Town cemetery within the Pula city walls
Until the mid-19th-century, burials in the town of Pula took place within the city walls. Even though Dr. Vincenzo Benini came up with the idea in 1799, burials were moved outside of the city walls to prevent the spreading of an epidemic caused by lack of hygienic conditions only in the middle of the 19th-century. However, as Pula developed (Napoleonic era), the town passed a Decision to change authority to perform interment to receive power to carry out this matter. Before that decision, only Church had the exclusive administrative duty to perform interment.
In 1846 a decision was passed to build a new town cemetery to maintain the hygiene and health conditions in town at acceptable levels, according to newly prescribed norms. The new town cemetery was not to be placed downtown but outside of the town center. The hill Monte Ghiro (read monte giro; Italian dormouse hill) located in the vicinity got chosen for a new location. The first burials started in 1848. Interestingly, after World War II, the locality Monte Ghiro changed its name to Green hill. The original name got restored in the 1990s, Monte Ghiro to version Monte Giro.
In the following years, Pula went through a renaissance as it became the main Austro-Hungarian naval port. The number of inhabitants increased to over 42.000 civilians and almost 17.000 military persons. Accordingly, and since the mortality rate was high, the first expansion of the Cemetery began as early as 1910. Later on, in 1934, 1985, and 1990s, several more expansions took place. Considering that there is a shortage in the existing cemetery capacity, one of the latest happened at the end of 2019.
Along its central wall, the Pula town cemetery Monte Ghiro houses tombs considered of exceptional value for the cultural heritage of the town of Pula. It is also, considering that mayors of Pula from Rizzi family and many other prominent families got buried there. Soon, this Cemetery could also gain the status of the Memorial Cemetery, the status already held by the Naval Cemetery in Pula. (Photo of the central part of the old section of the Cemetery)
Current surface: 75.000 m²
The area included in the newest expansion: 5567 m²
Year of construction: 1848
Number of buried: approximately 90.000