21. September 2015.

The giants of the region

Vuk Stefanović Karadzić

vukVuk Stefanović Karadzić (October 26/November 6, 1787, Tršić-February 7, 1864, Vienna) was a Serbian philologist, reformer of the Serbian language, collector of folk songs and the author of the first Serbian dictionary. Vuk was the most prominent character in Serbian literature in the first half of the 19th century. Vuk’s reforms introduced phonemic orthography in the Serbian language, therefore the Serbian language pushed out the Slavonic-Serbian language, which at that time was the language of educated people. Vuk was appreciated in Europe as the honorary Doctor of Science, the honorary citizien of Zagreb and Poreč, the honorary member of many universites a Великим реформама and institutes; he was appointed as a member of the Berlin, Vienna and St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences. He was elected a member of scientific societies in Krakow, Moscow, Gottingen, Paris, etc…and awarded by the Russian and Austro-Hungarian Tsar, King of Prussia and the Russian Academy of Sciences. Vuk Stefanović Karadzić was born in Tršić. His family suffered many child deaths, thus he got name Vuk after the national custom, to protect himself from witches and ghosts. His family moved from Drobnjak (Montenegro). He was taugh writting and reading skills by a relative Jevto Savić Čotrić. Vuk continued his further education at school in Loznica, but he did not finish it dueto illness. However, he continued studying at the Tronoša Monastery. At the beginning of the First Serbian Uprisning, Vuk worked at a scribe for Đorđe Ćučija, the chief of brigands. The same year he went to Sremski Karlovci to enroll the grammar school, but as a 19 year old boy he was too old to attend it. Therefore, he spent some time at the local seminary, where a professor Lukijan Mušicki worked. As he was rejected at grammar school “Sremski Karlovci”, he went to Petrinje and spent several months studyng German. Later on, he came to Belgrade to meet Dositej Obradović, an erudite man and enlightener. Vuk asked him for the assistance in his education, but Dositej refused. When Dositej established the Great School of Belgrade (today kown as the University of Belgrade), Vuk became its student. Soon he got ill and went for treatement in Novi Sad and Pest, yet faild to heal the aching leg, which remained contorted. Now being lame, Vuk returned to Serbia in 1810. During the First Serbian Uprising he worked as a scribe and a clerk in Negotinska Krajina, and after the crush of the uprising he moved to Vienna in 1813. There he met Jernej Kopitar, a censor of Slavic books, who encouraged him to start collecting Serbian folk songs, the Cyrilic alphabet reform and figth for the introduction of native language in Serbian literature. In Vienna, he married Anna Maria Kraus. Vuk and Anna had many children, of whom only Mina and Dimitrije survived, while others died in infancy or in early childhood. Vuk died in Vienna. The remains were transferred to Belgrade in 1897 and with great honours buried in the churchyard of the Catedral of St. Arhangel Michael, next to Dositej Obradović.

Wilhelmina Mina Karadzic Vukomanovic

134-630x350Wilhelmina Mina Karadzic Vukomanovic (Viena, June 30/July 12, 1828 – Viena, June 12, 1894) was born as the seventh child in a family of the Serbian magnate Vuk Karadzic and Ana Maria Kraus. Whilst a little girl, she showed a talent for art and music, having her father’s support, who did everzthing to provide his daughter better education. Mina had language, music and painting teachers since she was a child. She devoted herself to writing when she was fifeen, and she wrote poems and essays or translated the Serbian folk brainchildren into German. Some poems reached Vuk’s great friend Grimm who judged them as very good. She ceded them to Frankel, an Austrian poet, her good friend, who published them under his name. She translated into German and published Vuk’s collection of folk tales with more than thousand proverbs, and Jacob Grimm wrote preface for it. It was the first edition and first transation of the Serbian folk stories. Literary opus of Mina Karadzic also comprises notes from diaries she kept being persuaded by English lady Care (she translated well-known “Serbian Revolution by Leopold Von Ranker). These notes are of great documentary value, because they were made during her visit to Serbia in 1856. Her writtings where she talked about Branko Radicevic, her best friend, are also valuable. There are about fifty paintings she did, but she did not either sign or dated them. First of all, they are oil paintings, mostly portraits of people who lived then, and there were several drawings, too. She was inspired with legendary Marko Kraljevic, and she painted two pictures of him (Marko Kraljevic with a mace and Marko Kaljevic with a morning star). Two drawings – portraits of her father Vuk Karadzic have been preserved.
Best known paintings: Self portrait, Portrait of her brother Dimitrije, Old lady with a white cap, Young black, Montengrin, Greek Hero, Bosnian with red rug, Portriat of a girl with red scarf, Girl in plaid dress, Woman’s portrait, Old man with long hair, Young man with beard. Everybody admired her for her personality beauty and charisma. She always came to famous balls in Vienna dressed in the Serbian folk costume, and played kolo. She was inspiration for many poets, and there is well known lithography of Decker, a Vienna artist, who presented her in the Serbian urban costume. Pretty and educated, Mina was surrounded by wooers all the time, and she married to Aleksa Vukomanovic, a professor at Belgrade Lyceum and a nephew of noblewoman Ljubica, when she was thirty. Her husband died a year after they had married, and five years later she lost er father too. Being without her beloved, she devoted herself only to a memory of her father, diligently arranging his papers and his legacy. She was engaged in publishing Vuk’s works in Vienna, Belgrade, and Saint Petersburg. She ceded copyright and property rights over father’s work and assets to the State of Serbia. She died in Vienna on June 12, 1894. Her remains were first taken to Belgrade and then buried together with her son’s and her husband’s, in Savinac, near Gornji Milanovac, in a crypt of Vukomanovic’s family church.

