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Janjevo (St. Nicholas church in the background)
Janjevo (St. Nicholas church in the background)
Janjevë is located in Kosovo
Location in Kosovo
Coordinates: 42°34′26″N 21°14′56″E / 42.57389°N 21.24889°E / 42.57389; 21.24889Coordinates: 42°34′26″N 21°14′56″E / 42.57389°N 21.24889°E / 42.57389; 21.24889
Location Kosovo[a]
 • Total2,137
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)

Janjevo (Serbian Cyrillic: Јањево) or Janjevë (in Albanian) is a village or small town in the Lipljan municipality in eastern Kosovo.[a]

The settlement has a long history, having been mentioned for the first time in 1303 as a Catholic parish. The town was prior to the Kosovo War (1998–99) inhabited by a majority of Croats, known by their demonym as Janjevci, who since have left massively for Croatia.


Janjevo is described as a village[1][2] or small town,[3][4] located in Lipjan municipality, by Gornja Gušterica and Teče.[5][6]


Middle Ages[edit]

Forts and settlements in late antiquity Kosovo

Janjevo was first mentioned in 1303.[7] Although only a Catholic parish is mentioned, and no information on mining activity, it is assumed that the Catholic community in fact drew from miners, gathered in such numbers to constitute a parish.[8] Whether these Catholics were Ragusans or Saxons is unknown;[8] with the opening of mines in medieval Serbia, Saxons (Sasi) are mentioned as mining specialists; although they are not mentioned as inhabiting Janjevo, they most likely did, as the settlement Šaškovac located less than 1 km from Janjevo points to.[9] In 1346, the Pope sent a letter to Stefan Dušan regarding churches that belonged to the Diocese of Kotor, in which Janjevo is mentioned.[10]

In the first half of the 15th century, when the area was still part of a Serbian state, a Ragusan colony appeared in Janjevo.[8] At this time, Janjevo, along with Novo Brdo and Trepča, were the most important mines in Serbia.[8] Out of 15 manholes only two produced qualitative ore.[7] From 1455 a coin mint was active in Janjevo.[7] The local Catholic church, dedicated to St. Nicholas, was built in the 15th century.[10] In a tablet dating to 1425, Stephanus Marci, a priest of the Janjevo parish, is mentioned.[10] In 1441, priest Andreas was the head of the Janjevo parish, based in that church.[10] The population of this Catholic parish of Janjevo were mainly members of a Ragusan colony (to which Andreas also belonged).[10] Janjevo most likely fell to the Ottoman Empire after the Ottoman conquest of Novo Brdo (1455).[8]

Ottoman period[edit]

In 1530–31 there were six Christian and one Muslim neighbourhoods (mahala) in Janjevo.[7] In 1569–70 it became an imperial estate with revenue (hass).[7] There were at that time seven neighbourhoods.[7] Marino Bizzi (1570–1624), the Archbishop of Bar, listed 120 Latin (Catholic), 200 schismatic (Orthodox), and 180 Turkish (Muslim) homes, during his journey in Ottoman Serbia in 1610.[11]

According to local tradition, the population moved to its present location from "Old Janjevo" (located between the hills of Borelina and Surnjevica) in c. 1630 due to Albanian zulum (injustice).[12]

One of the first schools in the history of Kosovo opened in Janjevo in 1665 and is still in use today.[13]


In 1922, Henry Baerlein noted that the Austrians had for thirty years tried to albanianize the Janjevo population.[14] In 1997, the Croatian government began resettling Croats from the village to Kistanje in Croatia.[15] During the Kosovo War (1998–99), many of the Croats resettled to Croatia as they feared the ongoing battle waged by the Yugoslav army and the Kosovo Liberation Army. As of 2011, only 270 out of the pre-war 1500 Croats remain in the village.[16]


The population of Janjevci has decreased since the 1970s. Since 1971, the Janjevci have immigrated from Janjevo to Zagreb and Kistanje, causing a decline in the population of the Janjevci.[17][18] There is a Catholic church (St. Nikola)[19] located in the town about 100 meters from the main mosque.


In the Middle Ages, Ragusans and likely Saxons (Sasi) inhabited the village. The inhabitants of Janjevo have in the past called themselves and been called "Latins" (Serbo-Croatian: Latini).[20][21] Anthropologist A. Urošević noted during field study, published in 1935, that many Janjevans lacked national consciousness.[22] They spoke a Kosovan dialect, as the Serbs, but called it Janjevan.[22] As the Serbs, they had family feast days (slava).[23]

In 1991, the most numerous families were the Palić (Matić and Rucić), Glasnović (Tomkić and Topalović), Ćibarić, Berišić (Ancić, Mazarekić and Golomejić), Macukić, and Cirimotić.


