Serbia

Serbia

Overview
Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia , is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central
Central Europe
Central Europe or alternatively Middle Europe is a region of the European continent lying between the variously defined areas of Eastern and Western Europe...

 and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Carpathian basin and the central part of the Balkans
Balkans
The Balkans is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe...

. Serbia borders Hungary
Hungary
Hungary , officially the Republic of Hungary , is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is situated in the Carpathian Basin and is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine and Romania to the east, Serbia and Croatia to the south, Slovenia to the southwest and Austria to the west. The...

 to the north; Romania
Romania
Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe, on the Lower Danube, within and outside the Carpathian arch, bordering on the Black Sea...

 and Bulgaria
Bulgaria
Bulgaria , officially the Republic of Bulgaria , is a parliamentary democracy within a unitary constitutional republic in Southeast Europe. The country borders Romania to the north, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, as well as the Black Sea to the east...

 to the east; the Republic of Macedonia
Republic of Macedonia
Macedonia , officially the Republic of Macedonia , is a country located in the central Balkan peninsula in Southeast Europe. It is one of the successor states of the former Yugoslavia, from which it declared independence in 1991...

 to the south; and Croatia
Croatia
Croatia , officially the Republic of Croatia , is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic in Europe at the crossroads of the Mitteleuropa, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean. Its capital and largest city is Zagreb. The country is divided into 20 counties and the city of Zagreb. Croatia covers ...

, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

, and Montenegro
Montenegro
Montenegro Montenegrin: Crna Gora Црна Гора , meaning "Black Mountain") is a country located in Southeastern Europe. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the south-west and is bordered by Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast and Albania to the...

 to the west; additionally, it borders Albania
Albania
Albania , officially known as the Republic of Albania , is a country in Southeastern Europe, in the Balkans region. It is bordered by Montenegro to the northwest, Kosovo to the northeast, the Republic of Macedonia to the east and Greece to the south and southeast. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea...

 through Kosovo
Kosovo
Kosovo is a region in southeastern Europe. Part of the Ottoman Empire for more than five centuries, later the Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija within Serbia...

, whose status as part of Serbia is disputed.
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Timeline

1331   Stephen Uroš IV Dušan declares himself king of Serbia

1389   The Ottomans defeat the Serbian army in the bloody Battle of Kosovo, opening the way for the Ottoman conquest of Southeastern Europe (see Vidovdan).

1835   The first constitutional law in modern Serbia was adopted.

1868   The assassination of Michael Obrenovich III, Prince of Serbia, in Belgrade.

1878   Treaty of Berlin: the European powers redraw the map of the Balkans. Serbia, Montenegro and Romania become completely independent of the Ottoman empire.

1881   Secret treaty between Austria and Serbia.

1909   Serbia accepts Austrian control over Bosnia and Herzegovina.

1912   Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia declare war on the Ottoman Empire, joining Montenegro in the First Balkan War.

1912   Bulgaria, Greece, Montenegro, and Serbia (the Balkan League) sign an armistice with Turkey, ending the two-month long First Balkan War.

1913   Greece and Serbia annul their alliance with Bulgaria.

 
Encyclopedia
Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia , is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central
Central Europe
Central Europe or alternatively Middle Europe is a region of the European continent lying between the variously defined areas of Eastern and Western Europe...

 and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Carpathian basin and the central part of the Balkans
Balkans
The Balkans is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe...

. Serbia borders Hungary
Hungary
Hungary , officially the Republic of Hungary , is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is situated in the Carpathian Basin and is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine and Romania to the east, Serbia and Croatia to the south, Slovenia to the southwest and Austria to the west. The...

 to the north; Romania
Romania
Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe, on the Lower Danube, within and outside the Carpathian arch, bordering on the Black Sea...

 and Bulgaria
Bulgaria
Bulgaria , officially the Republic of Bulgaria , is a parliamentary democracy within a unitary constitutional republic in Southeast Europe. The country borders Romania to the north, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, as well as the Black Sea to the east...

 to the east; the Republic of Macedonia
Republic of Macedonia
Macedonia , officially the Republic of Macedonia , is a country located in the central Balkan peninsula in Southeast Europe. It is one of the successor states of the former Yugoslavia, from which it declared independence in 1991...

 to the south; and Croatia
Croatia
Croatia , officially the Republic of Croatia , is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic in Europe at the crossroads of the Mitteleuropa, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean. Its capital and largest city is Zagreb. The country is divided into 20 counties and the city of Zagreb. Croatia covers ...

, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

, and Montenegro
Montenegro
Montenegro Montenegrin: Crna Gora Црна Гора , meaning "Black Mountain") is a country located in Southeastern Europe. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the south-west and is bordered by Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast and Albania to the...

 to the west; additionally, it borders Albania
Albania
Albania , officially known as the Republic of Albania , is a country in Southeastern Europe, in the Balkans region. It is bordered by Montenegro to the northwest, Kosovo to the northeast, the Republic of Macedonia to the east and Greece to the south and southeast. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea...

 through Kosovo
Kosovo
Kosovo is a region in southeastern Europe. Part of the Ottoman Empire for more than five centuries, later the Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija within Serbia...

, whose status as part of Serbia is disputed. The country has just over 7.1 million inhabitants, with its capital, Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

, being among the largest cities in Southeast Europe
Southeast Europe
Southeast Europe or Southeastern Europe is a relatively recent political designation for the states of the Balkans. Writers such as Maria Todorova and Vesna Goldsworthy have suggested the use of the term Southeastern Europe to replace the word Balkans for the region, to minimize potential...

.

After the arrival
Timeline of Serbian history
This is a timeline of Serbian history.For individual centuries: 9th century in Serbia, 10th century in Serbia...

 of the Serbs
Serbs
The Serbs are a South Slavic ethnic group of the Balkans and southern Central Europe. Serbs are located mainly in Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and form a sizable minority in Croatia, the Republic of Macedonia and Slovenia. Likewise, Serbs are an officially recognized minority in...

 to the Balkans in the 7th century, several medieval states were formed, which evolved into the Serbian Empire
Serbian Empire
The Serbian Empire was a short-lived medieval empire in the Balkans that emerged from the Serbian Kingdom. Stephen Uroš IV Dušan was crowned Emperor of Serbs and Greeks on 16 April, 1346, a title signifying a successorship to the Eastern Roman Empire...

 in the 14th century. By the 16th century, Serbia was conquered and occupied by the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

, at times interrupted by the Habsburgs. In the early 19th century the Serbian revolution
Serbian revolution
Serbian revolution or Revolutionary Serbia refers to the national and social revolution of the Serbian people taking place between 1804 and 1835, during which this territory evolved from an Ottoman province into a constitutional monarchy and a modern nation-state...

 re-established the country as the region's first constitutional monarchy
Constitutional monarchy
Constitutional monarchy is a form of government in which a monarch acts as head of state within the parameters of a constitution, whether it be a written, uncodified or blended constitution...

, which subsequently expanded its territory and pioneered the abolition of feudalism
Feudalism
Feudalism was a set of legal and military customs in medieval Europe that flourished between the 9th and 15th centuries, which, broadly defined, was a system for ordering society around relationships derived from the holding of land in exchange for service or labour.Although derived from the...

 in the Balkans. The former Habsburg crownland of Vojvodina
Vojvodina
Vojvodina, officially called Autonomous Province of Vojvodina is an autonomous province of Serbia. Its capital and largest city is Novi Sad...

 united with Serbia in 1918. Following World War I, Serbia formed Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia refers to three political entities that existed successively on the western part of the Balkans during most of the 20th century....

 with other South Slavic peoples which existed in several forms up until 2006, when Serbia regained its independence. In February 2008 the parliament of UNMIK
United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo
The United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo or UNMIK is the interim civilian administration in Kosovo, under the authority of the United Nations. The mission was established on 10 June 1999 by Security Council Resolution 1244...

-governed Kosovo
Kosovo
Kosovo is a region in southeastern Europe. Part of the Ottoman Empire for more than five centuries, later the Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija within Serbia...

, Serbia's southern province, declared independence, with mixed responses from international governments.

Serbia is a member of the UN
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

, Council of Europe
Council of Europe
The Council of Europe is an international organisation promoting co-operation between all countries of Europe in the areas of legal standards, human rights, democratic development, the rule of law and cultural co-operation...

, PfP
Partnership for Peace
Partnership for Peace is a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation program aimed at creating trust between NATO and other states in Europe and the former Soviet Union; 22 States are members...

, BSEC
Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation
On 25 June 1992, the Heads of State and Government of eleven countries signed in Istanbul the Summit Declaration and the Bosporus Statement giving birth to the Black Sea Economic Cooperation ...

 and CEFTA. It is also a EU applicant country
Accession of Serbia to the European Union
The accession of Serbia to the European Union is the process of the Republic of Serbia being admitted into the framework of the European Union as a full-fledged member state.Serbia officially applied for European Union membership on 22 December 2009...

, which the European Commission recommended as EU candidate state as of 2011 and a self-declared neutral
Neutrality (international relations)
A neutral power in a particular war is a sovereign state which declares itself to be neutral towards the belligerents. A non-belligerent state does not need to be neutral. The rights and duties of a neutral power are defined in Sections 5 and 13 of the Hague Convention of 1907...

 country.

Etymology


The name "Serbia" was first mentioned as , meaning "land of the Serbs
Serbs
The Serbs are a South Slavic ethnic group of the Balkans and southern Central Europe. Serbs are located mainly in Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and form a sizable minority in Croatia, the Republic of Macedonia and Slovenia. Likewise, Serbs are an officially recognized minority in...

". There are many theories regarding the origin of the name of the Serbs. The most likely is that it is derived from the Old Slavic root *serb-, meaning "same". Another proposed etymology is that of the Indo-European root *ser- "to watch over, protect", akin to Latin servare "to keep, guard, protect, preserve, observe".

Early history



The Neolithic
Neolithic
The Neolithic Age, Era, or Period, or New Stone Age, was a period in the development of human technology, beginning about 9500 BC in some parts of the Middle East, and later in other parts of the world. It is traditionally considered as the last part of the Stone Age...

 Starčevo
Starcevo-Körös
The Starčevo culture, also called Starčevo–Kőrös–Criş culture, is an archaeological culture of Southeastern Europe, dating to the Neolithic period between c. 6200 and 5200 BCE....

 and Vinča culture
Vinca culture
The Vinča culture is a Neolithic archaeological culture in Southeastern Europe, dated to the period 5500–4500 BCE. Named for its type site, Vinča-Belo Brdo, a large tell settlement discovered by Serbian archaeologist Miloje Vasić in 1908, it represents the material remains of a prehistoric society...

s existed in or near Belgrade and dominated the Balkans
Balkans
The Balkans is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe...

 (as well as parts of Central Europe and Asia Minor
Asia Minor
Asia Minor is a geographical location at the westernmost protrusion of Asia, also called Anatolia, and corresponds to the western two thirds of the Asian part of Turkey...

) 8,500 years ago. Some scholars believe that the prehistoric Vinča signs represent one of the earliest known forms of writing system
Writing system
A writing system is a symbolic system used to represent elements or statements expressible in language.-General properties:Writing systems are distinguished from other possible symbolic communication systems in that the reader must usually understand something of the associated spoken language to...

s (dating to 6,000 – 4,000 BC).

Around 1000 BC, the Paleo-Balkan
Paleo-Balkan languages
Paleo-Balkan is a geolinguistic term referring to the Indo-European languages that were spoken in the Balkans in ancient times. Except for Greek and the language that gave rise to Albanian , they are all extinct, due to Hellenization, Romanization, and Slavicisation.- Classification :The following...

 peoples known as Thracians
Thracians
The ancient Thracians were a group of Indo-European tribes inhabiting areas including Thrace in Southeastern Europe. They spoke the Thracian language – a scarcely attested branch of the Indo-European language family...

, Dacians
Dacians
The Dacians were an Indo-European people, very close or part of the Thracians. Dacians were the ancient inhabitants of Dacia...

, Illyria
Illyria
In classical antiquity, Illyria was a region in the western part of the Balkan Peninsula inhabited by the Illyrians....

ns were developing in the Balkans. Ancient Greeks expanded into the south of modern Serbia in the 4th century BC, the north-westernmost point of Alexander the Great's empire being the town of Kale-Krševica
Kale-Krševica
Kale-Krševica is an Ancient Macedonian archaeological site of more than 4 hectares and so far some 1,000 squares have been excavated with a former fortified town in the hills of Krševica overlooking Bujanovac and Vranje, to the south of Ristovac in southern Serbia...

. The Celtic tribe of Scordisci
Scordisci
The Scordisci were an Iron Age tribe centered in the territory of present-day Serbia, at the confluence of the Savus , Dravus and Danube rivers. They were historically notable from the beginning of the third century BC until the turn of the common era...

 settled throughout Serbia in the 3rd century BC and built many fortifications and cities in Serbia, such as Singidunum
Singidunum
Singidunum is the name for the ancient city in Serbia which became Belgrade, the capital of Serbia. It was recorded that a Celtic tribe Scordisci settled the area in the 3rd century BC following the Gallic invasion of the Balkans. The Roman Empire conquered the area in 75 BC and later garrisoned...

, modern Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

.

The Romans
Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome was a thriving civilization that grew on the Italian Peninsula as early as the 8th century BC. Located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, it expanded to one of the largest empires in the ancient world....

 conquered parts of Serbia in the 2nd century BC; in 167 BC when conquering the west, establishing the province of Illyricum, and the rest of Central Serbia in 75 BC, establishing the province of Moesia Superior. Srem was conquered in 9 BC and Bačka and Banat in 106 AD after the Dacian wars. Despite its small size, contemporary Serbia extends fully or partially over several Roman province
Roman province
In Ancient Rome, a province was the basic, and, until the Tetrarchy , largest territorial and administrative unit of the empire's territorial possessions outside of Italy...

s such as Moesia
Moesia
Moesia was an ancient region and later Roman province situated in the Balkans, along the south bank of the Danube River. It included territories of modern-day Southern Serbia , Northern Republic of Macedonia, Northern Bulgaria, Romanian Dobrudja, Southern Moldova, and Budjak .-History:In ancient...

, Pannonia
Pannonia
Pannonia was an ancient province of the Roman Empire bounded north and east by the Danube, coterminous westward with Noricum and upper Italy, and southward with Dalmatia and upper Moesia....

, Praevalitana
Praevalitana
Praevalitana was an ancient Roman province. It included parts of present-day Albania, Montenegro and Serbia.-History:...

, Dalmatia
Dalmatia
Dalmatia is a historical region on the eastern coast of the Adriatic Sea. It stretches from the island of Rab in the northwest to the Bay of Kotor in the southeast. The hinterland, the Dalmatian Zagora, ranges from fifty kilometers in width in the north to just a few kilometers in the south....

, Dacia
Dacia
In ancient geography, especially in Roman sources, Dacia was the land inhabited by the Dacians or Getae as they were known by the Greeks—the branch of the Thracians north of the Haemus range...

 and Macedonia
Macedonia (region)
Macedonia is a geographical and historical region of the Balkan peninsula in southeastern Europe. Its boundaries have changed considerably over time, but nowadays the region is considered to include parts of five Balkan countries: Greece, the Republic of Macedonia, Bulgaria, Albania, Serbia, as...

. The chief towns of Serbian Upper Moesia (and wider) in the principate were: Singidunum
Singidunum
Singidunum is the name for the ancient city in Serbia which became Belgrade, the capital of Serbia. It was recorded that a Celtic tribe Scordisci settled the area in the 3rd century BC following the Gallic invasion of the Balkans. The Roman Empire conquered the area in 75 BC and later garrisoned...

, Viminacium
Viminacium
Viminacium was a major city and military camp of the Roman province of Moesia , and the capital of Moesia Superior. The archeological site occupies a total of 450 hectares. Viminacium is located 12 km from Kostolac, was devastated by Huns in the 5th century, but rebuilt by Justinian...

, Remesiana
Remesiana
Remesiana was an ancient Roman city built after the Roman conquest of Moesia, in the area of the Dacian town Aiadava. It is located all around and under modern day city of Bela Palanka, Serbia....

, Naissus and especially, Sirmium
Sirmium
Sirmium was a city in ancient Roman Pannonia. Firstly mentioned in the 4th century BC and originally inhabited by the Illyrians and Celts, it was conquered by the Romans in the 1st century BC and subsequently became the capital of the Roman province of Lower Pannonia. In 294 AD, Sirmium was...

 which served as a Roman capital during the Tetrarchy
Tetrarchy
The term Tetrarchy describes any system of government where power is divided among four individuals, but usually refers to the tetrarchy instituted by Roman Emperor Diocletian in 293, marking the end of the Crisis of the Third Century and the recovery of the Roman Empire...

. Seventeen Roman Emperors were born in Serbia, second only to Italy. The most famous of these was Constantine the Great, the first Christian Emperor, who issued religious tolerance throughout the Empire
Edict of Milan
The Edict of Milan was a letter signed by emperors Constantine I and Licinius that proclaimed religious toleration in the Roman Empire...

. When the Roman Empire was divided in 395, the region remained under the East, Byzantine Empire
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

. After the 520s, Slavs
South Slavs
The South Slavs are the southern branch of the Slavic peoples and speak South Slavic languages. Geographically, the South Slavs are native to the Balkan peninsula, the southern Pannonian Plain and the eastern Alps...

 appeared in the Byzantine Empire
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

 in great numbers.

Middle Ages


The Serbs
Serbs
The Serbs are a South Slavic ethnic group of the Balkans and southern Central Europe. Serbs are located mainly in Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and form a sizable minority in Croatia, the Republic of Macedonia and Slovenia. Likewise, Serbs are an officially recognized minority in...

, as Slavs in the vicinity of the Byzantine Empire, lived in so-called Sklavinia ("Slav lands"), territories initially out of Byzantine control and independent. In the 8th century, the Vlastimirović Dynasty established the Serbian Principality. In 822, Serbia "stretched over the greater part of Dalmatia", and Christianity was adopted as state-religion in ca 870. In the mid 10th century the state had emerged into a tribal confederation that stretched to the shores of the Adriatic Sea
Adriatic Sea
The Adriatic Sea is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan peninsula, and the system of the Apennine Mountains from that of the Dinaric Alps and adjacent ranges...

 by the Neretva
Neretva
Neretva is the largest river of the eastern part of the Adriatic basin. It has been harnessed and controlled to a large extent by four HE power-plants with large dams and their storage lakes, but it is still recognized for its natural beauty, diversity of its landscape and visual...

, the Sava
Sava River
The Sava is a river in Southeast Europe, a right side tributary of the Danube river at Belgrade. Counting from Zelenci, the source of Sava Dolinka, it is long and drains of surface area. It flows through Slovenia, Croatia, along the northern border of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and through Serbia....

, the Morava
Pomoravlje (region)
Pomoravlje , is a general term which in its widest sense marks valleys of any of three Morava rivers in Serbia: West Morava , Južna Morava and Great Morava . In the narrow sense, term is applied only to the Greater Pomoravlje...

, and Skadar. The state disintegrated after the death of the last known Vlastimirid ruler – the Byzantines annexed the region and held it for a century, until 1040 when the Serbs under the Vojislavljević Dynasty
House of Vojislavljevic
The Vojislavljević was the second Serb medieval dynasty, named after archon Stefan Vojislav, who wrestled the region from Byzantine hands in the 1040s...

 revolted in Duklja
Duklja
Doclea or Duklja was a medieval state with hereditary lands roughly encompassing the territories of present-day southeastern Montenegro, from Kotor on the west to the river Bojana on the east and to the sources of Zeta and Morača rivers on the north....

(Pomorje
Pomorje
Pomorje or Primorje is a term used in historical contexts to describe one of the two geographical divisions that constituted Serbia in the Middle Ages...

). In 1091, the Vukanović dynasty established the Serbian Grand Principality
Serbian Grand Principality
The Serbian Grand Principality or Rascia was a medieval state that was founded in 1090, and ended with the elevation to Kingdom in 1217. During the reign of Constantine Bodin, the King of Duklja, Vukan was appointed to rule Rascia as a vassal, and when Bodin was captured by the Byzantines, Vukan...

, based in Rascia
Rascia
Rascia was a medieval region that served as the principal province of the Serbian realm. It was an administrative division under the direct rule of the monarch and sometimes as an appanage. The term has been used to refer to various Serbian states throughout the Middle Ages...

(Zagorje). The two halves were reunited in 1142.

In 1166, Stefan Nemanja
Stefan Nemanja
Stefan Nemanja was the Grand Prince of the Grand Principality of Serbia from 1166 to 1196, a heir of the Vukanović dynasty that marked the beginning of a greater Serbian realm .He is remembered for his contributions to Serbian culture and...

 takes the throne, marking the beginning of a prospering Serbia, henceforth under the rule of the Nemanjić Dynasty. Nemanja's son Rastko
Saint Sava
Saint Sava was a Serbian Prince and Orthodox monk, the first Archbishop of the autocephalous Serbian Church, the founder of Serbian law and literature, and a diplomat. Sava was born Rastko Nemanjić , the youngest son of Serbian Grand Župan Stefan Nemanja , and ruled the appanage of Hum briefly in...

 (posth. Saint Sava), gained autocephaly
Autocephaly
Autocephaly , in hierarchical Christian churches and especially Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox churches, is the status of a hierarchical church whose head bishop does not report to any higher-ranking bishop...

 for the Serbian Church
Serbian Orthodox Church
The Serbian Orthodox Church is one of the autocephalous Orthodox Christian churches, ranking sixth in order of seniority after Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem, and Russia...

 in 1217 and authored the oldest known constitution
Zakonopravilo
The Nomocanon of Saint Sava was the first Serbian constitution and the highest code in the Serbian Orthodox Church, finished in 1219. This legal act was well developed. St...

, in the same year Stefan II was crowned King, establishing the Serbian Kingdom.

The Serbian Empire
Serbian Empire
The Serbian Empire was a short-lived medieval empire in the Balkans that emerged from the Serbian Kingdom. Stephen Uroš IV Dušan was crowned Emperor of Serbs and Greeks on 16 April, 1346, a title signifying a successorship to the Eastern Roman Empire...

 was established in 1346 by Dušan the Mighty, during which time Serbia reached its territorial, spiritual and cultural peak, becoming one of the most powerful states in Europe and the most powerful in the Balkans. Dušan's Code
Dušan's Code
Dušan's Code was enacted by Tsar Dušan in two state congresses: in May 21, 1349 in Skopje and amended in 1354 in Serres. It regulated all social spheres, so it can be considered a medieval Serbian constitution. The Code included 201 articles. The original manuscript is not preserved, but around...

