|Anna M. Cienciala (firstname.lastname@example.org)||
History 557 Lecture Notes
Spring 2002 (Revised Jan. 2004)
hist557 by anna m.cienciala is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Based on a work at web.ku.edu.
I. Historical background to early 19th century.
1. Serbs and Croats.
a. Croatia was converted to Christianity from Rome. It was a kingdom in the 11th c., but was united with Hungary in 1,102 c.e. Hungary also acquired Slavonia and Bosnia. Most of Hungary was conquered by the Ottoman Turks in the 16th century, but Venice acquired part of Dalmatia along the Adriatic coast, where she already held some port cities. Most of Croatia stayed out of Turkish reach as part of Royal Hungary. After the Austrian reconquest of Hungary from the Turks, it became the province of Croatia-Slavonia. This province, plus Dalmatia, is almost equivalent to present day Croatia. Meanwhile, Slovenia (north of Croatia) became part of Austria as the province of Carniola.
Croatia remained Roman Catholic, used the Latin alphabet, had a noble class, and was culturally part of Western Civilization. Western influence came by way of Austria, Venice and, during the Napoleonic Wars, through French occupation of the area when Napoleon created the province of Illyria. [See: 2. National Renascence, The Croats, Below].
b. Serbia, was converted to Christianity from Constantinople, so it was Greek-Orthodox in religion and used the Cyrillic script. It was a small state in 1250 but expanded under Stephen Dushan (pron. Dooshaan,d. 1355) who annexed Bosnia and some coastal lands. (The replication of his state became the goal of 19th century Serb politicians). The Serbs were defeated by the Ottoman Turks at the Battle of Kosovo, June 28, 1389. June 28 became the Serbian national holiday in memory of the heroic fight put up by their ancestors that day against the Turks. Bosnia, and most of the Balkans, came under Turkish rule. The Serbs lost their native noblity in wars with the Turks.
In the late 1600s, there was a large Serb migration from Serbia proper into southern Croatia and Voevodina (pron. Voyevodeenah). There Novi Sad (pron. Novee Saad) became center of Serb learning , while the Serbs and Croats of S. Croatia and Slavonia were employed by the Austrians as a special militia to guard the frontier with the Ottoman Empire, hence the name Kraina (pron. Krayeenaa= borderland; see Gunther E. Rosenberg, The Military Border in Croatia, 1740-1881. A Study of an Imperial Institution, Chicago, 1966).
c. Bosnia-Hercegovina (pron. Boznyaa -Hertsegovina =one province, Hercegovina comes from the German word: Herzog = Duke), Here, many Serbs and Croats accepted the Moslem faith under Ottoman Turkish rule, and Moslems became the landlord class. While most Moslems lived in the central area, they also lived in regions that bordered on Serb areas, in Tuzla, Gorazde, Srebrenica - names that became known in the Serb-Bosniak (Moslem) war over Bosnia, 1992-95. Moslem islands in Serb regions were the result of Turkish policy to garrison their fortresses with native Moslem troops.
NOTE: The Christians of Bosnia-Hercegovina revolted against the Turks in July 1876. The revolt was put down, but, together with the Bulgarian revolt against the Turks in the same year, it led to the Russo-Turkish War of 1877- 1878. This, in turn led to the Congress of Berlin, June-July 1878. Here, the great European powers, including Russia, agreed on Austrian occupation of Bosnia-Hercegovina, and the recognition of Serbian, Montenegrin and Romanian.independence, also the autonomy of the northern part of Bulgaria while the southern part was to have a special status in the Ottoman Empire. Cyprus went to Gt.Britain. [See Lecture Notes 10]. The great powers also rejected the great Bulgaria which resulted from the Russo-Turkish War (Treaty of San Stefano, Jan. 1878).
d. Bulgaria. The Bulgarians were originally a Turkic people, who came into the area in the 7th century and soon became slavicized. They accepted Christianity from Constantinople, along with the cyrillic alphabet. Bulgaria became an Empire in the 9th century, then part of the Byzantine Empire, and became an Empire again in the 13th century. It was conquered by the Ottoman Turks in 1396. [For national renascence, see p. 7 ff. below].
(Magocsi, Historical Atlas of East Central Europe)
II. National Renascence: the Beginnings of modern Balkan Nationalism.
The main characteristics of the modern nationalism, shared by all the stateless peoples of E. Europe were:
(1) the modernization ofthe national language and the flourishing of national literature;
(2) the writing of national histories and finding inspiration
in past glories;
(3) demands for economic and political reform.
(4) demands for unification, autonomy, then independence.
1. The Serbs in the Austrian Empire.
Some had fled the Turks to Voevodina around 1690, others fled to southern Croatia. As mentioned earlier, the Austrians organized most of this second area into a special region: the Military Frontier, called Kraina , which encompassed part of s. Croatia and Slavonia. Novi Sad in the Voevodina became a center of Serb culture under Dositej Obradovich (pron. Dohseetey Obrahdoveech, 1739-1811), who founded a Serb educational system and began to create a modern Serb language (see: Language, below). These Serbs kept alive the hope of a free Serbia in the future; they supplied money and arms to their brothers on the Ottoman Empire when they fought the Turks in the early 19th century.
2. The Serbs of Serbia, who lived under Turkish rule, preserved their Orthodox religion and historical memory partly through the Orthodox Church, and partly through wandering minstrels who memorized and sang or recited long ballads about the Serb heroes of old. The excesses of local Janissaries (pron. Jaaneesarees) - formerly elite Turkish troops, who had been given land and became corrupt local authorities - led to a Serb revolt and to what is called the First Serbian War of Independence (1804-13). It was led by a pig raiser (pigs were the primary form of wealth in the region) Karageorge (Black George, 1762-1817). The center of the revolt was the Sumadja (pron. Soomadyaa) district between the Morava and Drina rivers, especially the paschalik (pron. paaskhaleek, Turkish adm. unit) of Belgrade (Beograd).
(pictures from Stavrianos, The Balkans from 1453).
Though most Serb historians claim this was a revolt by a nationally conscious people, recent research indicates that it was a local revolt against local Turkish tyrants, not a war of independence. Indeed, Karageorge found it difficult to get recruits, and almost always had difficulty in getting his men to fight outside the Sumadja region. His goal was autonomy (home rule) within the Ottoman Empire. He played Austria and Russia off against the Turks. *
*[See: Larry Meriage, "The First Serbian Uprising (1804-1813): National Revival or a Search for Regional Security?" Canadian Studies in Nationalism, vol. IV, no. 2 spring 1977, pp. 187-205. For the traditional view of a war of independence, see Wayne Vucinich, The First Serb War of Independence, Stanford, Ca., 1977].
