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This is a list of Serbian monarchs.[1]

Contents

Monarchs of medieval Serbian states

In the Middle Ages, the domain of the Serbs included six territories, roughly sorted by importance:

English Name Serbian Name
Rascia Raška
Travunia Travunja, Terbounia
Doclea-Zeta Duklja
Pagania Paganija
Zachlumia Zahumlje
Bosnia Bosna

Serbian dynasties from these principalities fought for the ownership of the Serbian realms, and these lists concentrates on the families and rulers who at some point controlled some of the aforementioned duchies or other conquered regions.

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Earliest rulers

Name Reign Notes
Dervan -626 ruler of White Serbia (Bojka) until 626.
Unknown Archont -680 led the Serbs to the Balkans during the reign of Byzantine emperor Heraclius (626). He died in 680.
Višeslav I 780 unified the Serbian territories.
Radoslav  ? son of Višeslav I.
Prosigoj 822-836 son of Radoslav.

House of Vlastimirović

The House of Vlastimirović controlled the Serbs between ca. 825-850 up to ca. 950.

Picture TitleName Reign Territory Notes
Serb lands04.png Prince
Vlastimir of Serbia
-850 Rascia
Travunija
Konavli
Duklja
son of Prosigoj, ruled around 850, or only up to 825 according to some; founder of House of Vlastimirović. Vlastimir had three sons (Mutimir, Strojimir and Gojnik) and one daughter. His daughter married knez Krajina, son of Beloje, župan of Travunija. Each son had his own domain, but Mutimir, the eldest, was the supreme ruler, his two brothers being subjugated (vassals) to him. The brothers successfully fought off a Bulgarian onslaught by Boris of Bulgaria in 852. Later, the two youngest brothers rebelled against Mutimir, who, as a punishment, let Boris subjugate them.
Serb lands04.png Prince
Mutimir of Serbia
850-891 Rascia
Travunija
Konavli
Duklja
He was the oldest of the three brothers and had the main position after his father's ascession. Mutimir, together with his brothers Gojnik and Strojimir, defeated the Bulgar Army sent by Tsar Boris and led by his son Vladimir.
Seal of Prince Strojimir mirrored.png Zhupans (Vassals)
to Mutimir

Strojimir and
Gojnik
850-856 Rascia
Travunija
Konavli
Duklja
After power struggle between Strojimir and Mutimir, Strojimir and Gojnik was captured and sent as prisoners to Bulgar khan Boris in 855-856. They lost their titles of Zupans of Serbia and were held at Pliska, the Bulgarian capital, but treated well by the Bulgarians, Khan Boris himself chose the wife of Klonimir, the son of Strojimir.
Serb lands04.png Knez
Prvoslav of Serbia
891-893 Serbia He was the eldest son of Mutimir. Prvoslav ruled Serbia briefly for a year when Petar Gojnikovic, the son of Gojnik, returned from Croatia and after a battle defeated Prvoslav in 892, retaking the rule of Serbia. Prvoslav fled to Croatia and his son, Zaharije I, had the goals to rule Serbia but remained in Constantinople for a long period before ruling Serbia 921-924. Stefan Mutimirović and Bran Mutimirović was his two younger brothers who took over his power.
  • Bran (Boren) (younger brother of Pribislav, son of Mutimir), born by 867, pretender to the throne ca. 895
  • Stefan (youngest brother of Pribislav and Bran, son of Mutimir), born ca. 870
  • Prince Petar Gojniković (son of Gojnik, grandson of Vlastimir), born ca. 870, ruled ca. 892 - 918, captured by Bulgarians, died as their prisoner
  • Prince Pavle Branović (son of Bran, grandson of Mutimir), ruled ca. 917 - 921, brought to the throne by the Bulgars, brought down by Byzantines
  • Prince Zaharije Pribisavljević (son of Pribislav, grandson of Mutimir), ruled 921 - 924 (brought to the throne by the Byzantines, removed by the Bulgarians)
924 - 927 Serb throne held by Bulgarians, period of Bulgarian rule (Simeon I of Bulgaria)
  • Prince/Župan Časlav Klonimirović (son of Klonimir, grandson of Strojimir), ruled 927 - ca. 950: Liberated the central Serbian tribes from Bulgarian empire.
  • Prince/Župan Tihomir, ruled from ca.950-ca.980
  • Prince/Župan Ljutomir, ruled from 980-1003
  • Jovan Vladimir (998 - 1018), vassal of the Bulgarians

House of Višević/Višeslavić

The House of Višeslavić ruled over Serbs in Zahumlje from the 10th century until the end of the 12th century.

House of Vojislavljević

The House of Vojislavljević ruled Duklja between the 1050s up to the 1120s.

