Resolving The “Serbian Question” – One 19th-Century Project (II)

Part I 

Ethnolinguistic Serbdom

Serbia’s Prince Miloš’s schemes to solve the „Serbian Question“ were based exclusively on the historical (state) rights of the Serbs. However, during his reign, a new and cardinal dimension on an understanding of Serbian national identity and, therefore, the idea of the creation of the national state of the Serbs was introduced into Serbian political thought by Vuk Stefanović Karadžić (1787–1864) who framed the concept of a linguistic Serbdom.

In his brief essay “Срби сви и свуда” (“Serbs All and Everywhere”),[1] V. S. Karadžić established the linguistic criteria for determining Serbian national self-identity and reformulation of the whole concept of nation and nationality.[2] Namely, up to 1836, the Serbs were self-identified mainly as the Balkan community of Orthodox Christianity that both used the Cyrillic alphabet and maintained a national legend of the Kosovo tragedy of the defeat of the Serbs by the Ottomans in 1389 and heroic legends about it.[3]  Nevertheless, this traditional and conservative confession-based approach to the national identity of the Serbs (and other South Slavs) did not satisfy the Serbian intelligentsia which was heavily influenced in the time of Karadžić by the 19th-century German (linguistic) definition of the self-national identity (i.e., all German-speaking populations belong to the German nation).[4]

The nation-state building process in South-Eastern Europe is based on the development of nationalism as the phenomenon of the last two centuries. Nationalism itself is “associated with the spread of national ideologies leading in due course to the creation of sovereign nation-states”.[5] A fact is that the early 19th-century nationalism in South-East Europe was directly inspired by Western European ideas of Enlightenment which were based on secularization, historicism, and the spoken language by the folk. With regard to the Serbs, the ideas of the Enlightenment were primarily accepted and advocated by the Austrian urban Serbian settlers and secular intelligentsia who were in constant ideological conflict with the Serbian Orthodox Church. Therefore, it is surprising but true, that the early 19th-century Serbian nationalism was in essence secularist in a form which resulted from the confluence of a rapid decline of the Ottoman central power in Istanbul and new ideas of Western European Enlightenment, particularly those of German Romanticism.

Ethnic map of Socialist Yugoslavia according to 1981 census.
Ethnic map of Socialist Yugoslavia according to 1981 census.

S. Karadžić was inspired to apply the German language-based approach to the issue of what constituted the Serbian identity.[6] At the time of a rising Croatian linguistic and political nationalism, framed by Austria’s sponsored “Illyrian Movement,” he declared the Štokavian dialect (claimed by the Croatian “Illyrians” as one of three dialects of the Croatian national language) as the cardinal indicator of Serbian national identity, and identified all the South Slavs who spoke this dialect as ethnolinguistic Serbs. In accordance with the German model of the time, he did not consider religious affiliation in creating his national identity model, although he recognized that the ethnolinguistic Serbs belonged to three different confessional denominations. Therefore, he considered all the Bosnians and the Herzegovinians to be ethnolinguistic Serbs for the very reason that all of them spoke the Štokavian, but he distinguished three (confessional) groups of the inhabitants of Bosnia-Herzegovina, taking religion into consideration: the Serbs of the “Greek-creed” (the Eastern Orthodox), “Roman-creed” (the Roman Catholic) and “Turkish-creed” (the Islamic).[7] It should be noted that the former Serbo-Croatian language was officially divided by the Yugoslav linguists and philologists into three dialects according to the form of the interrogative pronoun what: Kajkavian (what = kaj), Čakavian (what = ča), and Štokavian (what = što).[8] At the time of V. S. Karadžić’s writing, the Kajkavian dialect was spoken in the northwestern parts of Croatia proper, the Čakavian in the northern coast area and the islands of the eastern Adriatic shore and the Štokavian within the area from the Austrian Military Border in the northwest to Mt. Shara in the southeast. The Štokavian dialect is (officially) divided into three sub-dialects according to the pronunciation of the original Slavic vowel represented by the letter jat.[9]

Disputes on the “Serbs All and Everywhere”