The first Serbian war led to a wider struggle for independence. The second uprising against the Turks,in 1815-17, was led by Milos Obrenovich (1780-1860, pron. Meelosh Obrenoveech) who ruled 1817-39 and 1858-60. In 1829, after the Turks lost a war to Russia and had to grant independence to Greece, the Sultan recognized Serbia as an autonomous state within the Ottoman Empire, by recognizing Milos as the hereditary ruler of the province of Serbia. He also recognized the right of the Russian Empire to protect the Serbs. (The Russian claim was based on religion, since the Serbs were Orthodox, like the Russians, but it was motivated by the long range goal of establishing Russian control over the eastern Balkans). Members of the rival dynasties of Karageorge and Obrenovich took turns to rule Serbia. It was recognized as an independent state after the Russo-Turkish War at the Congress of Berlin, July 1878.
Dositej Obradovich (1739-1811) was an Orthodox monk in his youth, but fled the monastery in 1760. After studies in Europe and Istanbul, he became the chief representative of Serbian Enlightenment, centered in Novi Sad, Voevodina. He was the first to claim that the Serb literary language should correspond to the vernacular, that is, the language spoken by the people, that is, (Stokavian), and is viewed as the father of modern Serb literature.
Vuk Stefanovich Karadzic( pron. Vook Stefanoveech Karadhzeech,1787-1864) completed the reform of the Serb literary language and adapted the Cyrillic alphabet to its needs. He published the first Serbian book in Vienna in 1814, also the first Serb grammar.
Serb National Ideology:
This was expressed in the Nacertanje (pron. Nachertanyeh
= Charter) written in 1844 by Ilija Garsanin(pron. Eelyah Garsaneen,1812-1874),
who was Serbian Minister of the Interior. This document stated that modern
Serbia must seek to reconstitute the medieval empire of Stephen Dushan
as an alternative to the Croat idea of Illyrianism or Yugoslavism,
that is, the union of all south Slavs.
Garsanin's Nacertanje was inspired by a Czech, Frantisek Zach, who was the Balkan agent of Prince Adam J. Czartoryski, the emigre Polish leader living in Paris, 1831-61. [See Lec. Notes 6] The Czartoryski- Zach project envisaged a Great Serbia as a South Slav State, strong enough to be independent of Russia - but Garsanin replaced Zach's term "South Slav" with the word : Serbian.*
*[See Ivo Banac, THE NATIONAL QUESTION IN YUGOSLAVIA.Origins, History, Politics, Ithaca and London, 1984, pb. 1988, pp. 82-84.]
The Nacertanje became the bible of Serb nationalism. It led the Serbs to aim at a South Slav state dominated by them. Thus, in late 1918 they rejected federalism and dominated the new Yugoslav state. Some observers claim that the policy of Slobodan Milosevic (pron.Slohbohdan Meeloshevich) in the late 1980s and then the 1990s, when he was President of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro today), was also inspired by the goal of gathering all the Serbs, including those of Croatia, Slavonia, and Bosnia, in one great Serbian state and expelling non-Serbs. [See Lec.Notes, 20]
Another integral Serb nationalist was Vuk Stefanovich Karadzic - mentioned earlier -who defined Serbs as all those speaking the Stokavian dialect. Since Croats also spoke it, he saw them as "Catholic Serbs."
Serb patriotism and nationalism were nurtured by Serbian schools in autonomous Serbia, 1830-78, and then in the Kingdom of Serbia, 1878-1918. At the same time, Croat patriotism and nationalism was taught in the Croatian schools of Austria-Hungary.* These were the roots of Serb-Croat disputes and fighting in the 20th century.
*[See: Charles Jelavich, South Slav Nationalisms. Textbooks
and Yugoslav Union before 1914, Columbus, OH., 1990].
1b. The orthodox people of Crna Gora (pron.
Chyrna Gorah =Black Mountain) known in the West as Montenegro (from
Italian: Monte Negro =Black Mountain), speak Serbian and were part of
medieval Serbia. They were conquered by the Ottoman Tuks but continued to fight
them. They were ruled by Prince-Bishops until Danilo I (pron.
Daaneeloh) became a secular ruler and governed the country in 1830-1851. He
tried to reform and modernize the state, but was murdered for his pains.
Nicholas I ruled 1860-1918 and succeeded in having Montenegro recognized as a state. In 1876, following the anti-Turkish revolt in Bosnia-Hercegovina, the Montenegrins scored military successes against the Turks. Their independence was recognized, along with that of Serbia and Romania after the Russo-Turkish War of 1878, at the Congress of Berlin in July that year. [See Lecture Notes 10]
The Croat nobles had opposed the reforms of Emperor Joseph II of Austria, including the use of German as the language of administration. Therefore, like the Hungarian nobles, they continued to use Latin. After 1815, they also cooperated with the Hungarian nobles against Vienna in fighting for the right of the Hungarian Diet (Legislature) to decide taxes and military service. To keep up a united front with the Hungarian nobles against Vienna, they even agreed to the use of Magyar (Hungarian) language in Croatian secular schools in 1827.
This was, however, opposed by the Croatian intelligentsia (originally of peasant descent). They were inspired by the establishment of the Illyrian Provinces in 1809 by the French after their conquest of Dalmatia. Although French rule lasted only until 1813, great changes took place. Serfdom was abolished, roads were built, commerce developed and, most important of all, the Croatian language was encouraged in schools.
Ljudevit Gaj (pron. Lyudyevit Gai, 1809-1872), a writer and journalist, succeeded in making the Stokavian dialect the literary language of the Croats, though Serbs spoke it as well. Gaj was also the founder of the Illyrian Movement which aimed at the cultural union of all South Slavs. The Illyrian movement can be described as an example of "romantic nationalism." It aimed at a voluntary, spiritual-cultural union, contrary to the "integral nationalism" of those who believed in using force to assimilate other nationalities under the rule of one dominant nationality.
THE CROATS IN 1848-49.
On March 29, 1848: Representatives from Croatia-Slavonia and Dalmatia met in AGRAM (Zagreb) and voted for a "Declaration," listing 30 demands addressed to the Austrian Emperor. The key demands were:
1. a union of the Kingdom of Dalmatia with Croatia, with its own Diet, plus Kraina (the Military Frontier) and a ministry responsible to it; national independence within the Empire;
2. the use of the national language in administration and education; the establishment of a university at Agram (Zagreb);
3. equal representation in the future Diets of Croatia-Dalmatia-Slavonia;
4. proportionate taxation;
5. exemption from all compulsory labor (this meant the abolition of serfdom);65. restoration of national finances, hitherto under Hungarian direction;
6. establishment of a national guard;
7. national troops to remain in the country and a national language of command;
8. all political prisoners, especially the [Croat] writer Nikolay Tommaseo, to be freed;
9. the right of free association. assembly and petition.;
10. the abolition of celibacy in the [R.C] Church and the use of the native language in the Church service according to old Croatian rights and customs. (Note: The Vatican Council of 1968 decreed that R.C. church services in all countries be conducted in native languages instead of Latin.)