, a universal system of laws and constitution, was enacted. The reign of his son Tsar Stefan Uroš V saw the Serbian Empire fragment into a confederation of principalities. Tsar Uroš died childless in December 1371, after much of the Serbian nobility had been destroyed by the Turks
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 in the Battle of Maritsa
Battle of Maritsa
The Battle of Maritsa, or Battle of Chernomen, took place at the Maritsa River near the village of Chernomen on September 26, 1371 between the forces of the Ottoman sultan Murad I's lieutenant Lala Şâhin Paşa and the...

 earlier that year. The royal Houses of Mrnjavčević
House of Mrnjavcevic
The House of Mrnjavčević was a medieval Serbian noble house that existed during the Serbian Empire, its fall, and the subsequent years when it held a region of present-day Macedonia region. The house ruled a province from its base at Prilep from 1366 to 1395.Vukašin Mrnjavčević was a military...

, Lazarević
House of Lazarevic
The House of Lazarević was a noble Serbian medieval dynasty.The dynasty starts with Lazar Hrebeljanović, son of Pribac Hrebeljanović -a noble at the court of Dušan the Mighty and of Princess Jelena Zupan Rascia-Nemanjic of Serbia...

 and Branković
House of Brankovic
House of Branković or Brankovići was a noble Serbian medieval dynasty. The family descent via female line through marriage from the Royal House of Nemanjić. The families rise to prominence during the time of disintegration of Serbian Empire under the last ruler of House of Nemanjić...

 ruled the Serbian lands in the 15th and 16th centuries. Constant struggles took place between various Serbian kingdoms and the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

. After the fall of Constantinople
Constantinople
Constantinople was the capital of the Roman, Eastern Roman, Byzantine, Latin, and Ottoman Empires. Throughout most of the Middle Ages, Constantinople was Europe's largest and wealthiest city.-Names:...

 to the Turks in 1453 and the Siege of Belgrade, the Serbian Despotate
Serbian Despotate
The Serbian Despotate was a Serbian state, the last to be conquered by the Ottoman Empire. Although the Battle of Kosovo in 1389 is generally considered the end of the medieval Serbian state, the Despotate, a successor of the Serbian Empire and Moravian Serbia survived for 70 more years,...

 fell in 1459 following the siege of the provisional capital of Smederevo
Smederevo
Smederevo is a city and municipality in Serbia, on the right bank of the Danube, about 40 km downstream of the capital Belgrade. According to official results of the 2011 census, the city has a population of 107,528...

. After repelling Ottoman attacks for over 70 years, Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

 finally fell in 1521, opening the way for Ottoman expansion into Central Europe. The Republic of Venice
Republic of Venice
The Republic of Venice or Venetian Republic was a state originating from the city of Venice in Northeastern Italy. It existed for over a millennium, from the late 7th century until 1797. It was formally known as the Most Serene Republic of Venice and is often referred to as La Serenissima, in...

 expanded into the coastal areas.

Ottoman and Austrian rule



After the loss of independence to the Kingdom of Hungary
Kingdom of Hungary
The Kingdom of Hungary comprised present-day Hungary, Slovakia and Croatia , Transylvania , Carpatho Ruthenia , Vojvodina , Burgenland , and other smaller territories surrounding present-day Hungary's borders...

 and the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

, Serbia briefly regained sovereignty under Jovan Nenad in the 16th century. Three Austrian invasions and numerous rebellions, such as the Banat Uprising, constantly challenged Ottoman rule. Vojvodina endured a century long Ottoman occupation before being ceded to the Habsburg Empire in the 17th–18th centuries under the Treaty of Karlowitz
Treaty of Karlowitz
The Treaty of Karlowitz was signed on 26 January 1699 in Sremski Karlovci , concluding the Austro-Ottoman War of 1683–1697 in which the Ottoman side had been defeated at the Battle of Zenta...

.
As the Great Serb Migrations depopulated most of Kosovo and Central Serbia
Central Serbia
Central Serbia , also referred to as Serbia proper , was the region of Serbia from 1945 to 2009. It included central parts of Serbia outside of the autonomous provinces of Kosovo and Vojvodina. The region of Central Serbia was not an administrative division of Serbia as such; it was under the...

, the Serbs sought refuge across the Danube river in Vojvodina
Vojvodina
Vojvodina, officially called Autonomous Province of Vojvodina is an autonomous province of Serbia. Its capital and largest city is Novi Sad...

 to the north and Military Frontier in the West
Military Frontier
The Military Frontier was a borderland of Habsburg Austria and later the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, which acted as the cordon sanitaire against incursions from the Ottoman Empire...

 where they were granted rights by the Austrian crown under measures such as the Statuta Wallachorum of 1630. The Ottoman persecutions of Christians culminated in the abolition and plunder of the Patriarchate of Peć
Patriarchate of Pec
The Patriarchate of Peć is a Serbian Orthodox monastery located near Peć. The complex of churches is the spiritual seat and mausoleum of the Serbian archbishops and patriarchs....

 in 1766. As Ottoman rule in the Pashaluk of Belgrade grew ever more brutal, the Holy Roman Emperor
Holy Roman Emperor
The Holy Roman Emperor is a term used by historians to denote a medieval ruler who, as German King, had also received the title of "Emperor of the Romans" from the Pope...

 Leopold I
Leopold I, Holy Roman Emperor
| style="float:right;" | Leopold I was a Holy Roman Emperor, King of Hungary and King of Bohemia. A member of the Habsburg family, he was the second son of Emperor Ferdinand III and his first wife, Maria Anna of Spain. His maternal grandparents were Philip III of Spain and Margaret of Austria...

 formally granted the Serbs the right to their autonomous crownland following several petitions.

Revolution and independence


The quest for national emancipation was first undertaken during the Serbian national revolution
Serbian revolution
Serbian revolution or Revolutionary Serbia refers to the national and social revolution of the Serbian people taking place between 1804 and 1835, during which this territory evolved from an Ottoman province into a constitutional monarchy and a modern nation-state...

, in 1804 until 1815. The liberation war
Serbian revolution
Serbian revolution or Revolutionary Serbia refers to the national and social revolution of the Serbian people taking place between 1804 and 1835, during which this territory evolved from an Ottoman province into a constitutional monarchy and a modern nation-state...

 was followed by a period of formalization, negotiations and finally, the Constitutionalization, effectively ending the process in 1835. For the first time in Ottoman history the entire Serbian Christian population
Serbian Orthodox Church
The Serbian Orthodox Church is one of the autocephalous Orthodox Christian churches, ranking sixth in order of seniority after Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem, and Russia...

 had risen up against the Sultan
Sultan
Sultan is a title with several historical meanings. Originally, it was an Arabic language abstract noun meaning "strength", "authority", "rulership", and "dictatorship", derived from the masdar سلطة , meaning "authority" or "power". Later, it came to be used as the title of certain rulers who...

. The entrenchment of French troops
French colonial empire
The French colonial empire was the set of territories outside Europe that were under French rule primarily from the 17th century to the late 1960s. In the 19th and 20th centuries, the colonial empire of France was the second-largest in the world behind the British Empire. The French colonial empire...

 in the western Balkans, the incessant political crises in the Ottoman Empire, the growing intensity of the Austro
Austria
Austria , officially the Republic of Austria , is a landlocked country of roughly 8.4 million people in Central Europe. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the...

Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

n rivalry in the Balkans, the intermittent warfare which consumed the energies of French
French colonial empire
The French colonial empire was the set of territories outside Europe that were under French rule primarily from the 17th century to the late 1960s. In the 19th and 20th centuries, the colonial empire of France was the second-largest in the world behind the British Empire. The French colonial empire...

 and Russian Empire
Russian Empire
The Russian Empire was a state that existed from 1721 until the Russian Revolution of 1917. It was the successor to the Tsardom of Russia and the predecessor of the Soviet Union...

s and the outbreak of protracted hostilities between the Porte and Russia are but a few of the major international developments which directly or indirectly influenced the course of the Serbian revolt
Serbian revolution
Serbian revolution or Revolutionary Serbia refers to the national and social revolution of the Serbian people taking place between 1804 and 1835, during which this territory evolved from an Ottoman province into a constitutional monarchy and a modern nation-state...

.
During the First Serbian Uprising
First Serbian Uprising
The First Serbian Uprising was the first stage of the Serbian Revolution , the successful wars of independence that lasted for 9 years and approximately 9 months , during which Serbia perceived itself as an independent state for the first time after more than three centuries of Ottoman rule and...

, or the first phase of the revolt, led by the Great Karađorđe Petrović, Serbia was independent for almost a decade before the Ottoman army was able to reoccupy the country. Shortly after this, the Second Serbian Uprising
Second Serbian Uprising
The Second Serbian Uprising was a second phase of the Serbian revolution against the Ottoman Empire, which erupted shortly after the re-annexation of the country to the Ottoman Empire, in 1813. The occupation was enforced following the defeat of the First Serbian Uprising , during which Serbia...

 began. Led by Miloš Obrenović, it ended in 1815 with a compromise between the Serbian revolutionary army and the Ottoman authorities. German historian Leopold von Ranke
Leopold von Ranke
Leopold von Ranke was a German historian, considered one of the founders of modern source-based history. Ranke set the standards for much of later historical writing, introducing such ideas as reliance on primary sources , an emphasis on narrative history and especially international politics .-...

 published his book "The Serbian revolution" in 1829. They were the easternmost bourgeois revolutions in the 19th-century world. Likewise, Serbia was second nation in Europe, after France, to abolish feudalism
Feudalism
Feudalism was a set of legal and military customs in medieval Europe that flourished between the 9th and 15th centuries, which, broadly defined, was a system for ordering society around relationships derived from the holding of land in exchange for service or labour.Although derived from the...

.

The Convention of Ackerman in 1826, the Treaty of Adrianople in 1829 and finally, the Hatt-i Sharif
Hatt-i Sharif
The Hatt-i Sharif of Gülhane or Tanzimât Fermânı was an 1839 proclamation by Ottoman Sultan Abdülmecid I that launched the Tanzimât period of reforms and reorganization....

, recognized the suzerainty
Suzerainty
Suzerainty occurs where a region or people is a tributary to a more powerful entity which controls its foreign affairs while allowing the tributary vassal state some limited domestic autonomy. The dominant entity in the suzerainty relationship, or the more powerful entity itself, is called a...

 of Serbia with Miloš Obrenović I as its hereditary Prince. The struggle for liberty, a more modern society and a nation-state
Nation-state
The nation state is a state that self-identifies as deriving its political legitimacy from serving as a sovereign entity for a nation as a sovereign territorial unit. The state is a political and geopolitical entity; the nation is a cultural and/or ethnic entity...

 in Serbia won a victory under first constitution in the Balkans
Miloš Obrenovic I, Prince of Serbia
Miloš Obrenović was Prince of Serbia from 1815 to 1839, and again from 1858 to 1860. He participated in the First Serbian Uprising, led Serbs in the Second Serbian Uprising, and founded the House of Obrenović...

 on 15 February 1835. It was replaced by a more conservative Constitution in 1838. In the two following decades, temporarily ruled by the Karadjordjevic dynasty, the Principality of Serbia actively supported the neighboring Habsburg Serbs
Serbian Vojvodina
The Serbian Vojvodina was a Serbian autonomous region within the Austrian Empire...

, especially during the 1848 revolutions
Revolutions of 1848 in the Habsburg areas
From March 1848 through July 1849, the Habsburg Austrian Empire was threatened by revolutionary movements. Much of the revolutionary activity was of a nationalist character: the empire, ruled from Vienna, included Austrian Germans, Hungarians, Slovenes, Poles, Czechs, Slovaks, Ruthenians,...

. Interior minister Ilija Garašanin
Ilija Garašanin
Ilija Garašanin was a Serbian politician and statesman, serving as Interior Minister and Prime Minister ....

 published The Draft (for South Slavic unification), which became the standpoint of Serbian foreign policy from the mid-19th century onwards. The government thus developed close ties with the Illyrian movement
Illyrian movement
The Illyrian movement , also Croatian national revival , was a cultural and political campaign with roots in the early modern period, and revived by a group of young Croatian intellectuals during the first half of 19th century, around the years of 1835–1849...

 in Croatia-Slavonia region that was a part of the Austria-Hungary.
Following the clashes between the Ottoman army and civilians in Belgrade in 1862, and under pressure from the Great Powers, by 1867 the last Turkish soldiers left the Principality. By enacting a new constitution without consulting the Porte, Serbian diplomats
Jovan Ristic
Jovan Ristić, or Ristitch was a Serbian statesman and diplomat....

 confirmed the de facto independence of the country. In 1876, Serbia declared war on the Ottoman Empire, proclaiming its unification with Bosnia
Bosnia (region)
Bosnia is a eponomous region of Bosnia and Herzegovina. It lies mainly in the Dinaric Alps, ranging to the southern borders of the Pannonian plain, with the rivers Sava and Drina marking its northern and eastern borders. The other eponomous region, the southern, other half of the country is...

. The formal independence of the country was internationally recognized at the Congress of Berlin
Congress of Berlin
The Congress of Berlin was a meeting of the European Great Powers' and the Ottoman Empire's leading statesmen in Berlin in 1878. In the wake of the Russo-Turkish War of 1877–78, the meeting's aim was to reorganize the countries of the Balkans...

 in 1878, which formally ended the Russo-Turkish War; this treaty, however, prohibited Serbia from uniting with Bosnia
Bosnia (region)
Bosnia is a eponomous region of Bosnia and Herzegovina. It lies mainly in the Dinaric Alps, ranging to the southern borders of the Pannonian plain, with the rivers Sava and Drina marking its northern and eastern borders. The other eponomous region, the southern, other half of the country is...

 by placing it under Austro-Hungarian
Austria-Hungary
Austria-Hungary , more formally known as the Kingdoms and Lands Represented in the Imperial Council and the Lands of the Holy Hungarian Crown of Saint Stephen, was a constitutional monarchic union between the crowns of the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Hungary in...

 occupation.

From 1815 to 1903, Principality of Serbia was ruled by the House of Obrenović
House of Obrenovic
The House of Obrenović was a Serbian dynasty that ruled Serbia from 1815 to 1842, and again from 1858 to 1903. They came to power through the leadership of their progenitor Miloš Obrenović in the Second Serbian uprising against the Ottoman Empire, which led to the formation of the Principality of...

, except from 1842 to 1858, when it was led by Prince Aleksandar Karađorđević. In 1882, Serbia became a kingdom, ruled by King Milan. In 1903, following May Overthrow
May Overthrow
The May Overthrow was a 1903 coup d'état in which the Serbian King Alexander Obrenović and his wife, Queen Draga, were assassinated inside the Royal Palace in Belgrade on the night between 28 and 29 May 1903 by the Julian calendar...

, the House of Karađorđević, descendants of the revolutionary leader Karađorđe Petrović assumed power. Serbia was the only country in the region that was allowed by the Great Powers to be ruled by its own domestic dynasty. During the Balkan Wars
Balkan Wars
The Balkan Wars were two conflicts that took place in the Balkans in south-eastern Europe in 1912 and 1913.By the early 20th century, Montenegro, Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia, the countries of the Balkan League, had achieved their independence from the Ottoman Empire, but large parts of their ethnic...

 lasting from 1912 to 1913, the Kingdom of Serbia
Kingdom of Serbia
The Kingdom of Serbia was created when Prince Milan Obrenović, ruler of the Principality of Serbia, was crowned King in 1882. The Principality of Serbia was ruled by the Karađorđevic dynasty from 1817 onwards . The Principality, suzerain to the Porte, had expelled all Ottoman troops by 1867, de...

 tripled its territory by reacquiring parts of Macedonia, Kosovo, and parts of Central Serbia. The 1848 revolution in Austria
Revolutions of 1848 in the Habsburg areas
From March 1848 through July 1849, the Habsburg Austrian Empire was threatened by revolutionary movements. Much of the revolutionary activity was of a nationalist character: the empire, ruled from Vienna, included Austrian Germans, Hungarians, Slovenes, Poles, Czechs, Slovaks, Ruthenians,...

 lead to the establishment of the autonomous region of Serbian Vojvodina
Serbian Vojvodina
The Serbian Vojvodina was a Serbian autonomous region within the Austrian Empire...

. By 1849, the region was transformed into the Voivodeship of Serbia and Banat of Temeschwar.

Balkan Wars and World War I


The phrase Balkan Wars refers to the conflicts that took place in Southeast Europe between 1912 and 1913. The First Balkan War
First Balkan War
The First Balkan War, which lasted from October 1912 to May 1913, pitted the Balkan League against the Ottoman Empire. The combined armies of the Balkan states overcame the numerically inferior and strategically disadvantaged Ottoman armies and achieved rapid success...

 broke out when the member states of the Balkan League
Balkan League
The Balkan League was an alliance formed by a series of bilateral treaties concluded in 1912 between the Balkan states of Bulgaria, Greece, Montenegro and Serbia, and directed against the Ottoman Empire, which at the time still controlled much of the Balkan peninsula...

 attacked and divided Ottoman territories in the Balkans in a seven-month campaign, resulting in the Treaty of London
Treaty of London, 1913
The Treaty of London was signed on 30 May during the London Conference of 1913. It dealt with the territorial adjustments arising out of the conclusion of the First Balkan War.-History:...

. For the Kingdom of Serbia
Kingdom of Serbia
The Kingdom of Serbia was created when Prince Milan Obrenović, ruler of the Principality of Serbia, was crowned King in 1882. The Principality of Serbia was ruled by the Karađorđevic dynasty from 1817 onwards . The Principality, suzerain to the Porte, had expelled all Ottoman troops by 1867, de...

, this victory enabled territorial expansion into Raška
Raška (region)
Raška is a region in south-central Serbia and northern Montenegro. It is mostly situated in the Raška District. The southern part of Raška is also known as Sandžak and is divided between Serbia and Montenegro....

 and Kosovo. The Second Balkan War
Second Balkan War
The Second Balkan War was a conflict which broke out when Bulgaria, dissatisfied with its share of the spoils of the First Balkan War, attacked its former allies, Serbia and Greece, on 29 June 1913. Bulgaria had a prewar agreement about the division of region of Macedonia...

 soon ensued when Bulgaria, dissatisfied with its gains, turned against its former allies, Serbia and Greece. Their armies repulsed the Bulgarian offensive and counter-attacked, penetrating into Bulgaria, while Romania and the Ottomans used the favourable time to intervene against Bulgaria to win territorial gains. In the resulting Treaty of Bucharest, Bulgaria lost most of the territories gained in the First Balkan War
First Balkan War
The First Balkan War, which lasted from October 1912 to May 1913, pitted the Balkan League against the Ottoman Empire. The combined armies of the Balkan states overcame the numerically inferior and strategically disadvantaged Ottoman armies and achieved rapid success...

, with Serbia annexing Vardar Macedonia
Vardar Macedonia
Vardar Macedonia is an area in the north of the Macedonia . The borders of the area are those of the Republic of Macedonia. It covers an area of...

. Serbia enlarged its territory by 80% and its population by 50% within just two years; it also suffered high casualties on the eve of World War I, with around 20,000 dead.

On 28 June 1914 the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria
Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria
Franz Ferdinand was an Archduke of Austria-Este, Austro-Hungarian and Royal Prince of Hungary and of Bohemia, and from 1889 until his death, heir presumptive to the Austro-Hungarian throne. His assassination in Sarajevo precipitated Austria-Hungary's declaration of war against Serbia...

 in Sarajevo
Sarajevo
Sarajevo |Bosnia]], surrounded by the Dinaric Alps and situated along the Miljacka River in the heart of Southeastern Europe and the Balkans....

 by Gavrilo Princip
Gavrilo Princip
Gavrilo Princip was the Bosnian Serb who assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his wife, Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg, in Sarajevo on 28 June 1914...

, a Serbian Nationalist and member of the Young Bosnia
Young Bosnia
Young Bosnia was a revolutionary movement active before World War I, the members were predominantly school students who were ethnic Serbs, but included Bosniaks...

 organization, led to Austria-Hungary declaring war on Serbia. In defense of its ally Serbia, Russia
Russian Empire
The Russian Empire was a state that existed from 1721 until the Russian Revolution of 1917. It was the successor to the Tsardom of Russia and the predecessor of the Soviet Union...

 started to mobilize its troops, which resulted in Austria-Hungary's ally Germany
German Empire
The German Empire refers to Germany during the "Second Reich" period from the unification of Germany and proclamation of Wilhelm I as German Emperor on 18 January 1871, to 1918, when it became a federal republic after defeat in World War I and the abdication of the Emperor, Wilhelm II.The German...

 declaring war on Russia. The retaliation by Austria-Hungary against Serbia activated a series of military alliances that set off a chain reaction
Causality
Causality is the relationship between an event and a second event , where the second event is understood as a consequence of the first....

 of war declarations across the continent, leading to the outbreak of World War I within a month.

Serbia won the first major battles of World War I, including the Battle of Cer
Battle of Cer
The Battle of Cer also known as Battle of Jadar was one of the first battles of World War I, it also marked the first Allied victory in the war. The battle was fought between the Austro-Hungarian Army and Serbian forces. The results improved Serbian standing in the Alliance...

 and Battle of Kolubara
Battle of Kolubara
The Battle of Kolubara was a major victory of Serbia over the invading Austro-Hungarian armies during World War I. The invaders were routed, and driven back across the Serbian border....

 – marking the first Allied
Allies of World War I
The Entente Powers were the countries at war with the Central Powers during World War I. The members of the Triple Entente were the United Kingdom, France, and the Russian Empire; Italy entered the war on their side in 1915...

 victories against the Central Powers
Central Powers
The Central Powers were one of the two warring factions in World War I , composed of the German Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and the Kingdom of Bulgaria...

 in World War I. Despite initial success, it was eventually overpowered by the joint forces of the German Empire
German Empire
The German Empire refers to Germany during the "Second Reich" period from the unification of Germany and proclamation of Wilhelm I as German Emperor on 18 January 1871, to 1918, when it became a federal republic after defeat in World War I and the abdication of the Emperor, Wilhelm II.The German...

, Austria-Hungary and Bulgaria in 1915. Most of its army and some people went into exile to Greece and Corfu
Corfu
Corfu is a Greek island in the Ionian Sea. It is the second largest of the Ionian Islands, and, including its small satellite islands, forms the edge of the northwestern frontier of Greece. The island is part of the Corfu regional unit, and is administered as a single municipality. The...