There is considerable controversy among the South Slavic philologists, linguists and historians regarding exactly how V. S. Karadžić treated the Štokavian-speaking Roman Catholic South Slavs (present-day Croats). This question became one of the most disputed topics with respect to V. S. Karadžić’s philological work and the apple of discord between the Serbian and Croatian researchers. Nevertheless, it is not precisely clear whether he evidently viewed them as Croats, or as Serbs. It appears, however, that V. S. Karadžić considered them in essence as the ethnolinguistic Serbs since they spoke the Štokavian dialect regardless of their own national (self)identity at that time. For him, all the Roman Catholic-creed Štokavians would eventually have to call themselves “Serbs”; and if they did not want to do so, they would end up without a national name. In other words, V. S. Karadžić was treating the Štokavian-speaking Roman Catholics in fact as Roman Catholic ethnolinguistic Serbs.[10] This conclusion was suggested also by the American historian from Dubrovnik Ivo Banac who notes that: “As early as 1814, for example, [Karadžić] held that one of the Štokavian subdialects was characteristic of ‘Roman Catholic Serbs’”[11] Nevertheless, many Croatian authors are of the opinion that V. S. Karadžić “tries to negate the existence of any significant number of Croats, distorting historic and linguistic factors to prove his arguments. At this time, the Croats, along with the Bulgarians, were seen as the biggest obstacle to Serbian dominance in the Balkans”.[12] However, for V. S. Karadžić a small number of the real ethnolinguistic Croats (the Čakavians) or of those who at that time clearly identified themselves as Croats (the Čakavians and the Kajkavians) was a reality. His point of view was moreover supported by the majority of the Slavic philologists at the end of the 18th century and the first half of the 19th century[13] who did not see in V. S. Karadžić’s opinion any kind of policy of Serbian expansionism at the Balkans. However, contrary to the Croatian allegations regarding V. S. Karadžić’s “imperialistic ideology of Serbian territorial expansionism”, any claim that at that time a significant number of the South Slavic Roman Catholic Štokavians were, in fact, the ethnolinguistic Croats is in support of Croatian assimilation policy (Croatization) of the Roman Catholic Štokavians which was begun at the time of V. S. Karadžić by the Croatian “Illyrian Movement”. The movement in the name of a Yugoslav unity appropriated the Serbian literal language standardized by Vuk Stefanović Karadžić (only for the Serbs) as a Croat literal language based exactly on the Štokavian dialect spoken at that time by no significant number of those who declared themselves as Croats but spoken by all of those who declared themselves as the Serbs and by those who had only a regional identity (Slavonian, Dalmatian, Dubrovnik, Bosnian…). Therefore, from the time of the Croatian “Illyrian Movement” to the present the Croats are, in fact, using the Serbian national language as their own literal one.[14] However, as a direct consequence of such Croatian linguistic policy, the Roman Catholic Štokavians of the time of V. S. Karadžić are today completely Croatized.

As a matter of fact, V. S. Karadžić was unable to fix precisely the southeastern ethnоlinguistic borders of the Serbian nation within the framework of his linguistic model of national identity, as he did not know how many Serbs (i.e., the Štokavian speakers) lived in Albania and Macedonia because of the lack of any relevant statistics and other documentation. For instance, in 1834, he was informed by some merchants about the existence of around 300 “Serbian” villages in Western Macedonia. However, he had serious doubts about the accuracy of this information when he heard that the people from these villages spoke the “Slavic language”, since this could have meant either the Bulgarian or Serbian.[15] He acknowledged, nevertheless, the existence of transitional zones between the Štokavian dialect and the Bulgarian language in Western Bulgaria (Torlak and Zagorje regions) but he excluded most of Macedonia and Albania from his Štokavian-speaking zone.[16] Finally, he was only able to conclude that the Štokavian dialect was definitely spoken in the area between the Timok River and Mt. Šara.