At the same time, the representatives elected General Joseph Jelacic (pron. Yehlaacheech) as the "principal magistrtate" of the region. He was, in fact, appointed "Ban" or Governor of Croatia by theAustrian Emperoror. [See: Ch. Jelavich, The Habsburg Monarchy, A 4, pp. 16-18].
In 1848-49, the Croats marched under General Jelacic against the Hungarians and thus in support of Austria, because Hungarian rule was more onerous for them than Austrian. The Serbs of the Austrian Empire offered to help the Hungarians if the latter gave them autonomy, but this offer was refused. (See Lecture Notes 8 on Hungary).
Integral Croatian Nationalism and its opponents.
The chief Croatian integral national ideologs were: Ante Starcevic (pron. Staarcheveech,1823-1896),and Eugen Kvaternik (pron. Oygehn Kvaaterneek,1825-1871). They claimed the whole area of what was later to be Yugoslavia, for the Croats. They saw the Serbs as "an unclean race," and a "servile" people, or at best "Orthodox Croats." Both refused to recognize the Slovenes and the Serbs of Croatia as separate peoples because they feared this would lead to recognizing their right to separate political territories. Indeed, Starcevic believed that all South Slavs, except the Bulgarians, would eventually become Croats. He regarded Serb nationalism as a creation of anti-Croat propaganda inspired by Vienna and St. Petersburg. (Compare with the view of most Galician Poles that Ukrainian nationalism in East Galicia was an Austrian creation).
A different program was drawn up by Bishop Josip Juraj Strossmayer of Diakovo (pron. Yoseep Yooray Shtrosmayer,1815-1905) and his close collaborator Canon Franjo Racki (Pron. Fraanyoh Raatskee,1828-1894). They did much to develop higher education in Croatia and took up the Illyrianism of L. Gaj, which aimed at a spiritual unification of the South Slavs. *
*[Banac, The National Question, pp. 86-88).
Serbs and Croats against Moslems in BOSNIA-HERCEGOVINA.
We should note that both Serb and Croat integrationalist national ideologs claimed Bosnia-Hercegovina as belonging to their respective peoples. Serb ideologs, however, aimed at the complete Serbianization of Bosnian Moslems; if this proved impossible, they actually foresaw eradicating the "Turks." Religious differences were exacerbated by the fact that until 1918, most of the landlords of Bosnia were Moslems, while the peasants were Serbs.
In the later 19th century, the Croats, particularly the Croatian Franciscans (a Catholic religious order) were more diplomatic and declared their acceptance of a multi-religious society. Some Moslems, therefore, accepted Croat national identity and some even converted to Catholicism.
3.The Slovenes, the smallest of these peoples, also developed their own language and political program beginning in 1848, when they asked Vienna for autonomy, which was refused. Between 1848 and 1914, they developed their language, economy, and political goals.
The lands inhabited by the Slovenes are: Styria, Carinthia and Carniola. Almost all of them were under Habsburg rule by the early 16th century. The Slovenes inhabited southern Carinthia. south eastern Styria, and most of Carniola; they also formed a major group in Gorizia. Others lived in Venetian Slovenia and in Istria. Until about 1880-90, the upper classes were predominantly German-speaking except in Venetian Slovenia and Istria, where they spoke Italian..
The whole area experienced the Reformation in the 16th century. Each region had its own "Estates" (classes) which formed noble parliaments. By the end of the 16th century, however, the Habsburgs gained the upper hand during the era of the Counter-Reformation, when they forced Protestant townsmen to convert to Catholicisim or emigrate. Nobles could remain Protestant, but most went over to Catholicisim when Jesuit schools were established.in the region. At the same time, there was little or no possibility of advancement for Protestants. The Habsburgs followed a policy of repression, culminating in 1670's.
Although the region was never under Turkish rule, Turkish military incursions were devastating, especially in 1529 and 1532. Slovenia was a frontier area subject to Turkish raids until after the final defeat of the Ottoman Turks at Vienna by Austrian armies and those of King John III Sobieski of Poland in 1683. Agriculture was the basis of the economy, but there was some mining and crafts also developed.
The Emergence of Slovene National Consciousness: example of how a people scattered in several areas developed
a national identity.
Under the rule of Empress Maria Theresa (1740-1780), especially in the years 1763-80, enlightened reforms in all Austrian lands included elementary education in native languages as well as German. In the Slovene case, however, this was hampered by the existence of three different versions of the language. Thus, in 1758-63, a Catholic Cathechism was printed in 3 different versions: the Styrian, Carinthian, and the Carniolan.
One of the most important "national awakeners" was the Augustinian monk, Marko Pohlin (1732-1801), who regretted the use of German over Slovene, and wrote a Carniolan Slovene grammar, published 1768. A Jesuit, Ozbalt Gutman (1727-90) proposed a single dictionary and literary language for both Slovenes and Kraintsy. A merchant and manufacturer, Ziga Zois, was prominent in the early Slovene national movement in the 1770s. He supported a group of Ljubljana intellectuals who studied Slavic languages and history.
Under Joseph II (1780-90), Slovenes benefited from official encouragement of popular religious and didactic literature. Very important was a new Slovene translation of the Bible in 1784-1804 by Jurij Japelj (1744-1807). Even more significant was Anton Lihnart’s (1756-95) History of Carniola and the South Slavs of Austria (1788-91). Though written in German, it made a great contribution to the development of national ideology by stressing the historical unity of all Slovenes. This can be compared to Pelcl’s German language History of Bohemia, which appeared in the 1790s.
During the Napoleonic Wars, the Habsburgs acquired additional Slovene populations in Venetian Istria and Venetia Julia by the Treaty of Campoformio, 1792. Habsburg rule encouraged education and some publications in the Slovene language. The first Slovene newspaper, the Lublanske Novine, appeared in 1797-1800. Also, the linguist Jernej Kopitar (1780-1844) published a dicitonary of the Slovene language in Carniola, Carinthia and Styria in 1809, which advanced Slovene linguistic unity and thus national unity.
By 1809. almost all Slovenes except for those in Styria and Prekmurje (between the rivers of Mura and Raba) , were under French rule in the Illyrian Provinces,.and remained under it until 1813. The French allowed the use of Slovene in education and administratoin in majority Slovene areas. Valentin Vodnik (1758-1810), who had launched the first Slovene newspaper, was charged by the French to write school textbooks in Slovene. He also spread the idea of a "United Slovenia." The Hasburgs recognized the importance of these developments by establishing a Chair of Slovene language at the Graz lyceum (High School) in 1812. It was to prepare officials and clergy for work in Slovene lands. Slovene began to appear in elementary schools in Styria and Carinthia.