, where they recovered, regrouped and returned to the Macedonian front
Macedonian front (World War I)
The Macedonian Front resulted from an attempt by the Allied Powers to aid Serbia, in the autumn of 1915, against the combined attack of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Bulgaria. The expedition came too late and in insufficient force to prevent the fall of Serbia, and was complicated by the internal...

 to lead a final breakthrough through enemy lines on 15 September 1918, liberating Serbia and defeating the Austro-Hungarian Empire and Bulgaria
Bulgaria
Bulgaria , officially the Republic of Bulgaria , is a parliamentary democracy within a unitary constitutional republic in Southeast Europe. The country borders Romania to the north, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, as well as the Black Sea to the east...

. Serbia, with its campaign
Serbian Campaign (World War I)
The Serbian Campaign was fought from late July 1914, when Austria-Hungary invaded Serbia at the outset of the First World War, until late 1915, when the Macedonian Front was formed...

, was a major Balkan Entente Power
Allies of World War I
The Entente Powers were the countries at war with the Central Powers during World War I. The members of the Triple Entente were the United Kingdom, France, and the Russian Empire; Italy entered the war on their side in 1915...

 which contributed significantly to the Allied victory in the Balkans in November 1918, especially by helping France force Bulgaria's capitulation
Capitulation (surrender)
Capitulation , an agreement in time of war for the surrender to a hostile armed force of a particular body of troops, a town or a territory....

. The country was militarily classified as a minor Entente power. Serbia was also among the main contributors to the capitulation of Austria-Hungary in Central Europe.

Serbia's casualties accounted for 8% of the total Entente military deaths; 58% (243,600) soldiers of the Serbian army perished in the war. The total number of casualties is placed around 1,000,000, more than 25% of Serbia's prewar size, and a majority (57%) of its overall male population.

First Yugoslavia



  • Syrmia
    Syrmia
    Syrmia is a fertile region of the Pannonian Plain in Europe, between the Danube and Sava rivers. It is divided between Serbia in the east and Croatia in the west....

     region was the first among former Habsburg lands
    Austria-Hungary
    Austria-Hungary , more formally known as the Kingdoms and Lands Represented in the Imperial Council and the Lands of the Holy Hungarian Crown of Saint Stephen, was a constitutional monarchic union between the crowns of the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Hungary in...

     to declare union with Serbia on 24 November 1918.
  • Banat, Bačka and Baranja
    Banat, Backa and Baranja
    Banat, Bačka and Baranja was a de facto province of the Kingdom of Serbia and the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes between October 1918 and March 1919...

     – together called Vojvodina
    Vojvodina
    Vojvodina, officially called Autonomous Province of Vojvodina is an autonomous province of Serbia. Its capital and largest city is Novi Sad...

    – joined Serbia the next day.
  • On 26 November 1918, the Podgorica Assembly
    Podgorica Assembly
    The Podgorica Assembly , in full the Great National Assembly of the Serb People in Montenegro , was an assembly held in Podgorica that served as the representative body of the Montenegrin people during the...

     deposed the House of Petrovic-Njegos
    House of Petrovic-Njegoš
    The House of Petrović-Njegoš was the Royal House of Montenegro from 1696 to 1918. Montenegro had enjoyed de facto independence from the Ottoman Empire from 1711 but only received formal international recognition as an independent principality in 1878.Montenegro was ruled from inception by...

     of the Kingdom of Montenegro
    Kingdom of Montenegro
    The Kingdom of Montenegro was a monarchy in southeastern Europe during the tumultuous years on the Balkan Peninsula leading up to and during World War I. Legally it was a constitutional monarchy, but absolutist in practice...

    , opting for the House of Karađorđević (the ruling dynasty of the Kingdom of Serbia
    Kingdom of Serbia
    The Kingdom of Serbia was created when Prince Milan Obrenović, ruler of the Principality of Serbia, was crowned King in 1882. The Principality of Serbia was ruled by the Karađorđevic dynasty from 1817 onwards . The Principality, suzerain to the Porte, had expelled all Ottoman troops by 1867, de...

    ), unifying the two states.
  • Bosnia
    Bosnia (region)
    Bosnia is a eponomous region of Bosnia and Herzegovina. It lies mainly in the Dinaric Alps, ranging to the southern borders of the Pannonian plain, with the rivers Sava and Drina marking its northern and eastern borders. The other eponomous region, the southern, other half of the country is...

     declares its unification with Serbia.
  • On 1 December 1918, the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs
    State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs
    The State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs was a short-lived state formed from the southernmost parts of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy after its dissolution at the end of the World War I by the resident population of Slovenes, Croats, and Serbs...

     and the Kingdom of Serbia
    Kingdom of Serbia
    The Kingdom of Serbia was created when Prince Milan Obrenović, ruler of the Principality of Serbia, was crowned King in 1882. The Principality of Serbia was ruled by the Karađorđevic dynasty from 1817 onwards . The Principality, suzerain to the Porte, had expelled all Ottoman troops by 1867, de...

     joined together and formed the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, later renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia
    Kingdom of Yugoslavia
    The Kingdom of Yugoslavia was a state stretching from the Western Balkans to Central Europe which existed during the often-tumultuous interwar era of 1918–1941...

    , under the reign of King Peter I.

World War II and civil war


In 1941, in spite of domestically unpopular attempts by the government of Yugoslavia to appease the Axis powers
Axis Powers
The Axis powers , also known as the Axis alliance, Axis nations, Axis countries, or just the Axis, was an alignment of great powers during the mid-20th century that fought World War II against the Allies. It began in 1936 with treaties of friendship between Germany and Italy and between Germany and...

, Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany , also known as the Third Reich , but officially called German Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Greater German Reich from 26 June 1943 onward, is the name commonly used to refer to the state of Germany from 1933 to 1945, when it was a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by...

, Fascist Italy, and other Axis states invaded Yugoslavia. After the invasion, the Kingdom of Yugoslavia was dissolved and Serbia was put under a German Military administration
Military Administration (Nazi Germany)
During World War II, Nazi Germany created military-led regimes in occupied territories which were known as a Military Administration . These differed from Reichskommissariats which were led by Nazi Party officials...

, under a joint German-Serb government with Milan Nedić
Milan Nedic
Milan Nedić was a Serbian general and politician, he was the chief of the general staff of the Yugoslav Army, minister of war in the Royal Yugoslav Government and the prime minister of a Nazi-backed Serbian puppet government during World War II.After the war, Yugoslav communist authorities...

 as Head of the "Government of National Salvation". Serbia was the scene of a civil war between royalist chetniks
Chetniks
Chetniks, or the Chetnik movement , were Serbian nationalist and royalist paramilitary organizations from the first half of the 20th century. The Chetniks were formed as a Serbian resistance against the Ottoman Empire in 1904, and participated in the Balkan Wars, World War I, and World War II...

 commanded by Draža Mihailović
Draža Mihailovic
Dragoljub "Draža" Mihailović was a Yugoslav Serbian general during World War II...

 and communist partisans
Partisans (Yugoslavia)
The Yugoslav Partisans, or simply the Partisans were a Communist-led World War II anti-fascist resistance movement in Yugoslavia...

 commanded by Josip Broz Tito
Josip Broz Tito
Marshal Josip Broz Tito – 4 May 1980) was a Yugoslav revolutionary and statesman. While his presidency has been criticized as authoritarian, Tito was a popular public figure both in Yugoslavia and abroad, viewed as a unifying symbol for the nations of the Yugoslav federation...

. Against these forces were arrayed Nedić's units of the Serbian Volunteer Corps and the Serbian State Guard.


After one year of occupation, around 16,000 Serbian Jews were murdered in Axis-occupied Serbia, or around 90% of its pre-war Jewish population. Banjica concentration camp
Banjica concentration camp
Banjica concentration camp was a quisling and Nazi German concentration camp in occupied Serbia from June 1941 to September 1944 in World War II, located in the eponymous suburb of Belgrade. It started as a center for holding hostages, but later included Jews, Serbs, Roma, captured partisans, and...

 was established by the German Military Administration in Serbia. Primary victims were Serbian Jews, Roma, and Serb political prisoners. Other camps in Serbia included the Crveni Krst concentration camp
Crveni Krst concentration camp
Crveni Krst concentration camp , also known as logor Crveni Krst or Lager Niš , was a concentration camp located in Crveni Krst, in the industrial zone of the Serbian city of Niš, and operated by the Nazis during the Second World War.It is estimated that around 30,000 persons went through this...

 in Niš
Niš
Niš is the largest city of southern Serbia and third-largest city in Serbia . According to the data from 2011, the city of Niš has a population of 177,972 inhabitants, while the city municipality has a population of 257,867. The city covers an area of about 597 km2, including the urban area,...

 and the Dulag 183
Dulag 183
Dulag 183 was the name of the German transit camp for POWs in WWII Serbia located in the town of Šabac. This camp was opened in September 1941, and it closed in September 1944. This camp was also used for partisan POWs, members of their families, and the extermination of Jews and Roma people...

 in Šabac
Šabac
Šabac is a city and municipality in western Serbia, along the Sava river, in the historic region of Mačva. It is the administrative center of the Mačva District. The city has a population of 52,822 , while population of the municipality is 115,347...

. Sajmište
Sajmište concentration camp
Sajmište concentration camp was a German run Nazi concentration camp located on the outskirts of Belgrade whilst part of NDH . It was established in December 1941 and shut down in September 1944...

 was one of the first concentration camps for Jews in Europe. Staro Sajmište was the largest concentration camp in Axis-occupied Serbia.

Relations between Serbs and Croats in Yugoslavia severely deteriorated during World War II as a result of the creation of the Axis
Axis Powers
The Axis powers , also known as the Axis alliance, Axis nations, Axis countries, or just the Axis, was an alignment of great powers during the mid-20th century that fought World War II against the Allies. It began in 1936 with treaties of friendship between Germany and Italy and between Germany and...

 puppet state
Puppet state
A puppet state is a nominal sovereign of a state who is de facto controlled by a foreign power. The term refers to a government controlled by the government of another country like a puppeteer controls the strings of a marionette...

 of the Independent State of Croatia
Independent State of Croatia
The Independent State of Croatia was a World War II puppet state of Nazi Germany, established on a part of Axis-occupied Yugoslavia. The NDH was founded on 10 April 1941, after the invasion of Yugoslavia by the Axis powers. All of Bosnia and Herzegovina was annexed to NDH, together with some parts...

 (NDH) that comprised most of present-day Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

, and parts of present-day Serbia. The NDH committed large scale persecution and genocide of Serbs, Jews, and Roma. The estimate of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum is the United States' official memorial to the Holocaust. Adjacent to the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the USHMM provides for the documentation, study, and interpretation of Holocaust history...

 indicates that between 330,000 and 390,000 ethnic Serb residents of Croatia, Bosnia and parts of Serbia (primarily the Syrmia region) were murdered during the Ustaše genocide campaign
Ustaše
The Ustaša - Croatian Revolutionary Movement was a Croatian fascist anti-Yugoslav separatist movement. The ideology of the movement was a blend of fascism, Nazism, and Croatian nationalism. The Ustaše supported the creation of a Greater Croatia that would span to the River Drina and to the border...

; same figures are supported by the Jewish Virtual Library. reports that more than Serbs were killed overall, whereas official Yugoslav sources used to estimate more than victims, mostly Serbs.
The Jasenovac memorial so far lists 75,159 names killed at the this concentration camp
Jasenovac concentration camp
Jasenovac concentration camp was the largest extermination camp in the Independent State of Croatia and occupied Yugoslavia during World War II...

 alone, out of around 100,000 estimated victims (75% of whom were of Serbian origin).
In April 2003 Croatian president Stjepan Mesić
Stjepan Mesić
Stjepan "Stipe" Mesić is a Croatian politician and former President of Croatia. Before his ten-year presidential term between 2000 and 2010 he held the posts of Speaker of the Croatian Parliament , Prime Minister of Croatia , the last President of the Presidency of Yugoslavia , Secretary General...

 apologized on behalf of Croatia to the victims of Jasenovac. In 2006, on the same occasion, he added that to every visitor to Jasenovac it must be clear that Holocaust, genocide and war crimes took place there.
Out of roughly 1,000,000 casualties in all of Yugoslavia up until 1944, around 250,000 were citizens of Serbia of different ethnicities, according to Zundhauzen. The overall number of Serb
Serbs
The Serbs are a South Slavic ethnic group of the Balkans and southern Central Europe. Serbs are located mainly in Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and form a sizable minority in Croatia, the Republic of Macedonia and Slovenia. Likewise, Serbs are an officially recognized minority in...

 casualties in Yugoslavia was around 530,000, out of whom up to 400,000 in the Independent State of Croatia
Independent State of Croatia
The Independent State of Croatia was a World War II puppet state of Nazi Germany, established on a part of Axis-occupied Yugoslavia. The NDH was founded on 10 April 1941, after the invasion of Yugoslavia by the Axis powers. All of Bosnia and Herzegovina was annexed to NDH, together with some parts...

. By late 1944, the Belgrade Offensive
Belgrade Offensive
The Belgrade Offensive or the Belgrade Strategic Offensive Operation was an offensive military operation in which Belgrade was conquered from the German Wehrmacht by the joint efforts of the Yugoslav Partisans and the Soviet Red Army...

 swung in favour of the partisans in the civil war; the partisans subsequently gained control of Yugoslavia. The Syrmia front was the last sequence of the internal war in Serbia following the Belgrade Offensive. Between 70,000–80,000 people were killed in Serbia alone during the communist takeover, (including 10,000 Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

rs).

Second Yugoslavia


The communist takeover by the Yugoslav Partisans resulted in abolition of the monarchy and a subsequent orchestrated constitutional referendum. A single-party state
Single-party state
A single-party state, one-party system or single-party system is a type of party system government in which a single political party forms the government and no other parties are permitted to run candidates for election...

 was soon established in Yugoslavia by the League of Communists of Yugoslavia
League of Communists of Yugoslavia
League of Communists of Yugoslavia , before 1952 the Communist Party of Yugoslavia League of Communists of Yugoslavia (Serbo-Croatian: Savez komunista Jugoslavije/Савез комуниста Југославије, Slovene: Zveza komunistov Jugoslavije, Macedonian: Сојуз на комунистите на Југославија, Sojuz na...

. All opposition was repressed and people deemed to be promoting opposition to the government or promoting separatism were given harsh prison sentences or executed for sedition. Serbia became a constituent republic
Constituent state
A constituent state, constituent entity, or constituent part, is a territorial and constitutional entity forming part of a sovereign state...

 within the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was the Yugoslav state that existed from the abolition of the Yugoslav monarchy until it was dissolved in 1992 amid the Yugoslav Wars. It was a socialist state and a federation made up of six socialist republics: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia,...

 (SFRY) known as the Socialist Republic of Serbia
Socialist Republic of Serbia
Socialist Republic of Serbia was a socialist state that was a constituent country of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. It is a predecessor of modern day Serbia, which served as the biggest republic in the Yugoslav federation and held the largest population of all the Yugoslav...

 and had a republic-branch of the federal Communist party, the League of Communists of Serbia
League of Communists of Serbia
The League of Communists of Serbia was the Serbian branch of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia, the sole legal party of Yugoslavia from 1945 to 1990. Under a new constitution ratified in 1974, greater power was devolved to the various republic level branches. In the late 1980s, the party was...

. The republic consisted of the Socialist Autonomous Province of Kosovo
Socialist Autonomous Province of Kosovo
Socialist Autonomous Province of Kosovo was one of the two socialist autonomous areas of the Socialist Republic of Serbia incorporated into the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from 1974 until 1990...

, Socialist Autonomous Province of Vojvodina
Socialist Autonomous Province of Vojvodina
Socialist Autonomous Province of Vojvodina , also known shortly as SAP Vojvodina , was one of the two socialist autonomous provinces of the Socialist Republic of Serbia from 1963 to 1990 and one of the federal units of the Socialist Federal...

, Central Serbia
Central Serbia
Central Serbia , also referred to as Serbia proper , was the region of Serbia from 1945 to 2009. It included central parts of Serbia outside of the autonomous provinces of Kosovo and Vojvodina. The region of Central Serbia was not an administrative division of Serbia as such; it was under the...

 and the state capital, Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

.

Serbia's most powerful and influential politician in Tito-era Yugoslavia was Aleksandar Ranković
Aleksandar Rankovic
Aleksandar "Leka" Ranković was a Yugoslav communist politician of Serbian origin considered to be the third most powerful man in Yugoslavia after Josip Broz Tito and Edvard Kardelj....

, a high-ranking official in the federal communist party and one of the "big four" Yugoslav leaders, alongside Josip Broz Tito
Josip Broz Tito
Marshal Josip Broz Tito – 4 May 1980) was a Yugoslav revolutionary and statesman. While his presidency has been criticized as authoritarian, Tito was a popular public figure both in Yugoslavia and abroad, viewed as a unifying symbol for the nations of the Yugoslav federation...

, Edvard Kardelj
Edvard Kardelj
Edvard Kardelj also known under the pseudonyms Sperans and Krištof was a Yugoslav communist political leader, economist, partisan, publicist, and full member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts...

, and Milovan Đilas. Ranković served as head of the UDBA
UDBA
The Department of State Security was the secret police organization of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.Although it operated with more restraint than other secret...

 internal security organization and served as vice-president of Yugoslavia from 1963 to 1966. In 1950, Ranković as minister of interior reported that since 1945 the Yugoslav communist regime had arrested five million people.

For years Ranković served as Tito's right-hand man and supported Tito's decision to break Yugoslavia away from domination by Soviet Union by having the UDBA obstruct the USSR's efforts to infiltrate state institutions and communist party. These actions resulted in the Cominform
Cominform
Founded in 1947, Cominform is the common name for what was officially referred to as the Information Bureau of the Communist and Workers' Parties...

 accusing the Yugoslav government of being dominated by a "Tito-Ranković clique" that they accused of being a "fascist regime". He supported a centralized Yugoslavia and opposed efforts that promoted decentralization that he deemed to be against the interests of Serb unity. Ranković sought to secure the position of the Serbs in Kosovo and gave them dominance in Kosovo's nomenklatura
Nomenklatura
The nomenklatura were a category of people within the Soviet Union and other Eastern Bloc countries who held various key administrative positions in all spheres of those countries' activity: government, industry, agriculture, education, etc., whose positions were granted only with approval by the...

. Ranković's power and agenda waned in the 1960s with the rise to power of reformers who sought decentralization and to preserve the right of national self-determination of the peoples of Yugoslavia. In response to his opposition to decentralization, the Yugoslav government removed Ranković from office in 1966 on various claims, including that he was spying on Tito. Ranković's dismissal was highly unpopular amongst Serbs.

Pro-decentralization reformers in Yugoslavia, especially from Slovenia and Croatia succeeded in the late 1960s in attaining substantial decentralization of powers, creating substantial autonomy in Kosovo and Vojvodina, and recognizing a Yugoslav Muslim nationality. As a result of these reforms, there was a massive overhaul of Kosovo's nomenklatura and police, that shifted from being Serb-dominated to ethnic Albanian-dominated through firing Serbs in large scale. Further concessions were made to the ethnic Albanians of Kosovo in response to unrest, including the creation of the University of Pristina as an Albanian language
Albanian language
Albanian is an Indo-European language spoken by approximately 7.6 million people, primarily in Albania and Kosovo but also in other areas of the Balkans in which there is an Albanian population, including western Macedonia, southern Montenegro, southern Serbia and northwestern Greece...

 institution. These changes created widespread fear amongst Serbs that they were being made second-class citizen
Second-class citizen
Second-class citizen is an informal term used to describe a person who is systematically discriminated against within a state or other political jurisdiction, despite their nominal status as a citizen or legal resident there...

s in Yugoslavia by these changes. These changes was harshly criticized by Serbian communist official Dobrica Ćosić
Dobrica Cosic
Dobrica Ćosić is a Serbian writer, as well as a political and Serb nationalist theorist. He was the first president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from 1992 to 1993...

, who at the time claimed that they were contrary to Yugoslavia's commitment to Marxism through conceding to nationalism, especially Albanian nationalism
Albanian nationalism
Albanian nationalism is a general grouping of nationalist ideas and concepts among ethnic Albanians that were first formed in the beginning of 19th century in what was called the Albanian National Awakening...

.

In 1989 Slobodan Milošević
Slobodan Milošević
Slobodan Milošević was President of Serbia and Yugoslavia. He served as the President of Socialist Republic of Serbia and Republic of Serbia from 1989 until 1997 in three terms and as President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from 1997 to 2000...

 rose to power in Serbia in the League of Communists of Serbia
League of Communists of Serbia
The League of Communists of Serbia was the Serbian branch of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia, the sole legal party of Yugoslavia from 1945 to 1990. Under a new constitution ratified in 1974, greater power was devolved to the various republic level branches. In the late 1980s, the party was...

. Milošević promised reduction of powers for the autonomous provinces of Kosovo and Vojvodina. This ignited tensions with the communist leadership of the other republics that eventually resulted in the secession of Slovenia
Slovenia
Slovenia , officially the Republic of Slovenia , is a country in Central and Southeastern Europe touching the Alps and bordering the Mediterranean. Slovenia borders Italy to the west, Croatia to the south and east, Hungary to the northeast, and Austria to the north, and also has a small portion of...

, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

 and Macedonia
Republic of Macedonia
Macedonia , officially the Republic of Macedonia , is a country located in the central Balkan peninsula in Southeast Europe. It is one of the successor states of the former Yugoslavia, from which it declared independence in 1991...

 from Yugoslavia.

Multiparty democracy was introduced in Serbia in 1990, officially dismantling the single-party system. Critics of Milošević claimed that the government continued to be authoritarian despite constitutional changes as Milošević maintained strong political influence over the state media. Milošević issued media blackout
Media blackout
Media blackout refers to the censorship of news related to a certain topic, particularly in mass media, for any reason. A media blackout may be voluntary, or may in some countries be enforced by the government or state. The latter case is controversial in peacetime, as some regard it as a human...

s of independent media stations' coverage of protests against his government and restricted freedom of speech through reforms to the Serbian Penal Code which issued criminal sentences on anyone who "ridiculed" the government and its leaders, resulting in many people being arrested who opposed Milošević and his government.

In 1992, the governments of Serbia and Montenegro agreed to the creation of a new Yugoslav federation called the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia which abandoned the predecessor SFRY's official endorsement of communism, and instead endorsed democracy. In response to accusations that the Yugoslav government was financially and militarily supporting the Serb military forces in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia, sanctions
International sanctions
International sanctions are actions taken by countries against others for political reasons, either unilaterally or multilaterally.There are several types of sanctions....

 were imposed by the UN
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

, during the 1990s, which led to political isolation, economic decline and hyperinflation
Hyperinflation
In economics, hyperinflation is inflation that is very high or out of control. While the real values of the specific economic items generally stay the same in terms of relatively stable foreign currencies, in hyperinflationary conditions the general price level within a specific economy increases...

 of the Yugoslav dinar
Yugoslav dinar
The dinar was the currency of the three Yugoslav states: the Kingdom of Yugoslavia , the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia between 1918 and 2003. The dinar was subdivided into 100 para...

