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Serbianisation or Serbification (Serbification[1], Serbisation or Serbization) (Serbian: србизација, посрбљавање, srbizacija, posrbljavanje, Bulgarian: сърбизация, посръбчване) is a term used to its belief that all South Slavs, comprising Slovenes, Croats, Bosnians, Montenegrins and Macedonians, should consider themselves, in their essential being, as Serbs.[2] Albanians too, were forced to the process of Serbification campaigns after World War I,[3] as well as the Romanian Vlachs since the 19th century.[4]

This conception reflects the impact of the French revolutionary-rationalist state on Europe and the widespread nineteenth century belief that large nation-states based on one "people" could be forged out of varying local identities.


Serbianisation in Macedonia

We find here, as everywhere else, the ordinary measures of "Serbization" — the closing of schools, disarmament, invitations to schoolmasters to become Servian officials, nomination of "Serbomanes," "Grecomanes," and vlachs, as village headmen, orders to the clergy of obedience to the Servian Archbishop, acts of violence against influential individuals, prohibition of transit, multiplication of requisitions, forged signatures to declarations and patriotic telegrams, the organization of special bands, military executions in the villages and so forth.[5]

Report of the International Commission

Territorial expansion of the Kingdom of Serbia after the 1913.

Immediately after annexation of Vardar Macedonia to the Kingdom of Serbia, the Macedonian Slavs were faced with the policy of forced serbianisation.[6][7] Those who declare as the Bulgarians were tortured, imprisoned or deported to Bulgaria.[8] Many high clergy of Bulgarian Orthodox Church were expelled: Cosmas of Debar (Bishop), Axentius of Bitola (Archbishop), Neophytus of Skopje, Meletius of Veles, Boris of Ohrid and others.[9] The population of Macedonia was forced to declare as Serbs. Those who refused were beaten and tortured.[10] prominent people and teachers from Skopje who refused to declare as Serbs were deported to Bulgaria.[11] International Commission concluded that the Serbian state started in Macedonia wide sociological experiment of "assimilation through terror."[12]

During the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, the government of the Kingdom pursued a linguistic Serbisation policy towards the Macedonians in Macedonia[13] , then called "Southern Serbia" (unofficially) or "Vardar Banovina" (officially). The dialects spoken in this region were referred to as dialects of Serbo-Croatian.[14] Either way, those southern dialects were suppressed with regards education, military and other national activities, and their usage was punishable[15]. The Serbianisation of the Bulgarian language and population in Republic of Macedonia increased after WWII. Persons declaring their Bulgarian identity were imprisoned or went into exile, and in this way Vardar Macedonia was effectively de-Bulgarised.[16]


Islamisation and Turkification occurred under Ottoman rule, starting from the 15th century to the 19th century, meaning that some Christian Serbs were persecuted and forcefully converted to Islam, thus also becoming Turks in the process of changing names and culture. Turks often chose Christian wives, either buying them from their parents or took them by force. [17][18].

De-serbisation occurred in Montenegro when Josip Broz Tito came to power in Yugoslavia. Prior to the 20th century the name Montenegrin was used as a regional/national affiliation.

Re-serbisation in Montenegro

In the 1921-census results, Serbs composed 92.96%, numbering 231,686 in Montenegro. From 1948 to 1991, the percentage of Serbs never exceeded 10% (ranging from 3-10% every 10 years) as a result of the Montenegrin national awakening. In 2003, Serbs composed 31.99%, numbering 198,414, as to the percentage in 1948 was 1.78%, a third of previously declared Montenegrins now re-declared as Serbs.

Notable individuals who voluntarily became Serbs

See also


  1. ^ "The Real Face of Serbian Education in Macedonia" (in English). newspaper "Makedonsko Delo", No. 9 (Jan. 10, 1926), Vienna, original in Bulgarian. Retrieved 2007-08-03.  
  2. ^ "Beyond "Ancient Hatreds"By Stephen Schwartz,What really happened to Yugoslavia". Hoover Institution.  
  3. ^ Raymond van den Boogaard, ‘Lessen van de oorlog op de Balkan’ (‘Lessons from the Balkan War’), Van Es & Samiemon & Starink (eds.), Redacteuren, p. 213.
  4. ^ M. V. Fifor. Assimilation or Acculturalisation: Creating Identities in the New Europe. The case of Vlachs in Serbia. Published in Cultural Identity and Ethnicity in Central Europe, Jagellonian University, Cracow
  5. ^ Report of the International Commission to Inquire into the Causes and Conduct of the Balkan War
  6. ^ Dejan Djokić, Yugoslavism: histories of a failed idea, 1918-1992
  7. ^ R. J. Crampton, Eastern Europe in the twentieth century - and after
  8. ^ Report of the International Commission to Inquire into the Causes and Conduct of the Balkan Wars (p. 52)
  9. ^ Report of the International Commission to Inquire into the Causes and Conduct of the Balkan Wars (p. 165)
  10. ^ Report of the International Commission to Inquire into the Causes and Conduct of the Balkan Wars (p. 53)
  11. ^ Report of the International Commission to Inquire into the Causes and Conduct of the Balkan Wars (p. 165)
  12. ^ Report of the International Commission to Inquire into the Causes and Conduct of the Balkan Wars (p. 165)
  13. ^ "An article by Dimiter Vlahov about the persecution of the Bulgarian population in Macedonia" (in English). newspaper "Balkanska federatsia", No. 140, Aug.20, 1930, Vienna, original in Bulgarian. Retrieved 2007-08-03.  
  14. ^ Friedman, V. (1985) "The sociolinguistics of literary Macedonian" in International Journal of the Sociology of Language. Vol. 52, pp. 31-57
  15. ^ "By the Shar Mountain there is also terror and violence" (in English). newspaper "Makedonsko Delo", No. 58, Jan. 25, 1928, Vienna, original in Bulgarian. Retrieved 2007-08-03.  
  16. ^ Europe Since 1945: An Encyclopedia by Bernard Anthony Cook ISBN 0815340583[1]
  17. ^ I took up lodgings near the church at the home of a Turk called Hasan, who had bought a Christian woman as his wife. - Marino Bizzi, 1610.
  18. ^ A Christian woman approached me here, the wife of a Turk. With tears in her eyes, she explained that she was the most unfortunate and desperate woman in the country because she was being kept in the power of a Turk (although she was his wife) and could not get away from him - Marino Bizzi
  19. ^ [[Стилиян Чилингиров |Чилингиров, Стилиян]] (1938, 1939, 1941, 1991, 2006). Какво е дал българинът на другите народи.  


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