Montenegro 1498-1660

After the death of Stephen II. Crnojevic and the end of the Crnojevic Dynasty, Montenegro was attached to the SANDJAK OF SKODER (province of Skoder). However, it proved that the various regions of Montenegro were difficult to control. In 1514, Sultan BAYEZIT II. established the SANDZHAK OF MONTENEGRO and appointed the son of Ivan Crnojevic, Alexander (Iskander Beg; better known as SKANDERBEG) province governor (beg). Skanderbeg, a Muslim convert, ruled until 1528.
In 1516, the last christian Crnojevic claimant to the throne retired to Venice, entrusting the VLADIKA (prince-bishop) with the government of the principality; the vladika was elected by popular assembly; Montenegro now was a theocracy.
The Sultan seems to have accepted the Montenegrin constitution, as no more begs were appointed. The church of Montenegro claimed autokephalous status (i.e. independence from the Patriarch in Constantinople and the Metropolit in Pec) from the early 17th century onward. Occasionally the Montenegrins had to defend their autonomy, such as in 1603 and 1613. In 1623 Cetinje was sacked by the Ottoman Turks; however they did not manage to conquer and permanently subdue Montenegro.

History of Montenegro : Montenegro under the Vladikas, 1516-1697, from Montenet
Links to Montenegrin history, from Studyweb
Zeta (Montenegro) under the third Montenegrin dynasty, the Crnojevic, (1427-1516); Montenegro under the Vladikas (Bishops), 1516-1697; from Montenegro.org
REFERENCE Fred Singleton, A Short History of the Yugoslav Peoples, Cambridge University Press (1985) 1999

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted in 2000, last revised on November 7th 2004

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