. The country permanently recovered from the inflation problem in 1996.

When the ruling Socialist Party of Serbia
Socialist Party of Serbia
The Socialist Party of Serbia is officially a democratic socialist political party in Serbia. It is also widely recognized as a de facto Serbian nationalist party, though the party itself does not officially acknowledge this...

 refused to accept municipal election results in 1997, which resulted in its defeat in the municipalities, Serbians engaged in large protests against the government. Between 1998–99, peace was broken when the worsened situation in Kosovo with continued clashes between Yugoslav security forces and the Kosovo Liberation Army
Kosovo Liberation Army
The Kosovo Liberation Army or KLA was a Kosovar Albanian paramilitary organization which sought the separation of Kosovo from Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in the 1990s....

 (KLA). The confrontations led to the Kosovo War
Kosovo War
The term Kosovo War or Kosovo conflict was two sequential, and at times parallel, armed conflicts in Kosovo province, then part of FR Yugoslav Republic of Serbia; from early 1998 to 1999, there was an armed conflict initiated by the ethnic Albanian "Kosovo Liberation Army" , who sought independence...

.

Political transition



In September 2000, opposition parties accused Milošević of electoral fraud
Electoral fraud
Electoral fraud is illegal interference with the process of an election. Acts of fraud affect vote counts to bring about an election result, whether by increasing the vote share of the favored candidate, depressing the vote share of the rival candidates or both...

. A campaign of civil resistance
Civil resistance
The term civil resistance, alongside the term nonviolent resistance, is used to describe political action that relies on the use of non-violent methods by civil groups to challenge a particular power, force, policy or regime. Civil resistance operates through appeals to the adversary, pressure and...

 followed, led by the Democratic Opposition of Serbia
Democratic Opposition of Serbia
The Democratic Opposition of Serbia was a wide alliance of political parties in Serbia , formed as a coalition against the ruling Socialist Party of Serbia and its leader, Slobodan Milošević in 2000...

 (DOS), a broad coalition of anti-Milošević parties. This culminated on 5 October when half a million people from all over the country congregated in Belgrade, compelling Milošević to concede defeat. The fall of Milošević ended Yugoslavia's international isolation
International isolation
International isolation is a penalty applied by the international community or a sizeable or powerful group of countries, like the United Nations, towards one nation, government or people group...

. Milošević was sent to the ICTY
International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
The International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991, more commonly referred to as the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia or ICTY, is a...

 on accusations of sponsoring war crimes during the breakup of Yugoslavia, where he was held on trial until his death in 2006. The DOS announced that FR Yugoslavia would seek to join the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

. In 2003, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was renamed Serbia and Montenegro
Serbia and Montenegro
Serbia and Montenegro was a country in southeastern Europe, formed from two former republics of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia : Serbia and Montenegro. Following the breakup of Yugoslavia, it was established in 1992 as a federation called the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia...

 and the EU opened negotiations with the country for the Stabilization and Association Agreement. On 21 May 2006, Montenegro held a referendum to determine whether or not to end its union with Serbia. The next day, state-certified results showed 55.4% of voters in favor of independence. This was just above the 55% required by the referendum.

Serbia's political climate has remained tense. In 2003, the prime minister Zoran Đinđić was assassinated
Assassination of Zoran Đinđić
The assassination of Zoran Đinđić, the Prime Minister of Serbia, took place on Wednesday, March 12, 2003, in Belgrade, Serbia and Montenegro.- Background :The assassination of Đinđić was preceded by several unsuccessful attempts on his life...

 as result of a plot originating from circles of organized crime and former security officials. Pro- and anti-EU political forces in Serbia have remained sharply divided on the political course of Serbia in regards to its relations with the European Union.

On 5 June 2006, the National Assembly of Serbia
National Assembly of Serbia
The National Assembly of Serbia is the unicameral parliament of Serbia. It is composed of 250 proportionally elected deputies elected in general elections by secret ballot, on 4 years term. The National Assembly elects the President of the National Assembly who presides over the sessions...

 declared Serbia to be the legal successor to the former state union. In April 2008 Serbia was invited to join the intensified dialogue programme with NATO despite the diplomatic rift with the alliance over Kosovo. Serbia officially applied for EU membership on 22 December 2009.

Geography




Located at the crossroads between Central and Southern Europe Serbia is found in the Balkan peninsula
Balkans
The Balkans is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe...

 and the Pannonian Plain. Including Kosovo, it lies between latitudes 41°
41st parallel north
The 41st parallel north is a circle of latitude that is 41 degrees north of the Earth's equatorial plane. It crosses Europe, the Mediterranean Sea, Asia, the Pacific Ocean, North America, and the Atlantic Ocean....

 and 47° N
47th parallel north
The 47th parallel north is a circle of latitude that is 47 degrees north of the Earth's equatorial plane. It crosses Europe, Asia, the Pacific Ocean, North America, and the Atlantic Ocean....

, and longitudes 18°
18th meridian east
The meridian 18° east of Greenwich is a line of longitude that extends from the North Pole across the Arctic Ocean, Europe, Africa, the Atlantic Ocean, the Southern Ocean, and Antarctica to the South Pole....

 and 23° E
23rd meridian east
The meridian 23° east of Greenwich is a line of longitude that extends from the North Pole across the Arctic Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, Europe, Africa, the Indian Ocean, the Southern Ocean, and Antarctica to the South Pole....

.

The Danube
Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

 passes through Serbia with 21% of its overall length, joined by its biggest tributaries, the Sava and Tisza
Tisza
The Tisza or Tisa is one of the main rivers of Central Europe. It rises in Ukraine, and is formed near Rakhiv by the junction of headwaters White Tisa, whose source is in the Chornohora mountains and Black Tisa, which springs in the Gorgany range...

 rivers. The province of Vojvodina covers the northern third of the country, and is entirely located within the Central European Pannonian Plain. Dinaric Alps
Dinaric Alps
The Dinaric Alps or Dinarides form a mountain chain in Southern Europe, spanning areas of Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo, Albania and Montenegro....

, gradually rising towards south, cover most of western and central Serbia. The easternmost tip of Serbia extends into the Wallachian Plain. The eastern border of the country intersects with the Carpathian Mountain range
Carpathian Mountains
The Carpathian Mountains or Carpathians are a range of mountains forming an arc roughly long across Central and Eastern Europe, making them the second-longest mountain range in Europe...

, which run through the whole of Central Europe.

The Southern Carpathians
Southern Carpathians
The Southern Carpathians or the Transylvanian Alps are a group of mountain ranges which divide central and southern Romania, on one side, and Serbia, on the other side. They cover part of the Carpathian Mountains that is located between the Prahova River in the east and the Timiș and Cerna Rivers...

 meet the Balkan Mountains
Balkan Mountains
The Balkan mountain range is a mountain range in the eastern part of the Balkan Peninsula. The Balkan range runs 560 km from the Vrashka Chuka Peak on the border between Bulgaria and eastern Serbia eastward through central Bulgaria to Cape Emine on the Black Sea...

, following the course of the Great Morava, a 500 km long river. The Midžor
Midzor
Midžor is a peak in the Balkan Mountains, situated on the border between Bulgaria and Serbia. At , it is the highest peak of the Western Balkan Mountains, as well as of Central SerbiaThe highest peak of Serbia is officially Đeravica in the Prokletije mountain range at , but is located in Kosovo....

 peak is the highest point in eastern Serbia at 2156 m. In the southeast, the Balkan Mountains meet the Rhodope Mountains
Rhodope Mountains
The Rhodopes are a mountain range in Southeastern Europe, with over 83% of its area in southern Bulgaria and the remainder in Greece. Its highest peak, Golyam Perelik , is the seventh highest Bulgarian mountain...

.
The Šar Mountains of Kosovo form the border with Albania, with one of the highest peaks in the region, Đeravica, reaching 2656 meters at its peak. Dinaric Alps
Dinaric Alps
The Dinaric Alps or Dinarides form a mountain chain in Southern Europe, spanning areas of Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo, Albania and Montenegro....

 of Serbia follow the flow of the Drina river
Drina
The Drina is a 346 kilometer long river, which forms most of the border between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia. It is the longest tributary of the Sava River and the longest karst river in the Dinaric Alps which belongs to the Danube river watershed...

, overlooking the Dinaric peaks on the opposite shore in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

.

National parks



Over 31% of Serbia is covered by forest. National park
National park
A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or owns. Although individual nations designate their own national parks differently A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or...

s take up 10% of the country's territory. Serbia has 5 national parks and 22 nature reserves.

Wetlands


{| class="wikitable" style="width:50%;"
|-
!Name
!Designated
!Municipality
!Area (km²)
|-
|Gornje Podunavlje
Gornje podunavlje
thumb|right|400pxGornje Podunavlje Special Nature Reserve is a large protected area of wetland in the northwest of Serbia...

||2007||Vojvodina
Vojvodina
Vojvodina, officially called Autonomous Province of Vojvodina is an autonomous province of Serbia. Its capital and largest city is Novi Sad...

||align=right|224,8
|-
|Labudovo okno||2006||Bela Crkva
Bela Crkva (Vojvodina)
Bela Crkva is a town and municipality in the South Banat District of Vojvodina, Serbia. The town has a population of 10,638, while the Bela Crkva municipality has 20,275 inhabitants....

||align=right|37,33
|-
|Ludaš Lake
Ludaš Lake
Ludaš or Ludoš Lake is a shallow lake in the province of Vojvodina in northern Serbia, near Subotica. It is a special natural preserve and, since 1977, designated as a swamp area of international significance by the Ramsar Convention...

||1977||Subotica
Subotica
Subotica is a city and municipality in northern Serbia, in the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina...

||align=right|5,93
|-
|Obedska bara||1977||Pećinci
Pecinci
Pećinci is a village and municipality in Srem District of Vojvodina, Serbia. The village has a population of 2,659, while Pećinci municipality has 21,472 inhabitants.-Name:...

||align=right|175,01
|-
|Peštersko polje
Pešter
thumb|right|[[Northern Lapwing]]Pešter or Pešterska visoravan is a karst plateau in southwestern Serbia, in the Raška region. It lies at the altitude of 900–1200 meters. The territory of the plateau is mostly located in the municipality of Sjenica, with parts belonging to Novi Pazar and Tutin...

||2006||Sjenica
Sjenica
Sjenica , is a town and municipality in the Zlatibor District of Serbia. The population of the town, according to 2011 census, is 13,056 inhabitants, while the municipality has 25,448.-History:...

||align=right|34,55
|-
|Slano Kopovo||2004||Vojvodina
Vojvodina
Vojvodina, officially called Autonomous Province of Vojvodina is an autonomous province of Serbia. Its capital and largest city is Novi Sad...

||align=right|9,76
|-
|Stari Begej – Carska Bara
Carska Bara
Carska Bara is the largest individual bog and one of the major nature reserves in Serbia. It is located in the Banat region of the province of Vojvodina.- Location :...

||1996||Zrenjanin
Zrenjanin
Zrenjanin is a city and municipality located in the eastern part of Serbian province of Vojvodina. It is the administrative centre of the Central Banat District of Serbia...

||align=right|17,67
|-
|Vlasina Lake
Vlasina Lake
Vlasina Lake is a semi-artificial lake in Southeast Serbia. Lying at the altitude of 1211 m, with the area of 16 km², it is the highest and largest artificial lake in Serbia...

||2007||Surdulica
Surdulica
Surdulica is a town and municipality situated in the southeast of Serbia . In 2011, the population of the town is 10,915, while population of the municipality is 20,265.-Geography:...

||align=right|32,09
|}

Climate


Most of Serbia's surface belongs to the humid subtropical climate
Humid subtropical climate
A humid subtropical climate is a climate zone characterized by hot, humid summers and mild to cool winters...

 (Köppen classification Cfa). Serbia's climate varies between a moderate climate in the north, with cold winters, and hot, humid summers with well distributed rainfall patterns, and a more Adriatic climate in the south with hot, dry summers and autumns and relatively cold winters with heavy inland snowfall in the mountains. Differences in elevation, proximity to the Adriatic Sea
Adriatic Sea
The Adriatic Sea is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan peninsula, and the system of the Apennine Mountains from that of the Dinaric Alps and adjacent ranges...

 and large river basins, as well as exposure to the winds account for climate differences.
Vojvodina possesses typical continental climate, with air masses from northern and western Europe which shape its climatic profile. South and South-west Serbia is subject to Mediterranean influences. However, the Dinaric Alps
Dinaric Alps
The Dinaric Alps or Dinarides form a mountain chain in Southern Europe, spanning areas of Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo, Albania and Montenegro....

 and other mountain ranges contribute to the cooling down of most of the warm air masses. Winters are quite harsh in Raška
Raška (region)
Raška is a region in south-central Serbia and northern Montenegro. It is mostly situated in the Raška District. The southern part of Raška is also known as Sandžak and is divided between Serbia and Montenegro....

 because of the mountains which encircle the plateau.

Mediterranean micro-regions exist throughout southern Serbia, in Zlatibor and the Pčinja District around valley and river Pčinja. The average annual air temperature for the period 1961–90 for the area with an altitude of up to 300 m (984 ft) is 10.9 °C (51.6 °F). The areas with an altitude of 300 to 500 m (984.3 to 1,640.4 ft) have an average annual temperature of around 10 °C (50 °F), and over 1000 m (3,281 ft) of altitude around 6 °C (42.8 °F). The lowest recorded temperature in Serbia was −39.5 °C on 13 January 1985, Karajukića Bunari
Karajukića Bunari
Karajukića Bunari is a village in the municipality of Sjenica, Serbia. According to the 2002 census, the village has a population of 116 people.-References:...

 in Pešter
Pešter
thumb|right|[[Northern Lapwing]]Pešter or Pešterska visoravan is a karst plateau in southwestern Serbia, in the Raška region. It lies at the altitude of 900–1200 meters. The territory of the plateau is mostly located in the municipality of Sjenica, with parts belonging to Novi Pazar and Tutin...

, and the highest was 44.9 °C or 112.8 °F, on 24 July 2007, recorded in Smederevska Palanka
Smederevska Palanka
Smederevska Palanka is a town and municipality located in Central Serbia. According to the preliminary results of the 2011 census, the municipality had a total population of 50,078, while the town proper has 23,152 inhabitants.-Geography:Smederevska Palanka lies in Pan-European Corridor X , just...

.

Environment


Serbia's environment is monitored by the Ministry of Environment and Spatial Planning and protected by the Serbian Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA). The NATO bombings of 1999 caused lasting damage to the environment of Serbia, with several thousand tons of toxic chemicals stored in targeted factories being released into the soil, atmosphere and water basins affecting humans and the local wildlife.
Recycling is still a fledgeling activity in Serbia, with only 15% of its waste being turned back for re-use, steps are being taken on improving the situation.

Rivers and lakes



Spanning over 588 kilometers across Serbia, the Danube
Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

 river is the largest source of fresh water. Other main rivers are Sava, Morava, Tisza
Tisza
The Tisza or Tisa is one of the main rivers of Central Europe. It rises in Ukraine, and is formed near Rakhiv by the junction of headwaters White Tisa, whose source is in the Chornohora mountains and Black Tisa, which springs in the Gorgany range...

, Drina
Drina
The Drina is a 346 kilometer long river, which forms most of the border between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia. It is the longest tributary of the Sava River and the longest karst river in the Dinaric Alps which belongs to the Danube river watershed...

 and Ibar. Almost all of Serbia's rivers drain to the Black Sea
Black Sea
The Black Sea is bounded by Europe, Anatolia and the Caucasus and is ultimately connected to the Atlantic Ocean via the Mediterranean and the Aegean seas and various straits. The Bosphorus strait connects it to the Sea of Marmara, and the strait of the Dardanelles connects that sea to the Aegean...

, by way of the Danube river. One notable exception is the Pčinja which flows into the Aegean
Aegean Sea
The Aegean Sea[p] is an elongated embayment of the Mediterranean Sea located between the southern Balkan and Anatolian peninsulas, i.e., between the mainlands of Greece and Turkey. In the north, it is connected to the Marmara Sea and Black Sea by the Dardanelles and Bosporus...

. The largest natural lake is Belo Jezero, located in Vojvodina, covering 25 square kilometers. The largest artificial reservoir, Iron Gate
Iron Gate
Iron Gate can refer to* Gates of Alexander, iron gates built by Alexander the Great* Iron Gates , a pass through the Bibans mountains in Algeria* Iron Gate Pass, a gorge in central Xinjiang, People's Republic of China...

 (Đerdap), covers an area of 163 square kilometers on the Serbian side, and it has a total area of 253 square kilometers. The largest waterfall, Jelovarnik, located in Kopaonik, is 71 meters high.

River Km in Serbia Total length
(km)
Number of countries
1 Danube
Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

588 2783 9
2 Great Morava 493 493 1
3 Ibar 250 272 2
4 Drina
Drina
The Drina is a 346 kilometer long river, which forms most of the border between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia. It is the longest tributary of the Sava River and the longest karst river in the Dinaric Alps which belongs to the Danube river watershed...

220 346 3
5 Sava 206 945 4
6 Timok 202 202 1
7 Tisa
Tisza
The Tisza or Tisa is one of the main rivers of Central Europe. It rises in Ukraine, and is formed near Rakhiv by the junction of headwaters White Tisa, whose source is in the Chornohora mountains and Black Tisa, which springs in the Gorgany range...

168 966 4
8 Nišava
Nišava
The Nišava or Nishava is a river in Bulgaria and Serbia, a right tributary, and with a length of 218 km also the longest one, of the Južna Morava.- Bulgaria :...

151 218 2
9 Tamiš
Timis River
The Timiş or Tamiš is a 359 km long river originating from Țarcu Mountains , southern Carpathian Mountains, Caraş-Severin County, Romania. It flows through the Banat region and flows into the Danube near Pančevo, in northern Serbia....

118 359 2
10 Begej
Bega River (Tisza)
The Bega is a 254 km long river in Romania and Serbia...

75 244 2

Politics


Serbia formally regained its independence in 2006, after 88 years in various federations, the parliament announced a constitutional referendum
Serbian constitutional referendum, 2006
A referendum on a proposed draft of the new Serbian constitution was held on October 28 and 29 October 2006 and has resulted in the draft constitution being approved by the Serbian electorate. The constitution is Serbia's first as an independent state since the Kingdom of Serbia's 1903 constitution...

 that would replace the former Yugoslav-era constitution and created the new framework for the country by ratifying a new constitution
Constitution of Serbia
The Constitution of the Republic of Serbia is Serbia's fundamental law. The current constitution was approved in a constitutional referendum, held from on 28–29 October 2006...

. Serving his second term as President
President of Serbia
The President of Serbia is the head of state of Serbia. Presently serving as the head of state is Boris Tadić. He was elected with a narrow majority of 50.31% in the 2008 Serbian presidential elections.-Authority, legal and constitutional rights:...

, Boris Tadić
Boris Tadic
Boris Tadić is the President of Serbia and leader of the Democratic Party. He was elected to a five-year term on 27 June 2004, and was sworn into office on 11 July. He was re-elected for a de facto second five-year term on 3 February 2008 and was sworn in on 15 February...

 is the leader of the center-left Democratic Party
Democratic Party (Serbia)
The Democratic Party is a political party in Serbia. It is described as a social liberal or social democratic party.-Pre-war history:The Democratic Party was established on 16 February 1919 from unification of Sarajevo parties independent radicals, progressives, liberals and the Serbian part of...

. His second reelection was won with a narrow 50.5% majority in the second round of the presidential election
Serbian presidential election, 2008
A pre-term presidential election was held in Serbia on January 20 and February 3, 2008. Incumbent President Boris Tadić was reelected as President of Serbia in the second round with 51.61 percent of the votes cast, defeating challenger Tomislav Nikolić....

 held on 4 February 2008.

Parliamentary elections were held in May 2008. The coalition For a European Serbia
For a European Serbia
For a European Serbia – Boris Tadić is an electoral coalition that won the Serbian parliamentary election, 2008, Vojvodina parliamentary election, 2008 and Serbian local elections, 2008...

led by Boris Tadic, claimed victory, but was significantly short of an absolute majority. Following the negotiations with the leftist coalition centered around the Socialist Party of Serbia
Socialist Party of Serbia
The Socialist Party of Serbia is officially a democratic socialist political party in Serbia. It is also widely recognized as a de facto Serbian nationalist party, though the party itself does not officially acknowledge this...

, an agreement was reached to form a new government, headed by Mirko Cvetković
Mirko Cvetkovic
Mirko Cvetković is a Serbian economist and the Prime Minister of Serbia as well as the Minister of Finance.-Biography:...

. Present-day Serbian politics are fractiously divided on different issues, such as the European Union and the role of government.

Kosovo has been governed since 1999 by UNMIK
United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo
The United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo or UNMIK is the interim civilian administration in Kosovo, under the authority of the United Nations. The mission was established on 10 June 1999 by Security Council Resolution 1244...

, a UN
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 mission. The Provisional Institutions of Self-Government
Provisional Institutions of Self-Government
The Provisional Institutions of Self-Government or 'PISG' are the local administrative bodies in Kosovo established by the United Nations administration in that province under the terms of UNSCR 1244...

, has an assembly
Assembly of Kosovo
The Assembly of Kosovo was originally established by the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo in 2001 to provide 'provisional, democratic self-government'....

 and a president
President of Kosovo
The President of the Republic of Kosovo is Head of State of the disputed Republic of Kosovo. The President of Kosovo is elected by the Assembly of Kosovo. The first post-war president, who served until his death in January 2006, was Ibrahim Rugova. His successor was Fatmir Sejdiu. When Sejdiu...

. Although the assembly has declared independence from Serbia, Serbia does not recognise the move.

Administrative divisions


Serbia has two autonomous provinces: Vojvodina
Vojvodina
Vojvodina, officially called Autonomous Province of Vojvodina is an autonomous province of Serbia. Its capital and largest city is Novi Sad...

 in the north and Kosovo and Metohija
Kosovo
Kosovo is a region in southeastern Europe. Part of the Ottoman Empire for more than five centuries, later the Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija within Serbia...

 in the south. The area that lies between Vojvodina and Kosovo is called Central Serbia
Central Serbia
Central Serbia , also referred to as Serbia proper , was the region of Serbia from 1945 to 2009. It included central parts of Serbia outside of the autonomous provinces of Kosovo and Vojvodina. The region of Central Serbia was not an administrative division of Serbia as such; it was under the...