It is of crucial importance to emphasize that V. S. Karadžić’s ideas on South Slavic identities were not original but in fact based on the theory developed by the leading 19th-century Slavonic philologists Dositej Obradović, Pavel Josef Šafařik, Jan Kollár, Josef Dobrovský, Jernej Kopitar and Franc Miklošič, who claimed that the genuine Slovene dialect was the Kajkavian, the native Croatian dialect was the Čakavian (and to a certain extent the Kajkavian) and that the true Serbian dialect was the Štokavian.[17] In other words, a Croat claimed Karadžić’s ethnolinguistic “imperialism” prompted by the desire to create a Greater Serbia was nothing else than an internationally recognized reality of the South Slavic ethnolinguistic division by the leading Slavic philologists of the time and who were of different ethnonational backgrounds.

Nevertheless, Karadžić’s concept of a language-based Serbian nationhood had a significant impact on 19th and 20th-century scholars, both the Serbs and the others:

  1. It gave a strong impetus to the revision of the traditional picture of the Serbian ethnolinguistic territories in the Balkans.
  2. As a result of V. S. Karadžić’s theory, the claim that there was a large Serbian population in Western Bulgaria and most of Macedonia and Albania was finally abandoned.
  3. The literary and cultural legacy of Dubrovnik was asserted to be exclusively Serbian.[18]

Ethnolinguistic Statehood

A Romanticist-based idea of Serbian national statehood reached its final stage when Ilija Garašanin (1812–1874) drafted a plan for consolidation of all ethnolinguistic Serbian territories within a single national state. His unfinished Начертаније (Outline) became one of the most significant and influential works in the history of South Slavic political thought, greatly influencing the development of Serbia’s national program and foreign policy in the 19th and 20th centuries. Written in 1844 as a top-secret document submitted only to Serbia’s Prince Aleksandar Karađorđević I (1842–1858), it became, however, known in the Austro-Hungarian diplomatic circles in 1888, and a wider audience became familiar with the text in 1906 when a Belgrade-based journal published it.[19]

Different interpretations of I. Garašanin’s ultimate idea of statehood are primarily inspired by two cardinal problems in dealing with the reconstruction of the text of Outline:

  1. The original is not preserved, and the text can be reconstructed only from several copies.[20]
  2. Garašanin (the “Balkan Bismarck”)[21] did not succeed in completing the original text of Outline that was delivered to the Prince Aleksandar.
Ilija Garašanin

Similar to the case of V. S. Karadžić’s linguistic model of Serbian national identity, to a large extent, Garašanin’s project of the creation of a united national state of the Serbs was also very much inspired by foreigners. More precisely, by three works written in 1843 and 1844 and translated into Serbian: Савети (The Advice) by the Polish Prince Adam Jerzy Czartoryski (1770–1861), a leader of the Polish émigrés in Paris; Фрагмент из српске историје (A Fragment from the History of Serbia) by the Englishman David Urkwart, and План (The Plan) by the Czech Francisco Zach. Nevertheless, these authors championed the idea of creating a united South Slavic state under the leadership of Serbia, intended as a barrier to Russian and Austrian political influence in the Balkans. This united South Slavic state was to be placed under French and British protection.[22] However, I. Garašanin did not accept the plan to unite Serbia with all South Slavic territories of the Austrian Empire (populated by Serbs, Croats and Slovenes) into a single, federal state as he advocated the creation of a single centralized national state only of the ethnolinguistic Serbs whose boundaries would embrace a complete Serbian national entity.[23]

There are three crucial reasons why I. Garašanin designed a united Serbian national state instead of a South Slavic one:

  1. He favored the idea of an ethnically uniform state, as advocated by the German Romanticists.[24]
  2. He believed that a multinational South Slavic state would easily disintegrate as a result of the frequent struggles between the different nations.
  3. He believed that only an ethnically uniform state organization could be inherently stable.[25]

Garašanin designed his plans in an expectation that both the Ottoman Empire and the Austrian Empire, as multinational and imperialistic states, would be dismantled in the immediate future due to their internal instability. In his view, in the event of the Austrian and the Ottoman dismemberment the principal duty of Serbia had to be to place all ethnolinguistic Serbs, especially those who had been living in undisputable Serbian historical lands, into a single national state organization. The core of a united Serb national state was to be the Principality of Serbia, which had at that time the status of an autonomous tributary within the Ottoman Empire.

