Rovca or Rovci is a historical region in central Montenegro. Its historical tribe is called Rovčani (Serbian Cyrillic: Ровчани, pronounced [rǒ̞ːʋt͡ʃaːni]). The Rovčani were one of seven highlander tribes (of the Brda region), alongside the Bjelopavlići, Piperi, Kuči, Bratonozići, Moračani (Lower and Upper), and Vasojevići.
The name is derived from the Slavic word rov which means "dent" or "cut". The tribe itself is believed to have received the name from the region they inhabited.
Rovca borders the historical regions and tribes of Morača to the east, the Drobnjaci to the north, the Nikšići to the west, the Bjelopavlići to the southwest, the Piperi to the south, and the Bratonožići to the southeast.
In July 1465, Isa-Beg Isaković continued the offensive against the Duchy of Saint Sava begun in 1463. The region is first mentioned in the 1477 defter (tax registry) of the Sanjak of Herzegovina (established in 1470).
Mariano Bolizza, a Venetian patrician, recorded in 1614 that "Riouzi" was inhabited by Orthodox Christian Serbs and had a total of 50 houses. The 120 men-at-arms were commanded by Ivan Rodonjin. In 1689, an uprising broke out in Piperi, Rovca, Bjelopavlići, Bratonožići, Kuči and Vasojevići, while at the same time an uprising broke out in Prizren, Peć, Priština and Skopje, and then in Kratovo and Kriva Palanka in October (Karposh's Rebellion).
The Rovčani tribe continues to view itself as Serbs, and in light of Montenegrin independence (2006), Rovca clan chief Nikola Minić said that "If Milo Djukanovic tried to divide Montenegro...we wouldn't live in his country... but remain united in a brotherhood with Serbia."
- Serb World. Neven Publishing Corporation. 1982. p. 26.
- Bolizza (1614). "Mariano Bolizza, report and description of the sanjak of Shkodra (1614)".
- Belgrade (Serbia). Vojni muzej Jugoslovenske narodne armije (1968). Fourteen centuries of struggle for freedom. The Military Museum. p. xxviii.
- Mirko R. Barjaktarović (1984). Rovca: (etnološka monografija. Akad.
- Vojislav M. Bulatović; Momir P. Bulatović; Petar J. Marković; Jovan V. Babović; Branko M. Bulatović; Marko V. Bulatović (2004). Rovca: bratstvo Bulatovići : životni put roda mog. M. V. Bulatović. ISBN 978-86-905639-0-6.
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