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Some key dates

3rd century BC: The Celtic tribe of Scordisci settled throughout the area. It formed a tribal state, building several fortifications, including its capital at Singidunum (present-day Belgrade) and Naissos (present-day Niš).
2nd century BC: The Romans conquered much of the territory. The famous Roman Emperor Constantine the Great, the first Christian Emperor, was born in the area of modern-day Serbia. He issued an edict ordering religious tolerance throughout the Empire.
395: The Roman Empire was divided and most of modern-day Serbia remained under the Byzantine Empire. Its north-western parts were included in the Western Roman Empire.
5th - 6th century: South Slavs migrated into the Byzantine territory in large numbers.
They settled in an area between the Sava River and the Dinaric Alps.
9th century: Serbia achieved the level of State. The Christianisation of Serbia was finalised by the middle of the 9th century.
1217: Stefan Nemanja II became king. Pope Honorius III gave the royal crown and the Church’s jurisdiction included all Serbian-speaking areas except Bosnia, which was then an independent state.
1219: Establishment of an independent Serbian church. Sava Nemanjić became the first archbishop of the Serbian and the countries along the coast.
1221: Archbishop Sava compiled the Nomokanon (Законоуправила), the compilation of laws aimed at organising the continuity and functioning of the Serbian Kingdom and the Serbian Church. It is Serbia’s first Serbian-language church-state constitution, and governed both the state and the church until 1349.
Archbishop Sava crowned his brother Stefan as king and thus Serbia got its first king, Stefan the First Crowned (Стефан Првовенчани).
1346: The Serbian Orthodox Church got its first Patriarch. The archbishop Joanikije (Јоаникије) became the first Serbian Patriarch with the title “Patriarch of all Serbian and the countries along the coast" (Патриjарх свих српских и поморских земаља).
King Stefan Dušan also called Dušan the Mighty (Душан Силни) became emperor The Serbian kingdom and the church took over new areas previously subordinated to the Byzantine Empire and the Patriarchate of Constantinople.
1349: Dušan’s Code (Душанов законик) was enacted as a compilation of several legal systems. It drew upon Roman law, Byzantine law, and customary and canon law elements. It was used in the Serbian Empire and the succeeding Serbian Despotate. It is considered an early constitution, or close to it; an advanced set of laws that regulated all aspects of life such as family relations, property rights, contracts, and crimes.
1459: Ottoman occupation and the beginning of a challenging period when the patriarchate and the church were abolished several times.
1690: Many Serbs moved across the Danube and Sava river. They were led by Patriarch Arsenije III Crnojević, who later established the Serbian Orthodox Church in Austria based in the Krušedol Monastery.
1739/40: Second great migration of Serbs under Patriarch Arsenije IV Jovanović Šakabenta’s leadership.
1882: Formation of the Kingdom of Serbia. Serbian Orthodoxy got a special position as a state religion. The state paid the church priests, and all national holidays were celebrated with religious rituals. Confessional religious education became compulsory in all public schools.
1918: The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was formed. The first Serbian Patriarch since 1766 became a member of the royal council, and several priests became members of the National Assembly. The Patriarch of Constantinople officially recognised the Serbian Orthodox Church and Belgrade became its headquarters in 1920.
1929: The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, was renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.
1945-1991: Serbia becomes one of the six republics of the Socialist Federative Republic of Yugoslavia.
The state and the church were separated and the state took over many of the church’s previous tasks. In connection with agrarian reforms, the church was deprived of a large part of its material assets. The church was without any regular source of income and thus dependent on state aid. The Orthodox Theological Faculty was separated from the University of Belgrade and the publishing activity became sporadic.
1991-1995: The dissolution of socialist Yugoslavia and civil wars. The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was formed of Serbia and Montenegro. Multi-party democracy was introduced, officially dismantling the one-party system. The UN imposed sanctions on Yugoslavia which led to political isolation and the collapse of the economy. The issue of religion’s role in the public sphere became more important.
1999: NATO bombing of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
2000: The establishment of the first democratic government. The church enters into public institutions such as schools and the army.
2001: Confessional religious education was re-established in all Serbian public schools.
2006: Serbia’s declaration of independence, marking the re-emergence of Serbia as an independent state.
2008: The Assembly of Kosovo unilaterally declared independence from Serbia on February 17. Serbia immediately condemned the declaration and continued to deny any statehood to Kosovo.
2009: Serbia officially applied for membership in the European Union.
2010: The Theological Faculty became part of state-owned Belgrade University.
2012: Serbia received candidate status for membership in the European Union.

D 4 June 2024    ASabina Hadžibulić Bodin

CNRS Unistra Dres Gsrl

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