List of heads of the Serbian Orthodox Church

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Patriarch of Peć and the Serbs
Patriarch Irinej of Serbia (portrait).jpg
Patriarch Irinej
Style His Holiness the Archbishop of Peć, Metropolitan of Belgrade and Karlovci, Serbian Patriarch
First incumbent Sava (Archbishop)
Joanikije II (Patriarch)
Formation 1219, 1346

This is a list of the Archbishops and Patriarchs of Peć and the Serbs from the creation of the church as an archdiocese in 1219 to today's Patriarchate. The list includes all the Archbishops and Patriarchs that led the Serbian Orthodox Church under the Patriarchate of Peć. Today, the church is unified under a Patriarch who is known officially as Archbishop of Peć, Metropolitan of Belgrade and Karlovci, and Serbian Patriarch. Patriarch Irinej acceded to this position on 23 January 2010.

The Archdiocese of Peć was founded in 1219 by Saint Sava, under the authority of the Patriarch of Constantinople. In 1346, when Stephen Uroš IV Dušan of Serbia proclaimed himself Emperor, he also elevated Peć to a patriarchate. This was only recognized by the Patriarch of Constantinople in 1379.

After the Ottoman conquest of the Serbian Despotate in 1459, the Patriarchate gradually lost its importance. At times the church was forced by the Ottoman government to install Greeks in the office. From 1766 to 1920 the patriarchate was abolished and all ecclesiastical jurisdiction was given to the Patriarch of Constantinople. A metropolitan see was maintained in Belgrade from 1766 afterwards. There were also independent Serbian Orthodox sees based in Karlovci and in Montenegro.

In 1920, the church was reunified and the Patriarchy was reestablished with the see moving to Belgrade, but retaining the lineage of the throne of Saint Sava in Peć. The Patriarch holds ecclesiastical authority over the Orthodox Church in the territory of the former Yugoslavia, and also over Serbian Orthodox Christians in Western Europe, Australia, North America, and South America.


     venerated to sainthood      also served as Metropolitan of Karlovci
     also served as Metropolitan of Belgrade      Current Serbian Patriarch

Archbishops, 1219–1346[edit]

Archbishop of the Autocephalous Orthodox Archdiocese of Žiča (1219–1233)
Regnal title: Metropolitan of Žiča and Archbishop of Serbs
No. Primate Portrait Reigned from Reigned until Place of birth Notes
1 Sava
Saint Sava, fresco from Mileševa.jpg 1219 1233 Stari Ras First Archbishop of Autocephalous Serbian Church
Born as Rastko Nemanjić / Растко Немањић
Archbishops of the Autocephalous Orthodox Archdiocese of Peć (1233–1346)
Regnal title: Metropolitan of Peć and Archbishop of Serbs
No. Primate Portrait Reigned from Reigned until Place of birth Notes
2 Arsenije I
Арсеније I
Arsenius I
Saint Arsenije I Sremac.jpeg 1233 1263 Syrmia First Archbishop of the See of Peć
3 Sava II
Сава II
Sabbas II
Loza Nemanjica Decani e 5.jpg 1263 1271 Stari Ras Nephew to Sava I
Born as Predislav Nemanjić / Предислав Немањић
4 Danilo I
Данило I
Daniel I
No image.png 1271 1272 Was replaced after a year for an unknown reason
5 Joanikije I
Јоаникије I
Joannicius I
No image.png 1272 1276 Disciple of Sava II
Archdiocese throne vacant from 1276–1279
6 Jevstatije I
Јевстатије I
Eustathius I
No image.png 1279 4 January 1286 Budimlje Relics buried at Patriarchate of Peć
7 Jakov I
Јаков I
Jacob I
No image.png 1286 1292
8 Jevstatije II
Јевстатије II
Eustathius II
No image.png 1292 1309
9 Sava III
Сава III
Sabbas III
No image.png 1309 1316
10 Nikodim I
Никодим I
Nicodemus I
Stefan Decanski Coronation.jpg 1316 1324
11 Danilo II
Данило II
Daniel II
DaniloII.jpg 1324 1337
12 Joanikije II
Јоаникије II
Joannicius II
Joanikije II.jpg 1338 1346 Prizren Elevated to Patriarch

Patriarchs, 1346–1766[edit]

