Viktor Novak (Donja Stubica 1889 – Belgrade 1977), was a Yugoslav historian, professor at the University of Belgrade and full member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts (SANU), and an honorary member of the Yugoslav Academy of Sciences and Arts (JAZU).
While working at the University of Zagreb, Novak, an ethnic Croat, was frequently attacked by Croatian nationalists for his balanced approach to the history of South Slavs and for his pan-Slavic Yugoslavist persuasion. From 1920 to 1924 he held the chair of Auxiliary Sciences of History at the Faculty of Philosophy in Zagreb. Novak left his position there in 1924 to go to the University of Belgrade. Viktor Novak dedicated many years to the extensive research of clericalism and extreme nationalism among Roman Catholic Croats in Croatia, Slavonia and Dalmatia. He did extensive research on the cultural and political foundations of the Yugoslav movement in the nineteenth century (with works on key persons such as Josip Juraj Strossmayer, Franjo Rački, and Natko Nodilo), as well as on the relations between the reformer of the Serbian alphabet Vuk Stefanović Karadžić and members of the Croatian Illyrian movement.
In Belgrade Novak's writings represented a strict Yugoslav unitary concept. During the January 6 Dictatorship, Novak wrote his Antologija jugoslovenske misli i narodnog jedinstva (Anthology of Yugoslav Consciousness and National Unity). According to historian Ivan Mužić, the work was an attempt "to justify a newly conceived myth of a three-tribed nation and its ostensible united national consciousness which dates to the sixth century". Novak would write: The future generations, freed of atavistic woes, with the aid of conscious national education, can bear in their hearts one great and holy idea, which will safeguard the people from external and internal enemies. That idea is the Yugoslav idea alone. In Belgrade Novak was a member of the Yugoslav Cultural Club and wrote in its unofficial journal Vidici. Novak would write in Serbian ekavian while working in Belgrade.
Novak authored Magnum Tempus, Magnum Sacerdos and Magnum Crimen (The Great Crime - a half-century of clericalism in Croatia), a trilogy about the Roman Catholic Church in Yugoslavia and its relation to the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, the Roman Curia, and the Croatian clerical nationalism including Ustashe supporters and World War II. From 1929 to 1959, he was a professor of Yugoslav history at the University of Belgrade. The Vatican Curia placed Magnum Crimen on their list of banned books Index librorum prohibitorum and named Viktor Novak "an enemy of Catholic Church".
In August 1941, Novak was one of the signatories of the Appeal to the Serb Nation written by Velibor Jonić of the collaborating regime calling for Serbs to "help our authorities in the fight against theses criminals" - in reference to Partisans who had launched an uprising around Užice. In November 1941 Novak was arrested for being a mason and spent approximately two months in the Nazi Banjica concentration camp near Belgrade.
After the Second World War, Novak continued teaching Yugoslav history and methodology of history at the Belgrade University. He was later elected to membership of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts (SANU; corresponding member in 1948 and full member in 1961) and was made head of the Department for Social Sciences of the Academy (1966–69). Novak was among founders and first director of the History Institute of SANU (Istorijski institut SANU) from 1947 to 1954. He was also praised for his books on Latin paleography, which are considered to be seminal works on the subject in Serbian historiography.
Magnum Crimen, which is considered the main source of first-hand accounts of close relations between Croatian clericalism and pro-Nazi Croatian Ustashas, that led to the genocide against the Serbs, Jews and Roma in the 1941–45 Independent State of Croatia, was first published in 1948, and again in an abridged version in 1960 in Sarajevo. The 1948 edition, reprinted several times in Belgrade after 1986, was highly acclaimed as a masterpiece left in oblivion.
Magnum Crimen forms the basis of such later anti-papal works as Carlo Falconi's "The Silence of Pius XII" The English edition of his magnum opus - Magnum Crimen was completed eventually in 2011 and published in two volumes on more than 1,300 pages, with two chapters that were omitted from the first edition in 1948, due to the communist censorship.
- Scriptura Beneventana s osobitim obzirom na tip dalmatinske beneventane, Zagreb 1920.
- Evangeliarium Spalatense, Split 1923.