. Central Serbia is not an administrative division (unlike the provinces), and it has no regional authority of its own.

Serbia is divided into 150 municipalities and 24 cities, which are the basic units of local self-government. Of the 150 municipalities, 83 are located in Central Serbia, 39 in Vojvodina and 28 in Kosovo. Of the 24 cities, 17 are in Central Serbia, 6 are in Vojvodina and 1 in Kosovo. Municipalities and cities are gathered into districts, which are regional centers of state authority, but have no assemblies of their own; they present purely administrative divisions. Serbia is divided into 29 districts (17 in Central Serbia, 7 in Vojvodina and 5 in Kosovo), while the city of Belgrade presents a district of its own.

Demographics



As of January 2011, Serbia (without Kosovo) had an estimated population of 7,276,195 (not including over 200,000 internally displaced person
Internally displaced person
An internally displaced person is someone who is forced to flee his or her home but who remains within his or her country's borders. They are often referred to as refugees, although they do not fall within the current legal definition of a refugee. At the end of 2006 it was estimated there were...

s from Kosovo, who will be counted as a permanent population in the next census, taking place in 2011). The 2002 census was not conducted in Kosovo, which was under United Nations administration at the time. According to CIA estimates, Kosovo has around 1.8 million inhabitants, the majority of them Albanian with Kosovo Serbs
Serbs of Kosovo
Kosovo Serbs are the second largest ethnic group in Kosovo. By the 12th century, the cultural, diplomatic and religious core of the Serbian Kingdom was located in Kosovo. This became essential to the Serbian Empire of the 14th century....

 coming in second.

Serbs
Serbs
The Serbs are a South Slavic ethnic group of the Balkans and southern Central Europe. Serbs are located mainly in Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and form a sizable minority in Croatia, the Republic of Macedonia and Slovenia. Likewise, Serbs are an officially recognized minority in...

 are the largest ethnic group in Serbia, representing 83% of the total population, excluding Kosovo. With a population of 290,000, Hungarians are the second largest ethnic group in Serbia, representing 3.9% (and 14.3% of the population in Vojvodina). Other minority groups include Bosniaks
Bosniaks of Serbia
Bosniaks are an ethnic group living in Serbia. According to the last census from 2002, the total number of Bosniaks in Serbia was 136,087 and they comprised 1.82% of population...

, Roma, Albanians
Albanians in Central Serbia
According to the 2002 census, there are 61,647 Albanians in Serbia if the Kosovo Albanians are not counted. Of those, 59,952 lived in former Central Serbia, mostly in the Preševo Valley, at the far south of Serbia near the border with Kosovo...

, Croats
Croats of Serbia
Croats of Serbia or Serbian Croats are the recognized Croat national minority in Serbia. They were recognized as national minority in 2005. According to the 2002 census, there were 70,602 Croats in Serbia or 0.94% of the population...

, Bulgarians
Bulgarians in Serbia
Bulgarians are an ethnic group in Serbia. This article focuses on Bulgarians in south-eastern Serbia, one of the two areas in which ethnic Bulgarians are concentrated....

, Montenegrins, Macedonians
Macedonians in Serbia
Macedonians of Serbia are an officially recognized ethnic minority in Serbia.-Immigration:During the years 1945–1992, ethnic Macedonians and the Macedonian Language was a constituent part of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Many Ethnic Macedonians migrated to other parts of the...

, Slovaks, Vlachs, Romanians
Romanians
The Romanians are an ethnic group native to Romania, who speak Romanian; they are the majority inhabitants of Romania....

, and Chinese
Chinese people in Serbia
The number of Chinese people in Serbia is estimated at around 20,000 people. The community resides mainly in Serbia's capital, Belgrade. Most have their origin in two provinces south of the Shanghai region...

. According to UN estimates, around 500,000 Roma live in Serbia. The German
Germans
The Germans are a Germanic ethnic group native to Central Europe. The English term Germans has referred to the German-speaking population of the Holy Roman Empire since the Late Middle Ages....

 minority in the northern province of Vojvodina
Vojvodina
Vojvodina, officially called Autonomous Province of Vojvodina is an autonomous province of Serbia. Its capital and largest city is Novi Sad...

 was more numerous in the past (336,430 in 1900, or 23.5% of Vojvodina's population).

Serbia has the largest refugee population in Europe. Refugees and internally displaced person
Internally displaced person
An internally displaced person is someone who is forced to flee his or her home but who remains within his or her country's borders. They are often referred to as refugees, although they do not fall within the current legal definition of a refugee. At the end of 2006 it was estimated there were...

s (IDPs) in Serbia form between 7% and 7.5% of its population – about half a million refugees sought refuge in the country following the series of Yugoslav wars
Yugoslav wars
The Yugoslav Wars were a series of wars, fought throughout the former Yugoslavia between 1991 and 1995. The wars were complex: characterized by bitter ethnic conflicts among the peoples of the former Yugoslavia, mostly between Serbs on the one side and Croats and Bosniaks on the other; but also...

, mainly from Croatia, and to a lesser extent from Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

 and the IDPs from Kosovo, which are currently the most numerous at over 200,000.

Meanwhile, it is estimated that 300,000 people left Serbia during the 1990s alone, and around 20% of those had college or higher education. Serbia has a comparatively old overall population (among the 10 oldest in the world), mostly due to low birth rates. In addition, Serbia has among the most negative population growth rates in the world, ranking 225th out of 233 countries overall.

Religion


For centuries straddling the religious boundary between Orthodoxy
Eastern Orthodox Church
The Orthodox Church, officially called the Orthodox Catholic Church and commonly referred to as the Eastern Orthodox Church, is the second largest Christian denomination in the world, with an estimated 300 million adherents mainly in the countries of Belarus, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece,...

 and Catholicism, joined up later by Islam, Serbia remains one of the most diverse countries on the continent. While formation of the nation-state
Nation-state
The nation state is a state that self-identifies as deriving its political legitimacy from serving as a sovereign entity for a nation as a sovereign territorial unit. The state is a political and geopolitical entity; the nation is a cultural and/or ethnic entity...

 and turbulent history of 19th and 20th century has left its traces on the religious landscape of the country: Vojvodina is still 25% Catholic or Protestant, while Central Serbia
Central Serbia
Central Serbia , also referred to as Serbia proper , was the region of Serbia from 1945 to 2009. It included central parts of Serbia outside of the autonomous provinces of Kosovo and Vojvodina. The region of Central Serbia was not an administrative division of Serbia as such; it was under the...

 and Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

 regions are over 90% Orthodox Christian
Serbian Orthodox Church
The Serbian Orthodox Church is one of the autocephalous Orthodox Christian churches, ranking sixth in order of seniority after Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem, and Russia...

. Kosovo consists of an 89% Albanian Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 majority.
Among the Eastern Orthodox Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
The Orthodox Church, officially called the Orthodox Catholic Church and commonly referred to as the Eastern Orthodox Church, is the second largest Christian denomination in the world, with an estimated 300 million adherents mainly in the countries of Belarus, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece,...

es, the Serbian Orthodox Church
Serbian Orthodox Church
The Serbian Orthodox Church is one of the autocephalous Orthodox Christian churches, ranking sixth in order of seniority after Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem, and Russia...

 is the largest in the country. According to the 2002 Census, 82% of the population of Serbia, excluding Kosovo, or 6,2 million people declared their nationality as Serbian, who are overwhelmingly adherents of the Serbian Orthodox Church. Other Orthodox Christian communities in Serbia include Romanians, Vlachs, Macedonians
Macedonians (ethnic group)
The Macedonians also referred to as Macedonian Slavs: "... the term Slavomacedonian was introduced and was accepted by the community itself, which at the time had a much more widespread non-Greek Macedonian ethnic consciousness...

 and Bulgarians
Bulgarians
The Bulgarians are a South Slavic nation and ethnic group native to Bulgaria and neighbouring regions. Emigration has resulted in immigrant communities in a number of other countries.-History and ethnogenesis:...

. Together they comprise about 84% of the entire population.

Catholicism is mostly present in Vojvodina, especially its northern part, which is home to minority ethnic groups such as Hungarians, Slovaks, Croats, Bunjevci
Bunjevci
Bunjevci are a South Slavic community and ethnic group living mostly in the Bačka region of Serbia and southern Hungary...

, and Czechs. There are an estimated 388,000 baptized Catholics in Serbia, roughly 6.2% of the population, mostly in northern Serbia.

Protestantism accounts for about 1.1% of the country's population, chiefly among Reformist Hungarians and Slovaks in Vojvodina
Slovaks in Vojvodina
Slovaks are the third largest ethnic group in the Vojvodina province of Serbia. According to the 2002 census, there are 56,637 ethnic Slovaks in Vojvodina, constituting 2.79% in the population of the province...

. Islam has a strong historic following in the southern regions of Serbia – southern Raška
Raška (region)
Raška is a region in south-central Serbia and northern Montenegro. It is mostly situated in the Raška District. The southern part of Raška is also known as Sandžak and is divided between Serbia and Montenegro....

 and Preševo Valley
Preševo Valley
The Preševo Valley , is an Albanian political catchphrase used to describe the two south Serbian municipalities of Bujanovac and Preševo, which have a majority ethnic Albanian population. Medvedja municipality is sometimes also included under this term, although it has a majority Serbian population...

 municipalities in the south-east. Bosniaks
Bosniaks
The Bosniaks or Bosniacs are a South Slavic ethnic group, living mainly in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with a smaller minority also present in other lands of the Balkan Peninsula especially in Serbia, Montenegro and Croatia...

 are the largest Islamic community in Serbia with 140,000 followers or 2% of the total population, followed by Albanians.

With the exile of Jews
Judaism
Judaism ) is the "religion, philosophy, and way of life" of the Jewish people...

 from Spain during the Inquisition
Inquisition
The Inquisition, Inquisitio Haereticae Pravitatis , was the "fight against heretics" by several institutions within the justice-system of the Roman Catholic Church. It started in the 12th century, with the introduction of torture in the persecution of heresy...

 era, thousands made their way through Europe to the Balkans. A good number settled in Serbia and became part of the general population. They were well-accepted and in the ensuing generations the majority assimilated or became secular. Later on, the wars that ravaged the region resulted in a great part of the Serbian Jewish population emigrating from the region.
Today, there are 1,185 Jews living in Serbia. The only functioning synanogue remains the Belgrade Synagogue
Belgrade Synagogue
Sukkat Shalom Synagogue or Belgrade Synagogue is currently the only fully active Jewish place of worship in Belgrade, as other synagogues citywide are not active....

. The synagogue was saved from destruction, at the hands of the Nazis, by the local population during World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

.

Economy



With a GDP (PPP
Purchasing power parity
In economics, purchasing power parity is a condition between countries where an amount of money has the same purchasing power in different countries. The prices of the goods between the countries would only reflect the exchange rates...

) for 2011 estimated at $79.013 billion or $10,661 per capita (PPP
Purchasing power parity
In economics, purchasing power parity is a condition between countries where an amount of money has the same purchasing power in different countries. The prices of the goods between the countries would only reflect the exchange rates...

), Serbia is an upper-middle income economy. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in 2006 was $5.85 billion or €4.5 billion. FDI for 2007 reached $4.2 billion while real GDP per capita figures are estimated to have reached $6,178 in April 2011. The GDP growth rate showed increase by 6.3% in 2005, 5.8% in 2006, reaching 7.5% in 2007 and 8.7% in 2008 as the fastest growing economy in the region. According to Eurostat
Eurostat
Eurostat is a Directorate-General of the European Commission located in Luxembourg. Its main responsibilities are to provide the European Union with statistical information at European level and to promote the integration of statistical methods across the Member States of the European Union,...

 data, Serbian (PPS) GDP per capita stood at 37% of the EU average in 2008.

The economy has a high unemployment rate above 27% and a unfavourable trade deficit. The country expects some major economic impulses and high growth rates in the next years. Given its recent high economic growth rates, which averaged 6.6% in the last three years, foreign analysts have sometimes labeled Serbia as a "Balkan Tiger".

Apart from its free-trade agreement with the EU as its associate member
Stabilisation and Association process
In talks with countries who have expressed a wish to join the European Union, the EU typically concludes Association Agreements in exchange for commitments to political, economic, trade, or human rights reform in that country...

, Serbia is the only European country outside the former Soviet Union to have free trade agreements with Russia and Belarus
Belarus
Belarus , officially the Republic of Belarus, is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe, bordered clockwise by Russia to the northeast, Ukraine to the south, Poland to the west, and Lithuania and Latvia to the northwest. Its capital is Minsk; other major cities include Brest, Grodno , Gomel ,...

.

Serbia grows about one-third of the world's raspberries
Raspberry
The raspberry or hindberry is the edible fruit of a multitude of plant species in the genus Rubus, most of which are in the subgenus Idaeobatus; the name also applies to these plants themselves...

 and is the leading frozen fruit exporter.

In July 2010, the credit rating agency Dun & Bradstreet
Dun & Bradstreet
Dun & Bradstreet is a Fortune 500 public company headquartered in Short Hills, New Jersey, USA that provides information on businesses and corporations for use in credit decisions, B2B marketing and supply chain management...

 rated Serbia's economy at DB4d, which remained the same since the last rating. There was expressed concern for the slower-than-expected recovery of the economy from the global financial crisis, along with the continuous high business risk due lowered credit capabilities, increasing company bankruptcy and generally poor economic prospects. The Agency also expressed concern for the high credit debt and large number of foreign banks in the financial sector, creating increased risk of instability.

Telecommunication


89% of households in Serbia have fixed telephone lines, and with over 9.60 million users the number of cell-phones surpasses the number of total population of Serbia itself by 30%. The largest cellphone provider is Telekom Srbija
Telekom Srbija
Telekom Srbija is a telecommunications company based in Serbia, with its headquarters in Belgrade...

 with 5.65 million subscribers, followed by Telenor
Telenor Serbia
Telenor Serbia , subsidiary of Norwegian company Telenor, is the second largest Serbian mobile network operator.According to its most recent annual financial report submitted to the Serbian Economic Register Agency, the company has 1,102 employees and it posted an annual profit of RSD 6,459,361,000...

 with 3.1 million users and Vip mobile
Vip mobile
Vip mobile is the third Serbian mobile network operator and a member of mobilkom Austria group. It is the exclusive strategic partner of Vodafone in Serbia....

 with just over 1 million. 50.4% of households have computers, 39% use the internet, and 42% have cable TV, which puts the country ahead of certain member states of the EU. Serbia is ranked 59th in the world in terms of internet usage out of 216 states. 55.9% of the population uses the internet, placing Serbia ahead of all Balkan countries.

Transport


There are 4 international airports in Serbia: Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport
Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport
Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport is Serbia's busiest airport, also known as Surčin , after a nearby Belgrade district.Named after Nikola Tesla, the airport is situated west, of central Belgrade, in the Municipality of Surčin, surrounded by Syrmia's fertile lowlands...

, Niš Constantine the Great Airport
Niš Constantine the Great Airport
Niš Constantine the Great Airport , is a Serbian airport that serves southern Serbia and the city of Niš. The airport, which is named for Constantine the Great, is located from the Niš city centre and is Serbia's second international airport.- History :...

, Vršac International Airport and Pristina International Airport
Priština International Airport
Pristina International Airport Adem Jashari is an international airport located southwest of Pristina, Kosovo. It is an international airport that handles over a million passengers per year, co-located with Slatina Air Base. It is under the authority of the Government of Kosovo and is the only...

.

The valley of the Morava, is sometimes considered "the crossroads between East and West", which is one of the primary reasons for its turbulent history. The Morava valley route, which avoids mountainous regions, is the easiest route of travel from continental Europe to Greece and Asia Minor
Asia Minor
Asia Minor is a geographical location at the westernmost protrusion of Asia, also called Anatolia, and corresponds to the western two thirds of the Asian part of Turkey...

. Modern Serbia was the first among its neighbors to buy railroads- in 1858 the first train arrived to Vršac
Vršac
Vršac is a town and municipality located in Serbia. In 2002 the town's total population was 36,623, while Vršac municipality had 54,369 inhabitants. Vršac is located in the Banat region, in the Vojvodina province of Serbia. It is part of the South Banat District.-Name:The name Vršac is of Serbian...

, then Austria-Hungary (by 1882 route to Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

 and Niš
Niš
Niš is the largest city of southern Serbia and third-largest city in Serbia . According to the data from 2011, the city of Niš has a population of 177,972 inhabitants, while the city municipality has a population of 257,867. The city covers an area of about 597 km2, including the urban area,...

 was completed). Serbian Railways
Serbian Railways
Serbian Railways is the national railway carrier of Serbia. Its current network spans a distance of 4,347 km in length, with 32% electrified railways....

 handles the entire railway links in Serbia.

European routes E65
European route E65
European route E 65 is a north-south Class-A European route that begins in Malmö, Sweden and ends in Chaniá, Greece. The road is about in length.-Itinerary:* Sweden** E 65: Malmö – Ystad* Baltic sea, ferry Ystad-Świnoujście* Poland...

, E70
European route E70
European route E 70 is an A-Class West-East European route, extending from A Coruña in Spain in the west to the Georgian city of Poti in the east.-Itinerary:...

, E75
European route E75
European route E 75 is part of the International E-road network, which is a series of main roads in Europe.The E 75 starts from Vardø, Norway in the Barents Sea and runs south through Finland, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Serbia and Republic of Macedonia to Sitia, Greece on...

 and E80
European route E80
European route E 80, also known as Trans-European Motorway or TEM, is an A-Class West-East European route, extending from Lisbon, Portugal to Gürbulak, Turkey, on the border with Iran...

, as well as the E662, E761, E762, E763, E771, and E851 pass through the country. The E70 westwards
E70 in Serbia
The part of the European route E70 in Serbia spans approximately . It crosses the country from east to west, starting at Batrovci border crossing with Croatia and ending with Vatin border crossing with Romania...

 from Belgrade and most of the E75
E75 in Serbia
The part of the European route E75 in Serbia spans approximately . It crosses the country from north to south, starting at Horgoš border crossing with Hungary and ending with Preševo border crossing with Republic of Macedonia...

 are modern highways of motorway / autobahn standard or close to that. As of 2005, Serbia has 1,481,498 registered cars, 16,042 motorcycles, 9,626 buses, 116,440 trucks, 28,222 special transport vehicles, 126,816 tractors, and 101,465 trailers.

Although landlocked, there are around 2000 km of navigable rivers and canals, the largest of which are: the Danube
Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

, Sava
Sava River
The Sava is a river in Southeast Europe, a right side tributary of the Danube river at Belgrade. Counting from Zelenci, the source of Sava Dolinka, it is long and drains of surface area. It flows through Slovenia, Croatia, along the northern border of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and through Serbia....

, Tisa
Tisza
The Tisza or Tisa is one of the main rivers of Central Europe. It rises in Ukraine, and is formed near Rakhiv by the junction of headwaters White Tisa, whose source is in the Chornohora mountains and Black Tisa, which springs in the Gorgany range...

, joined by the Timiş River
Timis River
The Timiş or Tamiš is a 359 km long river originating from Țarcu Mountains , southern Carpathian Mountains, Caraş-Severin County, Romania. It flows through the Banat region and flows into the Danube near Pančevo, in northern Serbia....

 and Begej
Bega River (Tisza)
The Bega is a 254 km long river in Romania and Serbia...

, all of which connect Serbia with Northern and Western Europe through the Rhine–Main–Danube Canal and North Sea
North Sea
In the southwest, beyond the Straits of Dover, the North Sea becomes the English Channel connecting to the Atlantic Ocean. In the east, it connects to the Baltic Sea via the Skagerrak and Kattegat, narrow straits that separate Denmark from Norway and Sweden respectively...

 route, to Eastern Europe via the Tisa, Timiş, Begej
Bega River (Tisza)
The Bega is a 254 km long river in Romania and Serbia...

 and Danube Black Sea
Black Sea
The Black Sea is bounded by Europe, Anatolia and the Caucasus and is ultimately connected to the Atlantic Ocean via the Mediterranean and the Aegean seas and various straits. The Bosphorus strait connects it to the Sea of Marmara, and the strait of the Dardanelles connects that sea to the Aegean...

 routes, and to Southern Europe via the Sava river. The two largest Serbian cities – Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

 and Novi Sad
Novi Sad
Novi Sad is the capital of the northern Serbian province of Vojvodina, and the administrative centre of the South Bačka District. The city is located in the southern part of Pannonian Plain on the Danube river....

, as well as Smederevo
Smederevo
Smederevo is a city and municipality in Serbia, on the right bank of the Danube, about 40 km downstream of the capital Belgrade. According to official results of the 2011 census, the city has a population of 107,528...

 – are major regional Danubian harbours. The Danube River, central Europe's connection to the Black Sea, flows through Serbia. Through Danube-Rhine-Main canal the North Sea is also accessible. Tisza river offers a connection with Eastern Europe while the Sava river connects her to western former Yugoslav republics near the Adriatic Sea.

Energy



Most of the energy is currently produced comes from coal or hydroelectric dams. Energy consumption is expected to exceed energy production by 2012 and Elektroprivreda Srbije
Elektroprivreda Srbije
Elektroprivreda Srbije or simply EPS is the state-owned energy provider in Serbia, and currently the largest enterprise in Serbia. As of 2010, the company employs 34,130 workers....

, Serbia's largest energy producer, is expected to develop Đerdap III, a hydroelectric dam with approximately 2.4 gigawatts of power.

Naftna Industrija Srbije
Naftna Industrija Srbije
Naftna Industrija Srbije is an oil company in Serbia. The company's main business is the oil and gas exploration, production, importing, processing, transportation, and marketing of oil and oil products in Serbia. It holds monopoly on all oil imports until 2011 except the high quality diesel fuel...

, Serbia's largest oil producer was acquired by Russian energy giant Gazprom Neft
Gazprom Neft
Gazprom Neft is the fifth largest oil producing and refining company in Russia. It's the oil arm of Gazprom, which owns 80% of Gazprom Neft's shares....

. The two companies, are planning to build the Serbian portion of the South Stream
South Stream
South Stream is a proposed gas pipeline to transport Russian natural gas to the Black Sea to Bulgaria and further to Greece, Italy and Austria. The project is seen as rival to the planned Nabucco pipeline...

 gas pipeline. The two companies are also building a 300 million cubic meter gas storage at Banatski Dvor
Banatski Dvor
Banatski Dvor is a village in Serbia. It is situated in the Žitište municipality, in the Central Banat District, Vojvodina province...

