Janko Mitrović

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Janko Mitrović
Born 1613
Died 1659
Allegiance  Republic of Venice
Years of service 1645-1659
Rank harambaša
Unit Morlach army

Janko Mitrović (Serbian Cyrillic: Јанко Митровић; 1613–1659) was a harambaša (Ottoman for "bandit leader"), and the commander of the Morlach army, in the service of the Republic of Venice, from 1648 until his death in 1659. He participated in the Cretan War (1645–69), alongside Ilija Smiljanić, as the supreme commanders of the Venetian Morlach troops, of which he is enumerated in Serb epic poetry (as Janko of Kotari, Јанко од Котара). His son, Stojan Janković, followed in his father's footsteps.


Janko was the son of Mitar, who hailed from Žegar. The Mitrović resettled, together with others from Žegar, in Budim near Posedarje, then under Venetian control. Stojan, who was Janko's eldest son, began fighting alongside him and Ilija Smiljanić early on, in the Cretan War (1645–69). Ilija, as the more experienced, was named serdar in 1648 after his father, serdar Petar Smiljanić had died.[1] In February 1659, at the Cetina river, both leaders Janko and Ilija Smiljanić succumb to wounds after battling the Turks. The same year, the well experienced 23-year-old Stojan is chosen as leader by the band. As leader, he constantly takes part in battles in the Frontier. He was known to have defeated several Turkish contingents, and even himself slew the commanders, among which are notable: Ali-beg Durakbegović, Redžep-aga Filipović, aga Velagić, aga Pajalitović and Ibrahim-aga Kovačević.[2] His son fell at Duvno in 1687.


Janko had three sons, Stojan, Ilija and Zaviša, and a daughter.[3]

Yugoslav writers Boško and Vladan Desnica are descendants of Stojan's youngest brother Zaviša.[4]

See also[edit]

Military offices
Preceded by
Ilija Smiljanić
Morlach commander
Republic of Venice

Succeeded by
Stojan Janković


  1. ^ Berber, p. 3
  2. ^ Baština dvora Jankovićap. 92
  3. ^ Berber, p. 6
  4. ^ Mayhew, p. 18


External links[edit]