Currency: Serbian dinar (RSD)
Calling Code: 381
Serbia, officially the Republic of Serbia , the
sovereign is a country located at the crossroads of middle and
southeast Europe in the southern part of the Pannonian Plain and the
center of the Balkan Peninsula. It mainly covers the Balkan
Peninsula and , to a lesser extent , the Pannonian Plain . Serbia
borders the Hungarian border in the north, Romania in the northeast
, Bulgaria in the east , Northern Macedonia in the south, Albania
with the southwestand Montenegro , and in the west with Croatia and
Bosnia and Herzegovina (entity Republika Srpska ). Serbia excluding
Kosovo and Metohija has a population of about 7 million, while with
Kosmet it has an estimated 8.8 million inhabitants. The capital is
Belgrade , which is one of the oldest and largest cities in
Southeast Europe . With a population of 1,659,440 in the wider area,
according to the 2011 census , it is the administrative and economic
center of the country. The official language is Serbian and the
official currency is Serbian Dinar .
After Slovenian migration to the Balkans ( 6th century ), Serbs established several states in the early Middle Ages . The Serbian Kingdom was recognized by Rome and the Byzantine Empire in 1217, culminating in 1346 as a relatively short-lived Serbian Empire .
Until the mid- 16th century , all of modern Serbia was part of the Ottoman Empire , until it was interrupted by the Habsburg Monarchy , which began to spread to Central Serbia from the end of the 17th century and maintained a foothold in modern Vojvodina . In the early 19th century, the Serbian Revolution established the nation-state as the first constitutional monarchy in the region, which later expanded its territory.
Serbia, after the catastrophic losses in World War I and unification with the former Habsburg Crown of Vojvodina (and other territories), became a co-founder and integral part of a common state with most of the Southern Slavs originally in the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (later renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia ), then in the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia , the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro . In 2006, after a referendum was held in the Republic of Montenegro, the peoples dispersed peacefully and the State Union ceased to exist, and the Republic of Serbia, on the basis of the Constitutional Charter , continued state-legal continuity with Serbia and Montenegro.
Introduction of Serbia
Republic of Serbia is located in Southeastern Europe in central part of Balkan Peninsula. About 20 % of the country is occupied by Pannonian lowland. North part of the country is dominated by predominantly plains. Farther in the south the terrain becomes more mountainous and rugged. Serbia contains 4 mountain ranges. Dinaric Alps in the west that extend to the northwest and southeast, Stara Planina (Old Mountains) and Eastern Serbian Mountains are located in the East extending into neighboring Bulgaria. And Rila- Rhodope mountain range take much of the country's south. Serbia's highest mountain is Mount Dzheravitsa at a height of 2656 meter.
Emergency numbers while traveling to Serbia
Fire Department 93
Language of Serbia
Official language in Serbia is Serbia (what a suprise). Although in some regions people speak Hungarian, Albanian, Slovak, Romanian and Ruthenian.
Religion in Serbia
Most of Serbs belong to Orthodox Church. Christianity plays an important role in the lives of these people. For a long time monasteries and churches kept the spirit of people and helped preserve Serbian national identity. Even if the person might be very religious the institution of the Church is still highly regarded. Besides the Republic of Serbia has a fairly large Muslim community (5%) and Catholics (4%).
Prehistoric and Antique Serbia
Starchevo-Krish culture dates back to the 7th – 5th millennia BC. e. The tribes of this culture were engaged in cattle breeding, hunting and fishing. They settled in clay-coated wicker houses near rivers. Artifacts are represented by polished stone axes and rough kitchen ceramics. The bearers of the culture belonged to the Mediterranean race, which sharply distinguished them from the local Mesolithic Cro-Magnons, descendants of the Lepenski-Vira culture. Starchevo-Krish culture was supplanted by a wave of Anatolian farmers belonging to the Vinca culture.