  Jovan Cvijić

cvijicJovan Cvijić (October 11, 1865, Loznica – January 16, 1927, Belgrade) was a Serbian scientist, the founder of the Serbian Geographical Society, the president of the Serbian Royal Academy (today known as The Serbian Academy of Arts and Scienes), the professor and rector at the University of Belgrade, the Honorary Doctor of Sorbonne University and Charles University in Prague. He was equally interested in social and physical geography, geomorphology, ethnography, geology, anthropology and history. He is conidered the founder of geography in Serbia. When he left primary school, he completed a lower grammar school (first two year) in Loznica and attended a grammar school in Šabac, where he finished the third and fourth year. Then, he enrolled and graduated from the first Belgrade Grammar School, together with Milorad Mitrović, Mihailo Petrović Alas and other great minds, which was the main plot of the novel and the film “The Hat of professor Vujić.” Due to his researches, Jovan Cvijić made advancement in the world’s store of scientific knowledge with a review on anthropogeography, as a thorough study of psychological types of Balkan people published in the work „Balkan Peninsula 1918“. Cvijić conducted researches for thirty-eight years and explored the Balkan Peninsula, the Southern Carpathians and Asia Minor, which resulted into numerous scientific works. One of the most substantial works is „Balkan Peninsula“. The book „Geomorphology“, written in two volumes, describes the geomorphic terrain of the Balkan Peninsula. It is still recognizable and regarded as the basis for many contemporary researches. Jovan Cvijić was a world-known scientist who received numerous awards. He was a member of eight academies of sciences, sixteen geographical and natural science societes and recived 10 honours. He was: honorary Doctor od Sorbonne and Charles University in Prague, corresponding member of the Serbian Royal Academy from February 5, 1896, whereas he became a full memeber on February 4, 1899, the President of Serbian Royal Academy from April 12, 1921. He stayed on this position until his death in 1927, honoree of the English, French and American medal for scientific papers, honorary Memeber of many geographical, ethnographic, natural science and other societeis around the world (St.Petersburg, Budapest, Bucharest, etc.). He was twice rector of University of Belgrade (1906/07 and 1919/20). Jovan Cvijić, 62, died on January 16, 1927 in Belgrade, where he was buried in the New Cemetery. He made a bequest and left his estate to the Serbian Geographic Society. The Memorial Museum of Jovan Cvijić’s which consist of 1476 subjects, such as manuscripts, correspondence, notebooks, photogaphs, maps, atlases, books, paintings, and other oersonal items. The event „Cvijić’s days“ is organized in Loznica every year; there are two monuments raised in honour of his name; an elementary school and street are named after him.

