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|— Municipality and city —|
|District||District of Peć|
|• Municipality and city||602 km2 (232 sq mi)|
|• Municipality and city||ca. 170,000 (municipality)
ca. 82,300 (city)
|• Density||120/km2 (300/sq mi)|
|As of 2009|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|Website||Municipality of Peć|
Peć (Serbian Cyrillic: Пећ, Albanian: Pejë) is a city in western Kosovo[a], and the administrative centre of the homonymous district. The municipality covers an area of 602 km2 (232 sq mi), including the city of Peć and 95 villages; it is divided into 28 territorial communities. As of 2011, the whole municipality has a population of approximately 95,723, of which ca. 60,000 live in the city of Peć.
In Serbian, Peć means furnace or cave and its name is probably connected with nearby caves in Rugova Canyon which served as hermit cells for Serbian Orthodox monks. In medieval Ragusan documents, the Serbian name of the city (Peć, lit. "furnace") is sometimes translated as Forno, meaning furnace in Italian.
The Albanian name's definite form is Peja and the indefinite Pejë. Other names of the city include the Latin Pescium and Siparantum, the Greek Episkion (Επισκιον), the Ottoman Turkish ايپك (İpek), the Slavonic Petcha, and the formerly used form Pentza.
The city lies near the Rugova Canyon.
The municipality covers an area of 602 km2 (232 sq mi), including the city of Peć and 95 villages; it is divided into 28 territorial communities. As of 2011, the whole municipality has a population of approximately 95,723, of which ca. 60,000 live in the city of Peć.
|Climate data for Peć (1961-1990)|
|Record high °C (°F)||15.4
|Average high °C (°F)||2.8
|Daily mean °C (°F)||−0.5
|Average low °C (°F)||−3.6
|Record low °C (°F)||−24.8
|Precipitation mm (inches)||85.9
|Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm)||12.0||12.3||11.3||11.5||13.0||13.2||9.9||8.7||8.1||9.5||12.3||13.3||135.1|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||69.5||93.3||143.0||172.0||207.8||257.7||274.3||264.9||206.3||152.6||86.8||55.3||1,983.5|
|Source: Republic Hydrometeorological Service of Serbia|
The city is located in a strategic position on the Pećka Bistrica river, a tributary of the White Drin to the east of the Prokletije. The city was known as Pescium during the Roman era; or as reported by Ptolemy in his Geography, Siparantum.
Between 1180 and 1190, Serbian Grand Prince Stefan Nemanja conquered Peć with its surrounding župa (district) of Hvosno from the Byzantine Empire, thus establishing Serbian rule over the city of Peć for next 300 years. In 1220, Serbian King Stefan Nemanjić donated Peć and several surrounding villages to his newly founded monastery of Žiča. As Žiča was the seat of a Serbian archbishop, Peć came under direct rule of Serbian archbishops and later patriarchs who built their residences and numerous churches in the city starting with the church of Holy Apostles built by archbishop Saint Arsenije I Sremac. After the Žiča monastery was burned by the Cumans (between 1276 and 1292) the seat of Serbian archbishop was transferred to a more secure location in Peć where it remained until the abolition of the Serbian Patriarchate in 1766.
The city became a major religious center of medieval Serbia under the Serbian Emperor Stefan Dušan, who made it the seat of the Serbian Orthodox Church in 1346. It retained this status until 1766, when the Patriarchate of Peć was abolished. Today, Peć holds the Patriarchate of Serbia. The city and its surrounding area are still revered by adherents of Serbian Orthodoxy; the city is the site of the patriarchal monastery, which stands above the city and consists of four fresco-decorated churches, a library, and a treasury. The 14th century Visoki Dečani monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, lies about 19 km (12 mi) south, in nearby Dečani.
Peć was captured by the Ottomans in the late 14th century, and underwent major changes under their rule, including a change of name to Ipek. The city was settled by a large number of Turks, many of whose descendants still live in the area, and took on a distinctly oriental character with narrow streets and old-style Turkish houses. It also gained an Islamic character with the construction of a number of mosques, many of which still remain. One of these is the Bajrakli Mosque, built by the Ottomans in the 15th century and located in the center of the city.
The city increased its political importance through the League of Peja, established in 1899 by Albanian patriots led by Haxhi Zeka. The League inherited the traditions and character of the League of Prizren to defend the rights of the Albanians and give them autonomous status within the Ottoman Empire. After an armed conflict with the ottoman forces in 1900 the League ended its operations.
The 500 years of Ottoman rule came to an end in the First Balkan War of 1912-1913, when Montenegro took control of the city. In the late 1915, during World War I, Austria-Hungary took the city. Peć was retaken in October 1918. After World War I, the city became part of Yugoslavia (at first officially called the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes). Between 1931 and 1941 the city was part of Zeta Banovina. During the World War II Peć was occupied by Albania. After the war, Peć again became part of Yugoslavia as part of Kosovo and Metohija, an autonomous province within the People's Republic of Serbia.
Relations between Serbs and Albanians, who were the majority population, were often tense during the 20th century. They came to a head in the Kosovo War of 1999, during which the city suffered heavy damage and mass killings. More than 80 percent of the total 5280 houses in the city were heavily damaged (1590) or destroyed (2774). It suffered further damage in violent inter-ethnic unrest in 2004.