The lifetime of Vinca culture is not precisely defined. The earliest moment of occurrence is considered the VI millennium BC. e., its extinction dates from the middle of the V millennium BC. e. or the beginning of the IV millennium BC. e. Settlements are represented by dugouts with clay stoves, later huts with gable roofs began to be built. They totaled up to five rooms, the floors were wooden. The bull’s head was reinforced above the entrance to the house. The culture is also characterized by a large number of clay figurines of men and women found.
During the existence of the Roman Empire, all of modern Serbia was part of the Roman state (most of the territory of modern Serbia, then inhabited mainly by Illyrian tribes, was part of the province of Upper Moesia). After the empire was divided into 2 parts around 395, these lands were assigned to the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) empire. The Romanization of Upper Moesia remained insignificant and, in contrast to the coastal regions, there were no large urban settlements, with the exception of Singidunum (Belgrade), Vimination (Kostolac) and Naissus (Niš).
Medieval Serbian State
The resettlement of the Slavs and the creation of statehood
From the middle of the VI century, the gradual expansion of Slavic tribes began on these lands, accompanied by the devastation of the Balkans. The ancestors of the Serbs settled the lands south of the Sava to the Adriatic. They assimilated or ousted the former inhabitants of this territory - Illyrians, Celts, Greeks and Romans - to cities, mainly on the coast, as well as to the mountains of the Dinaric Highlands and Albania. In some places, Illyrian and Wallachian enclaves arose in the lands inhabited by the Slavs.
The process of state formation among the Serbs was slowed by the isolation of various Serbian communities and the lack of economic ties between them. The early history of the Serbs is characterized by the formation of several centers of statehood, which in turn became centers of unification of the Serbian lands. Proto-state formations formed on the coast - Sklavinia Pagania, Zahumye, Travuniya and Duklja, in the interior (the eastern part of modern Bosnia and Sandzak) - the Serbian principality. Nominally, all Serbian territories were part of Byzantium, but their dependence was weak. From the 7th century, the Christianization of Serbian tribes began, which ended in the second half of the 9th century with the direct participation of the disciples of Saints Cyril and Methodius.
In the middle of the 9th century, under the influence of an attack on the Serb regions of the Proto-Bulgarians, princely power and a state were formed in the Serbian principality, headed by Prince (zupan) Vlastimir, who managed to drive back the Bulgarians and subordinate part of the coastal territories. The hereditary principle of the transfer of power, however, did not work out, which led at the end of the 9th century to civil strife, weakening of Raska and its transition under the rule of the First Bulgarian Kingdom, and then, after its fall, Byzantium. Some strengthening of Serbia in the middle of the 10th century during the reign of Prince Caslav, which significantly expanded the territory of the state, was replaced after its death in 950 by the collapse of the country. At the same time, the active penetration of bogomilism from Bulgaria began, which also contributed to the weakening of central authority in Raska. In 1040-1041, Belgrade and the Morava Valley became the center of a mass Slavic uprising led by Peter Delyan against Byzantium.
In the middle of the XI century, the center for the unification of Serbian lands moved to Dukla, where an independent principality was formed, headed by Stefan Vojislav. Unlike Byzantine-oriented Raska, Zeta sought support in the West, primarily in Catholic Rome and among the Normans of southern Italy. In 1077, the ruler of the Zeta was crowned king of the Serbs. Under Konstantin Bodin, at the end of the 11th century, Duklja established control over the internal Serbian regions, including Raska and Bosnia, and the Bar became the center of a separate Serbian church metropolis subordinate to the pope. However, after the death of Konstantin Bodin in 1101, the Duklian kingdom fell apart.
In the mid-12th century, the strengthening of one
of the Serbian state formations, Raska, began, which gradually freed
itself from the power of Byzantium. In 1168, Stefan Nemanja, the
founder of the Nemanichi dynasty, became the supreme zupan of Raska.