Patriarchs of the Holy Patriarchal See of Peć (1346–1766)
First Patriarchate of Peć (1346–1463)
Regnal title: Archbishop of Peć and Patriarch of all Serb Lands and the Maritime
No. Primate Portrait Personal name Reigned from Reigned until Place of birth Notes
1 Joanikije II
Јоаникије II
Joannicius II
Joanikije II.jpg 1346 1354 Prizren First Serb Patriarch installed during the coronation of Emperor Dušan
2 Sava IV
Сава IV
Sabbas IV
No image.png 1354 1375
3 Jefrem
Serbian Patriarch Jefrem.jpg 1375 1380 Tarnovo, Bulgarian Empire First tenure
4 Spiridon
Serbian Patriarch Spiridon.jpg 1380 1389
-- Jefrem
Serbian Patriarch Jefrem.jpg 1389 1390 Tarnovo, Bulgarian Empire Second tenure
5 Danilo III
Данило III
Daniel III
Serbian Patriarch Danilo III.jpg 1390 1396
6 Sava V
Сава V
No image.png 1396 1406
7 Danilo IV
Данило IV
Daniel IV
No image.png 1406
8 Kirilo I
Cyril I
No image.png 1407 1419
9 Nikon
No image.png 1420 1435
10 Teofan
No image.png 1435 1446 For unknown reasons not listed as an official Patriarch of the church
11 Nikodim II
Никодим II
Nicodemus II
No image.png 1446 1455
12 Arsenije II
Арсеније II
Arsenius II
No image.png 1457 1463
First Ottoman Intervention (1463–1557)[A]
vacant from 1463 to 1508 due to Ottoman Empire's 1st abolishment
No. Primate Portrait Personal name Reigned from Reigned until Place of birth Notes
-- Jovan I
Јован I
John I
No image.png 1508 Title was Archbishop of Serbs
vacant from 1508 to 1524 due to Ottoman Empire's 2nd abolishment
-- Marko
No image.png 1524 Title was Serb Metropolitan
vacant from 1524 to 1527 due to Ottoman Empire's 3rd abolishment
-- Pavle (I)
Павле (I)
No image.png 1527 1535 Title was Metropolitan of Smederevo
vacant from 1535 to 1557 due to Ottoman Empire's 4th abolishment
Second Patriarchate of Peć (1557–1766)
Regnal title: Archbishop of Peć and Patriarch of Serbs and Bulgarians (1557–1572)
Regnal title: Archbishop of Peć and Patriarch of Serbs (1572–1766)
No. Primate Portrait Personal name Reigned from Reigned until Place of birth Notes
13 Makarije
Makarije Sokolovic.jpg Makarije Sokolović
Макарије Соколовић
1557 1571 Višegrad
14 Antonije
No image.png Antonije Sokolović
Антоније Соколовић
1571 1575
15 Gerasim
No image.png Gerasim Sokolović
Герасим Соколовић
1575 1586
16 Savatije
Savatije Sokolović.jpg Savatije Sokolović
Саватије Соколовић
1586 Prijepolje
17 Nikanor
No image.png ?
18 Jerotej
No image.png 1589 1590
19 Filip
No image.png 1591 1592
20 Jovan II Kantul
John II Kantul
Jovan Kantul, by Georgije Mitrofanović.jpg 1592 1613
21 Pajsije I
Пајсије I
No image.png 1615 1648 Janjevo
22 Gavrilo I
Гаврило I
Gabriel I
No image.png 1648 1655 Štitkovo
23 Maksim I
No image.png 1655 1672 Skopje
24 Arsenije III
Арсеније III
Arsenius III
Arsenije III.jpg Arsenije Čarnojević
Арсеније Чарнојевић
1672 1690 Cetinje, Montenegro Patriarch that lead the Serbs to migration into the Habsburg Monarchy. Created independent church in Hungary.
25 Kalinik I
Калиник I
Callinicus I
No image.png 1691 1710 Skopje Maintained Peć in turbulent times after the mass exodous of Serbs from the Ottoman Empire.
26 Atanasije I
Атанасије I
Athanasius I
No image.png 1711 1712
27 Mojsije
No image.png 1712 1726
28 Arsenije IV
Арсеније IV
Arsenius IV
Arsenije IV Jovanović Šakabenta.jpg Arsenije Jovanović Šakabenta
Арсеније Јовановић Шакабента
1726 1737 Peć
29 Joanikije III
Јоаникије III
Joannicius III
No image.png 1739 1746 Ethnic Greek Patriarch
30 Atanasije II Gavrilović
Атанасије II Гавриловић
Athanasius II
No image.png Gavrilović
1746 1752 Skopje
31 Gavrilo II Sarajevac
Гаврило II Сарајевац
Gabriel II the Sarajevan
No image.png Mihajlović
1752 Sarajevo
32 Gavrilo III
Гаврило III
Gabriel III
No image.png 1755
33 Vikentije I
Vicentius I
No image.png ?? ??
34 Pajsije II Grk
Пајсије II Грк
Paisius II the Greek
No image.png ?? ?? Ethnic Greek Patriarch
35 Gavrilo IV Grk
Гаврило IV Грк
Gabriel IV the Greek
No image.png ?? ?? Ethnic Greek Patriarch
36 Kirilo II
Кирило II
Cyril II
No image.png 1758 1763
37 Vasilije
No image.png Vasilije Brkić
Василије Бркић
1763 1765
38 Kalinik II Grk
Калиник II Грк
Callinicus II the Greek
No image.png 1765 1766 Ethnic Greek Patriarch
Resigned as Patriarch, effectively abolishing the post and relegating it to the Patriarchate of Constantinople
Second Ottoman Intervention (1766–1920)
Ottoman Empire abolishes the Patriarchate of Peć for the Fifth and final time. During the period of 1766 to 1920, the Serbian Orthodox Christians within the Ottoman Empire are subjected to the Patriarch of Constantinople. However a metropolitan bishop remained in Belgrade.
See List of Ecumenical Patriarchs of Constantinople
For the Metropolitans of Belgrade, see Metropolitanate of Belgrade

