Monday, November 22, 2010

Serbia 12. 1389

1389 is the year when the battle of Kosovo took place, where the Serbian army, led by Knyaz Lazar, fought against the invading army of the Ottoman Empire. After the battle, both Knyaz Lazar and Sultan Murad I died, along with most of their soldiers. Serbian epics says that Knyaz Lazar was visited by an angel of God on the night before the clash, and offered a choice between an earthly or a heavenly kingdom. Lazar opted for the latter, which is why many Serbs believe they are heavenly people.

1389 is also the name of an organization in Serbia, often called right-wing by the media and associated with nationalistic movements and implication in anti-European actions, such as the recent gay parade protests and clashes. They are strongly strong believers and consider Orthodoxy a core element of Serbian identity. That is why I wanted to meet them. The leaders of the 1389 agreed to see me. I explained a little bit about my project and they agreed to let me tag along with some of their members for a while in New Belgrade.

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