If at the beginning of his reign he remained a faithful vassal of
the empire, then after the death of Emperor Manuel I, Stefan
launched a struggle for independence and the unification of Serbian
lands. As a result of several military campaigns, by the end of the
XII century, most of the lands inhabited by Serbs, including the
coastal regions, Zeta, Kosovo and, temporarily, Northern Macedonia,
became part of a single state. Stefan Nemani’s war with Dubrovnik
was unsuccessful, but the Dubrovnik merchants received from him the
right to free trade in Serbia, which subsequently contributed to the
recovery of the country's economy. In 1190, the Byzantine Empire
recognized the independence of Serbia, and in 1217, the son of
Stefan Nemani, Stefan the First-Crowned, was crowned king of the
Serbs. In 1219, thanks to the activities of St. Sava, an
autocephalous Serbian church was created with a center in the
The heyday of Serbia
Under the immediate successors of Stephen the First Crown, the Serbian state experienced a short period of stagnation and increased influence of neighboring powers, primarily Hungary. At the turn of the XIII and XIV centuries, Serbia was divided into two states: in the north, in Machva, Belgrade, the Branichev region, as well as in Usor and Salt, Stefan Dragutin ruled based on Hungary, the rest of the Serbian lands were ruled by his younger brother Stefan Milutin focusing mainly on Byzantium.
Despite the temporary division of the state, the strengthening of Serbia continued: a centralized system of local governance was formed, law was reformed, an internal communications system was created, and the transition to conditional holding and a pronary system in land relations began. At the same time, the influence of the higher clergy and the church intensified. Monasticism was actively developing, many Orthodox monasteries arose (including Studenica, Жić, Mileshevo, Gracanitsa, as well as the Hilandar Monastery on Mount Athos), and their churches were built in accordance with the already established original Serbian architectural tradition (“Rash school”). The belonging of Serbia to the Byzantine-Orthodox world was finally fixed, the Catholic influence was practically eliminated, and the Bogomils were expelled from the country. At the same time, the process of byzantization of the public administration system began, a pompous royal court was created on the model of Constantinople. There was an upsurge in mining (largely due to the influx of Saxon settlers), agriculture and trade, in which Dubrovnik merchants had a decisive role. The population of the country increased rapidly, cities grew.
Milutin and his son Stefan Dechansky also managed to significantly expand the territory of the state. Although Belgrade, Usora, and Soli were lost after Dragutin’s death, Serbia included Nis, northern Macedonia and Dirrahiy, and Skopje became the new capital. In 1330, at the Battle of Velbuda, Serbian forces defeated Bulgaria and put an end to Bulgarian hegemony in the Balkans.
The heyday of the medieval Serbian state occurred during the reign of Stephen Dusan (1331–1355). During a series of military campaigns, Stefan Dusan subjugated all of Macedonia, Albania, Epirus, Thessaly and the western part of Central Greece. As a result, Serbia has become the largest state in Southeast Europe. In 1346, Stefan Dusan was crowned king of the Serbs and Greeks, and the Archbishop of Pecs was proclaimed patriarch. The Serbo-Greek kingdom of Stefan Dusan combined Serbian and Byzantine traditions, the Greeks retained the highest positions in the cities and their land holdings, culture had a strong Greek influence. In architecture, a Vardarian style developed, the vivid examples of which were the temples in Gracanitsa, Pec and Lesnov. In 1349, the “Lawyer of Stefan Dusan” was published, which formalized and codified the norms of Serbian law. The central authority sharply strengthened, a ramified administrative system was formed along the Byzantine model, while maintaining the essential role of the assemblies (sabors) of the Serbian aristocracy. The tsar’s domestic policy, based on a large land nobility and leading to the expansion of its prerogatives, however, did not contribute to the strengthening and consolidation of the state, especially given the ethnic diversity of the Dushan state.