By 1830, the Slovene national movement was visible, but suffered from a key weakness - this was the preference of the middle class for German, or Italian, or Magyar, depending on the rulers of the region. Also, political conservatives, especially the Catholic clergy, did not support the use of Slovene in education above elementary schools. Still, a group of dedicated intellectuals emerged as national leaders. They gathered around France Preseren (1800-1849) and published the almanc, Cebelica (1830-34), championing unlimited use of Slovene. They were also political liberals, urging full equality for Slovene peasants and other social classes.
In the economic sphere, the industrial revolution, which progressed from 1792 to 1847, meant the development of mechanized factories using abundant water power, later steam, which was most noticeable in textile production. Sugar refining developed quickly in Gorizia and Ljubljana. Iron production doubled between 1825 and 1847. This stimulated coal mining, whose production also doubled by 1847.Glass production also developed. On the whole, however, industrial production was only at a modest.level by 1850. The population increased from about 700,000 in 1771 to about 1,100,000 in 1857.
The Revolution of 1848 and its Aftermath.
1848 marked a turning point in Slovene political thinking, just as it did among many other peoples of the Habsburg monarchy, especially in Bohemia. But news of the March revolution in Vienna sparked social discontent rather than national demands among the Slovene peasants.
Slovene intellectuals drew up the first Slovene political program in Vienna. It was adopted on April 20, 1848, by the Slovenija Society in the Austrian capital The program postulated the creation of a United Slovenia combining all Slovene lands in a separate kingdom as part of the Habsburg Empire, with its own Diet and Slovene as the language of education and adminstration. This was endorsed by Slovenija societies in Graz and Ljubljana. However, the movement was hampered the lack of a national political organization.
Clerics and other conservatives distrusted this program. They preferred to seek limited oncessions from existing diets and adminsitrations. In fact, the Carniolan Diet had adopted a strong resolution. in favor of the use of Slovene in public life, and the Austrian government allowed more use, especially in education.
Like the Czechs, the Slovene leaders remained Austroslav and opposed the program of all-German unification put forward by the German parliament at Frankfurt am Main. Also, 5 Slovene delegates attended the Slav Congress in Prague in June. The formerly conservative Janez Bleiwas, editor of the periodical Novice, now supported the Slovene program. 16 Slovene deputies were elected to the imperial parliament (Reichstag) in Vienna in June 1848, but most of them were peasants who were not nationally conscious. When the parliament moved fromVienna to Kromeriz (Kremsier) in November, they did not join the Slav club, but voted with the Germans.
However, it should be noted that it was a Slovene member of the parliaments’s constitutional commiteee, Matija Kavcic, who first proposed the national reorganization of the Austrian Empire, including an autonomous Slovenia made up of Carniola and the Slovene parts of Styria and the Littoral. When the committee ignored his proposal, most of the Slovene deputies voted for Palacky’s project of reorganizing the Empire into national lands.
After some regression in the period of Absolutism (1848-1861), the Slovene national movement gained from the widespread awakening of national consciousness among the peasants, though this was less evident in Carinthia and Istria than elsewhere. Under the freedom of association granted by the imperial government, many cultural and social organizations floursished, with Ljubljana as the leading center. Following the Czech model, a Sokol gymnastic organization was established in 1863 and the Slovenska Matica for schools in 1864. A dramatic society appeared in 1866.
In 1865, Slovene politicians put forward the so-called Maribor Program, which proposed linking the lands of Styria, Carinthia, Carniola and the Littoral through a common diet. This did not succeed, but Slovenes gained more seats in the existing diets of these lands. In 1867, Slovene deputies in Vienna hoped to gain something by voting with the Poles for the Austro-Hungarian conpromise. All they got, however, was the right to use Slovene as the external administrative language in Carniola judicial proceedings, if one of the parties knew no other language.
Most Slovenes, like the Czechs, resented the Compromise of 1867 and championed federalism on national lines, along with the idea of a united Slovenia. Furthermore, the so-called Yugoslav Congress in Ljubljana in 1870 - when the growth of Prussian might seemed to threaten the Habsburg monarchy - expressed the Slovene wish for a union with the Serbs and Croats if there was a fundamental rearrangement of frontiers in East Central Europe. This idea of a South Slav land in the Empire was to gain more adherents later.
In the 1870s the Slovenes experienced a split between Young and Old Slovenes, similar to that between the Old and Young Czechs. When they reunited, they pursued a limited program, making gains in schools and administration. These gains were obtained in exchange for supporting the Austrian government during the Taaffe era, 1879-93. The new leaders, like the old, shelved the program for a United Slovenia.
In the 1880s and 1890s, there was sharp rivalry between liberals and clericals. Also, modern political parties developed, including a Social Democratic Party. There was also a Realist Party, modelled on that of T.G. Masaryk in Bohemia. The electoral reform in the Austrian part of the Empire, i.e. the establishment of universal male suffrage in 1907, increased the number of Slovene deputies in Vienna from 15 to 24 (out of 516).
Between 1908 and 1914, all Slovene political parties favored closer ties with other South Slavs in the Empire. They hoped for a union between Slovenes and Croats. Slovene Liberals made this their program in 1909 and 1913, proposing a federal or trialistic reorganization of the Empire. In this, they agreed with the Croat and Serb politicians of the Empire. The radicals, however, favored secession of the Southern Slavs into a separate state.
In the economy, the modernization of agriculture and development of industrialization brought prosperity to Slovenia in the period 1890-1914. This was accompanied by the growth of credit institutions. By 1913, 35.2% of the national product came from non-agricultural production, about the same as in Hungary. Most of the industrial production came from wood processing. While textiles stagnated, leather and shoe production grew. Despite limitations, the Slovene lands were the most highly industrialized of the Empire’s South Slav territories.
By 1914, most Slovenes were nationally conscious. However, the Slovene population in southern Carinthia, where Slovnes had made up 91% of the population in 1800, declined to 45.5.% by 1910. There was also some regression in southern Styria - both resulting from aggressive germanization.
(See: Robert A. Kann and Zdenek David, The Peoples of the
Eastern Habsburg Lands, 1526-1918, Seattle, London, 1984, ch. 4. pp. 209-220,
ch. 5. pp. 327-342).
4. The Bulgarians - like the Serbs, they preserved their language and traditions in the Orthodox Church. The upper class, however, became largely hellenized, that is, Greek- speaking, because Greeks dominated the Bulgarian church as well as trade in the period of Ottoman rule.