Garašanin designed two stages to rally all Serbs into a united national state. This timetable corresponds to I. Garašanin’s prediction that the Ottoman Empire would collapse first, followed by the Habsburg Monarchy:

  1. In the first stage, Serbia would annex all the Serbian ethnographic territories within the Ottoman Empire: i.e., Bosnia-Herzegovina, part of West Bulgaria, Montenegro, Sanjak (Raška), part of North Albania and, finally, Kosovo-Metochia.
  2. The lands of the Austrian Empire that were inhabited by the ethnolinguistic Serbs — the Military Border, Slavonia, Srem, Bačka, Banat, and Dalmatia — would be subject to the same action in the second phase of Serbian national unification.[26]

Disputes on the “Outline”

In South Slavic and international historiography, there is a two-camp dispute about the principles on which I. Garašanin based his idea of Serbian statehood:

  1. The first group claims that at the time I. Garašanin was writing the Outline the Serbian Minister of Internal Affairs, sought to create a Serbian national state solely on the principle of historical state rights. They argue that I. Garašanin took as a model the glorious Serbian medieval empire, which lasted from 1346 to 1371, and hence that he did not consider the territories settled by the Serbs in the Austrian Empire as they had not been included in the Serbian mediaeval empire, but focused only on those within the Ottoman Empire because they composed the Serbian mediaeval state. In their view, I. Garašanin always referred to the Serbian Empire of Stefan Dušan (1331–1355, proclaimed emperor in 1346), the borders of which reached the Drina River on the west, the Sava and Danube Rivers on the north, the Chalkidiki Peninsula on the east, and the Albanian seacoast and the Gulf of Corinth on the south. Therefore, the territories of the Austrian Military Border, Slavonia, Srem, Bačka, Banat, and Bosnia-Herzegovina, which were not included in the medieval Serbian Empire, were not treated by him as the lands to which Serbia had historic (state) rights.[27]
  2. The second group argues that I. Garašanin advocated the creation of a national state on the basis of both Serbian ethnic and historical (state) rights. This view is based on the last chapter of the Outline, in which I. Garašanin urged the dissemination of Serbian nationalist propaganda in the territories settled by the Serbs in the Austrian Empire and West Bulgaria. Hence, according to this second group, I. Garašanin clearly regarded these territories as a part of a united Serbian national state by calling for the ethnic rights of the Serbs.[28]

Nevertheless, in order to settle this problem, I took into consideration primarily the whole text of the Outline. It is clear that I. Garašanin did not call for Macedonia to be included into the united national state of the Serbs. Instead of Macedonia, he favored the annexation of Bosnia-Herzegovina. In fact, to champion Serbia’s territorial expansion toward the southern portion of the Balkan Peninsula, I. Garašanin turned his eyes toward the western part of the Balkan Peninsula because his ultimate aim was to unite all Serbs but not to unite all South Slavs. It meant that the Principality of Serbia needed to be expanded to include the western Balkan territories, where the ethnolinguistic Serbs were settled, but not the southern ones, where the language-based Serbs either had already disappeared or were a minority.

Garašanin could not have supported the policy of the southward expansion of the medieval Serbian state (at the expense of the Byzantine Empire),[29] because he advocated the German Romanticist principle of establishing a single national state organization based on the common language as the crucial marker of national identity. If I. Garašanin’s project of a united Serbian national state organization is compared to V. S. Karadžić’s picture of the ethnographic dispersion of the Serbs, it is clear that both of them were speaking about exactly the same Balkan territories. Therefore, the fundamental principle behind I. Garašanin’s project of a united national state of all Serbs was, in fact, V. S. Karadžić’s linguistic model of Serbian national identity. Finally, as for V. S. Karadžić, a main political motif for I. Garašanin’s Outline was to prevent Croatian territorial claims and national expansion in the lands settled by the Roman Catholic and Muslim Štokavian speakers who at that time usually had the only regional identity or already felt as ethnic Serbs.

