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Serbia, Pirot
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"Pirot" (Serbian Cyrillic: Пирот) is a town and municipality located in south-eastern Serbia. In 2002, the town had a total population of 40,678, while population of municipality was 63,791. The town is the administrative center of the Pirot District.

In its vicinity is the church from the thirteenth century: the Church of St. Petka, and the monastery of St. John the Theologian from the late fourteenth century displays a fine example of the Serb medieval architecture.

Thracians lived in Pirot prior to the Roman conquest and Romanization of Serbia in the 1st century BC.

The first mentions of Pirot are found in the 2nd century AD, when the town was called "Turres", Quimedava. At the Maglić monastery of village Blato, an 2nd century AD stone depiction of the Thracian horseman was found in September 2008§ionId=56&view=story.

The first written account mentioning Pirot was the 4th century Roman itinerary knowns as Tabula Peutingeriana. An antique settling in this area was named Tures (Latin for “towers”). Firstly, it was set to enable control and defence of the main road in this part of the empire. Besides, travellers could sleep here over night, as well as get refreshments and new horses or vehicles. In time, the settling advanced because of the important road passing through. It was also disturbed very persistently by invasions of the Gothic tribes throughout the 4th century, as well as the Huns in the 5th century. According to the written accounts "On the Constructions" by Procopius of Caesarea, writing during the reigning of the emperor Justinian I (527 – 565), the reigning emperor ordered reconstruction of thirty fortresses in the area from Niš to Sofia, probably including the tower of Pirot. He also gave the detailed description of those construction works. In times when the Slavs and Avars were invading the Balkans, the settling was named Quimedava, and was situated on the southern slope of the Sarlah Hill.

Corresponding to the archaeological investigations, the town back then, surrounded by forts and fortified walls, also included an early Christian basilica, termas (public bathrooms), a necropolis (graveyard), and other facilities. Beside the military fortress, a civil settlement existed on the site called Majilka. Although Byzantium successfully defended itself from the barbaric tribes’ raids, the Balkans were teeming with the Slavs in the second half of the 6th century and at the beginning of the 7th century. The Slavs soon became a crucial ethnical element on the peninsula. In the Middle Ages, Pirot was respectively under Byzantine, Bulgarian and Serbian administration. From the late 7th century, the town was incorporated into the First Bulgarian Empire. Consequently, the significance of the towns vanished and the roads were not being used as much. A well-organized country was replaced with the weakly connected tribal communities of the Slavs and the natives, who were pushed back into the woodlands. Serbian archaeological researches have not found typical Serbian tombs in Pirot"s area from the period 7th-8th century. Serbian archaeological science has not found traces of Serbian presence from the 10th century as well. It remained under Bulgarian rule almost to the very end of the First Empire at the beginning of the 11th century, when it again came under Byzantine rule. In 1182-1183, the joint Serb-Hungarian army took temporarily control of Pirot area, and it was first time that Pirot was included briefly into Serbian state. Serbian ruler, Stefan Nemanja, together with Frederick Barbarossa passed through Pirot and was enthusiastically welcomed by its citizens. The town once again came under Bulgarian rule after the successful uprising of Asen and Peter in the end of the 12th century. It was under Bulgarian rule in most the of 13th and 14th centuries. Some historians state that in 1214-1216 Serbian ruler Stefan Nemanjić took possession of the region of Pirot. During the reign of Emperor Ivan Asen II (1218-1241) the regions in the west and northwest were under Bulgarian rule. Pirot again belonged to the Serbian state during the rule of king Stefan Uroš II of Serbia (1282-1321).

There is disagreement between Serbian and Bulgarian sources whether area belonged to Serbian or Bulgarian states in the 14th century period. According to Serbian sources, in the 14th and 15th century, Pirot belonged to the several Serbian states - the Serbian Empire of Stefan Dušan, Moravian Serbia of Lazar Hrebeljanović, and Serbian Despotate of Stefan Lazarević, while according to Bulgarian historian Koledarov, the town was under Bulgarian rule in the 13th and 14th century and belonged to the Bulgarian state almost to the end of Second Bulgarian Empire. Still more, the Serbian archaeological excavations haven"t found evidences for mass Serbian presence from 13th-15th century in the region, for example typical Serbian pottery from 14th-15th century. The town was later conquered by the Ottoman Empire. It was conquered by the Ottoman army the first time in 1386, but later the possession of this region was changed several times between Serbian and Ottoman rulers. It was finally conquered by Ottomans in the 15th century and remained under Ottoman rule until the 19th century (December 1877). It was known as "Şehirköy" during Ottoman rule.

According to some contemporary Serbian authors during the Ottoman rule, the majority of native Torlakian Slavic population of Pirot did not had either Serb or Bulgarian national consciousness - in ethnic sense, they simply considered themselves inhabitants of the place where they lived with foggy idea that they are Slavs. Therefore, both, Serbs and Bulgarians, considered local Slavs as part of their own people, while local population was also divided between sympathy for Serbs and sympathy for Bulgarians. Various other sources from various time periods mention Torlakian Slavs from the area under names of Serbs or Bulgarians. It should be noted that according to some Serbian researchers term "Bulgarians" was in the past used as a designation for all Slavs, hence a record that somebody was "Bulgarian" was simply a description of his Slavic origin, not of his Bulgarian origin in modern sense. Unlike the majority of local Torlakian Slavs, the small part of them adopted Serb or Bulgarian national consciousness.

Some authors from the epoch, take a different view and maintain that until 1878 the inhabitants of Pirot had a Bulgarian national consciousness and had a fondness to Bulgarian national idea. Also, in the 19th century Pirot was one of the centres of Bulgarian National Revival. It was a seat of Bulgarian bishop from 1870 to 1878. In Pirot were born well-known Bulgarian literary critic and philosopher Krastio Krastev (1866-1919), the scientist Spas Vatzov (1856-1928), the painter Michael Krastev (1877-1956), etc. The inhabitants of Pirot along with the Shopi inhabitants of present-day north-western Bulgaria, with the help from Serbia, started in 1836 unsuccessful rebellion ("Pirot rebellion") and in 1841 uprising ("anti-feudal national uprising") against Ottoman authorities. In 1878, Pirot was ceded to Bulgaria according to the Treaty of San Stefano, but only a few months later with the Treaty of Berlin it was incorporated in Serbia. It was shortly occupied by Bulgaria during Serbo-Bulgarian War in 1885 and was occupied again by Bulgaria between 1915-1918 during World War I.


Category:Cities, towns and villages in Central Serbia
Category:Municipalities of Central Serbia

nl:Pirot (stad)
Dieser Artikel stammt aus der freien Enzyklopädie Wikipedia und kann dort bearbeitet werden. Der Text ist unter der Lizenz Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike verfügbar. Fassung vom 16.09.2019 04:58 von den Wikipedia-Autoren.


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