The first manifestations of Bulgarian national consciousness occurred among educated clergy in the later 18th century. The most prominent exponent of this trend was the monk Father Paisi Hilendarskii (pron: Payeesee Heelendarskee,1722-1798) who wrote The Slavic-Bulgarian History of the Bulgarian People, Tsars and Saints, completed in 1762. He resented being treated like a bumpkin by Greek monks, so he searched for documents on Bulgarian history. He told his readers to love their Bulgarian fatherland and admonished them as follows:
The Russo-Turkish wars of the first half of the 19th c. were fought mostly on Bulgarian territory and served to quicken national consciousness. After the war of 1806-12, thousands of Bulgarians fled Turkish rule and settled in south western Russia, especially Bessarabia (now western Moldova). At this time, the Bulgarian orthodox clergy began to propagate the view that "Grandfather Ivan" (Russia) was going to liberate the Bulgarians from the Turks. The clergy also claimed that Cyril and Methodius, who brought Christianity to Bulgarians, as the patron saints of Bulgaria and said they were Bulgarians. (They were, in fact, Slavs from Macedonia). The Bulgarians helped the Greeks win their independence from the Ottoman Empire (Greek War of Independence, 1821-29).
Bulgarian schools developed after 1815, and textbooks were written for them. Vasil Aprilov, a Bulgarian merchant, established the first secular Bulgarian school in his town of Gabrovo. By 1878, most towns and villages had such schools. American missionaries made a significant contribution. Elias Riggs, of the American Bible Society, wrote the first Bulgarian grammar, though it was meant for English speakers. He also helped Konstantin Fotinov publish the first Bulgarian periodical in 1842, and helped the monk Neophytos translate and publish the first modern Bulgarian bible, known as the American Bible. (1840). The first American mission was opened in 1858, and James F. Clarke founded the Samokov Seminary in 1861. American teachers taught Bulgarians in American schools, especially in the Roberts College, Istanbul (now in Lebanon). Graduates of this college later played a prominent role in the liberation of Bulgaria from Turkish rule, though this was accomplished mainly by Russia when it defeated the Ottman Turks in 1878.
The Bulgarian revolutionary movement grew in strength, spurred
by the establishment of the Bulgarian Exarchy in 1870 as a branch
of the Greek Orthodox Church.. Revolutionary leaders were George Sava
Rakovski (pron: Rahkovskee,1821-1867) and Khristo Botev(1848-1876).
Rakovski was a writer who organized the Bulgarian revolt of 1876 (see below),
after which he lived in exile but always called for Bulgarian independence.
Botev was a poet who met his death fighting Turkish troops in
In September1875, there was an abortive Bulgarian uprising against Turkish rule; it was crushed by Turkish troops. A great insurrection took place between April and August 1876 - at the time of the Bosnian insurrection - but it was ruthlessly put down by Turkish troops. This horrified western opinion and and was called "The Bulgarian Horrors."The Serbs tried to help the Bosnians but were defeated by the Turks. This led to the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78.
When Russia defeated the Ottoman Turks, she forced the creation of a large Bulgaria, which would clearly be a Russian satellite (Treaty of San Stefano, March 3, 1878). France, Britain, Germany and Austria-Hungary did not want to see such an expansion of Russian power in the Balkans, so Russia was obliged to give up the great Bulgaria when the powers, including Russia, met at the Congress of Berlin in June-July 1878. Instead, a small Bulgarian principality was established north of the Balkan mountains, and another, Eastern Rumelia, with special status in the Ottoman Empire, was established south of the mountains. Alexander of Battenberg (1857-1893), a favorite nephew of Tsar Alexander II, was elected Prince Alexander I of the Bulgarian Principality in April 1879.
(NOTE: Alexander of Battenberg was the second son of Prince Alexander of Hesse and a Polish lady, Julia Hauke, Countess of Battenberg. Their children married into European royal families and one of their descendants is Prince Philip Mountbatten, husband of Queen Elizabeth II of Gt. Britain. The name Battenberg was changed to Mountbatten at the outset of World War I, when the name of the British dynasty was also changed from the House of Hanover to the House of Windsor).
There was an insurrection in Rumelia in 1885. Alexander gave in to national pressure assuming leadership of the Revolution of Philippopolis of September 18 1885 in favor of the union of the two Bulgarian principalities in one state. In April 1885, Alexander was appointed governor of Rumelia for five years and the European powers consented to it. This was, however, against the wishes of Russia, so Alexander was kidnapped by some Russian-inspired Bulgarian officers. He was freed and returned to power by the Bulgarian political leader Stephen Stamboulos, but abdicated when it was clear that he would not have Russian support.
After a Danish prince refused the crown, the Bulgarian National Assembly elected Prince Ferdinand of Saxe-Coburg as Ferdinand I in August 1887. (He came from the same German house as Queen Victoria’s husband, Prince Albert). Ferdinand ruled 1887-1918, but was opposed for a time by Russia. He finally achieved reconciliation with Russia when he converted to the Greek Orthodox Church in February 1898. On October 5, 1908, Ferdinand declared Bulgaria an independent country; this was at the beginning of the Bosnian Crisis of 1908 (see Lecture Notes 10).
Since 1878, Bulgarians have been grateful to Russia for their independence and pro-Russian sentiments have persisted among the people to this day.
III. The National Renascence of the Non-Slavic Peoples of the Balkans.
1. The Greeks won their independence in the war of 1821-29 with the help of Gt. Britain, France, and Russia. The British and the French helped the Greeks in order to prevent Russia from dominating the area. Apart from the Greeks, the British supported the Ottoman Empire, known as "The Sick Man of Europe" until 1914, because they feared its dissolution would lead to Russian domination of the Balkans, the eastern Mediterranean, the Middle East, and finally India. [The Ottoman Empire sided with Germany and Austria-Hungary in World War I and disintegrated at its end].
2. The Romanians lived in 10 Romanian "historic"
lands: Banat, Bessarabia, Bukovina, Crisana, Dobrodgea, Maramures, Moldavia,
Oltena, Transylvania and Moldavia. Of these, the core lands were Walachia
(also spelled Wallachia), and Moldavia
(from: History of Romania, Iasi, 1997).
Romanians (also called Walachs or Vlachs in old history books)
are, in part, the descendants of the Roman colonists of Dacia,
a Roman province created in 106 b.c.e. after the defeat of the Dacians. The
Romans abandoned it in 271 c.e. Although the Romanians of Dacia were converted
to Christianity by this time, they did not have a hierarchical structure until
about 1,000 c.e., when they acquired an Orthodox church.
At this time, Church Slavonic replaced Latin and most Romanians became Orthodox christians. In the middle ages, Walachia and Moldavia were ruled by Romanian princes, but then fell under Ottoman Turkish sovereignty. This meant they paid tribute to the Sultan in Istanbul but were ruled by their own nobility.