Fall and Turkish conquest
Shortly after the death of Stephen Dushan, his state collapsed. Part of the Greek lands again came under the rule of Byzantium, and the rest formed semi-independent principalities. In Serbia proper, large landowners (rulers) left the central government, began to pursue their own policies, mint coins and collect taxes: the reign of Balsic was established in Zeta, the Mrnyavchevich in Macedonia, Prince Lazar, Nicola Altomanovic and Vuk Brankovich in Old Serbia and Kosovo . The unity of the Serbian lands after the death of the last representative of the Nemanich dynasty, Stefan Uros V in 1371, was supported almost exclusively by the unity of the Orthodox Church in the person of the Pecsk Patriarchate, which in 1375 achieved canonical recognition by the Patriarchate of Constantinople. In 1377, the Bosnia’s Serbian crown was taken by the ban of Bosnia, Stefan Tvrtko I, however, although Prince Lazar and Vuk Brankovich recognized his royal title, the power of Tvrtko I was purely nominal. The internecine wars between the princes greatly weakened the defense of the Serbian lands in the face of the growing Turkish threat. Already in 1371, in the Battle of Maritsa, the Turks defeated the troops of the South Serb rulers, led by King Vukashin, after which the territory of modern Macedonia came under the rule of the Ottoman Empire.
An attempt to unite the Serbian lands to organize a rebuff to the Turks, made by Prince Lazar with the support of the Serbian Orthodox Church, was unsuccessful: on June 15, 1389 (on the day of St. Vitus - Vidovdan) in the battle on Kosovo, despite the heroic efforts of the Serbs, they were defeated . Prince Lazarus is dead. Although his son Stefan Lazarevich retained his power, he was forced to recognize the suzerainty of the Ottoman Empire and participate in Turkish campaigns. The battle of Kosovo and the deed of Milos Obilic, who killed the Ottoman Sultan Murad I at the beginning of the battle, later became one of the most important subjects of Serbian national folklore, a symbol of self-sacrifice and unity of the Serbian people in the struggle for independence.
In the first half of the XV century, when the onslaught of the Turks temporarily weakened due to a threat from Tamerlane, Stefan Lazarevich attempted to restore the Serbian state. He took the Byzantine title of despot and, relying on an alliance with Hungary, which transferred Belgrade and Machva to him, again subjugated Zeta (except Primorye), Srebrenica and a number of South Serbian regions. The central administration was revived, the prince's power was strengthened, mining and urban crafts were actively encouraged, the ideas of humanism and the Renaissance began to penetrate into Serbia. Architecture (the “Moravian school”, represented, in particular, by the monasteries of Resava and Ravanica) and literature (works by Patriarch Danil III and Stephen Lazarevich himself) experienced a new upsurge. The capital of Serbian despotism was Belgrade, in which a well-fortified fortress was built, partially preserved to this day. Although Nis and Krusevac were lost as a result of the Turks' new invasion in 1425, and then Belgrade came under Hungarian rule, the new capital of Serbia, Smederevo, founded by despot George Brankovich, experienced its heyday and won the glory of the second Constantinople. But already in 1438 the next Ottoman offensive began. In 1439, Smederevo fell. The long campaign of the Hungarian troops Janos Hunyadi in 1443-1444 allowed the Turks to be expelled from the territory of Serbia and to restore its independence for a short time. However, the defeat of the crusaders near Varna in 1444, the defeat of the Hungarian army in the Second Battle of Kosovo in 1448 and the fall of Constantinople in 1453 determined the fate of the country. In 1454, Novo Brdo and Pristina were captured, and in 1456 Belgrade was besieged. Finally, in 1459 Smederevo fell. Bosnia was conquered by 1463, Herzegovina by 1482, and finally Mountain Zeta in 1499. The Serbian state ceased to exist.
Social and economic development
The basis of the economy of the medieval Serbian state was agriculture, primarily agriculture, as well as cattle breeding, especially in mountainous areas. Significantly longer than in Bulgaria and Croatia, Serbia retained the importance of large patriarchal families - friends and the communal system. In peasant farming, collective ownership of land continued to dominate. Gradually, however, the processes of feudalization of land relations and enslavement of peasants intensified. Already in the "Lawyer of Stephen Dushan" the dependent position of the peasantry was legally enshrined and the right to transfer was canceled. Among the dependent categories of peasants, the merokhs , who have hereditary rights to their allotment and are obliged to the feudal lord for working duties (100 days a year), Vlachs — cattle breeders paying natural rents to the feudal lord (mainly to monasteries), and lads who were the personal property of the master . No significant peasant uprisings have been noted in medieval Serbia. The feudal ownership of the land was of two types: hereditary unconditional ownership - the tower, and conditional holding for service under the king or other large aristocrat - pronity, and the role of the latter steadily increased. The largest landowner was the Orthodox Church. The immune rights of the feudal lords were limited to the preservation of the royal court, the fiscal and military duties of landowners to the crown. The monasteries possessed the broadest immunity, the possessions of which actually turned into feudal lords and which subjugated the small feudal lords - warriors.