The economy was inevitably badly affected by the war, but historically it has centered on agricultural activities and craftworks produced by the city's traditional craftsmen—coppersmiths, goldsmiths, slipper makers, leather tanners, saddle makers, etc.
Peć has undeveloped tourist areas such as the Rugova Canyon. Skiing is possible in the mountains nearby.
Pejë is one of the more successful cities in Kosovan sport leagues. Its premier football team is KF Besa, its basketball teams is KB Peja. KB Peja is the older and more established basketball team. Additionally the city is host to a handball team, KH Besa Famiglia, a volleyball team KV BESA, a judo team Ippon, a athletic team Besa as well as a women's basketball team KB Penza. Since June 2008 Peć has also a Taekwondo Team: Tae Kwon Do Club Peja (Klubi i Tae Kwon Do-së Peja).
|Ethnic Composition in the municipality|
|Source: Yugoslav Population Censuses for data through 1991,OSCE estimates for data from 1999, and 2011 census from Kosovo Republic. Mission in Kosovo: Municipal profile of Peć, March 2009. – Retrieved on 14 May 2009.</ref>|
According to the 1981 census, the city had a population of 54,497; according to the 1991 census it had grown to 68,163. In 2003 the city had a population of 81,800. In 2011 census,around 49,000 people in the city of Peć.
The vast majority of the inhabitants are Kosovo Albanians, but there is also a large minority community. Most Kosovo Serbs live in the village enclaves of Goraždevac, Belo Polje and Ljevoša. There is also a large Bosniak community in the city of Peć and in Vitomirica, while significant Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian communities reside in urban and rural areas.
International relations 
Twin towns – Sister cities 
Peć is twinned with:
Notable people 
- Mehmet Akif Ersoy, poet, who wrote the Turkish National Anthem
- Fatos Beciraj, Albanian Kosovar football player, who plays for Dinamo Zagreb and for Montenegro national football team
- Faruk Begolli, Albanian actor
- Qerim Begolli, signatory of the Albanian Declaration of Independence
- Ali Berisha, military doctor of the KLA during the 1999 Kosovo War, actual Mayor of Peć
- Vladimir Božović, Montenegrin football player
- Agim Çavdarbasha, sculptor
- Agim Çeku, military commander of the KLA during the 1999 Kosovo War, actual minister of Security Force of Kosovo
- Majlinda Kelmendi, European judo Champion for juniors
- Nora Gjakova, junior judo champion
- Salih Gjuka, signatory of the Albanian Declaration of Independence
- Bogoljub Karić, Serbian politician and businessman
- Rustemi Kreshnik, kickboxer
- Miodrag Krivokapić, Serbian actor
- Rahman Morina, politician
- Xhevdet Muriqi, former football player, part of the "Golden Generation" of KF Prishtina
- Fadil Muriqi, former football player, part of the "Golden Generation" of KF Prishtina
- Bedri bej Ipeku, politician
- Nikola Marković, Serbian-born actor
- Vladimir Rajčević, Serbian actor
- Riza Sapunxhiu, politician
- Bashkim Shehu, composer
- Milutin Šoškić, former Serbian football player
- Pavle Strugar, retired Montenegrin general in the Yugoslav People's Army (JNA)
- Dragoljub Vukašinović, Serbian businessman
- Xhevdet Xhafa, artist, primarily painter
- Sislej Xhafa, artist
- Haxhi Zeka, Albanian national leader
Notes and references 
- Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Serbia and the self-proclaimed Republic of Kosovo. The latter declared independence on 17 February 2008, but Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. Kosovo's independence has been recognised by 99 out of 193 United Nations member states.
- OSCE Mission in Kosovo: Municipal profile of Peja, March 2009. – Retrieved on 14 May 2009.
- K.Jireček, La civilisation Serbe au moyen age, Paris 1920, p.15
- 1888 "Ipek" Encyclopædia Britannica at p.211
- OSCE Mission in Kosovo: Municipal profile of Peć, Juni 2011. – Retrieved on 14 May 2011.
- World Gazetteer: Kosovo: largest cities and city and statistics of their population. – Retrieved on 12 May 2011.
- "Monthly and annual means, maximum and minimum values of meteorological elements for the period 1961-1990" (in Serbian). Republic Hydrometeorological Service of Serbia. Retrieved 2012-11-10.
- John VA Fine,The Late Medieval Balkans, p.7 at
- F.Miklosich,Monumenta Serbica,Viennae 1858, p.11 at
- Prilozi za orijentalnu filologiju: Revue de philologie orientale, Volume 37. Sarajevo: Orijentalni institut u Sarajevu. 1988. p. 174. Retrieved 1 August 2011. "Poslije pada juznih dijelova Despotovine pod osmansku vlast 1455. godine, oba sjedista srpske patrijarsije, Peć i Ziča više nisu bili pod srpskom vlašću"
- Bep Jubani et al., Historia e popullit shqiptar: për shkollat e mesme (Libri Shkollor: Pristina, 2002) 182-185.
- Crimes Of War, Time Magazine, June 28, 1999
- HRW report
- OSCE Mission in Kosovo: Municipal profile of Peć, April 2008. – Source: Municipal Communities Officer. – Retrieved on 12 November 2008.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Peć|
- Municipality of Peć
- - Albanian Information - Peć
- - Serbian Information - Peć
- Municipal map of Peć Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, 2001