Realm of Stefan Dragutin

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Realm of Stefan Dragutin
initially vassal kingdom of the Kingdom of Hungary,[1] later an independent kingdom


Kingdom of Syrmia of Stefan Dragutin (1291-1316)
Capital Debrc and Belgrade
Government kingdom
Historical era Middle Ages
 •  Established 1282
 •  Disestablished 1325
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Banate of Macsó
Banate of Ózora
Banate of Só
Realm of Darman and Kudelin
Kingdom of Serbia (medieval)
Banate of Macsó
Banate of Bosnia
Kingdom of Serbia (medieval)
Today part of Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Warning: Value not specified for "common_name"
Kingdom of Syrmia of Stefan Dragutin with borders that are including Upper Syrmia (according to Serbian historian Stanoje Stanojević)

The Realm of Stefan Dragutin (Italian: terra del re Stefano, Serbian: zemlja kralja Stefana, also known as Syrmian Land, State of Syrmian Land, Kingdom of Syrmia, Kingdom of Serbia, Land of king Stefan, State of king Dragutin) was a medieval Serb kingdom. Initially, it was a vassal kingdom of the Kingdom of Hungary,[1] but subsequently became an independent kingdom, after the collapse of the central power in the Kingdom of Hungary. It was ruled by the Serbian kings Stefan Dragutin (1282–1316) and his son Stefan Vladislav II (1316–1325). The kingdom was centered in the region of Lower Syrmia (today known as Mačva) and its first capital was Debrc (between Belgrade and Šabac), while residence of the king was later moved to Belgrade.


In the Middle Ages, Syrmia was a name for larger area around the river Sava. The part in the north of Sava was known as Upper Syrmia (present-day Syrmia), while the area south of the river was known as Lower Syrmia (present-day Mačva). The kingdom was centered in Mačva, but also included Belgrade, part of Šumadija with Rudnik, parts of Župa of Podrinje, Usora, Soli, Braničevo and Kučevo. According to several Serbian historians (Dejan Mikavica, Stanoje Stanojević, Aleksa Ivić, Milojko Brusin, etc), the kingdom also included Upper Syrmia.


Stefan Dragutin was initially a king of Serbia from 1276 to 1282. In 1282 he broke his leg while hunting and became ill; he passed the throne to his younger brother Stefan Milutin at the council at Deževo in 1282, while keeping for himself some northern parts of the country (Rudnik and parts of Župa of Podrinje). Since his son Vladislav married the relative of the Hungarian king, Dragutin in 1284 gained from Ladislaus IV the Banates of (Soli), Ózora (Usora) and Macsó (Mačva) with Belgrade, which he initially ruled as a vassal of the King of Hungary, until the collapse of the central power in the Kingdom of Hungary. In Serbian historiography, Dragutin's new state is known under several names - terra del re Stefano (or zemlja kralja Stefana), Syrmian Land, State of Syrmian Land, Kingdom of Syrmia, Kingdom of Serbia, Land of king Stefan, State of king Dragutin, etc.[2] The first capital of his state was Debrc (between Belgrade and Šabac), and later he moved his residence to Belgrade. Dragutin was the first Serb ruler who ruled from Belgrade as the capital.

In roughly 1291 and with the help of Milutin, Stefan Dragutin expanded his territory by annexing regions of Braničevo and Kučevo, whose Bulgarian rulers Darman and Kudelin recently became independent from the Kingdom of Hungary.[3] For the first time, that region became part of the Serbian state.[1] This action probably caused the war between the Bulgarian despot Shishman of Vidin and Milutin of Serbia.

Near the end of his life Stefan Dragutin separated from his Hungarian friends and strengthened his connections in Serbia. He later became a monk and changed his name to Teoktist. He died in 1316 and was buried in the Đurđevi Stupovi monastery near Novi Pazar.

After king Dragutin died, his son Stefan Vladislav II assumed his father's appanage. However in 1319, Milutin, Vladislav's uncle and the king of Serbia, invaded, defeating and imprisoning Vladislav. When Milutin died in 1321, the newly freed Vladislav recovered his father's lands, with the help of the Hungarians and Stephen II, Ban of Bosnia. (Vladislav's mother was the daughter of former Hungarian King Stephen V. Vladislav's wife was the aunt of former Hungarian King Andrew III. Ban Stephen II was the son of Vladislav's sister.)

After having been beaten again by supporters of Stefan Dečanski (successor of Milutin), Vladislav II retreated to the Kingdom of Hungary in 1324. Vladislav II's nephew, Ban Stephen II, reincorporated Soli and Usora into Bosnia. Belgrade and the northern part of Banate of Macsó along the river Sava remained under the rule of the Kingdom of Hungary, while Braničevo and the southern part of Mačva remained Serbian. The Kingdoms of Serbia and Hungary would contest Mačva for the next century.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Fine, John V.A. (1994). The Late Medieval Balkans: a critical survey from the late twelfth century to the Ottoman conquest. University of Michigan Press. p. 220. ISBN 9780472082605. 
  2. ^ Sima Ćirković, "Zemlja Mačva i grad Mačva, Prilozi KJIF 74 (1-4), Beograd 2008, p. 6"
  3. ^ Vásáry, István (2005). Cumans and Tatars: Oriental Military in the Pre-Ottoman Balkans, 1185-1365. Cambridge University Press. p. 104. ISBN 9780521837569. 

External links[edit]


  1. Mihailo Dinić, Srpske zemlje u srednjem veku (The Serbian countries during the Medieval Ages), Beograd 1978
  2. Small encyclopedia "Sveznanje" published by "Narodno delo", Belgrade, in 1937 which is today in public domain.
  3. Miomir Filipović - Fića, Tri cara i trideset i jedan kralj srpskog naroda, Čikago, 1992.
  4. Drago Njegovan, Prisajedinjenje Vojvodine Srbiji, Novi Sad, 2004.