It should be stressed that I. Garašanin adopted V. S. Karadžić’s language-based concept of nation and hence identified the Serbs with the Štokavian-speaking South Slavic population. I. Garašanin excluded Macedonia from his concept of the language-based Serbian statehood because he had adopted V. S. Karadžić’s view that there were no Štokavian speakers in most parts of Macedonia and Albania. However, he had also adopted V. S. Karadžić’s claim that the entire population of Bosnia-Herzegovina belonged to the language-based Serbian nationality, and hence he included Bosnia-Herzegovina within the language-based Serbian national state organization. Moreover, he understood V. S. Karadžić’s transitional zones in West Bulgaria to be territories inhabited mostly by the Štokavian speakers. According to the same principle, the territories of the Austrian Military Border, Dalmatia, Slavonia, Bačka, Srem, and Banat would also be included in Garašanin’s language-based national state of the Serbs.

The idea that I. Garašanin supported only the historical rights of the Serbs in the creation of the Serbian united national state should be finally rejected by historians. The cases of Macedonia and Bosnia-Herzegovina provide the strongest evidence in support of this conclusion. The territory of Macedonia was a political center during Stefan Dušan’s Serbian Empire. The largest Macedonian city, Skopje, was selected as the capital of the Serbian Empire, and it was where king Stefan Dušan was crowned as the emperor and had his imperial court. Yet this historical Serbian land did not find its way into the state projected by I. Garašanin. In contrast, Bosnia-Herzegovina, a province that had never been part of the Serbian medieval state, was incorporated into I. Garašanin’s united national state of all Serbs.

With respect to the Roman Catholic Štokavian speakers, I. Garašanin also followed V. S. Karadžić’s model of the ethnolinguistic Serbdom and therefore incorporated into the Serbian language-based national state all West Balkan territories settled by the Štokavian-speaking Roman Catholics. However, I. Garašanin did not include into a future Serbian national state the territories inhabited by both Čakavian and Kajkavian speakers as they were not considered Serbs. This is the real reason why Slovenia, Istria, a majority of East Adriatic Islands and present-day North-West Croatia (i.e., territories around Zagreb) were not mentioned in the Outline as the parts of his state project.

Garašanin’s language-based statehood was designed as an empire under the Serbian ruling dynasty. For him, the geographical position of the country, the natural and military resources and, above all, a single ethnic origin and language shared by its citizens, guaranteed a long existence of the state.[30] He favored a centralized inner state organization similar to that of the Principality of Serbia, but he did not have in mind a federation or confederation[31] as his state was to be composed of only one ethnolinguistic nation – the Serbs.


The issue of national self-determination, the idea and goals of nationhood, and the methods and means for the attainment of such goals, were foremost in the thinking of 19th-century Serbian intellectuals and politicians. Vuk Stefanović Karadžić’s linguistic model of the Serbian national identification and Ilija Garašanin’s model of the Serbian national-state unification were the most important of all of the 19th-century Serb projects to solve the “Serb Question”. Both were essentially based on the ideological constructs intended to unite all Serbs (within the Ottoman Empire and the Austrian Empire) and to create a single national state of the Serbs as the answer to the rising Croatian nationalism and territorial claims with respect to the Balkans formulated by Austria-sponsored “Illyrian Movement” which had as its ultimate national-political goal the establishment of a Greater Croatia in the Austrian Empire including all territories settled by the Štokavian speakers west of the Drina River.[32]

The language-based model of a unified Serbian national state after the Serbian liberation from the Ottoman Empire and the Austrian Empire, combined to some extent with the principle of historical state rights, is the keystone of I. Garašаnins’s arguments.

Both, V. S. Karadžić’s new model of language-based Serbian nationhood, drafted in his article “Serbs All and Everywhere”, and I. Garašanin’s new model of language-based Serbian statehood, drafted in Outline, are of extraordinary importance in the history of the political thought of the South Slavs. However, the real meaning of both models is differently explained by Serbian and Croatian linguists, philologists and historians: i.e., a majority of the former understand these models as a good way to politically and culturally unify the Serbian nation, while, conversely the majority of the latter saw in these models the ideological foundations for Serbia’s territorial expansion and political domination in the Balkan Peninsula.