Miodrag Mića Popović

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Miodrag Mića Popović (June 12, 1923, Loznica – December 22, 1996, Belgrade). His father’s name was Tomo and mother’s name was Dana. Beside outstanding painting, he was ivolved into film directing, scenography, illustration, aesthetics, literature and book desing. He enrolled The Acdemy of Fine Arts in Belgrade (at the class of prof. Ivan Tabaković) in 1946. He was the founder and one of the members of „Zadar Association“. On his return to Belgrade, he was permanently expelled from the academy, unlike his groups members, who were subsequently allowed to return to studies. Therefore, he continued studying painting on his own, with oaccasional assistance of prof. Ivan Tabaković. As a student he visited France, Spain, Mexico, etc. He travelled to Greece, Egypt, Italy, China, Thailand, India, Iran and many other countries. In 1982, he lectured drawing and painting as a visiting at the State University of New York at Albany. He got many awards for his work and held many solo and group exhibitions in Serbia and abroad. He was a memeber of the artist association called „Lada“ in 1965. He was elected a corresponding member of The Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts in 1978, and he became a full member in 1984. In Berlin, he was appointed as a corresponding member of The Academy of Arts. He was a member of the Eupropean Soceity of Culture in Venice. He was declaredthe first honorary citizien of Loznica in 1989, the year of the opening of his Permanent Exhibition. Mića Popović’s and Vera-Božičković-Popo-vić’s Permanent Ehxibition of paintings. This legacy was a gift from the Popović family. The founder of the gallery, as a part of the ’Vuk Karadžić Cultural Center,’ is the Town Council of Loznica. The legacy was opened in 15 Jovan Cvijić Street, on October 28, 1989. It is situated in one of the most beautiful houses of Loznica, which was originally the home of Marjan Katić, a merchant (eventually, the building became the cultural monument). Mića’s legacy was displayed in 1989, (on the day when he was recognized as the first honorary citizen of Loznica), and Vera’s legacy was set up in 1992. Mića’s and Vera’s works of art, as a part of our permanent collection, reflects their exquisit art and depicts the development of the Serbian art in the second half of the 20th century. Every year, since 2001, the event ’Mića and Vera’s Days’ is celebrated on June, 12, on the day of Mića’s birth. This event encompasses various programs in the field of art, film and theatre, as well as the promotion of a magazine ’Prizor’ (a magazine of Jadar’s cultural history dedicated to the works of art of Mića Popović and his coevals.
The gallery embodies all the beauty and essence of the Popovic’s art. The extraordinary artistic power of their art will be even more glorified in future times.

Anta Bogićević

antaAntonije Bogićević (born around 1758 in Klupci near Loznica, died 1813) was a Serbian Duke at the time of the First Serbian Urprising. Famous minstler Filip Višnjić was singing about him in the song “Battle at Loznica“. During the First Serbian Urprising he joined the rebels and he worked in the organization of government and supply of the army. In 1807 he was set for the Duke in Jadar and from then he has constantly been on the boundary, defending this turbulent area from Turkish incursions from Bosnia. He fought with the Turks at Krupanj, Rožaj, Rađevo Polje, and usually in Loznica, where were waged several bloody battles with the Bosnia Turkish army. He was wounded in one of these battles. The most important was the Battle of Loznica, waged between the 5th and the 6th of October in 1810, according to the Julian calendar. Under the command of Ali Pasha Vidajić, 30 000 Turks went down the river Drina, using the yawls, to the field Tičari near Loznica. Protected city walls were defended by 1200 Serbs led by the Duke of Loznica Antonije Anta Bogićević. The siege and fire from cannons lasted for 12 days. Since it is estimated that he could not resist the Turkish attacks, the Duke Anta sought help from Luka Lazarević. According to a report about the siege of Loznica and after refusing Hashid Pasha from Morava, Karađorđe rushed to help with almost the entire army from Šumadija and 200 Cossacks. It looks like that Karađorđe estimated that the most decisive battle in 1810 will play right here. How much importance Karađorđe gave to this battle, also testifies a letter addressed to Petar Dobrnjac, in which he seeks from him a reinforcement: “Don’t hesitate a minute. Every minute is worth, I really care about if my army will arrive to Drina a minute earlier“. Luka Lazarević and Jakov Nenadović came to help with an army of Šabac and Valjevo. The crucial battle began in the morning on October 6, 1810. Later Karađorđe reported to Miloš Obrenović: “Turks and us went out on field, and we were killing each others terribly out of cannons and rifles, so that for eight hours there was no worse battle of this“. This victory of the Serbian Army is one of the most important in the First Serbian Urprising. When the Duke Anta Bogićević died in 1813 his son Bogosav Bogićević was appointed for a Duke. He was buried in Loznica on Šanac, but the Turks removed his corpse, cut off the head and threw the body into river Štira. However, the patriots later secretly removed his bones and buried them next to the church of Loznica.


Momčilo Gavrić

Momčilo Gavrić was born on the 1st May in 1906 in Village of Trbušnica, near Loznica, as the 8th child in the family of Alimpije and Jelena Gavrić. He was only 8 years old when, in 1914 in August, Austro-Hungarian solidiers killed his parents, his four brothers and three sisters. Momčilo was accepted by the Sixth Artillery Regiment of the Drina Devision where he served the motherland from 1914 till the end of the First World War in 1918. When he was 8 he became a corporal of the same regiment, and he was 12 when he was promoted the rank of sergeant personally by Duke Živojin Mišić. Momčilo was a praticipant in the famous Gučevo battle and after this one, also in glorius Kolubara battle in the year 1914. He survived the Albanian golgotha, and from the island of Corfu he moved to the Thessaloniki front. He hurt his arm on the positions in the mountin Kajmakčalan, but he healed breach in the Polish hospital Thessaloniki. After leaving the hospital, Momčilo managed the unit which delivered munition to the Artillery situated on the mountin Kajmakčalan; later he participated in the march to Belgrade which gave victory in 1918. He died on the 28th April in 1993 in Belgrade.