The Danube in Serbian-Hungarian Relations in the 14th and 15th Centuries

Ivanović, Miloš and Isailović, Neven (2015) The Danube in Serbian-Hungarian Relations in the 14th and 15th Centuries. Tibiscum – Acta Musei Caransebesiensis. Serie nouă. Istorie – Arheologie, 5. pp. 377-393. ISSN 1453-505

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Serbian state reached the banks of Danube in the last decade of the thirteenth century, establishing a common border with Hungary along the line from Belgrade to the river Poreč. The lands around the Danube were an area of frequent conflict between Serbia and Hungary since the beginning of the reign of Serbian ruler Stephen Dušan. After Dušan's death Hungary acquired control over the right bank of the Danube through the noble family of Rastislalići. Prince (Knez) Lazar took over Braničevo in 1379 and since then his formal title included the mention of the Danube region (Podunavlje). This notion was used in the title of Serbian rulers until 1413, which testified to the significance of this river for Serbian rulers. After the first Battle of Kosovo in 1389, the Ottomans carried out incursions in southern Hungary through the Serbian territory. In answer to these actions, Hungarian King Sigismund started his own incursions across the Danube to the area of northern Serbia. The borderline between Serbia and Hungary was fairly stable in the period from 1402 to 1427, during the rule of Despot Stephen Lazarević. After the death of Stephen, by occupying Golubac (1428) the Turks gained their first important stronghold on the banks of the Danube, while in the period from 1437 to 1439, they got hold of the entire Serbian part of the Danube region from which they planned major attacks against Hungary. Belgrade was first besieged in 1440, while the fortress Žrnov was built in 1442. The Hungarian-Serbian offensive of 1443 was launched over the Danube. When the peace was concluded, an important demand of the victorious Christian side was the return of Golubac to the restored Serbian Despotate. Although it was a part of the treaty, a clause that the Turks and Hungarians should not attack each other over Serbian territory was not respected. During the Turkish siege of Belgrade in 1456, this river proved to be of a great strategic importance for the beleaguered city since the Ottomans used navy too. Despot Lazar managed to gain a few settlements on the left bank of the Danube in 1457. Turkish-Hungarian border on the Danube was finally established in 1459, after the collapse of the Serbian Despotate. Conflicts between the Hungarians and Turks in the Danube area continued until the end of the fifteenth century, and even later (until 1526) with significant participation of the Serbs on both sides (major campaigns took place in 1462, 1476, 1480, 1481 etc.). The most important locations for crossing the Danube during this period were in the vicinity of fortified towns (Belgrade, Smederevo, Golubac, Kovin, Haram/Hram)

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Serbia, Hungary, Danube, Ottomans, middle ages, political history, military history
Subjects: C Auxiliary Sciences of History > CD Diplomatics. Archives. Seals
D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D111 Medieval History
D History General and Old World > DR Balkan Peninsula
Depositing User: Istorijski Institut
Date Deposited: 08 Nov 2022 12:47
Last Modified: 14 Dec 2023 13:02

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