, located approximately 60 kilometers northeast of Novi Sad
Novi Sad
Novi Sad is the capital of the northern Serbian province of Vojvodina, and the administrative centre of the South Bačka District. The city is located in the southern part of Pannonian Plain on the Danube river....

. The South Stream gas pipeline project will be the largest since the 19th century railway construction through Serbia.

Tourism


Tourism in Serbia mainly focuses on the villages and mountains of the country. The most famous mountain resorts are Zlatibor
Zlatibor
Zlatibor is a mountain region situated in the western part of Serbia, a part of the Dinaric Alps.The mountain range spreads over an area of 300 km², 27 miles in length, southeast to northwest, and up to 23 miles in width. The highest peak is Tornik at 1496 m...

, Kopaonik
Kopaonik
Kopaonik ; is one of the larger mountain ranges of Serbia. It is located in the central part of Serbia, while a small portion extendeds to North Kosovo. Its highest point, Pančić's Peak, is above sea level....

, and the Tara
Tara Mountain
Tara , is a mountain located in western Serbia. It is part of Dinaric Alps and stands at 1,000-1,500 metres above sea level. The mountain's slopes are clad in dense forests with numerous high-altitude clearings and meadows, steep cliffs, deep ravines carved by the nearby Drina River and many karst,...

. There are also many spa
Spa
The term spa is associated with water treatment which is also known as balneotherapy. Spa towns or spa resorts typically offer various health treatments. The belief in the curative powers of mineral waters goes back to prehistoric times. Such practices have been popular worldwide, but are...

s in Serbia, one the biggest of which is Vrnjačka Banja
Vrnjacka Banja
Vrnjačka Banja is a town, municipality, and a resort, mineral spa located in Raška District of Serbia. It contains the world's only hot spring with a temperature measuring exactly that of the human body ....

. Other spas include Soko Banja and Niška Banja
Niška Banja
Niška Banja is a spa town in southern Serbia, located east of its third largest city, Niš. The municipality of Niška Banja is one of the five urban municipalities of the City of Niš...

. There is a significant amount of tourism in the largest cities like Belgrade
Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. According to official results of Census 2011, the city has a population of 1,639,121. It is one of the 15 largest cities in Europe...

, Novi Sad
Novi Sad
Novi Sad is the capital of the northern Serbian province of Vojvodina, and the administrative centre of the South Bačka District. The city is located in the southern part of Pannonian Plain on the Danube river....

 and Niš
Niš
Niš is the largest city of southern Serbia and third-largest city in Serbia . According to the data from 2011, the city of Niš has a population of 177,972 inhabitants, while the city municipality has a population of 257,867. The city covers an area of about 597 km2, including the urban area,...

, but also in the rural parts of Serbia like the volcanic wonder of Đavolja varoš, Christian pilgrimage
Pilgrimage
A pilgrimage is a journey or search of great moral or spiritual significance. Typically, it is a journey to a shrine or other location of importance to a person's beliefs and faith...

 across the country and the cruises along the Danube
Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

, Sava or Tisza
Tisza
The Tisza or Tisa is one of the main rivers of Central Europe. It rises in Ukraine, and is formed near Rakhiv by the junction of headwaters White Tisa, whose source is in the Chornohora mountains and Black Tisa, which springs in the Gorgany range...

. There are several popular festivals held in Serbia, such as EXIT
EXIT (festival)
Exit is an annual summer music festival in the Petrovaradin Fortress of Novi Sad, Serbia. It is staged annually since 2000 and usually lasts four days ....

, proclaimed to be the best European festival by UK Festival Awards 2007 and Yourope, the European Association of the 40 largest festivals in Europe and the Guča trumpet festival
Guca trumpet festival
The Guča trumpet festival, also known as the Dragačevo Assembly , is an annual brass band festival held in the town of Guča, near the city of Čačak , in the Dragačevo region of western Serbia. Guča is a three-hour bus journey from Belgrade....

. 2,2 million tourists visited Serbia in 2007, a 15% increase compared to 2006.

Education



Education in Serbia is regulated by the Ministry of Science and Education. Education starts in either pre-schools or elementary schools. Children enroll in elementary schools at the age of seven, and remain there for eight years. After compulsory education students have the opportunity to either attend a high school for another four years, specialist school, for 2 to 4 years, or to enroll in vocational training, for 2 to 3 years. Following the completion of high school or a specialist school, students have the opportunity to attend university.

In Serbia, some of the largest universities are:
  • University of Belgrade
    University of Belgrade
    The University of Belgrade is the oldest and largest university of Serbia.Founded in 1808 as the Belgrade Higher School in revolutionary Serbia, by 1838 it merged with the Kragujevac-based departments into a single university...

  • University of Kragujevac
    University of Kragujevac
    The University of Kragujevac is a university located in Kragujevac, Serbia. It was founded in 1976 and is organized in 11 Faculties.-History:...

  • University of Niš
    University of Niš
    The University of Niš is a university located in Niš, Serbia. It was founded in 1965 and it consists of 13 faculties with 1500 teachers, 630 staff and extracurricular staff, and around 30,000 students...

  • University of Novi Sad
    University of Novi Sad
    The University of Novi Sad is a university located in Novi Sad, the capital of Serbian province of Vojvodina and the second largest city in Serbia....

  • University of Pristina
  • University of Novi Pazar


The University of Belgrade
University of Belgrade
The University of Belgrade is the oldest and largest university of Serbia.Founded in 1808 as the Belgrade Higher School in revolutionary Serbia, by 1838 it merged with the Kragujevac-based departments into a single university...

 is the oldest and currently the largest university in Serbia. Established in 1808, it has 31 faculties, and since its inception, has trained an estimated 330,000 graduates. Other universities with a significant number of faculty and alumni are those of Novi Sad (founded 1960), Kragujevac (founded 1976) and Niš (founded 1965).

The roots of the Serbian education system date back to the 11th and 12th centuries when the first Catholic colleges were founded in Titel
Titel
Titel is a town and municipality in the South Bačka District of the Vojvodina, Serbia. The town of Titel has a population of 5,831, while the population of the municipality of Titel is 16,936...

 and Bač, in Vojvodina province. Medieval Serbian education, however, was mostly conducted through the Serbian Orthodox monasteries of Sopoćani
Sopocani
The Sopoćani monastery , an endowment of King Stefan Uroš I of Serbia, was built in the second half of the 13th century, near the source of the Raška River in the region of Ras, the centre of the Serbian medieval state. It is World Heritage Site, added in 1979 with Stari Ras...

, Studenica
Studenica monastery
The Studenica monastery is a 12th-century Serbian Orthodox monastery situated 39 km southwest of Kraljevo, in central Serbia. It is one of the largest and richest Serb Orthodox monasteries....

, and Patriarchate of Peć
Patriarchate of Pec
The Patriarchate of Peć is a Serbian Orthodox monastery located near Peć. The complex of churches is the spiritual seat and mausoleum of the Serbian archbishops and patriarchs....

. Serbian Orthodox education starting from the rise of Raška
Raška (state)
Principality of Serbia or Serbian Principality was an early medieval state of the Serbs ruled by the Vlastimirović dynasty, that existed from ca 768 to 969 in Southeastern Europe. It was established through an unification of several provincial chiefs under the supreme rule of a certain Višeslav,...

 in 12th century, when Serbs overwhelmingly embraced Orthodox Christianity. The oldest college faculty within current borders of Serbia dates back to 1778; founded in the city of Sombor
Sombor
Sombor is a city and municipality located in northwest part of Serbian autonomous province of Vojvodina. The city has a total population of 48,749 , while the Sombor municipality has 87,815 inhabitants...

, then Habsburg Empire, it was known under the name Norma and was the oldest Slavic
Slavic languages
The Slavic languages , a group of closely related languages of the Slavic peoples and a subgroup of Indo-European languages, have speakers in most of Eastern Europe, in much of the Balkans, in parts of Central Europe, and in the northern part of Asia.-Branches:Scholars traditionally divide Slavic...

 Teacher's college in Southern Europe.

Culture



For centuries straddling the boundaries between East and West, Serbia had been divided among: the Eastern
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

 and Western
Western Roman Empire
The Western Roman Empire was the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian in 285; the other half of the Roman Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire, commonly referred to today as the Byzantine Empire....

 halves of the Roman Empire
Roman Empire
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

; between Kingdom of Hungary
Kingdom of Hungary
The Kingdom of Hungary comprised present-day Hungary, Slovakia and Croatia , Transylvania , Carpatho Ruthenia , Vojvodina , Burgenland , and other smaller territories surrounding present-day Hungary's borders...

, Bulgarian Empire
Bulgarian Empire
Bulgarian Empire is a term used to describe two periods in the medieval history of Bulgaria, during which it acted as a key regional power in Europe in general and in Southeastern Europe in particular, rivalling Byzantium...

, Frankish Kingdom and Byzantium
Byzantium
Byzantium was an ancient Greek city, founded by Greek colonists from Megara in 667 BC and named after their king Byzas . The name Byzantium is a Latinization of the original name Byzantion...

; and between the Ottoman Empire and the Austrian Empire and Austria-Hungary, as well as Venice
Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

 in the south. The result of these overlapping influences are distinct characters and sharp contrasts between various Serbian regions, its north being more tied to Western Europe and south leaning towards the Balkans and the Mediterranean Sea.

The Byzantine Empire
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

's influence on Serbia was profound, through the introduction of Greek Orthodoxy from the 7th century onwards to today, the Serbian Orthodox Church
Serbian Orthodox Church
The Serbian Orthodox Church is one of the autocephalous Orthodox Christian churches, ranking sixth in order of seniority after Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem, and Russia...

 has an overwhelming influence on the makeup of cultural objects in Serbia. Different influences were also present- chiefly the Ottoman, Hungarian
Kingdom of Hungary
The Kingdom of Hungary comprised present-day Hungary, Slovakia and Croatia , Transylvania , Carpatho Ruthenia , Vojvodina , Burgenland , and other smaller territories surrounding present-day Hungary's borders...

, Austrian and also Venetian
Republic of Venice
The Republic of Venice or Venetian Republic was a state originating from the city of Venice in Northeastern Italy. It existed for over a millennium, from the late 7th century until 1797. It was formally known as the Most Serene Republic of Venice and is often referred to as La Serenissima, in...

, also known as coastal Serbs
Serbs of Montenegro
Montenegrin Serbs is a regional, ethnographic group of ethnic Serbs. They compose the second largest ethnic group in Montenegro after the Montenegrins....

. Serbs use both the Cyrillic and Latin alphabet
Latin alphabet
The Latin alphabet, also called the Roman alphabet, is the most recognized alphabet used in the world today. It evolved from a western variety of the Greek alphabet called the Cumaean alphabet, which was adopted and modified by the Etruscans who ruled early Rome...

s.

The monasteries of Serbia, built largely in the Middle Ages
Middle Ages
The Middle Ages is a periodization of European history from the 5th century to the 15th century. The Middle Ages follows the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 and precedes the Early Modern Era. It is the middle period of a three-period division of Western history: Classic, Medieval and Modern...

, are one of the most valuable and visible traces of medieval Serbia's
History of Medieval Serbia
Тhe medieval history of Serbia begins in the 5th century AD with the Slavic invasion of the Balkans, and lasts until the Ottoman occupation of 1540.- Slavic invasion :...

 association with the Byzantium and the Orthodox World, but also with the Romanic Western Europe that Serbia had close ties with back in Middle Ages. Most of Serbia's queens still remembered today in Serbian history
History of Serbia
The history of Serbia, as a country, begins with the Slavic settlements in the Balkans, established in the 6th century in territories governed by the Byzantine Empire. Through centuries, the Serbian realm evolved into a Kingdom , then an Empire , before the Ottomans annexed it in 1540...

 were of foreign origin, including Hélène d'Anjou, a cousin of Charles I of Sicily
Charles I of Sicily
Charles I , known also as Charles of Anjou, was the King of Sicily by conquest from 1266, though he had received it as a papal grant in 1262 and was expelled from the island in the aftermath of the Sicilian Vespers of 1282...

, Anna Dondolo, daughter of the Doge
Doge of Venice
The Doge of Venice , often mistranslated Duke was the chief magistrate and leader of the Most Serene Republic of Venice for over a thousand years. Doges of Venice were elected for life by the city-state's aristocracy. Commonly the person selected as Doge was the shrewdest elder in the city...

 of Venice
Republic of Venice
The Republic of Venice or Venetian Republic was a state originating from the city of Venice in Northeastern Italy. It existed for over a millennium, from the late 7th century until 1797. It was formally known as the Most Serene Republic of Venice and is often referred to as La Serenissima, in...

, Enrico Dandolo
Enrico Dandolo
Enrico Dandolo — anglicised as Henry Dandolo and Latinized as Henricus Dandulus — was the 41st Doge of Venice from 1195 until his death...

, Catherine of Hungary, and Symonide of Byzantium
Byzantium
Byzantium was an ancient Greek city, founded by Greek colonists from Megara in 667 BC and named after their king Byzas . The name Byzantium is a Latinization of the original name Byzantion...

.

Serbia has eight cultural sites marked on the UNESCO World Heritage list
World Heritage Site
A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a place that is listed by the UNESCO as of special cultural or physical significance...

: Stari Ras and Sopoćani
Sopocani
The Sopoćani monastery , an endowment of King Stefan Uroš I of Serbia, was built in the second half of the 13th century, near the source of the Raška River in the region of Ras, the centre of the Serbian medieval state. It is World Heritage Site, added in 1979 with Stari Ras...

 monasteries added to the Heritage list in 1979, Studenica
Studenica monastery
The Studenica monastery is a 12th-century Serbian Orthodox monastery situated 39 km southwest of Kraljevo, in central Serbia. It is one of the largest and richest Serb Orthodox monasteries....

 Monastery added in 1986, the Medieval Serbian Monastic Complex in Kosovo, comprising: Dečani Monastery, Our Lady of Ljeviš
Our Lady of Ljeviš
Our Lady of Ljeviš is a 12th-century Serbian Orthodox Church in the town of Prizren, located in southern Serbia - Kosovo and Metohija. It was converted to a mosque during the Ottoman Empire and then back into an Orthodox Church in the early 20th century....

, Gračanica
Gracanica monastery
Gračanica is a Serbian Orthodox monastery located in Kosovo. It was founded by the Serbian king Stefan Milutin in 1321. Gračanica Monastery was declared Monument of Culture of Exceptional Importance in 1990, and it is protected by Republic of Serbia, and on 13 July 2006 it was placed on UNESCO's...

 and Patriarchate of Pec, monestaties were added in 2004, and put on the endangered list in 2006, and Gamzigrad – Romuliana, Palace of Galerius
Gamzigrad
Gamzigrad is an archaeological site, spa resort and UNESCO World Heritage Site of Serbia, located south of the Danube river, near the city of Zaječar. It is the location of the ancient Roman complex of palaces and temples Felix Romuliana, built by Emperor Galerius...

, was added in 2007. Likewise, there are 2 literary
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

 memorials added on the UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

's list as a part of the Memory of the World Programme
Memory of the World Programme
UNESCO's Memory of the World Programme is an international initiative launched to safeguard the documentary heritage of humanity against collective amnesia, neglect, the ravages of time and climatic conditions, and willful and deliberate destruction...

: Miroslav Gospels, handwriting from the 12th century, added in 2005, and Nikola Tesla
Nikola Tesla
Nikola Tesla was a Serbian-American inventor, mechanical engineer, and electrical engineer...

's archive added in 2003.

The most prominent museum in Serbia is the National Museum of Serbia
National Museum of Serbia
The National Museum is the largest and oldest museum in Serbia. It is located in Republic Square, Belgrade, Serbia. The museum was established on May 10, 1844. Since it was founded, its collections have to over 400,000 objects including many foreign masterpieces...

, founded in 1844; it houses a collection of more than 400,000 exhibits, over 5,600 paintings and 8,400 drawings and prints, and includes many foreign masterpiece collections and the famous Miroslav Gospels. The museum is currently undergoing renovation.

Art



There are cultural traces in Serbia from prehistory. The most famous neolithic
Neolithic
The Neolithic Age, Era, or Period, or New Stone Age, was a period in the development of human technology, beginning about 9500 BC in some parts of the Middle East, and later in other parts of the world. It is traditionally considered as the last part of the Stone Age...

 culture on the territory of Serbia is the culture of Lepenski Vir
Lepenski Vir
Lepenski Vir is an important Mesolithic archaeological site located in Serbia in the central Balkan peninsula. It consists of one large settlement with around ten satellite villages. The evidence suggests the first human presence in the locality around 7000 BC with the culture reaching its peak...

.
There were many famous royal cities and palaces in Serbia at the time of Roman Empire and early Byzantine Empire, traces of which can still be found in Sirmium, Gamzigrad and Justiniana Prima.
Serbian medieval monuments, which survived until our days, are mostly Monasteriesand churches. Most of these monuments have walls painted with frescoes. The most original monument of Serbian medieval art is the Studenica
Studenica monastery
The Studenica monastery is a 12th-century Serbian Orthodox monastery situated 39 km southwest of Kraljevo, in central Serbia. It is one of the largest and richest Serb Orthodox monasteries....

 (around 1190).
This monastery was a model for later monasteries, like: Mileševa, Sopoćani
Sopocani
The Sopoćani monastery , an endowment of King Stefan Uroš I of Serbia, was built in the second half of the 13th century, near the source of the Raška River in the region of Ras, the centre of the Serbian medieval state. It is World Heritage Site, added in 1979 with Stari Ras...

 and Visoki Dečani. The most famous Serbian medieval fresco is the "Mironosnice na grobu" (or the "white angel") from the Mileševa monastery
Mileševa monastery
Mileševa is a Serbian Orthodox monastery located near Prijepolje, in southwest Serbia. It was founded by King Vladislav, in the years between 1234 and 1236...

.

Icon-painting is also part of Serbian medieval cultural heritage. The influence of Byzantine art
Byzantine art
Byzantine art is the term commonly used to describe the artistic products of the Byzantine Empire from about the 5th century until the Fall of Constantinople in 1453....

 was increased after the fall of Constantinople
Constantinople
Constantinople was the capital of the Roman, Eastern Roman, Byzantine, Latin, and Ottoman Empires. Throughout most of the Middle Ages, Constantinople was Europe's largest and wealthiest city.-Names:...

 into the hands of crusaders in 1204, when many artists went to Serbia. Their influence is seen in the building of the church Our Lady of Ljeviš
Our Lady of Ljeviš
Our Lady of Ljeviš is a 12th-century Serbian Orthodox Church in the town of Prizren, located in southern Serbia - Kosovo and Metohija. It was converted to a mosque during the Ottoman Empire and then back into an Orthodox Church in the early 20th century....

 and many other buildings, including Gračanica
Gracanica monastery
Gračanica is a Serbian Orthodox monastery located in Kosovo. It was founded by the Serbian king Stefan Milutin in 1321. Gračanica Monastery was declared Monument of Culture of Exceptional Importance in 1990, and it is protected by Republic of Serbia, and on 13 July 2006 it was placed on UNESCO's...

.
The monastery Viski Dečani
Decani
Decani is the side of a church choir occupied by the Dean. In English churches this is typically the choir stalls on the south side of the chancel, although there are some notable exceptions, such as Durham Cathedral and Southwell Minster...

 was built between 1330 and 1350. Unlike other Serbian monasteries, this one was built in romantic
Romanticism
Romanticism was an artistic, literary and intellectual movement that originated in the second half of the 18th century in Europe, and gained strength in reaction to the Industrial Revolution...

 style, under the authority of grand master Vita from Kotor
Kotor
Kotor is a coastal city in Montenegro. It is located in a secluded part of the Gulf of Kotor. The city has a population of 13,510 and is the administrative center of the municipality....

. On the frescoes of this monastery there are 1.000 portrets depicting the most important episodes from the New Testament
New Testament
The New Testament is the second major division of the Christian biblical canon, the first such division being the much longer Old Testament....

.
Another style of architecture followed in Serbia is that of the end of the 14th century, near the river Morava (Moravic school). A characteristic of this style was the wealthy decoration of frontal church-walls. The frescoes in the monastery Manasija depict religious scenes in which people with Serbian medieval clothes are shown.
During the time of Turkish occupation art virtually died. The most important Serbian painters of the 20th century were: Milan Konjović
Milan Konjovic
Milan Konjović was a prominent Serbian painter whose works can be divided into six periods of artistic style. He studied in many countries abroad and lived in Paris from 1924 to 1932...

, Marko Čelebonović
Marko Celebonovic
Marko Čelebonović was one of the most famous Serbian painters of the 20th century.Čelebonović was born in Belgrade. He studied law and economics in England and France. His first public exhibition was in Paris in 1925. Before World War II he resided in Saint Tropez. During the years of war he was...

, Petar Lubarda
Petar Lubarda
Petar Lubarda was a Serbian painter, considered to be an influential figure on post-war painting in former Yugoslavia....

, Vladimir Veličković
Vladimir Velickovic
Vladimir Veličković is one of the most prominent Serbian painters. He graduated from the Faculty of Architecture at Belgrade University. From 1963 to 1966, he was an assistant in Krsto Hegedušić’s Master workshop in Zagreb, and in 1966 he moved to Paris...

 and Mića Popović
Mica Popovic
Miodrag "Mića" Popović was a Serbian painter and experimental filmmaker.-Popović's Life:Mića Popović was born on 12 June 1923 in Loznica. He finished grammar school in Belgrade...

.

Literature



The start of Serbian literacy relates to the activity of brothers Cyril and Methodius in the Balkans. There are monuments of Serbian literacy from the early 11th century and, written Glagolitic. Back in the 12th century, there are books written in Cyrillic. From this epoch is the oldest Serbian Cyrillic book editorial, Gospel Zahumian prince Miroslav, brother of Stefan Nemanja
Stefan Nemanja
Stefan Nemanja was the Grand Prince of the Grand Principality of Serbia from 1166 to 1196, a heir of the Vukanović dynasty that marked the beginning of a greater Serbian realm .He is remembered for his contributions to Serbian culture and...

. The Miroslav Gospel is the oldest book of Serbian medieval history.

In the era of national revival, in the first half of 19th century Vuk Stefanović Karadžić
Vuk Stefanovic Karadžic
Vuk Stefanović Karadžić was a Serbian philolog and linguist, the major reformer of the Serbian language, and deserves, perhaps, for his collections of songs, fairy tales, and riddles to be called the father of the study of Serbian folklore. He was the author of the first Serbian dictionary...

 translated the New Testament
New Testament
The New Testament is the second major division of the Christian biblical canon, the first such division being the much longer Old Testament....

 in Serbian and reformed the Serbian language and spelling. These were the foundations laid for the Serbian literature of recent times. The first half of the 19th century was dominated by Romanticism
Romanticism
Romanticism was an artistic, literary and intellectual movement that originated in the second half of the 18th century in Europe, and gained strength in reaction to the Industrial Revolution...