Picture TitleName Reign Territory Notes
PRINCIPALITY 1050.jpg Knez (Archont)
Vojislav of Duklja
1018 - 1043 Duklja Overthrew the Byzantine supremacy over Serbs in Duklja; founder of the House of Vojislavljević; in 1035 rebelled against the Byzantine Empire, but forced to sign an armistice; went to war again in 1040, which would be continued by his heir and son, Mihajlo. Except Duklja, his realm included Travunija with Konavli and Zahumlje.
Srb mihailo.jpg Grand Prince, King
Mihailo I of Duklja
1050 - 1081 Duklja Grand Prince 1050-1077, King 1077-1081
Konstantin Bodin.jpg King, Tzar
Constantine Bodin
1081 - 1101 Duklja
Dalmatia
Bulgaria
Tsar of Bulgaria as Peter III in 1072
Dobroslav II.jpg King
Dobroslav II
1101 - 1102 Duklja Overthrewn by Vukan I and Kočopar.

Đorđe was overturned by Uroš I of Raška, and later returned to power in Duklja between 1125 and 1131, but the main line of the Vojislavljević ended with him.

Vojislavljevićs / Uroševićs / Vukanovićs

Between 1050 and 1165, the main Serbian state of Raška was ruled by descendants of the aforementioned House of Vojislavljević, but the Byzantine Empire often controlled it as well. In 1118, the main line of the Vojislavljević dynasty was mostly extinguished in Duklja, and Uroš of Raška took control of both Raška and Duklja, which is why he named the Urošević.

  • Petrislav, instated by his father Mihajlo, ruled between 1050s and 1074
  • Vukan and Marko, probably sons of Petrislav, instated by Konstantin Bodin. Vukan was the Grand Župan between 1083 and 1115 while Marko headed administration of a part of the land. Under Byzantine sovereignty after 1094.
  • Uroš I, ruled Raška ca. 1115 - 1131
  • Uroš II, replaced him around 1140 and ruled until 1155
  • Desa, replaced him and ruled for one year, 1155.
  • Uroš II replaced Desa for a second reign from 1155 - 1161.
  • Desa, under his second reign, ruled 1162 - 1166 under Byzantine sovereignty, raised an unsuccessful revolt

After Desa's revolt, in 1165 the Byzantium divided the Serb lands between the four sons of Zavida: Tihomir in Raška, Stracimir in Duklja, Miroslav in Zahumlje and Travunia, and Stefan Nemanja in Toplica (in today's central Serbia). Stefan Nemanja rebelled against his eldest brother Tihomir in 1166, who fled with his brothers Stracimir and Miroslav to Byzantium to seek help. But later on, Stefan Nemanja defeated his Greek army of mercenaries in the same year near the town of Pantino on Kosovo in which poor Tihomir drowned in the River of Sitnica. Nemanja captured his other brothers and made peace with them by giving them rule in their former parts of the land in order to recognise him as the only ruler of Rashka or Serbia. The Nemanjić dynasty was named after Stefan Nemanja and ruled over Serbia until 1371.

House of Nemanjić / The Stefan Dynasty

Coat of Arms of Nemanjićs

The House of Nemanjić ruled the Serb lands between ca. 1166 up to 1371. All Serbian rulers after Stefan Prvovenčani ("the First-Crowned") added the name Stefan (Stephen) before their birth names after ascending the throne as a manner of honoring first rulers of their dynasty Stefan Nemanja and Stefan Prvovenčani. The name Stefan is derived from Greek Stephanos, meaning crowned with wreath. There is no absolutely consistent system for the enumeration of Medieval Serbian monarchs. Some rulers reigned with double names: Stefan Nemanja, Stefan Radoslav, Stefan Vladislav, and Stefan Uroš. While Prvovenčani and Dečanski are epithets, not names, the exact nature of Dragutin and Milutin—names or nicknames—is unclear. However, unlike the names Nemanja, Radoslav, Vladislav, Uroš, and even Dušan, they never appear in the official contemporary sources. Therefore Prvovenčani and Dragutin are most accurately to be numbered simply Stefan I and Stefan II, since those were their only official names. For the basic imperial title of the last Nemanjićs, see article Tsar.

Emperor Stefan Dušan

Nemanjićs in Thessaly

Simeon (Siniša) Uroš, a son of Stefan Uroš III Dečanski by his second (Byzantine) wife, claimed the imperial title in 1355, but was defeated in Serbia. He retreated into Thessaly, from where he dominated much of northern Greece in alliance with various other Serbian noblemen. He and his son reigned as emperor of Serbians and Greeks. After the abdication of Jovan Uroš in 1373, Thessaly passed into the hands of the Angeloi, who recognized Byzantine suzerainty.

House of Balšić

Balšić Coat of Arms

The House of Balšić, "Barons of Coastal Serbia", was a medieval Serbian dynasty that ruled Zeta. It lasted from 1356 until 1435, when it was succeeded by the House of Crnojević.

There were 5 rulers of the dynasty:

House of Mrnjavčević

Coat of Arms of House of Mrnjavčević

The last Serbian emperor (tsar) Stefan Uroš V associated Vukašin Mrnjavčević as king in 1366. The Serbian royal title thus survived in this family, but in fact the authority of these kings was circumscribed by the local nobility and confined to parts of central and eastern Macedonia. The Serbian royal title was also claimed by Tvrtko I of Bosnia, a descendant of Stefan Dragutin, from 1377. Tvrtko I used the titles King of Serbs, of Bosnia, and of the Coastlands from 1377 and King of Rascia, Bosnia, Dalmatia, Croatia, and the Coastlands from 1390, but died in 1391.