Transylvania was given autonomy within the Ottoman Empire. After the Austrian conquest it formed part of Hungary, though it had a majority Romanian population.
One Romanian prince, Michael the Brave (1558-1601) fought the Turks and managed at one time to rule all three regions.
The beginnings of national awakening came with Jan Inocentiu Micu-Klein (1692-1768), a Uniate bishop in Transylvania. He and his disciples traveled to Rome and discovered the Latin roots of many Romanian words. Therefore, they claimed Romanians were descended from the Romans.
Micu-Klein tried to obtain equal rights for the Romanian upper class with the Magyars, Saxons, and Szeklers, also a reduction of peasant labor dues, but he failed due to the resistance of the three privileged nations. A peasant revolt took place November-December 1784. It was brutally put down, but Emperor Joseph II abolished serfdom in Transylvania. (He had to revoke this before he died in 1790).
The first petition to the Austrian Emperor by the Romanians of Transylvania was the Supplex Libellus Valllachorum Transsilvaniae (Supplication of the Walachians of Transylvania) was sent to Vienna in March 1791 and published that year. They took up the demand formulated earlier by Micu-Klein, that is, equality with the other three "nations" of Transylvania; this meant equality for the Romanians nobles and burghers with the Magyars, Szeklers and Saxons, or at least separate national representation. Emperor Leopold II forwarded the petition to the Transylvanian Diet, which rejected it. A second petition was sent to him in March 1792, demanding proportional Romanian representation in the Diet, and this was also rejected. [Note: about 60% of the population of Transylvania was Romanian, but most of them were peasants].
The Romanian struggle for national independence took
place separately in the four provinces: Moldavia, Walachia, Transylvania
and Bukovina.We should bear several names in mind. Tudor Vladimirescu
(1780-1821), led an uprising against the Turks in Walachia in March 1821,
at about the same time as the outbreak of the Greek War of Independence. As
a former officer in the Russian army, decorated for bravery, he was linked with
the Greek revolutionary society, Heteria (Greek: Etairia), and
its leader in Walachia, Alexandros Ypsilanti (1792-1828), an officer
of the Russian Imperial Guard.
Both counted on Russian support. Unfortunately, the Russian Tsar Alexander I opposed all revolts in Europe, so he refused to help and deprived Vladimirescu and Ypsilanti of all their Russian decorations. The Greeks suspected Vladimirescu of conspiring with the Turks and he was executed on Ypsilanti’s orders on June 8, 1821. Vladimirescu is a great hero in Romanian history. Alexandros Ypsilanti crossed into Austrian territory where he was imprisoned. His brother Demetrios commanded Greek forces against the Turks in 1828-30.
During the Russo-Turkish War of 1828-29, the Russians occupied Moldavia and Walachia; they also entered Dobrudja (pron. Dobroodzhya). After a pause due to the plague, the Russian armies marched to Adrianople/Edirne/. The Peace of Adrianople, September 2, 1829, included the autonomy of Greece and Serbia, free merchant shipping in the Black Sea, and the cession of the Danube Delta to Russia. Moldavia and Walachia were to have internal autonomy, the right to nominate governors for life and to issue decrees in agreement with the Divan (pron.Deevan), that is, the Ottoman government. Meanwhile, until the Turks paid Russia compensation for war damages and the two provinces were to be under Russian administration. In reality, they were a Russian protectorate for the next 25 years.
The Russian "Organic Statute" of 1831 for the two provinces was a step toward modernization. Legislatures were to be elected in each province every five years, though they were of course dominated by nobles. These assemblies could initiate legislation in agreement with the Governors (Hospodars). The latter were chosen for life from among the great nobles. Local government was established in towns. The peasants were left as they were, but paid lower state taxes. Direct Russian administration ended in 1834, when the Turks had paid up their war debt to Russia.
Alexander Ghica (1795-1862), a Russian protege, ruled Walachia in 1834-42. He had good intentions but dictatorial inclinations. Thus, he fell into conflict with the liberal opposition in the Assembly, led by Ian Campineanu (1798-1868), a spokesman for Romanian unity and a collaborator of Prince Adam J. Czartoryski. In 1842, the Assembly elected George Bibescu(1804-1873), who was governor in 1842-49. He was a reactionary and an opportunist.
Moldavia was ruled in 1834-49 by Michael Sturdza(1795-1884). He was a ruthless and greedy prince, but modernized the administration, developed communications, schools and hospitals. In 1844, he abolished Gypsy slavery on state and and church estates (In Walachia, this took place in 1847).
Transylvania was governed from Vienna in 1811-34.
and there was no local legislature. The Polish revolt against Russia of 1830-31
had some impact, as it did in Hungary, but the influence of the Hungarian movement
led by Kossuth was much greater. The Hungarians of Transylvania
demanded union with Hungary. This, in turn, activated the Romanian national
movement in the province, but it was weakened by the split between radicals
and conservatives. In 1846/47 the Transylvanian Assembly, frightened by the
"Galician massacres" in Austrian Poland, reduced peasant obligations, but not
enough to satisfy the peasants. Banata. Crisana, Oltena, Maramures, was
ruled by Hungary.
Bukovina was ruled from Vienna.
Bessarabia was under Russian rule from 1812.
The development of the Romanian language and literature took place between 1821 and 1859 This. cultural renascence formed the background to the struggles for independence, reform, and unification. A Literary Society was founded by Dinicu Golcescu (1777-1830). Historical Dacia became the national symbol but the national hero was Michael the Brave, the 16th century Romanian prince, because he fought the Ottoman Turks and managed to unite Moldavia, Walachia and Transylvania under his rule, at least for a time. Of course, Michael did not think in terms of uniting the Romanians in one state; he was building his own power. But he served as a useful symbol for the 19th century struggle for union in an independent Romanian state.
The Romanians in 1848.
The revolutionary year 1848 was very important in the development of Romanian national consciousness. A mass meeting in Jassy, Moldavia on April 8, approved a petition drawn up members of the liberal opposition. The Petition, drafted by the poet and political activist Vasile (Basil) Alecsandri (1821-1890), demanded guarantees for civil freedoms, the establishment of a national guard, new elections, and the improvement of the lot of the peasants. Similar mass meetings of Romanians took place in Oltena, Walachia, led by Nicaolae Balcescu, Al. G. Golescu and Ion Ghica; in Blaj, Transylvania, it was led by Simion Barnutiu,and in Cernauti/ Ger.Czernovits/, Bukovina, by the Hurmuzaki brothers, George, Alexander, and Anton Kral. Everywhere, the demand for national rights went together with the demand for peasant emancipation.