From the end of the 12th century, the importance of mining began to grow for the country's economy. The centers of extraction of copper, iron, gold, silver and lead were Novo-Brdo, the Kopaonik plateau and the Rudnitskaya planina. Field development was mainly carried out by German colonists. Legally, the supreme ownership of the mines belonged to the king, but in fact they were in the possession of Saxon, Dubrovnik and Kotor merchants. The mining tax and metal export duties were an essential part of the state budget. The role of mining for the Serbian economy particularly increased during the Turkish invasions, when cultivated land was devastated and the population declined sharply.
Serbian cities were initially extremely underdeveloped and did not play a significant role in the country's economy. The only exceptions were the coastal cities - Kotor, Ulcinj, Budva, Bar, which at an early stage turned into large centers of maritime intermediary trade. With the development of mining and crafts in the XIII century, the revitalization of the cities of the internal regions of Serbia began: Novo Brdo, Pristina, Nis, Branichevo and others. The main export items were metals, honey and leather. Trade gravitated to the Adriatic and was concentrated in the hands of the Dubrovnik, Kotor and Italian merchants. The level of development of city self-government remained low (except for Kotor and some cities of Primorye), they did not play any noticeable role in the political system of Serbia and were governed by the knights appointed by the king.
Serbia ruled by the Ottoman Empire
As a result of the Turkish conquest, Serbian lands were devastated, agriculture fell into decay, mining production almost ceased. A massive outflow of population began over the Danube and the Sava, as a result of which the ethnic territory of the Serbs significantly expanded northward. Serbs were massively resettled on the lands of modern Hungary and Croatia, which were then part of the Habsburg possessions, forming a military estate there. In exchange for military service, guarding the border and participating in battles with the Turks, the border guards received land and were exempted from paying a number of taxes. At the same time, Turks, Vlach cattle breeders and Albanians began to move to the depopulated lowland areas, and especially to the southern regions of the country (Kosovo). The Christian population was limited in civil rights. However, unlike Albania, Bosnia and Macedonia, only a small part of the population converted to Islam in Serbia. The main merit in this belonged to the Pecsk Patriarchate, restored in 1557, which during the Ottoman rule played the role of a center of national and cultural unity of the Serbian people. The Orthodox Church as a whole retained its privileges and possessions and, as a special confessional community (millet), used self-government in cultural and religious matters, including the ability to create primary schools.
After the conquest, a military-prison system was extended to Serbia, in which most of the land was owned by the state and was divided into flax, whose holders are Spahia, were obliged to perform military service. The rest of the land was transferred to church and public organizations (waqfs) or secured on the right of ownership to individual representatives of the Turkish aristocracy (mulk) or the family of the Sultan (Sultan Khas). Administratively, the territory of Serbia became part of the Rumeliya Eylet, and after the Turks conquered Hungary in the middle of the 16th century, the areas north of Niš were transferred to the Buda Eylet. Eylets were divided into sanjaks. The former territory of the Serbian despot formed Smederevsky (after the conquest of Belgrade in 1521 - Belgrade) sandzhak. Like the Greeks, Serbs, having converted to Islam, could rise to public service in public service.
The feudal class of the period of Ottoman domination was represented almost exclusively by Muslims, both Turks and Slavs who converted to Islam (Turchens). The basis of the population was the dependent peasantry - paradise, which had the right of hereditary use of allotments and paying land (haraj) and capitation (jizya) taxes to the Sultan, as well as various payments to the feudal lord. In southern Serbia and the Danube regions, a significant stratum of Vlach pastoralists has been preserved, which enjoys certain privileges and is used for border service. The bulk of the peasants was attached to the land and could not leave it without the permission of the local feudal lord or official.