According to the 2011 census, there was a total number of 2137 inhabitants. Albanians numbered 1586, Croatians - 270, Roma - 177, Turks - 118, Ashkali - 11, Bosniaks - 5, Unknown - 4, Serbs - 1, Undeclared - 1.[24]

Demographic history
  • 1991: 4797 (est.); Croats - 2859, Roma - 344, Albanians - 59 (est. 1539), Serbs - 8
  • 1981: 5086; Croats - 3534, Albanians - 1078, Roma - 331, Serbs - 21.
  • 1971: 4742; Croats - 3761, Albanians - 576, Roma - 218, Serbs - 51.
  • 1961: 3762; Croats - 3052, Albanians - 302, Serbs - 47, Roma - 7.
  • 1953: 3420
  • 1948: 3090

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ The political status of Kosovo is disputed. Having unilaterally declared independence from Serbia in 2008, Kosovo is formally recognised as an independent state by 97 UN member states (with another 15 states recognising it at some point but then withdrawing their recognition), while Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory.


  1. ^ Marilyn Kott (25 June 2016). Catholic Kosovo: A Visitor's Guide to Her People, Churches, Historical Sites, and Her 1,900 Year Journey. Lulu Publishing Services. pp. 66–. ISBN 978-1-4834-3521-3.
  2. ^ Petar Vlahović (2004). Serbia: the country, people, life, customs. Ethnographic Museum. p. 54. ISBN 978-86-7891-031-9.
  3. ^ Gail Warrander; Verena Knaus (2010). Kosovo. p. 142. ISBN 9781841623313.
  4. ^ Starinar. Arheološki institut. 2004. p. 161.
  5. ^ "Janjevo Map | Serbia and Montenegro Google Satellite Maps". Maplandia.com. Retrieved 2013-07-15.
  6. ^ Janjevë, Lipjan, Kosovo, Collins Maps, archived from the original on 2013-08-29, retrieved 2013-08-29
  7. ^ a b c d e f Radovanović 2008, p. 292.
  8. ^ a b c d e Kovačević-Kojić 2007, p. 14.
  9. ^ Dušan Nedeljković (1974). Simpozijum o metodologiji etnoloških nauka: 18-20 decembra 1972. SANU. p. 97.
  10. ^ a b c d e Kovačević-Kojić 2007, p. 21.
  11. ^ Relatione della visita fatta da me, Marino Bizzi, Arcivescovo d'Antivari, nelle parti della Turchia, Antivari, Albania et Servia alla santità di nostro Signore papa Paolo V. Published as: Franjo Racki (ed.): Izvještaj barskoga nadbiskupa Marina Bizzia o svojem putovanju god. 1610 po Arbanaskoj i Staroj Srbiji, in: Starine, na sviet izdaje Jugoslavenska Akademija Znanosti i Umjetnosti, Zagreb, 20 (1888), pp. 50–156
  12. ^ Kovačević-Kojić 2007, p. 14, Urošević 1935, p. 188
  13. ^ Historia e Komunës së Lipjanit (History of the Lipjani commune) (in Albanian), Lipjan Commune, retrieved 2013-08-28
  14. ^ Duijzings 2000, p. 43.
  15. ^ Duijzings 2000, p. 59.
  16. ^ "Ethnic composition, all places: 2011 census".
  17. ^ ŠILJKOVIĆ, ŽELJKA; GLAMUZINA, MARTIN (2004-05-26), "JANJEVO AND JANJEVCI – FROM KOSOVO TO ZAGREB", Geoadria, Croatian Geographical Society - Zadar, Department of Geography, University of Zadar, 9 (1): 88–109, archived from the original on 2012-03-18, retrieved 2013-07-15
  18. ^ "Ethnic Croats inform Bebic about deteriorating security in Janjevo - Daily - tportal.hr". Daily.tportal.hr. 2011-11-24. Archived from the original on 2014-03-17. Retrieved 2013-07-15.
  19. ^ "President Jahjaga visited the Croatian community in Janjevo". Presidency of Kosovo. 20 May 2012. Retrieved 2013-08-29.
  20. ^ Nušić 1902, p. 53.
  21. ^ Kostić, Kosta N. (1922). Naši gradovi na jugu. p. 133. OCLC 12841086.
  22. ^ a b Urošević 1935, p. 199.
  23. ^ Nušić 1902, p. 54.
  24. ^ "Ethnic composition, all places: 2011 census".
  25. ^ "Komuna Lipjan - Në Janjevë u mbajt manifestimi " Gjurmë të Gjeçovit"". Lipjan Commune. 16 June 2010. Retrieved 2013-08-29.


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