speaking, the locals sought to be annexed to the Kingdom of Italy , but Italy is likely to become a member of Yugoslavia in 1921, and many of its Italian-speaking residents for Istria and the rest of Italy.

During World War II , the forces of Fascist Italy established the Rab concentration camp on the island. A memorial complex built in 1953 commemorates the site of the camp form, located in the village of Kampor.

After the Second World War, the island was part of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia until the Croatian independence referendum in 1991.

The island of Rab is rich in cultural heritage and cultural-historical monuments that make it a popular vacation destination. Rab is also known as a pioneer of naturism after the visit of King Edward VIII and Mrs. Wallis Simpson .

The island is nowadays very popular with tourists and families for its beautiful nature, beaches, heritage and many events, particularly the Rab arbalest tournament and the Rab Medieval festival – Rapska Fjera .

Twin cities

See also: Town twinning
  • slovenia Sežana
  • Germany Königsbrunn
  • San Marino San Marino


  1. Jump up^ Duplančić Leder, Tea; Ujević, Tin; Čala, Mendi (June 2004). “Coastline lengths and areas of the islands in the Croatian part of the Adriatic Sea determined from the topographic maps of the scale of 1: 25,000” (PDF) . Geoadria . Zadar . 9 (1): 5-32 . Retrieved 2011-01-21 .
  2. Jump up^ Ostroški, Ljiljana, ed. (December 2015). Statistiki ljetopis Republike Hrvatske 2015 [ Statistical Yearbook of the Republic of Croatia 2015 ] (PDF) . Statistical Yearbook of the Republic of Croatia (in Croatian and English). 47 . Zagreb: Croatian Bureau of Statistics . p. 47. ISSN  1333-3305 . Retrieved 27 December 2015 .
  3. Jump up^ Pius Bonifacius Gams, Series Episcoporum Ecclesiae Catholicae , Leipzig 1931, pp. 394-395
  4. Jump up^ Konrad Eubel,Hierarchia Catholica Medii Aevi,vol. 1, p. 101; flight. 2, p. 92; flight. 3, p. 115; flight. 4, p. 91; flight. 5, p. 95; flight. 6, p. 95
  5. Jump up^ Annuario Pontificio 2013(Libreria Editrice Vaticana 2013ISBN 978-88-209-9070-1), p. 836

Leave a Comment