Shortly, the main conclusions are that V. S. Karadžić’s understanding of language in the conception of the Serbian linguistic nationalism was primarily of an ethnic nature and that I. Garašanin drafted a project of a united Serbian national state by implementing a linguistic model of Serbian national identification exactly as developed by V. S. Karadžić. Finally, in my opinion, both models were primarily designed as the instruments with which to counter Croatian nationalistic propaganda and territorial claims developed by the “Illyrian Movement” in the 1830s.


[1]  From the essay’s title, one can understand that the author claimed that the Serbs were living everywhere in the world and that all world nations were of Serbian origin. However, V. S. Karadžić’s essay is only about all of those who were Serbs as defined by his new linguistic identity criteria regardless of where they were living and to which confessional denomination they adhered. This politically motivated “misunderstanding” usually originates on the Croat side as an example of the (Orthodox) Serb genocide ideology and policy against the (Roman Catholic) Croats. See, for instance: Ante Beljo et al., eds., Greater Serbia from Ideology to Aggression (Zagreb: Croatian Information Centre, 1992), 17−22. This typical Croat propaganda book was published during the time of the bloody destruction of Yugoslavia in order to show that “Serbia’s aggression” towards Croatia was rooted on the 19th and 20th century imperialistic ideology of Serb intellectuals.

[2] Вук Стефановић Караџић, „Срби сви и свуда“, Koвчежић за историју, језик и обичаје Срба сва три закона, (1, Беч, 1849), 1−27; Judah, The Serbs, 55, 61−62. On national identity see: David McCrone, Frank Bechhofer, Understanding National Identity (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015).

[3] On the myth and reality of the Kosovo Battle and Kosovo legend, see: Ратко Пековић (уредник), Косовска битка: Мит, легенда и стварност (Београд: Литера, 1987).

[4] For details on the German Romanticism, see: Oskar Walzel, German Romanticism (Literary Licensing, LLC, 2013).

[5] Mark Biondich, The Balkans: Revolution, War, and Political Violence Since 1878 (New York: Oxford University Press, 2011), 13.

[6] Милосављевић, Срби и њихов језик, 22−25.

[7] Караџић, „Срби сви и свуда,“ (1849), 6−7. Similar opinion had, for instance, and a leading Balkan geographer and ethnographer of the time Jovan Cvijić at the beginning of the 20th century [Јован Цвијић, Oснове за географију и геологију Makeдоније и Старе Србије (Београд: СКА, 1906); Јован Цвијић, Метанастазичка кретања, њихови узроци и последице (Београд: СКА, 1922), 202−33].

[8] Dalibor Brozović, Pavle Ivić, Jezik srpskohrvatski/hrvatskosrpski, hrvatski ili srpski (Zagreb: Jugoslavenski leksikografski zavod „Miroslav Krleža“, 1988); Robert D. Greenberg, Language and Identity in the Balkans (Oxford−New York: Oxford University Press, 2008), 16−23.

[9] Vladimir Dedijer, History of Yugoslavia (New York: Mc Graw-Hill Book Co., 1975), 103; Barbara Jelavich, History of the Balkans: Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983), 304−08.

[10] Вук Стефановић Караџић, Писменица сербского иезика, по говору простога народа (Беч: Штампарија Јована Шнирера, 1814), 105; Караџић, „Срби сви и свуда“, 6; Милосављевић, Срби и њихов језик, 128.

[11] Ivo Banac, The National Question in Yugoslavia: Origins, History, Politics (Ithaca−London: Cornell University Press, 1984), 80.

[12] Beljo et al, Greater Serbia from Ideology to Aggression, 17−18.

[13] On this issue, see more in: Милосављевић, Срби и њихов језик.

[14] Лазо М. Костић, Крађа српског језика (Баден, 1964); Предраг Пипер, Увод у славистику 1 (Београд: Завод за уџбенике и наставна средства, 1998), 116−127; Петар Милосављевић, Српски филолошки програм (Београд: Требник, 2000), 9.

[15] Караџић, „Срби сви и свуда“, 1; Владимир Стојанчевић, “Једна неиспуњена жеља Вукова”, Ковчежић за историју Срба сва три закона (12, Београд), 74−77; Милосављевић, Срби и њихов језик, 125.