Since the 16th century, revival of handicraft production and urban life began in Serbia. New urban centers located at the intersection of the trade routes of the Ottoman Empire, primarily Belgrade, captured by the Turks in 1521, which soon became the largest trade and craft center of the Serbian lands, came to the fore. Nevertheless, the cities remained divorced from the district, their growth had practically no effect on the progress of neighboring lands. Handicraft production was organized in an oriental fashion into closed corporations, separate for Muslims and Christians. At first, dominance of foreign capital remained in trade - Dubrovnik, Venetian and Genoese merchants, and orientation towards the Adriatic coast. However, starting from the 17th century, with the weakening Italian city-states, local merchants began to play an increasingly important role in trade. Nevertheless, the economic development of the Serbian lands was still significantly behind the European level.
In the XVII century, the process of the decline of
the Ottoman Empire began. The military system began to decompose,
the Spahis departed from military service and switched to the active
exploitation of their lands and dependent population. Land ownership
gradually began to pass into the hands of trade and craft circles
and the Janissaries and gain a foothold on the right of ownership
(Chiftliks). The central government weakened, the state experienced
a chronic financial crisis. Local feudal lords actually came out of
submission to the Sultan, anarchy reigned in the country, there were
constant internecine clashes between Spakhia, Janissaries and Pasha,
trying to expand their possessions and commit extortionate raids on
the lands of their neighbors. This was accompanied by an increase in
tax and feudal oppression and a significant deterioration in the
position of the Christian majority. The remnants of the autonomy of
the Vlachs were eliminated, and religious antagonism intensified.
In the eighteenth century, the economic growth of northern Serbia and especially Belgrade continued, while the economy of the central and southern regions of the country was in stagnation, which was greatly facilitated by the new ruins during the Austro-Turkish wars of the late XVII - early XVIII centuries. From 1716 to 1739, Northern Serbia was under the control of Austria, which gave a significant impetus to its economic development and the growth of trade, especially the Danube, with Central Europe. After the return of Northern Serbia to the power of the Ottoman Empire in 1739, it retained a special position. The border Belgrade pashalyk was created here, the Turkish population has declined significantly, local authorities began to pass into the hands of the local aristocracy. This was accompanied by the weakening of feudal oppression, the collapse of the spahic system and the acceleration of the development of the economy, especially cattle breeding, oriented to Austria.
Immediately after the Turkish conquest of Serbian lands, migration of part of the Serbs to unoccupied lands by the Turks beyond the Danube and Sava began: in Srem, Bachka, Banat, Slavonia, as well as in northern Bosnia. In southern Hungary (present-day Vojvodina), a Serbian military administration was created with a center in Kupnik (Srem), headed by princes who considered themselves heirs to the rulers of the Serbian despot. Serbs actively participated in the Hungarian-Turkish wars of the late XV - early XVI centuries, however, after the defeat of the Hungarian kingdom under Mojac in 1526, these lands also fell under the control of the Ottoman Empire.
The liberation movement of the Serbian people against Turkish domination developed in two directions: the guiduism, often indistinguishable from ordinary banditry, and the uprisings confined to the wars of the European powers with the Ottoman Empire. At the head of the movement was the Pechersky Patriarchate, which managed to establish political relations with Hungary, Austria and Spain. Already during the Austro-Turkish war of 1593-1606, an uprising against the Turks broke out in Banat, supported by Patriarch Jovan II.
The liberation movement reached its highest rise
during the Holy League war at the end of the 17th century. Serbian
rebels, working in collaboration with the Austrian army, liberated
most of the country. In 1688, Belgrade was taken, the Austrian
troops of General Eneo Piccolomini penetrated into Macedonia.
However, in 1690, the Turks retaliated. The Austrians were driven
out of Serbia, the power of the Ottoman Empire was restored. The
country was devastated, mass repressions against participants in the
uprisings began. In response, Patriarch Arseny III called on the
Serbs to emigrate beyond the Danube. The “Great Relocation of Serbs”
began: tens of thousands of Serbian families left their homes and
moved to Austrian territory: to Banat, Bachka, Srem, Baranya. The
second big wave of migration of Serbs passed after the unsuccessful
war for Austria of 1737-1739 for Austria.