In 1848, during the Hungarian War of Independence, Kossuth rejected the demands of the non-Magyar nationalities but on July 14, 1849, a Magyar-Romanian agreement was signed in Szeged. Kossuth agreed to an amnesty for the Romanians of Transylvania; broad national and religious rights in government offices and schools; the aboliton of social injustices; and the establishment of a Romanian National Guard. This agreement - which came too late - was condemned by both Hungarian and Romanian nationalists as a betrayal of national interests. In any case, the Romanians of Transylvania did not see the fulflment of any of the rights promised them. Their leader,Avran Iancu (1824-72), who had fought the Hungarians and placed his hopes in Austria, lost his mind when the Austrians occupied the region. He wondered from peasant cottage to peasant cottage in the western mountains until his death.
The Romanian revolution in Bukovina was crushed by Austrian troops, while the Romanian revolutions in Moldavia and Walachia were put down by Russia and Turkey, who occupied the principalities in 1849-51.
In 1853, Russian troops again occupied the two regions at the beginning of a new Russo-Turkish war, which developed into the Crimean War. Russia hoped to unify the two prinipalities under a Russian prince. Anglo-French pressure, however, forced a Russian evacuation in 1854. In June of that year, Austria signed an agreement with the Turks and began to occupy the region, along with Turkish troops.
After the defeat of Russia by France and Britain in the Crimean
War, 1854-55, a peace congress met in Paris in 1856. Russia, France and
the Italian kingdom of Sardinia (which had sent some troops to fight alongside
the allies in Crimea) supported a project to unify Moldavia and Walachia,
but the Treaty of Paris of 30 March 1856 confirmed Turkish sovereignty
while preserving their autonomy.
The Treaty also internationalized the Danube river, which was placed under an international commission. (This arrangement lasted until 1947).
However, the movement for the union of Moldavia and Walachia was so strong by this time that it could not be denied. On Jan. 17, 1858, the Moldavian assembly unanimously chose Prince Alexander Ioan Cuza (1820-1873) a liberal Romanian noble, as the Duke of Moldavia. The Walachian assembly did likewise on February 5, 1859. Austria gave up its opposition to the union in 1859, after losing northern Italy in a war with France and the Kingdom Sardinia. Cuza finally obtained the recognition of European powers for the unification of the two provinces on December 23, 1861.
(picture from: A History of Romania. Iasi, 1997).
The Romanian peasant masses were, howevever, disillusioned by
the lack of progress in agrarian reform. The liberal opposition led a coup against
Cuza, who refused to resign. He then put through a new electoral
reform bill, which was less than the opposition wanted, but was supported by
most Romanians in a referendum and approved by the Sultan.
The government then took up the most burning problem: agrarian reform, passing the Law of 26 August 1864 to abolish serfdom.Peasants obtained the largest plots of land in southern Bessarabia, then Moldavia, and the smallest in Walachia. The average farm was small: 3.77 hectares (1 ha = 2.7 acres) and about one quarter of the peasants received no land at all. Those who obtained land had to pay compensation which, together with taxes, amounted to about one third of their annual income. Also, great estates still accounted for 2/3 of the land. Nevertheless, the reform was a great step forward. (Peasant emancipation in Prussia was completed by 1848; it took place in the Austrian Empire and separately in Hungary in 1848, in Russia in 1861, in Russian Poland in 1864).
Still, political opposition to Cuza grew so strong
that he declared he would not stay in power if the people did not want him,
but he was not believed. The palace was surrounded by rebellious troops on Feb.
23 1866 and Cuza abdicated. He died abroad in
He was succeeded by Prince Karl Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen, who was a Catholic. He was elected by the Assembly as Duke of Romania on May 22, 1866.
Romania agreed to allow Russian troops to cross its territory in the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78, and thus gained Russian support for recognition as an indpendent state. It was recognized as an independent state at the Congress of Berlin, July 1878, and became a Kingdom under Karl, who became King Carol I, in 1881.
Meanwhile, Transylvania was ruled directly from Vienna in the years 1849-67. However, with the Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867, it reverted to Hungary, and the Romanians there had to wait for union with the rest of Romania until November 1918. (See "Romanians outside the United Provinces" ... below).
Romanians outside the United Provinces, then Kingdom of Romania to 1914.
In 1900, these Romanians numbered about 2,785,000 in Hungary, or 16.7% of pop. of Hungary, excluding Croatia. Most lived in Transylvania, where they were the majority, plus in the adjoining territories of Banat, Crisana, and Maramures, where they lived side by side with other nationalities.
230,000 lived in Bukovina (now part of Ukrainian Republic), then under Austrian rule. Here, the majority was Ruthenian (Ukrainian).
1,092,000 lived in Bessarabia under Russian rule (now Moldova),
where they formed 56% of the population in 1900 according to Russian figures.
Others were Russians, Ruthenians, and Jews.
[See: Map 30 “Ethnolinguistic Distribution,” Robert Paul Magocsi Historical Atlas of East Central Europe, Seattle and London, 1993, facing p. 98, (in Lecture Notes 7, Magyarns) does not show the decline of Moldovan Hungarians in Bessarabia after 1870. In 1900, they formed 56% of the population).
The history of the Romanians of Transylvania in the second half of 19th century is important for understanding why this region could not remain in Hungary after the collapse of Austria-Hungary in November 1918.
For most of the period 1867-1914, Romanian leaders in Transylvania aimed at gaining autonomy (self-government) within the Kingdom of Hungary. This meant their own administration, with Romanian language, also in education, and free cultural development in general. These leaders, called Conservatives or Passivists, did not want the destruction of Hungary, because they believed Austria-Hungary was needed to prevent Russian domination of the region. They also believed that a federalized Hungary would best fulfill this role. It is worth noting that in 1906 Aurel Popovici published his book: Die Vereinigten Staaten von Gross-Osterreich (The United States of Greater Austria) in support of federalism, and that two years later in 1908, the Czech politician Edvard Benes published a book in France on the Czech question in Austria-Hungary (in French ) advocating the federalization of the Empire. (This was the Czech program since 1849).
However, this Passivist policy became largely discredited by the Magyar policy of assimilation. Hungarian governments aimed to prevent separatist movements from gaining strength by imposing Hung. language of education and controlling the Orthodox and Uniate churches in Transylvania. Also, the Hungarian governments aimed at a centralized state and therefore opposed federalization.
The Romanian government in Bucharest supported its nationals in Transylvania, but often used the issue as a ploy in internal political maneuvers. Furthermore, King Carol I was pro-German and thus pro-Austrian, so he wanted good relations with Germany and Austria-Hungary, with which Romania was allied.
However, Romanian governments gave financial support to Rom. churches and schools in Transylvania. The elementary and middle schools used Rom. as lang. of instruction and this was crucial in maintaining Rom. national consciousness.
By 1914, there was a general feeling among Romanians of Transylvania that a negotiated agreement with Hungarian government was impossible. Therefore, many looked to union with the “Regat” or Romanian kingdom, but with autonomy for Transylvania.