, with Branko Radičević
Branko Radicevic
Branko Radičević , an influential Serbian poet, within a short space of time contrived to enhance Serbian literature with several perennially attractive poems.- Biography:...

, Petar II Petrović-Njegoš
Petar II Petrovic-Njegoš
Petar II Petrović-Njegoš , was a Serbian Orthodox Prince-Bishop of Montenegro , who transformed Montenegro from a theocracy into a secular state. However, he is most famous as a poet...

, Laza Kostić
Laza Kostic
Laza Kostić was a Serbian poet, prose writer, lawyer, philosopher, polyglot, publicist, and politician, considered to be one of the greatest minds of Serbian literature.-Biography:...

, Đura Jakšić and Jovan Jovanović Zmaj
Jovan Jovanovic Zmaj
Jovan Jovanović Zmaj was one of the best-known Serbian poets. He was a physician by profession, like his literary predecessor writer Jovan Stejić ....

 being the most notable representatives, while the second half of the century was marked by realist
Literary realism
Literary realism most often refers to the trend, beginning with certain works of nineteenth-century French literature and extending to late-nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century authors in various countries, towards depictions of contemporary life and society "as they were." In the spirit of...

 writers: Milovan Glišić
Milovan Glišic
Milovan Glišić was a Serbian writer, dramatist, translator, and literary theorist. He is sometimes referred to as the Serbian Gogol.-Biography:...

, Laza Lazarević
Laza Lazarevic
Laza K. Lazarević was a Serbian writer, psychiatrist, and neurologist. The primary interest of Lazarević throughout his short life was the science of medicine...

, Simo Matavulj
Simo Matavulj
Simo Matavulj was a Serbian novelist, a representative of lyric Realism, especially in short prose. He is best known for employing his skill in holding up to ridicule the peculiar foibles of the Dalmatian folk...

, Stevan Sremac
Stevan Sremac
Stevan Sremac was a Serbian realist and comedy writer. He is considered one of the best truly humorous Serbian writers.-Biography:...

, Branislav Nušić
Branislav Nušic
Branislav Nušić was a Serbian novelist of Aromanian descent, playwright, satirist, essayist and founder of modern rhetoric in Serbia. He also worked as a journalist and a civil servant.- Biography :...

, Radoje Domanović
Radoje Domanovic
Radoje Domanović was a Serbian writer and teacher, most famous for his satirical short stories. His few remaining years were a constant fight against consumption...

 and Borisav Stanković
Borisav Stankovic
Borisav "Bora" Stanković was a Serbian writer belonging to the school of realism. His novels and short stories depict the life of people from South Serbia...

. The 20th century has been given to the prose writers: Ivo Andrić
Ivo Andric
Ivan "Ivo" Andrić 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...

, Isidora Sekulić
Isidora Sekulic
Isidora Sekulić was a famous Serbian prose writer, novelist, essayist, adventurer, polyglot and art critic....

, Miloš Crnjanski
Miloš Crnjanski
Miloš Crnjanski was a poet of the expressionist wing of Serbian modernism, author, and a diplomat...

, Meša Selimović
Meša Selimovic
Mehmed "Meša" Selimović was a Yugoslav writer. His novel Death and the Dervish is one of the most important literary works in post-war Yugoslavia. Some of the main themes in his works are relations between individual and authority, life and death, and other existential problems...

, Borislav Pekić
Borislav Pekic
Borislav Pekić was a Serbian writer. He was born in 1930, to a prominent family in Montenegro, at that time part of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. From 1945 until his immigration to London in 1971, he lived in Belgrade...

, Dobrica Ćosić
Dobrica Cosic
Dobrica Ćosić is a Serbian writer, as well as a political and Serb nationalist theorist. He was the first president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from 1992 to 1993...

, Danilo Kiš
Danilo Kiš
Danilo Kiš was a Yugoslavian novelist, short story writer and poet who wrote in Serbo-Croatian. Kiš was influenced by Bruno Schulz, Vladimir Nabokov, Jorge Luis Borges and Ivo Andrić, among other authors...

, Aleksandar Tišma
Aleksandar Tišma
Aleksandar Tišma was a Serbian novelist.He completed the basic and middle school in Novi Sad and studied economy and French language and literature in Budapest during World War II, to finally graduate on Germanistics from the University of Belgrade Faculty of Philology...

, Milorad Pavić
Milorad Pavic (writer)
Milorad Pavić was a Serbian poet, prose writer, translator, and literary historian. He was also a candidate for Nobel Prize in Literature....

, though there were valuable poetic achievements: Milan Rakić
Milan Rakic
Milan Rakić was a Serbian poet. He focused on dodecasyllable and hendecasyllable verse, which allowed him to achieve beautiful rhythm and rhyme in his poems. He was quite a perfectionist and therefore only published two collections of poems . He wrote largely about death and non-existence,...

, Jovan Dučić
Jovan Ducic
Jovan Dučić was a Serbian poet born in Herzegovina, writer and diplomat.-Biography:...

, Desanka Maksimović
Desanka Maksimovic
Desanka Maksimović was a Serbian poet, professor of literature, and a member of Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts.-Biography:...

, Miodrag Pavlović
Miodrag Pavlovic
Miodrag Pavlović was born on 28 November 1928 in Novi Sad, Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. He graduated from the University of Belgrade with a degree in medicine in 1954. He studied foreign languages and has written his first volume of poetry, 87 Poems...

, Vladislav Petković Dis
Vladislav Petkovic Dis
Vladislav Petković Dis was a Serbian poet, part of the impressionism movement in European poetry. He was born in 1880 in Zablaće, near Čačak in Serbia and died in 1917 on a boat on the Ionian Sea.-Biography:...

, Branko Miljković
Branko Miljkovic
Branko Miljković was an iconic Serbian poet. He was best known across Yugoslavia and the Soviet bloc for his influential writings. He died prematurely in 1961 at the age of 27, found hanging from a tree in Zagreb, Croatia...

, Vasko Popa
Vasko Popa
- Biography :Popa was born in the village of Grebenac , Vojvodina, Serbia. After finishing high school, he enrolled as a student of the University of Belgrade Faculty of Philosophy. He continued his studies at the University of Bucharest and in Vienna...

, and others.

In the last decade of the 20th century and the first decade of the 21st century, the most popular authors are: David Albahari
David Albahari
David Albahari is a Serbian writer of Jewish origin from Kosovo, residing in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Albahari writes mainly novels and short stories. He is also an established translator from English into Serbian. He is a member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts...

, Milorad Pavić
Milorad Pavic (writer)
Milorad Pavić was a Serbian poet, prose writer, translator, and literary historian. He was also a candidate for Nobel Prize in Literature....

, Momo Kapor
Momo Kapor
Momčilo "Momo" Kapor was a Serbian novelist, painter, and short story writer.. Several successful films have been based upon his novels. He was born in Sarajevo, Kingdom of Yugoslavia and died in Belgrade, Serbia.Kapor was born in Sarajevo in 1937 and graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in...

, Goran Petrović
Goran Petrovic
Goran Petrović is one of the most significant and most widely read among contemporary Serbian writers. He studied Yugoslav and Serbian literature at the University of Belgrade Faculty of Philology. He works as a librarian in a city library in Žiča, very close to Žiča Monastery...

, Svetlana Velmar-Janković
Svetlana Velmar-Jankovic
Svetlana Velmar-Janković is a Serbian novelist, essayist and chronicler of Belgrade. She was born in 1933 in Belgrade, Serbia, Kingdom of Yugoslavia, and educated in Belgrade where she continues to live today....

 and Svetislav Basara
Svetislav Basara
Svetislav Basara is a contemporary Serbian author...

.

Music


Serbia has long tradition in music. A kind of dance, named kolo
Kolo (dance)
Kolo , is a collective folk dance, danced primarily by people from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia. It is performed amongst groups of people holding each other's having their hands around each other's waists...

 is most favorite type of folklore
Folklore
Folklore consists of legends, music, oral history, proverbs, jokes, popular beliefs, fairy tales and customs that are the traditions of a culture, subculture, or group. It is also the set of practices through which those expressive genres are shared. The study of folklore is sometimes called...

, and it is different from region to region. The most popular are those from Užice
Užice
Užice is a city and municipality in western Serbia, located at the banks of the Đetinja river. It is the administrative center of the Zlatibor District...

 and Morava
Pomoravlje (region)
Pomoravlje , is a general term which in its widest sense marks valleys of any of three Morava rivers in Serbia: West Morava , Južna Morava and Great Morava . In the narrow sense, term is applied only to the Greater Pomoravlje...

 region.
Traditional Serbian music include various kinds of bagpipes
Bagpipes
Bagpipes are a class of musical instrument, aerophones, using enclosed reeds fed from a constant reservoir of air in the form of a bag. Though the Scottish Great Highland Bagpipe and Irish uilleann pipes have the greatest international visibility, bagpipes of many different types come from...

, flutes, horns
Blowing horn
The blowing horn or winding horn is a sound device by and large shaped like a horn or actually a cattle or other animal horn arranged to blow from a hole in the pointed end of it...

, trumpets, lutes, psalteries, drums and cymbals.
Sung epic poetry has been an integral part of Serbian and Balkan music for centuries. In the highlands of Serbia these long poems are typically accompanied on a one-string fiddle called the gusle
Gusle
The Gusle is a single-stringed musical instrument traditionally used in the Dinarides region of the Balkans ....

, and concern themselves with themes from history and mythology.

Composer and musicologist
Musicology
Musicology is the scholarly study of music. The word is used in narrow, broad and intermediate senses. In the narrow sense, musicology is confined to the music history of Western culture...

 Stevan Stojanović Mokranjac
Stevan Stojanovic Mokranjac
Stevan Stojanović Mokranjac was a Serbian composer and music educator. His work was essential in bringing the spirit of Valach Serbian unwritten folk poems into organized art.-Biography:He was born in Negotin...

 is considered one of the most important founders of modern Serbian music. Born in 1856, Mokranjac taught music, collected Serbian traditional
Traditional music
Traditional music is the term increasingly used for folk music that is not contemporary folk music. More on this is at the terminology section of the World music article...

 songs and did the first scholarly research on Serbian music. He was also the director of the first Serbian School of Music
Music schools in Serbia
In Serbia, there are 70 primary music schools, 30 secondary music schools and 6 university music departments.-Primary music schools:Primary music schools are attended by pupils up to 14 years old...

 and one of the founders of the Union of Singing Societies. His most famous works are the Song Wreaths.
The Serbian composers Petar Konjović
Petar Konjovic
Petar Konjović was a Serbian composer. He was born in Čurug . While a pedagogy student in Sombor, Konjovic self-taught himself the art of compositure and conducting. He finished his education at the Prague Conservatorium in 1906...

, Stevan Hristić
Stevan Hristic
Stevan Hristić , , was the most popular Serbian composer of the first half of the 20th century, remembered best for his technically cultivated compositions in the Neoromanticist, veristic, and Romanticist-Impressionist styles.-Biography:He conducted his primary studies in Leipzig, but also in...

 and Miloje Milojević
Miloje Milojevic
Miloje Milojević was a famous Serbian composer, conductor, pianist, pedagogue, music critic, and musical writer, considered by his contemporaries as a true man of letters....

, all born in the 1880s, were the most eminent composers of their generation. They maintained the national expression and modernized the romanticism into the direction of impressionism.
The best-known composers born around 1910 studied in Europe, mostly in Prague. Ljubica Marić
Ljubica Maric
Ljubica Marić was considered to be one of the most original composers to emerge from Yugoslavia. She was a pupil of Josip Štolcer-Slavenski. She was known for being inspired by Byzantine Orthodox church music...

, Stanojlo Rajicić, Milan Ristić took influence from Schoenberg, Hindemith and Haba, rejecting the "conservative" work of prior Serbian composers, seeing it as outdated and the wish for national expression was outside their interest.
Other famous classical Serbian composers include Isidor Bajić
Isidor Bajic
Isidor Bajic was a Serbian composer, pedagogue, and publisher.He was born in Kula...

, Stanislav Binički
Stanislav Binicki
Stanislav Binički , was a Serbian composer, conductor, and pedagogue.Binički, who was born in Jasika, Kruševac, is considered to be one of the most famous representatives of Serbian classical music...

, and Josif Marinković
Josif Marinkovic
Josif Marinkovic was one of the most important Serbian composers of the nineteenth century.-External links:* *...



The former Yugoslav rock scene, which Serbian rock scene
Serbian rock
Serbian rock is the rock music scene of Serbia. During the 1960s, 1970s and the 1980s, while Serbia was a constituent republic of Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Serbian rock scene was a part of the SFR Yugoslav rock scene....

 was a part of during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, was well developed and covered in the media, which included numerous magazines, radio and TV shows. With the breakout of Yugoslav wars
Yugoslav wars
The Yugoslav Wars were a series of wars, fought throughout the former Yugoslavia between 1991 and 1995. The wars were complex: characterized by bitter ethnic conflicts among the peoples of the former Yugoslavia, mostly between Serbs on the one side and Croats and Bosniaks on the other; but also...

, former Yugoslav rock scene ceased to exist. During the 1990s popularity of rock music declined in Serbia, and although several major mainstream acts managed to sustain their popularity, an underground
Underground music
Underground music comprises a range of different musical genres that operate outside of mainstream culture. Such music can typically share common values, such as the valuing of sincerity and intimacy; an emphasis on freedom of creative expression; an appreciation of artistic creativity...

 and independent music scene developed. The first decade of the 21st century saw the revival of the mainstream scene. The most notable Serbian rock acts include Bajaga i Instruktori
Bajaga i Instruktori
Bajaga i Instruktori are a highly popular Serbian and former Yugoslav rock band...

, Disciplina Kičme
Disciplina Kičme
Disciplina Kičme , is a Serbian band, one of the two spin-offs of the seminal Yugoslav New Wave and later post-punk band Šarlo Akrobata, the other being Ekatarina Velika...

, Đorđe Balašević, Ekatarina Velika
Ekatarina Velika
Ekatarina Velika , sometimes referred to as EKV for short, was a Serbian and former Yugoslav rock group from Belgrade, being one of the most successful and influential music acts coming out of former Yugoslavia....

, Električni Orgazam
Električni Orgazam
Električni Orgazam is a Serbian rock band from Belgrade. Originally starting as a combination of New Wave, punk rock and post-punk, the band later slowly changed their style, becoming a mainstream rock act.- New Wave years :...

, Galija
Galija
Galija is a Serbian and former Yugoslav rock band from Niš. The central figures of the band are brothers Nenad Milosavljević and Predrag Milosavljević...

, Idoli, Korni Grupa
Korni Grupa
Korni Grupa was a former Yugoslav rock band from Belgrade. Korni Grupa was one of the first former Yugoslav rock bands to achieve major mainstream popularity. The band's first releases were commercial pop-oriented songs. Korni Grupa later turned towards progressive rock, continuing, however, to...

, Partibrejkers
Partibrejkers
Partibrejkers is a prominent Serbian rock band from Belgrade, as well as an acclaimed act of the former Yugoslav rock scene....

, Pekinška Patka
Pekinška Patka
Pekinška Patka is an eminent Serbian and former Yugoslav punk rock band from Novi Sad. Their debut album, Plitka poezija, released in 1980, is considered the first punk rock album by a band coming from Serbia...

, Rambo Amadeus
Rambo Amadeus
Rambo Amadeus is the stage name of the Belgrade-based Montenegrin singer-songwriter Antonije Pušić, popular all over the former Yugoslavia...

, Riblja Čorba
Riblja Corba
Riblja Čorba is a Serbian and former Yugoslav rock band. Their presence on the scene has lasted from 1978 to today. They reached their peak of popularity in the 1980s, but it has declined in the 1990s, partly due to controversial political attitudes of the band's leader Bora Đorđević...

, Smak
Smak
Smak is a Serbian and former Yugoslav rock band. The group reached the peak of popularity in the 1970s when it was one of the top acts of the former Yugoslav rock scene...

, Šarlo Akrobata
Šarlo Akrobata
Šarlo Akrobata were a seminal Yugoslav rock band often categorized as late punk or New Wave, particularly art-oriented. Short-lived but extremely influential, in addition to being one of the most important acts of the Yugoslav New Wave scene, the three piece left an indelible mark on the entire...

, YU grupa
YU grupa
YU grupa is a Serbian and former Yugoslav rock band. One of the pioneers in combining rock music with the elements of the traditional music of the Balkans, YU grupa is considered the longest-lasting rock band to come from Serbia....

, Van Gogh
Van Gogh (band)
Van Gogh is a Serbian and former Yugoslav rock band from Belgrade. The band was formed in 1986, and released their debut alternative rock-oriented self-titled album the same year...

, and others.


Some of the most popular Serbian pop music
Pop music
Pop music is usually understood to be commercially recorded music, often oriented toward a youth market, usually consisting of relatively short, simple songs utilizing technological innovations to produce new variations on existing themes.- Definitions :David Hatch and Stephen Millward define pop...

 performers are Zdravko Čolić
Zdravko Colic
Zdravko Čolić , is a pop singer popular across the entire area of former Yugoslavia. Originally from Sarajevo, since 1992 , his home is in Belgrade, Serbia...

, Željko Joksimović
Željko Joksimovic
Željko Joksimović or often credited Zeljko Joksimovic is a popular Serbian singer, songwriter and producer. He is also well known in Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, Croatia, Slovenia, Greece, Germany, Austria and other European countries...

, Aleksandra Kovač
Aleksandra Kovac
Aleksandra Kovač is a Serbian singer-songwriter. She is the eldest daughter of eminent composer Kornelije Kovač and the elder sister of singer Kristina Kovač. Alongside her sister Kristina, Kovač came to media prominence as a part of girl group K2, and then launched a successful solo career in 2001...

, Aleksandra Radović
Aleksandra Radovic
Aleksandra Radović is a Serbian singer and songwriter, one of the most popular pop and R&B singers in Serbia.- Early life :...

, Ana Stanić
Ana Stanic
Ana Stanić is a Serbian singer, songwriter, composer and film producer.-Music:...

, Jelena Tomašević
Jelena Tomaševic
Jelena Tomašević is a Serbian pop singer famed for her strong vocal performances. She has won numerous awards for her songs and represented Serbia at 2008 Eurovision Song Contest, coming sixth with the song "Oro".- Music career :Jelena started her way to stardom at the young age of 8 when she won...

, and others. Marija Šerifović
Marija Šerifovic
Marija Šerifović is a singer from Serbia. She won the Eurovision Song Contest 2007 with the song "Molitva". Šerifović was born in Kragujevac, Socialist Republic of Serbia, Yugoslavia and is the daughter of Verica Šerifović, also a notable singer...

 won the first place at the 2007 Eurovision Song Contest with the song "Molitva
Molitva
"Molitva" is a song by Serbian singer Marija Šerifović. It was the winning song of the Eurovision Song Contest 2007. It was Serbia's Eurovision debut as an independent nation; the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro having dissolved in June 2006...

", and Serbia was the host of the 2008 contest.

The so called "novokomponovana muzika" (newly composed music) can be seen as a result of the urbanization of folk music. In its early times, it had a professional approach to performance, used accordion
Accordion
The accordion is a box-shaped musical instrument of the bellows-driven free-reed aerophone family, sometimes referred to as a squeezebox. A person who plays the accordion is called an accordionist....

 and clarinet
Clarinet
The clarinet is a musical instrument of woodwind type. The name derives from adding the suffix -et to the Italian word clarino , as the first clarinets had a strident tone similar to that of a trumpet. The instrument has an approximately cylindrical bore, and uses a single reed...

 and typically included love songs or other simple lyrics. of the genre's best performers also play forms imported from even further abroad. These include Šaban Šaulić
Šaban Šaulic
Šaban Šaulić is a Serbian singer He released his debut EP Dajte mi utjehu in 1969 when he was 18 years old. In 1970, he served the mandatory Yugoslav army service in Bitola, now in the Republic of Macedonia...

, Toma Zdravković
Toma Zdravkovic
Toma Zdravković was a famous Yugoslav folk singer from Serbia.Toma Zdravković was an outstanding figure on Serbian folk scene; a bohemian and a poet, he lived up to his sad songs. The songs, although having the form of Serbian folk music, had spirit of chansons...

, Silvana Armenulic
Silvana Armenulic
Silvana Armenulić was one of the most prominent commercial folk music and traditional sevdalinka singers in former Yugoslavia...

 and. At a later stage, the popular performers such as Lepa Brena
Lepa Brena
Fahreta Jahić Živojinović is Yugoslavian pop-folk singer, better known as Lepa Brena , . Born in Tuzla and raised in Brčko, Bosnia and Herzegovina , she moved to Novi Sad in 1980 to pursue her career in singing. In 1982...

, Vesna Zmijanac
Vesna Zmijanac
Vesna Zmijanac is a Serbian folk singer.She released 13 albums, 6 singles and several compilations. Her singing career started back in 1979 with the single "Thank You for All", and after that came a few popular singles and first album in 1981...

 and Dragana Mirković
Dragana Mirkovic
Dragana Mirković is a Serbian pop-folk singer.She is very popular in Ex-Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Romania, Greece and Turkey...

 used more influences from pop music, oriental music, and other genres, which led to the emergence of turbo folk.

Turbo-folk
Turbo-folk
Turbo-folk is a popular musical sub-genre that originated in Serbia, the Balkans. Having mainstream popularity in Serbia, although closely associated with Serbian performers, its sound is as popular in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Montenegro...

 (a term coined by rock
Rock music
Rock music is a genre of popular music that developed during and after the 1960s, particularly in the United Kingdom and the United States. It has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, itself heavily influenced by rhythm and blues and country music...

 musician Rambo Amadeus
Rambo Amadeus
Rambo Amadeus is the stage name of the Belgrade-based Montenegrin singer-songwriter Antonije Pušić, popular all over the former Yugoslavia...

) music emerged during the breakup of Yugoslavia. Turbo-folk used Serbian folk music and "novokomponovana" as the basis, and added influences from rock, pop and electronic dance music
Electronic dance music
Electronic dance music is electronic music produced primarily for the purposes of use within a nightclub setting, or in an environment that is centered upon dance-based entertainment...

. In the first decade of the 21st century turbo-folk featured even more pop music elements, and some of the performers were labeled as pop-folk. Some of the best known turbo-folk performers include Seka Aleksić
Seka Aleksic
Svetlana "Seka" Aleksić is a Bosnian pop-folk and techno folk singer.-Biography:...