House of Lazarević

Serbia proper came under the control of Lazar Hrebeljanović, who had married Milica, a descendant of Stefan Nemanja's eldest son Vukan. The Lazarevići and their successors, the Brankovići, ruled as princes, but were frequently distinguished by the Byzantine court title of despotēs, granted by the last Byzantine Emperors to their allies.

House of Branković

Coat of Arms of House of Branković

Serbia proper was annexed by the Ottoman Empire in 1459. In 1471 a dependent Serbian state was established by the Hungarians mostly on the territory of Vojvodina and Syrmia.

  • Vuk Branković (1471 - 1485), grandson of Đurađ I
  • Đurađ II Branković also Đorđe Branković (1486 - 1496), son of Stefan Branković, abdicated
  • Jovan Branković (1496 - 1502), son of Stefan Branković

House of Crnojević

Coat of Arms of Crnojevićs

The House of Crnojević was a dynasty ruling in the Medieval Serbian state of Zeta, first struggling with House of Balšić for control over Zeta, and then succeeding them as Zeta's supreme overlords throughout the 14th and 15th century. Since the second half of the 15th century, they would play a crucial role in the survival of late Medieval Zeta. All members of the House of Crnojević considered themselves Lords Zetan.

  • Radič (end of the 14th century-1396)
  • Đurađ and Aleksa (1403-1435)
  • Kojčin (Gojčin, Goycinus) (?-1451)
  • Stefan I (1451-1465)
  • Ivan I (1465-1490)
  • Đurađ IV (1490-1496)
  • Stefan II (1496-1498)
  • Ivan II (1498-1515)
  • Đurađ V (1515-1516)

House of Berislavić

  • Ivaniš Berislavić (1504 - 1514), married widow of Jovan Branković
  • Stjepan Berislavić (1514 - 1521), deposed

Jovan Nenad

Radoslav Čelnik

Monarchs of modern Serbian states (1804-1918)

First Serbian Uprising (1804-1813)

Karađorđević Dynasty

Picture Name Born-Died Reign start Reign end
Kara-Djordje Petrovic.jpg Karađorđe Petrović 1762 - 1817 15 February 1804 21 September 1813 (deposed)

Principality of Serbia (1815-1882)

Obrenović Dynasty

Picture Name Born-Died Reign start Reign end
MilosObrenovic 1848.jpg Miloš Obrenović I (first reign) 1780 - 1860 21 November 1815 13 June 1839 (abdicated)
MilanIIIO.jpg Milan Obrenović II 1819 - 1839 13 June 1839 8 July 1839
Mihailo Obrenović III.jpg Mihailo Obrenović III (first reign) 1823 - 1868 8 July 1839 14 September 1842 (deposed)

Karađorđević Dynasty

Picture Name Born-Died Reign start Reign end
PrinceAlexander I w.jpg Aleksandar Karađorđević 1806 - 1885 14 September 1842 23 December 1858 (deposed)

Obrenović Dynasty

Picture Name Born-Died Reign start Reign end
MilosObrenovic 1848.jpg Miloš Obrenović I (second reign) 1780 - 1860 24 December 1858 26 September 1860
Mihailo Obrenović III.jpg Mihailo Obrenović III (second reign) 1823 - 1868 26 September 1860 10 June 1868 (assassinated)
Kralj Milan Obrenovic.jpg Milan Obrenović IV 1854 - 1901 10 June 1868 6 March 1882 (proclaimed King of Serbia)

Kingdom of Serbia (1882-1918)

Obrenović Dynasty

Picture Name Born-Died Reign start Reign end
Kralj Milan Obrenovic.jpg Milan I 1854 - 1901 6 March 1882 6 March 1889 (abdicated)
KraljAlexObrenovic.jpg Aleksandar I 1876 - 1903 6 March 1889 11 June 1903 (assassinated in coup d'état)

Karađorđević Dynasty

Picture Name Born-Died Reign start Reign end
Kralj Petar I Karadjordjevic.jpg Petar I 1844 - 1921 15 June 1903 (Crowned on 15 February 1904) 1 December 1918 (proclaimed King of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes)

For the continuation of this list, go to List of heads of state of Yugoslavia.

Notes

In 1918, Serbia became part of the newly formed Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. Later that state changed name in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia (i.e. Kingdom of South Slavs). In that period (between World War I and World War II) the country was a parliamentary monarchy nominally ruled by the Karađorđević dynasty.

After World War II and the civil war Yugoslavia became a communist state, Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, ruled by Josip Broz Tito. After his death in 1980, the federation started a process of dissolution which finished in a series of civil wars in the early 1990s. Through the 1990s, Serbia and Montenegro comprised the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, which was restructured in 2003 into a confederation called Serbia and Montenegro. The state union ended with Montenegro's separation in 2006. Currently Serbia is a parliamentary republic.

The present Head of the House of Karađorđević, who is heir to the Serbian throne, is HRH Crown Prince Aleksandar II.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Entries bounded within parentheses are for reference only; for instance, the Roman numerals keep counts of Stefans and Lazars. They are not part of the common nomenclature.

Sources


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