Bože pravde

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Боже правде
English: God of Justice
Bože pravde
Bože pravde za mešoviti hor.jpg
Sheet music of the anthem (for mixed choir)

National anthem of Serbia Serbia
Lyrics Jovan Đorđević, 1872
Music Davorin Jenko, 1872
Music sample
Fans singing "Bože pravde" in Belgrade Arena before the handball match Serbia vs Germany, 2012 European Men's Handball Championship

"Bože pravde" (Serbian Cyrillic: „Боже правде”, meaning "God of Justice"[1] or "Lord, Give Us Justice"[citation needed]) is the official anthem of Serbia, as defined by the Article 7 of the Constitution of Serbia.[2] "Bože pravde" was the anthem of the Principality of Serbia and the Kingdom of Serbia until 1918 when the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was formed. It was recommended by the Parliament of Serbia on August 17, 2004[1] and constitutionally adopted on November 8, 2006. The recommended text was made Law on May 11, 2009.[3] The original song was written in 1872 with music by Davorin Jenko and lyrics by Jovan Đorđević. It was then a piece for the theater play "Marko kazuje na kome je carstvo" (Marko names the Emperor), and its immense popularity with audiences prompted its adoption as the Serbian national anthem.

While being the anthem of the Kingdom of Serbia, it occasionally was referred to as 'Serbian National Prayer'[4] and the original lyrics contained a petition for the Serbian king. Various rulers of Serbia changed the words of the anthem to suit them. During the rule of Prince Milan I of Serbia, the words were "God, save Prince Milan" (knez Milana Bože spasi), which changed to King Milan when Serbia became a kingdom. Later the anthem was tailored to Peter I and Alexander I as well.[5] During the time of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (later Kingdom of Yugoslavia), "Bože pravde" was part of its national anthem.

The current anthem uses slightly modified original lyrics, asserting that Serbia is no longer a monarchy — four verses are different. In three, "Serbian king" (srpskog kralja) is changed to "Serbian lands" (srpske zemlje) and in one, "God save the Serbian king" (srpskog kralja Bože spasi, literally The Serbian king, O God, save) is changed to "O God, save; O God, defend" (Bože spasi, Bože brani).

It was also used as an anthem of Republika Srpska, an entity of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the period of 1991 to 2006, when it was ruled down by the country's constitutional court. The Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina has ruled against the use of "Bože pravde" as the anthem of Republika Srpska in 2006, declaring it unconstitutional,[6] and the decision was upheld by the Constitutional Court of Republika Srpska.[7]

In 1992, "Vostani Serbije" and "Marš na Drinu" were proposed as the anthem of Serbia along with Bоže pravde.[8] The latter, promulgated by then-ruling Socialist Party of Serbia, even received a plurality of popular vote on referendum, but it never got officially adopted.[9]

Lyrics[edit]

The anthem officially has eight stanzas, but only the first two are usually sung.[3]

(*) Chorus sung twice

Serbian Cyrillic[3] Serbian Latin[3] English translation (Free)[1][10] English translation (Literal)[citation needed]

Боже правде, ти што спасе
од пропасти досад нас,
чуј и одсад наше гласе
и од сад нам буди спас.

Моћном руком води, брани
будућности српске брод,
Боже спаси, Боже xрани,(*)
српске земље, српски род!(*)


Сложи српску браћу драгу
на свак дичан славан рад,
слога биће пораз врагу
а најјачи српству град.

Нек на српској блиста грани
братске слоге златан плод,
Боже спаси, Боже xрани(*)
српске земље, српски род!(*)

Нек на српско ведро чело
твог не падне гнева гром
Благослови Србу село
поље, њиву, град и дом!

Кад наступе борбе дани
к победи му води ход
Боже спаси, Боже xрани(*)
српске земље, српски род!(*)


Из мрачнога сину гроба
српске славе нови сјај
настало је ново доба
Нову срећу, Боже дај!

Отаџбину српску брани
пет вековне борбе плод
Боже спаси, Боже xрани(*)
моли ти се српски род!(*)


Bože pravde, ti što spase
od propasti dosad nas,
čuj i odsad naše glase
i od sad nam budi spas.

Moćnom rukom vodi, brani
budućnosti srpske brod,
Bože spasi, Bože hrani,(*)
srpske zemlje, srpski rod!(*)

Složi srpsku braću dragu
na svak dičan slavan rad,
sloga biće poraz vragu
a najjači srpstvu grad.