The great resettlement of Serbs has become one of the key events of Serbian history. It caused significant changes in the political and social life of the Serbs, and also seriously changed the ethnic borders of the Serbian people. Southern Serbia (Raska, Kosovo and Metohija) lost the dominant Serbian component. In place of the Serbs who left these regions, Albanians and Turks moved in large numbers. Since that time, Raska also received the Turkish name Sanjak. The ethnic map of Central Serbia has changed less, however, from there the Serbian population also went north. The great resettlement led to a sharp increase in the number of Serbs in the territories of Slavonia, Bachka, Baranya and Southern Hungary.
Relocating the Albanians to the regions of southern Serbia, the Ottoman Empire did its best to incite antagonism between them. Muslim Albanians were in a much more privileged position than the Orthodox Serbs, who had a minimum of rights under the Turks. By betting on the Albanians, Istanbul sought to stop the development of political activity of the Serbs and to prevent among them the growth of the liberation struggle.
Istanbul also sought to limit the political activities of the Orthodox clergy in Serbia. From the first half of the 18th century, the Turks began to appoint patriarchs themselves, who were previously elected at church councils and only approved by the Sultan Berats. Monasteries and churches were plundered by Muslims, and economic oppression of the clergy began. Since the late 1730s, they began to appoint the Greeks loyal to the Empire as patriarchs, who, in turn, sought to pursue a Hellenization policy and simply plundered the property of the patriarchy. In 1766, the Pecsk Patriarchate was abolished, and a year later the Ohrid Archbishopric, subordinate to the Patriarch of Constantinople. This deprived the Orthodox population of the Western Balkans of the institution, which was previously one of the factors of its consolidation.
The role of the Pecsk patriarch in the liberation movement forced the Ottoman Empire to reconsider its attitude towards the Serbian Orthodox Church: the patriarch began to be appointed from Istanbul, accelerated Hellenization of the church began, in 1767 the Pecsk patriarchy was abolished, and the Serbian church was subordinated to Constantinople. Soon the Orthodox Church lost its importance as a unifying force in the liberation struggle. After the defeat of Austria in the Austro-Turkish war of 1737-1739, a temporary decline in the liberation movement took place. A new stage in the struggle began after the Russo-Turkish war of 1768-1774 and the signing of the Kuchuk-Kainardzhi peace, which granted Russia the right to protect the Orthodox population in the Ottoman Empire. During the years of the war of Austria and Russia with Turkey in 1787-1792 in Serbia, primarily in the Belgrade Pashalyk, a major uprising broke out against the Ottoman authorities. Serbian volunteer units were formed, fighting in the Austrian army, which, however, was defeated.
After the war, the Turkish authorities began to significantly expand the powers of local authorities in Belgrade Pashalyk and took measures to limit the autocracy of the Janissaries. But already in 1801, in the conditions of the weakening of central power, the Janissaries made a coup and seized power in Belgrade. This was followed by the division of lands, an increase in feudal payments, the removal of the local aristocracy from participation in the administration and bloody repressions against the Serbs. In response, in 1804, the First Serbian Uprising broke out in Belgrade Pashalyk. At the head of the rebels stood the Grand Duke Karageorgii. Soon, almost the entire territory of the pashalyk was liberated from the Turkish authorities. If initially the rebels opposed only the dominance of the Janissaries, then after the failure of negotiations with the central government and the start of the Russian-Turkish war, they began to focus on achieving independence. The Turks were expelled, their possessions and property redistributed between the Serbs. Central authorities, the local administration, and the judiciary were formed. At the same time, disagreements began between the leaders of the uprising: Karageorgii, who declared himself in 1808 the hereditary supreme leader of the Serbian people, and other Serbian princes. After the conclusion of the Bucharest peace of 1812 and the withdrawal of Russia from the war, a massive offensive by the Turks began. Despite the heroic defense, in 1813 the Turks captured Belgrade. The uprising was crushed, followed by massive repression.