As for Hungarian governments, they believed that granting autonomy to Transylvania would lead to the dissolution of multi-ethnic Hungarian state, so they saw a centralized Hungarian state as a matter of life and death.
We should note that most of the Romanians in Transylvania were farmers, with a very small middle class that was outnumbered by the same class among Magyars, Szeklers and Saxons.
Austria took this region from Moldavia in 1774 (2 years after lst Partition of Poland). Most of the population was made up of peasants, while the Romanian middle class and intellectuals were far less numerous than those in Transylvania.
By 1880, Romanians numbered 190,005 or 33% of the population, increasing to 273,254 or 34% in the census of 1910. The majority were Ruthenes/Ruthenians (Ukrainians). Most of the merchants and artisans in the towns were Jewish, as were the lawyers and physicians. The decline of the Rom. pop. was due mainly to emigration, mostly to U.S. but some also to the Kingdom of Romania.
The Romanian Orthodox Church supported Rom. schools and teachers, and staffed the Theological Faculty in University of Cernauti (Ger. Czernowitz, Ukr.Cernivci). However, the Austrian government favored the Ukrainians by appointing a Ruthenian Episcopal Vicar instead of a Romanian Metropolitan in 1912. The Romanian language was used in 37% of the elementary schools, but there was no Romanian “gymnasium” (High School) or University.
There was no strong movement for union with Kg. of Romania, probably because the Austrian bureaucracy was fairly efficient and showed integrity in elections. Also, the Romanians and Ukrainians worked for compromise among themselves.
c. Bessarabia. (Name comes from the Basarab Princes of Wallachia who once ruled the area).
Russia annexed this part of Moldavia, lying between the Prut
and Dniester rivers, in 1812. At first there was autonomy, but this ended
in 1828 when Bess. became part of the general government of Novorossiisk . Then,
the administration was organized on the lines of a Russian gubernia (province)
with Russian as language of adm. and law.
Even after introduction of Russ. local govt. reforms under Alexander II (1855-81), participation was by Russians and non-Moldavian officials sent in from other parts of Rus. Empire. The largest industry in 1914 was food processing.
Russification made great advances. By 1911, out of 468 noble Moldavian families, only 138 were left, and most of them were integrated with Russian nobility.
The total Moldavian population decreased from 86% according to the 1817 census to 74% in 1856, and to 56% in 1897. At that time, 18.9% of the population was Ukrainian and Russian while 11.7% was Jewish. Most of the Moldavians lived in the central part of the province, while Ukrainians predominated in the north and south.
Most of the people were peasants with very small plots, or no land at all. The land reform of 1868 favored the prosperous peasants. Only 14.7% of the pop. was urban in 1912. The largest city was Kishinev (Rom. Chisinau). There was a Pogrom of Jews in that city in 1903. Pogroms in the Russian Empire in late 19th and early 20th century led to large-scale Jewish emigration, mostly to U.S.
[There were pogroms in Bessarabia and the Trans-Dniester region, when Romanian troops entered these regions in summer 1941. Many Ukrainians also participated in these pogroms].
The Orthodox Church was russified , so it could not play the same role in maintaining Rom. nationality as it did elsewhere. It is not surprising that there was no national Romanian movement before 1905, when there was a revolution in Russia. Conservatives advocated the teaching of the Rom. lang. in state schools (called Moldavian), but opposed social reform.
“Radicals,” mostly students, advocated both national rights and social reforms. They were influenced by Russian Socialist Revolutionaries (SR’s) and Social Democrats (SDs). But they did not call for separation from the Russian Empire. They wanted to work with the Russian people for democratic reforms. However, in elections to the Duma (Russian National Assembly), 1907, the victory went to the extreme right, who opposed social reform and concessions to national minorities. Therefore, the national movement in Bessarabia stagnated until 1917.
[This text is based on: Robert Hitchens, Rumania 1866-1947,
Oxford, 1994, ch.5].
3. The Albanians were the original Illyrians, the oldest ethnic group in the Balkans. They had fought the Turks for a long time and their hero is known as Alexander Skanderberg, though his real name was Gjerg Kastrioti Skenderbeu ( pron. Gyerg Kasrtiohtee Skanderbyeuh, 1405-68). Raised at the Sultan's court in Istanbul, he returned home with a band of Albanians, led a revolt against the Turks in 1444, defeated them and ruled to 1467. Afterwards, the country was under loose Turkish sovereignty and Albanians occupied high positions in the Ottoman government. Nevertheless, opposition continued in the highlands, so that the land was never completely controlled by the Turks.
Albanian society was organized along tribal lines in Muslim and Christian (Greek Orthodox) clans. There were two dialects: Gheg in the North and Tosk in the South.
The Albanian League for the Defense of the Rights of the Albanian Nation, also known as the Prizren League, sent a memorandum to the Congress of Berlin in 1878, demanding an independent Albania, but without success.. The League was led by Ali Pasha of Gusinje(pron.Gooseenyeh) and fought the Montenegrins, to whom the Congress of Berlin had awarded their country. Ultimately, Montenegro only obtained half the land assigned to it by the Powers.
The great Albanian national poet, the Franciscan monk Gjergj Fishta(pron. Gyergye Feeshtaa) wrote the great national epic: Lahuta e Malcis (pron. Lahootaa ej Maalthsees) The Saga of the Mountain, in the Gheg dialect, and it became the nationalist epic. (See: T. Zavalani, "Albanian Nationalism," in Sugar and Lederer, Nationalism in Eastern Europe, p.67).
American missionaries gave significant help in modernizing the language (as they had in Bulgaria).The American Bible Society translated the bible into Albanian.
Albania became a state in 1912 - mostly because Austria-Hungary did not want Serbia to get the Albanian coast. However, it did not contain all Albanians. Many were left in Macedonia while Kosovo, with its Albanian majority, was occupied by the Serbs. The Treaty of London, May 30, 1913, which ended the First Balkan War, recognized Serbian possession of Kosovo, thus storing up trouble for the future. However, at this time, the Powers would have had to fight the Serbs to make them leave. [Note: Kosovo had been part of medieval Serbia and was the cradle of Serbian culture].
For short histories of the Slavic and non-Slavic nations of the Balkans, see: Peter F.Sugar and Ivo J. Lederer, Nationalism in Eastern Europe, Seattle, Wash., 1977 and reprints. For an excellent overview of the period 1804-1920, see Charles and Barbara Jelavich, The Establishment of the Balkan National States, 1804-1920, Seattle, London, 1977. See also national histories by English and American historians. See also the richly illustrated History of Romania, 3rd edition, edited by Kurt W. Treptow and written by Romanian and American scholars, published by the Center for Romanian Studies, Iasi, Romania, in 1997.