Nek na srpskoj blista grani
bratske sloge zlatan plod,
Bože spasi, Bože hrani(*)
srpske zemlje, srpski rod!(*)


Nek na srpsko vedro čelo
tvog ne padne gneva grom
Blagoslovi Srbu selo
polje, njivu, grad i dom!

Kad nastupe borbe dani
k pobedi mu vodi hod
Bože spasi, Bože hrani(*)
srpske zemlje, srpski rod!(*)


Iz mračnoga sinu groba
srpske slave novi sjaj
nastalo je novo doba
Novu sreću, Bože daj!

Otadžbinu srpsku brani
pet vekovne borbe plod
Bože spasi, Bože hrani(*)
moli ti se srpski rod!(*)

God of Justice; Thou who saved us
when in deepest bondage cast,
Hear Thy Serbian children's voices,
Be our help as in the past.

With Thy mighty hand sustain us,
Still our rugged pathway trace;
God, our hope; protect and cherish,(*)
Serbian lands and Serbian race!(*)


Bind in closest links our kindred
Teach the love that will not fail,
May the loathed fiend of discord
Never in our ranks prevail.

Let the golden fruits of union
Our young tree of freedom grace;
God, our Master! Guide and prosper,(*)
Serbian lands and Serbian race!(*)


Lord! Avert from us Thy vengeance,
Thunder of Thy dreaded ire;
Bless each Serbian town and hamlet,
Mountain, meadow, heart and spire!

When our host goes forth to battle
Death or victory to embrace-
God of armies! Be our leader,(*)
Strengthen then the Serbian race!(*)


On our sepulchre of ages
Breaks the resurrection morn,
From the slough of direst slavery
Serbia anew is born.

Through five hundred years of durance
We have knelt before Thy face,
All our kin, O God! Deliver,(*)
Thus entreats the Serbian race!(*)

God of Justice, You who saved us
From disasters till this day,
Hear from now on, our voices,
And from now on, save us!

Defend with Your mighty hand,
That very future Serbia walks to,
God save; God protect,(*)
Serbian lands and Serbian people!(*)


Bind them closer, brother Serbians
Teach them to proudly work and love,
United, our enemies we'll conquer
and Serbia's cities we will defend.

Serbia's golden fruits of friendship are riping
united high from our liberty's tree,
God save; God protect,(*)
Serbian lands and Serbian people!(*)


Save all Serbians from Your anger,
Thunder coming from up above,
Bless every Serbian village,
Mountain, meadow, town and home!

When the days of battle happen,
to the victory lead the pace,
God save, God protect,(*)
Serbian lands and Serbian people!(*)


In that sepulcher of years
Serbia's glory rises anew,
A new era now is dawning,
That new beginning, that God gave us!

Sustain for us the Serbian fatherland,
just like the five centuries passed,
God save, God protect,(*)
Thus entreats the Serbian people!(*)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "National symbols and anthem of the Republic of Serbia". Government of Serbia. Retrieved 2011-11-18. 
  2. ^ Constitution of Serbia at the site of the Government of Serbia
  3. ^ a b c d "Zakon o izgledu i upotrebi grba, zastave i himne Republike Srbije — English: Law on the Appearance and Use of the Coat of arms, the Flag and the Anthem of the Republic of Serbia". Official Gazette of the Republic of Serbia – No. 36/2009 (in Serbian). Narodna skupština Republike Srbije – JP "Službeni glasnik". 2009-05-11 (valid from 2009-05-19). Retrieved 2009-06-26. 
  4. ^ "Serbia - Bože pravde". NationalAnthems.me. Retrieved 2011-11-18. 
  5. ^ LJ. M. V. - J. Ž. S. (2006-08-01). "Hej, Bože pravde!". Vecernje novosti. Retrieved 2007-04-17.  (Serbian)
  6. ^ "Press Release". Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina. 2007-01-27. 
  7. ^ "Republika Srpska court upholds complaint about anthem". RFE/RL. 
  8. ^ Konstantin Babić (2000-11-02). "Zašto Srbija još nema himnu". Vreme. 
  9. ^ "Svi naši referendumi". Novi Sad: Radio-televizija Vojvodine. 2008-03-06. 
  10. ^ Petrovitch, Voislav (1915). Serbia, Her People, History and Aspirations. Cosimo, Inc. p. 15. ISBN 978-1-60206-941-1.  Translated by Elisabeth Christitch, originally published in The Times. Note: this is a free, not literal translation of the lyrics, also fitting the meter of the original.

External links[edit]