[16] Вукова преписка, IV (Београд, 1909), 648.

[17] See more in: Милосављевић, Срби и њихов језик.

[18] For instance: Ђорђе Николајевић, Српски споменици (Београд: Летопис Матице српске, 1840); Ђорђе Николајевић, „Епархија православна у Далмацији“, Српско-далматински магазин (15, Задар, 1850); Цвијић, Oснове за географију и геологију Makeдоније и Старе Србије, 43−44; Grégoire Gravier, Les frontiers historiques de la Serbie (Paris: Armand Colin, 1919); Цвијић, Метанастазичка кретања, њихови узроци и последице, 202−233; Никола Радојчић, “Географско знање о Србији почетком XIX века”, Географско друштво (Београд, 1927); Лујо Бакотић, Срби у Далмацији од пада Млетачке Републике до уједињења (Београд: Геца Кон А. Д.: 1938), 64−81, 110−121.

[19] John R. Lampe, Yugoslavia as History. Twice There Was a Country (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 52.

[20] Радош Љушић, Књига о Начертанију: Национални и државни програм Кнежевине Србије (1844) (Београд: БИГЗ, 1993).

[21] Дејвид Мекензи, Илија Гарашанин: Државник и дипломата (Београд: Просвета, 1987), 15.

[22]  Ljiljana Aleksić, „Šta je dovelo do stvaranja ’Načertanija’“, Historijski pregled, (2, Zagreb, 1954), 68−71.

[23] “The Načertanije itself uses the language of romantic nationalism to propose a Serbian state…” Lampe, Yugoslavia as History, 52.

[24] Ibid.

[25] The history of all multiethnic Yugoslav states from 1918 to 1991 clearly proved the rightness of I. Garašanin’s point of view.

[26] As in the case of Karadžić’s model of ethnolinguistic identification of the Serbs, I. Garašanin’s project of creation of a united Serbian ethnonational state was inspired by Croatian imperialistic ideas of the Croatian ethnonational identity and creation of a united Greater Croatia within the borders of the Austrian Empire. Both V. S. Karadžić and I. Garašanin well understood that the “Illyrian Movement” was, in fact, the Austrian sponsored political movement for creation of a Greater Croatia in the Austrian Empire mostly at the expense of the Serbs. According to the Austrian/Croatian idea promulgated by the “Illyrian Movement”, all Roman Catholic South Slavs had to be named as the ethnolinguistic Croats and as such included into the Austrian Empire. The Croats hoped to create within the Austrian Empire a separate administrative province of a Greater Croatia with Bosnia-Herzegovina.

[27] For instance: Љушић, Књига о Начертанију, 94−100, 153; Dušan Bilandžić, Hrvatska moderna povjest (Zagreb: Golden marketing, 1999), 29−30.

[28] For example: Banac, The National Question in Yugoslavia, 83−84: Damir Agičić, Tajna politika Srbije u XIX stoljeću (Zagreb: AGM−Zavod za hrvatsku povijest Filozofskog fakulteta Sveučilišta u Zagrebu: 1994), 25−26.

[29] The Serbian Empire was definitely broken apart in 1371 by the Ottoman victory in the Battle of Marica (September) and by the death of the Emperor Stefan Uroš in the same year (December). See more in: Јованка Калић, Срби у позном Средњем веку (Београд: Службени лист СРЈ, 2001).

[30] Љушић, Књига о Начертанију, 76−87.

[31] Charles Jelavich, “Garashanins Natchertanie und das gross-serbische Problem”, Südostforschungen (XXVII, 1968), 131−147.

[32] For more details on this issue, see: Vladislav B. Sotirović, The Croatian National (“Illyrian”) Revival Movement and the Serbs: From 1830 to 1847 (Saarbrücken: LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing, 2015).

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  1. Walter DuBlanica

    Thank you for your excellent article. Slavs need to remember that they are more alike each other then they are with other neighboring people.

  2. Unfortunately, all Roman Catholic Slavs are firstly Roman Catholics and than the Slavs.

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