There was also a see in Cetinje, Montenegro since the late 15th century. The Vladikas of Montenegro were Orthodox bishops that ran the tiny medieval Serb statlet of Montenegero. The Metropolitante of Montenegero was a part of three major dioceses that merged to form the reunited Serbian church in 1920 (the other were the Metropolitante of Belgrade and the Patriarchate of Karlovci).

See List of Metropolitans of Montenegro

Due to the war between the Ottoman Empire and the Holy League, a large number of Serbs migrated to Habsburg Monarchy in 1690. This caused the establishment of a Metropolitanate in Karlowitz (Sremski Karlovci). Later on the see was elevated to a patriarchate in 1848 as a reward to Serbs who supported the Habsburgs during the 1848/1849 revolution.

For the Metropolitans of Karlovci, see Metropolitanate of Karlovci
For the Patriarchs of Karlovci, see Patriarchate of Karlovci

Patriarchs, 1920–present[edit]

Patriarchs of the Holy Patriarchal See of Belgrade (Peć) (1920–present)
Regnal title: Archbishop of Peć, Metropolitan of Belgrade and Karlovci, and Serbian Patriarch[B]
No. Primate Portrait Personal name Reigned from Reigned until Place of birth Notes
39 Dimitrije
Димитрије (Павловић).jpg Dimitrije Pavlović
Димитрије Павловић
12 September 1920 6 April 1930 Požarevac, Principality of Serbia First Patriarch of the reunified Serbian church
40 Varnava
Патриарх Варнава.jpg Petar Rosić
Петар Росић
12 May 1930 23 July 1937 Pljevlja, Principality of Montenegro Some believe he may have been poisoned
41 Gavrilo [V]
Gabriel (V)
Патријарх Гаврило (Дожић).jpg Gavrilo Dožić
Гaврилo Дoжић
21 February 1938 7 May 1950 Vrujci, Principality of Montenegro Known unofficially as Gavrilo V Dožić-Medenica
42 Vikentije [II]
Vicentius (II)
No image.png Vitomir Prodanov
Витомир Проданов
1 July 1950 5 July 1958 Bačko Petrovo Selo, Austria-Hungary Not known as Vikentije II but entered just as Vikentije
43 German
No image.png Hranislav Đorić
Хранислав Ђорић
14 September 1958 30 November 1990 Jošanička Banja, Kingdom of Serbia Longest reigning Patriarch and only retired Patriarch during his life
44 Pavle [II]
Patrijarh Pavle.jpg Gojko Stojčević
Гојко Стојчевић
1 December 1990 15 November 2009 Kućanci, Austria-Hungary Not known as Pavle II but entered just as Pavle
45 Irinej
Patriarch Irinej of Serbia (portrait).jpg Miroslav Gavrilović
Мирослав Гавриловић
23 January 2010 Present Vidova, Kingdom of Yugoslavia


  • A The Ottomans did not recognize the official title of "Archbishop of Peć and Patriarch of Serbs". However still church records still record these three men as Patriarchs even though they did not serve in full title. They were still known as the exrach and protector of the throne
  • B The patriarchs hold the title of Archbishop of Peć, Metropolitan of Belgrade and Karlovci, and Patriarch of all Serbs and are considered the successors to the Patriarchal throne of Peć. However, the Patriarchy is based in Belgrade, Serbia.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]