, Jelena Karleuša
Jelena Karleuša
Jelena Karleuša Tošić , professionally known under her maiden name Jelena Karleuša and initials JK, is a Serbian pop singer, fashion designer and former columnist. She rose to fame with her debut turbo-folk album Ogledalce , and has since been a popular Serbian female singer...

, Aca Lukas
Aca Lukas
Aleksandar Vuksanović , most known as Aca Lukas is a popular Serbian folk singer.-Biography:Aca Lukas was born in as Aleksandar Vuksanović...

, Ceca Ražnatović, Dragana Mirković
Dragana Mirkovic
Dragana Mirković is a Serbian pop-folk singer.She is very popular in Ex-Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Romania, Greece and Turkey...

 and others.

Brass bands, known as "trubači" (трубачи, trumpeters) are popular in Central and Southern Serbia where they originated. The music is traditional from the First Serbian Uprising
First Serbian Uprising
The First Serbian Uprising was the first stage of the Serbian Revolution , the successful wars of independence that lasted for 9 years and approximately 9 months , during which Serbia perceived itself as an independent state for the first time after more than three centuries of Ottoman rule and...

. The trumpet was used as a military instrument to wake and gather soldiers and announce battles, the trumpet took on the role of entertainment during downtime, as soldiers used it to transpose popular folk songs. When the war ended and the soldiers returned to the rural life, the music entered civilian life and eventually became a music style, accompanying births, baptisms, weddings, slava
Slava
The Slava , also called Krsna Slava and Krsno ime , is the Serbian Orthodox tradition of the ritual celebration and veneration of a family's own patron saint. The family celebrates the Slava annually on the patron saint's feast day...

s, farewell parties for those joining military service, state and church festivals, harvesting, reaping, and funerals. In 1831 the first official military band was formed by Prince Miloš Obrenović
Miloš Obrenovic I, Prince of Serbia
Miloš Obrenović was Prince of Serbia from 1815 to 1839, and again from 1858 to 1860. He participated in the First Serbian Uprising, led Serbs in the Second Serbian Uprising, and founded the House of Obrenović...

. Roma people have adopted the tradition and enhanced the music, and today most of the best performers are Roma.

The best known Serbian brass musicians are Goran Bregović
Goran Bregovic
Goran Bregović is one of the most internationally known modern musicians and composers of the Balkans. He currently splits his time between Paris and Belgrade, where he settled down during the Yugoslav Wars.Bregović has composed for such varied artists as Iggy Pop and Cesária Évora...

, Fejat Sejdić, and Boban Marković
Boban Markovic
Boban Marković is a Serbian Romani trumpet player and brass ensemble leader from Vladičin Han, frequently recognized as the greatest trumpet player to emerge from the Balkans...

 and are also the biggest names in the world of modern brass band bandleaders. Guča trumpet festival
Guca trumpet festival
The Guča trumpet festival, also known as the Dragačevo Assembly , is an annual brass band festival held in the town of Guča, near the city of Čačak , in the Dragačevo region of western Serbia. Guča is a three-hour bus journey from Belgrade....

 is one of the most popular and biggest music festivals in Serbia, with over 300,000 visitors annually.

Theatre and cinema



Serbia has a well-established theatrical tradition with many theaters. The Serbian National Theatre
Serbian National Theatre
The Serbian National Theatre , located in Novi Sad, is one of the major theatres of Serbia...

 was established in 1861 with its building dating from 1868. The company started performing opera from the end of the 19th century and the permanent opera was established in 1947. It established a ballet company. Bitef
Bitef
BITEF, Belgrade International Theatre Festival, is one of the theatre festival that takes place in Belgrade, Serbia, each year.Founded in 1967, BITEF has continually followed and supported the latest theater trends...

, Belgrade International Theatre Festival, is one of the oldest theatre festivals in the world. New Theatre Tendencies is the constant subtitle of the Festival. Founded in 1967, Bitef has continually followed and supported the latest theater trends. It has become one of five most important and biggest European festivals. It has become one of the most significant culture institutions of Serbia.

Cuisine


Serbian cuisine
Serbian cuisine
Serbian cuisine is a heterogeneous cuisine, sharing characteristics of the Balkans , the Mediterranean , Turkish, and Central European cuisines....

 is a heterogeneous cuisine, sharing characteristics of the Balkans
Balkans
The Balkans is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe...

 (especially former Yugoslavia
Former Yugoslavia
The former Yugoslavia is a term used to describe the present day states which succeeded the collapse of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia....

), the Mediterranean (especially Greek), Turkish
Turkish cuisine
Turkish cuisine is largely the heritage of Ottoman cuisine, which can be described as a fusion and refinement of Central Asian, Middle Eastern and Balkan cuisines. Turkish cuisine has in turn influenced those and other neighbouring cuisines, including that of western Europe...

, and Central Europe
Central Europe
Central Europe or alternatively Middle Europe is a region of the European continent lying between the variously defined areas of Eastern and Western Europe...

an (especially Austrian and Hungarian) cuisines. Each region has its own peculiarities and variations. Among traditional Serbian foods are ćevapčići
Cevapcici
Ćevapi or ćevapčići is a grilled dish of minced meat, a type of kebab, found traditionally in the countries of southeastern Europe. They are considered a national dish in Bosnia and Herzegovina and in Serbia...

, pljeskavica
Pljeskavica
Pljeskavica is a Serbian patty dish popular in the Balkan region of Southeastern Europe.Pljeskavica is eaten in Serbia, Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia and Croatia, and can be found in Romania, and Bulgaria. Traditional pljeskavica is made from mixture of ground meats...

, sarma
Sarma (food)
Sarma is a dish of grape, cabbage or chard leaves rolled around a filling usually based on minced meat. It is found in the cuisines of the former Ottoman Empire from the Middle East to the Balkans and Central Europe.-Etymology and names:...

, pasulj
Pasulj
Pasulj is a white or brown bean dish, considered a traditional dish in Serbian and Bosnian cuisine, though it is nowadays popular throughout many Balkan nations...

, burek, gibanica
Gibanica
Gibanica , pron. gheebanitsa, is a traditional Balkan pastry dish, usually made with white cheese, now popular throughout the Balkans.Gibanica is a traditional dish in parts of Balkan region...

, ajvar
Ajvar
Ajvar and aijvar is relish, made principally from red bell peppers, with eggplant, garlic and chili pepper. Ajvar originates in the Serbian cuisine, and was therefore long known as "Serbian salad" or "Serbian vegetable caviar"...

. The national drink is Slivovitz
Slivovitz
Slivovitz or Slivovitsais a distilled beverage made from Damson plums. It is frequently called plum brandy, and in the Balkans is part of the category of drinks called rakia...

 (šljivovica).


Sports


Sports in Serbia revolve mostly around team sports: football, basketball, volleyball, handball
Team handball
Handball is a team sport in which two teams of seven players each pass a ball to throw it into the goal of the other team...

, water polo
Water polo
Water polo is a team water sport. The playing team consists of six field players and one goalkeeper. The winner of the game is the team that scores more goals. Game play involves swimming, treading water , players passing the ball while being defended by opponents, and scoring by throwing into a...

, and, most recently, tennis.

Milorad Čavić
Milorad Cavic
Milorad Čavić is an American-born Serbian swimmer.-Swimming career:...

 and Nađa Higl
Nađa Higl
Nađa Higl is a Serbian swimmer...

 in swimming, Olivera Jevtić
Olivera Jevtic
Olivera Jevtić is a Serbian long-distance runner. She is based in her native city of Užice, Serbia. Jevtić's coach is Slavko Kuzmanović, and she competes for the running club "Mladost"...

, Dragutin Topić
Dragutin Topic
-Career:He is a World junior record holder with 2.37 when he won World Junior Championships 1990, three weeks before his win at European Championships. In the same year Topić received the golden badge award for best athlete of Yugoslavia. Topic has set five national records, and claimed four...

 in athletics, Aleksandar Karakašević
Aleksandar Karakasevic
Aleksandar Karakašević is a Serbian table tennis player and has been claimed by many to be one of the most talented players in the world. His incredible feeling and powerful backhand has helped him win against some of the top players in the world. He won a bronze medal on 2011 European Championship...

 in table tennis, Jasna Šekarić
Jasna Šekaric
|- bgcolor="#eeeeee" align=center! colspan="4" | Competed as an Jasna Šekarić |- bgcolor="#eeeeee" align=center! colspan="4" | Competed as an Jasna Šekarić |- bgcolor="#eeeeee" align=center! colspan="4" | Competed as an Jasna Šekarić (Cyrillic: Јасна Шекарић, née Brajković (Брајковић) (born...

 in shooting are also very popular athletes in Serbia.

The two main football clubs in Serbia are Red Star Belgrade
Red Star Belgrade
Red Star Belgrade is a football club from Belgrade, Serbia. The club is a part of the Red Star Sports Society.Red Star Belgrade is the most successful Serbian club, with a record of 25 national championships and 23 national cups in both Serbian and ex-Yugoslav competitions...

 and FK Partizan
FK Partizan
Fudbalski klub Partizan is a professional football club based in Belgrade, Serbia. In its long history, FK Partizan won as many as 37 trophies. The club is the holder of 23 national championships, 12 national cups and 1 national supercup, and has also won the Mitropa Cup in 1978...

, both from capital Belgrade. Red Star is the only Serbian and former Yugoslav club that has won a UEFA
UEFA
The Union of European Football Associations , almost always referred to by its acronym UEFA is the administrative and controlling body for European association football, futsal and beach soccer....

 competition, winning the 1991 European Cup in Bari
Bari
Bari is the capital city of the province of Bari and of the Apulia region, on the Adriatic Sea, in Italy. It is the second most important economic centre of mainland Southern Italy after Naples, and is well known as a port and university city, as well as the city of Saint Nicholas...

, Italy. The same year in Tokyo, Japan, the club won the Intercontinental Cup
Intercontinental Cup (football)
The European/South American Cup, commonly referred to as the World Club Championship, Intercontinental Cup or Toyota Cup, was a football competition endorsed by UEFA and CONMEBOL, contested between the winners of the European Cup and the South American Copa Libertadores...

. Partizan is the first Eastern European football club which played European Cup final (in 1966). The matches between two rival clubs are known as "Eternal derby
Eternal derby (Serbia)
The Eternal derby also called the Belgrade derby is a match between the fiercest city rivals Red Star and Partizan, two of the biggest and most popular sports societies in Serbia. Rivalry is present in a number of different sports but the most intensive matches are between football, basketball,...

".
Serbia's national football team
Serbia national football team
The Serbia national football team represents Serbia in association football and is controlled by the Football Association of Serbia, the governing body for football in Serbia. Serbia's home ground is Stadion Crvena Zvezda in Belgrade and their last head coach was Vladimir Petrović...

 made their first appearance during the qualifying rounds for Euro 2008 although they did not qualify for Euro 2008. During the qualifying tournament for the World Cup 2010, Serbia won the first place in its group and consequently qualified directly for the 2010 World Cup Championship. Serbian SuperLiga
Serbian Superliga
Serbian SuperLiga is a Serbian professional league for football clubs. At the top of the Serbian football league system, it is the country's primary football competition. It is contested by 16 clubs, operating a system of promotion and relegation with the Serbian First League...

, is the highest professional league in the country. The 2009/2010 season champion was FK Partizan
FK Partizan
Fudbalski klub Partizan is a professional football club based in Belgrade, Serbia. In its long history, FK Partizan won as many as 37 trophies. The club is the holder of 23 national championships, 12 national cups and 1 national supercup, and has also won the Mitropa Cup in 1978...

, followed by Red Star Belgrade
Red Star Belgrade
Red Star Belgrade is a football club from Belgrade, Serbia. The club is a part of the Red Star Sports Society.Red Star Belgrade is the most successful Serbian club, with a record of 25 national championships and 23 national cups in both Serbian and ex-Yugoslav competitions...

 in the second place, and FK Vojvodina
FK Vojvodina
FK Vojvodina is a football club from Novi Sad, Serbia. The club currently competes in the Serbian SuperLiga. FK Vojvodina is the third oldest football club in Serbia's SuperLiga, after OFK Beograd which was founded in 1911 and FK Javor which was founded in 1912.-History:FK Vojvodina was founded...

 in the third.
Serbia is one of the traditional powerhouses of world basketball, winning various FIBA World Championship
FIBA World Championship
The FIBA World Championship is an international basketball competition contested by the men's national teams of the members of the International Basketball Federation , the sport's global governing body...

s, multiple EuroBasket
Eurobasket
The EuroBasket, also referred to as the FIBA European Basketball Championship, is the main basketball competition contested biennially by the men's national teams governed by FIBA Europe, the European zone within the International Basketball Federation. The championship was first held in 1935 and...

 and Olympic medals
Basketball at the Summer Olympics
Basketball has been a Summer Olympics sport for men consistently since 1936. Prior to its inclusion as a medal sport, it was held as demonstration event in 1904 and 1932, both in the United States. Women's basketball was played in the Olympics only since 1976....

 (albeit as FR Yugoslavia). Serbia's national basketball team is considered the successor to the successful Yugoslavia national basketball team
Yugoslavia national basketball team
The Yugoslavian national basketball team represented the Kingdom and socialist Yugoslavia. Its of governing body was the Basketball Federation of Yugoslavia, whose seat was in Belgrade....

. Serbia has won FIBA world championships five times and won second place in the 2009 European championship. Players from Serbia made deep footprint in history of basketball, having success both in the top leagues of Europe and in the NBA
National Basketball Association
The National Basketball Association is the pre-eminent men's professional basketball league in North America. It consists of thirty franchised member clubs, of which twenty-nine are located in the United States and one in Canada...

. Many Serbians have played in the NBA such as Vlade Divac
Vlade Divac
Vlade Divac is a retired Yugoslav and Serbian professional basketball player who spent most of his career in the NBA. At , he played center and was known for his passing skills...

, Predrag Stojaković
Peja Stojaković
Predrag Stojaković , also known by his nickname Peja , is a Serbian professional basketball player who last played for the Dallas Mavericks of the National Basketball Association . Standing at 6 ft 10 , Stojaković plays the small forward position...

, Nenad Krstić
Nenad Krstic
Nenad Krstić is a Serbian professional basketball player for CSKA Moscow. Krstić is officially listed at 7'0" tall.-KK Partizan:...

, Darko Miličić
Darko Milicic
Darko Miličić is a Serbian professional basketball center for the Minnesota Timberwolves of the National Basketball Association . He was selected by the Detroit Pistons as the second overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft after LeBron James, and ahead of players such as Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh,...

, and Vladimir Radmanović
Vladimir Radmanovic
Vladimir Radmanović is a Serbian professional basketball player who last played for the Golden State Warriors of the National Basketball Association...

.

Basketball League of Serbia
Naša Sinalko Liga
-Champions:* 2006–07 to present: Basketball League of Serbia-Championship winning teams:* Including titles in SFR Yugoslavia, FR Yugoslavia, Serbia and Montenegro and Serbia-Euroleague:-Eurocup:Ex. European Cup Winner's Cup, Saporta Cup...

 is the highest professional basketball in Serbia. For the eighth consecutive year, KK Partizan
KK Partizan
Košarkaški klub Partizan is a Serbian professional basketball club. It is part of the multi-sports Belgrade-based club Partizan. The club competes in the Serbian League, Adriatic League and the Euroleague....

 is currently the reigning champion of the league, followed by KK Crvena Zvezda
KK Crvena zvezda
Košarkaški klub Crvena zvezda is a professional basketball club based in Belgrade, Serbia. Its name Crvena zvezda means Red Star and it's part of the Red Star Belgrade sports society ....

. KK Partizan
KK Partizan
Košarkaški klub Partizan is a Serbian professional basketball club. It is part of the multi-sports Belgrade-based club Partizan. The club competes in the Serbian League, Adriatic League and the Euroleague....

 was the European champion in 1992 with curiosity of winning the title, although playing all but one of the games (crucial quarter-final game vs. Knorr
Virtus Bologna
-Notable players: Marco Bonamico 9 seasons: '75-'76, '77-'78, '80-'86, '88-'89 Carlo Caglieris 6 seasons: '75-'81 Pietro Generali 6 seasons: '75-'76, '78-'83 Gianni Bertolotti 5 seasons: '75-'80 Terry Driscoll 3 seasons: '75-'78 Eric Luc Leclerc 1 season: '75-'76 Luigi Serafini 2 seasons: '75-'77...

) away from home; FIBA decided not to allow teams from Former Yugoslavia play their home games at their home venues, because of open hostilities in the region. KK Partizan was not allowed to defend their title in the 1992–1993 season, because of UN sanctions.

Serbian tennis players Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic is a Serbian professional tennis player who has been ranked world no. 1 by the Association of Tennis Professionals since 4 July 2011. He has won four Grand Slam singles titles: the 2008 and 2011 Australian Open, the 2011 Wimbledon Championships, and the 2011 US Open...

, Ana Ivanović
Ana Ivanovic
Ana Ivanović is a former world no. 1 Serbian tennis player. As of November 7, 2011, she is ranked 22th on the WTA rankings. She beat Dinara Safina to win the 2008 French Open and was the runner-up in singles at the 2007 French Open and the 2008 Australian Open...

, Jelena Janković
Jelena Janković
Jelena Janković is a former world no. 1 professional tennis player from Serbia. She reached the final of the 2008 US Open and won the 2007 Wimbledon Mixed Doubles title. Janković is ranked world no...

, Nenad Zimonjić
Nenad Zimonjic
Nenad Zimonjić is a professional Serbian tennis player who is currently ranked World No. 3 in men's doubles. He is the second tennis doubles player from Serbia to hold the World No.1, after Slobodan Živojinović.-Career:...

, Janko Tipsarević
Janko Tipsarevic
Janko Tipsarević is a Serbian tennis player. His career-high ranking is No. 9, achieved on 14 November 2011. He is the 117th player in history to crack the top 10....

 and Viktor Troicki
Viktor Troicki
Viktor Troicki is a Serbian professional tennis player. He has Serb and Russian ethnic roots. His paternal grandparents emigrated from Tver and Rostov-on-Don to Serbia in 1917. His career-high ranking is no. 12, achieved on 6 June 2011. He won his first ATP singles title at the 2010 Kremlin Cup,...

 are very successful and led to a popularisation of tennis in Serbia. Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic is a Serbian professional tennis player who has been ranked world no. 1 by the Association of Tennis Professionals since 4 July 2011. He has won four Grand Slam singles titles: the 2008 and 2011 Australian Open, the 2011 Wimbledon Championships, and the 2011 US Open...

, in particular, is currently the World number 1 tennis player and was the founder of an ATP tennis tournament, Serbia Open
Serbia Open
The Serbia Open is an ATP World Tour 250 series men's tennis tournament held in Belgrade, Serbia. It is currently played on outdoor clay courts. The event was held for the first time in 2009, from May 4–10...

. Other well-known players are Monika Seles and Jelena Dokić
Jelena Dokic
Jelena Dokić is an Australian female professional tennis player.During the height of her career, she played for Serbia and Montenegro and reached a career-high ranking of World No. 4 on 19 August 2002. After several family-related difficulties , she slowly slipped down the rankings in 2006...

. The Serbia men national team
Serbia Davis Cup team
The Serbian Davis Cup team represents Serbia in the Davis Cup tennis competition. The team started playing in 2007, following the split of Serbia and Montenegro.Serbia is the current winner of the Davis Cup....

 won the 2010 Davis Cup
2010 Davis Cup
The 2010 Davis Cup was the 99th edition of the most important annual tournament among national teams in men's tennis worldwide...



Serbia and Italy were host nations at 2005 Men's European Volleyball Championship. The Serbia men's national volleyball team
Serbia men's national volleyball team
The Serbia men's national volleyball team is the national team of Serbia.FIVB considers Serbia as the inheritor of the records of SFR Yugoslavia, FR Yugoslavia and Serbia and Montenegro....

 is the direct descendant of Yugoslavia men's national volleyball team
Yugoslavia men's national volleyball team
The Yugoslavia men's national volleyball team was the national team of Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.For the later official volleyball teams, see:* Bosnia and Herzegovina men's national volleyball team* Croatia men's national volleyball team...

. Serbia won the bronze medal at the 2007 Men's European Volleyball Championship
2007 Men's European Volleyball Championship
The 25th Men's European Volleyball Championship was the first continental volleyball competition hosted by Russia. Championship took place from September 6 to September 16, 2007, and was won by Spain.-Teams:Pool A – Saint Petersburg...

 held in Moscow, Russia.

Serbia men's national water polo team
Serbia men's national water polo team
The Serbia men's national water polo team represents Serbia in international water polo competitions and is controlled by the Water Polo Association of Serbia...

 is the reigning Water polo world champion
Water polo at the 2009 World Aquatics Championships – Men's tournament
The men's water polo tournament at the 2009 World Aquatics Championships in Rome was held from July 20 to August 1. It was won by Serbia.-Teams:-Preliminary round:All times are Central European Summer Time -Tie-breaking criteria:...

 winnig the 2009 World Championships
2009 World Aquatics Championships
The 2009 World Aquatics Championships or the XIII FINA World Championships were celebrated in Rome, Italy in 2009 from July 17 to August 2. The 2009 Championships featured competition in all 5 aquatics disciplines: diving, swimming, open water swimming, synchronized swimming and water polo.Rome won...

 in Rome, Italy. Serbia has won three European Championships (2001
2001 Men's European Water Polo Championship
The 2001 Men's European Water Polo Championship was the 25th edition of the bi-annual event, organised by the Europe's governing body in aquatics, the Ligue Européenne de Natation...

, 2003
2003 Men's European Water Polo Championship
The 2003 Men's European Water Polo Championship was the 26th edition of the event, organised by the Europe's governing body in aquatics, the Ligue Européenne de Natation...

 and 2006
2006 Men's European Water Polo Championship
The 2006 Men's European Water Polo Championship was the 27-th edition of the event organised by the Europe's governing body in aquatics, the Ligue Européenne de Natation...

), finished as runner-up in 2008
2008 Men's European Water Polo Championship
The 2008 Men's European Water Polo Championship was the 28th edition of the bi-annual event, organised by the Europe's governing body in aquatics, the Ligue Européenne de Natation. The event took place in the Aquatic Centre Málaga in Málaga, Spain from July 4 to July 13, 2008...

, won two World Championships (2005 and 2009) and won bronze medal at 2008 Summer Olympics
2008 Summer Olympics
The 2008 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXIX Olympiad, was a major international multi-sport event that took place in Beijing, China, from August 8 to August 24, 2008. A total of 11,028 athletes from 204 National Olympic Committees competed in 28 sports and 302 events...

 held in Beijing.

Sources




External links