- Franjo Rački u govorima i raspravama, Zagreb 1925.
- Maksimilijan Vrhovac, Bratstvo, Beograd 1928.
- Notae palaeographicae, chronologicae et historicae, Journal of the Zagreb Archaeological Museum, Vol.15 No.1 January (1928)
- Aliquid de nominibus ducum Croatorum in antiquissimo evangeliario Cividalensi. Nota palaeographico-historica, Zbornik u čast Bogdana Popovića, Beograd 1929.
- Franjo Rački, Bratstvo, Beograd 1929.
- Masarik i Jugosloveni, SKG, Beograd 1930.
- Sveslavenska misao, Ljubljana 1930.
- Mihailo Polit-Desančić i Hrvati, LMS, Novi Sad 1932.
- Natko Nodilo, Novi Sad 1935.
- Le Roi Alexandre Ier Karageorgevitch et la Formation de l'Unité Nationale Yougoslave, Paris : Amitiés franco-yougoslaves, 1935.
- Rad Stanoja Stanojevića na srpskoj diplomatici, Glasnik Istorijskog društva u Novom Sadu, 1938.
- Dva antipoda. Štrosmajer i Mihanović, Beograd 1940.
- Oko Trsta [editor], Državni izdavački zavod Jugoslavije, Belgrade, 1945.
- Ferdo Šišić, Ljetopis JA, 1949, 54.
- Jedno sporno pitanje iz srpsko-hrvatskih odnosa 60-tih godina prošlog veka, Istorijski časopis, 1-2, Belrade 1949
- Principium et finis - veritas (Concerning the Case of Archbishop Stepinac), Review of International Affairs, Volumes 1-2, Socialist Alliance of the Working People of Yugoslavia, 1950
- Supetarski kartular, Djela JA, 1952, 43.
- Latinska paleografija, Beograd 1952, 1980 2nd edition.
- Vatikan i Jugoslavija, I, Belgrade 1953 (ed., na srpskohrvatskom, francuskom i engleskom jeziku).
- Outline of Jugoslav Historiography, Ten Years of Jugoslav Historiography, 1945–1955, Beograd 1955.
- Natko Nodilo, Zadarska revija, 1955.
- Paleografija i slavensko-latinska simbioza od VII–XV stoljeća, Istorijski časopis, Beograd 1957.
- Franjo Rački, Beograd, Prosveta 1958.
- Nikola Vulić, naučnik i čovek. Uvod u knjigu N. Vulića: Iz rimske književnosti, SKZ, Beograd 1959.
- Valtazar Bogišić i Franjo Rački. Prepiska (1866–1893), Zbornik za istoriju, jezik i književnost srpskog naroda, SAN, I od., vol. XXV, Beograd 1960.
- Pojava i proširenje karolinške minuskule u Dalmaciji, Glas SAN, vol. CCLV, Beograd 1963.
- Вук и Хрвати [Vuk and Croats]: примљено на VII скупу Одељења друштвених наука САНУ, 27. IX 1966, по приказу самог аутора, Београд, 1967.
- Magnum tempus : ilirizam i katoličko sveštenstvo : ideje i ličnosti 1830-1849, Beograd, Nova knjiga 1987.ISBN 86-7335-040-9
- Magnum Crimen : Half a Century of Clericalism in Croatia : dedicated to the known and unknown victims of clericalism. Vol. 1 [translation Ileana Ćosić], Jagodina, Gambit 2011, XLIII+682 p. ISBN 978-86-7624-048-7
- Magnum Crimen : Half a Century of Clericalism in Croatia : dedicated to the known and unknown victims of clericalism. Vol. 2 [translation Ileana Ćosić, Milica Borlja], Jagodina, Gambit 2011, pp. 693–1369; ISBN 978-86-7624-049-4
- Celokupna bibliografija: B. Telebaković-Pecarski, Zbornik filozofskog fakulteta u Beogradu, 1963 (Целокупна библиографија: Б. Телебаковић-Пецарски, Зборник филозофског факултета у Београду, 1963).
- Antologija jugoslovenske misli i narodnog jedinstva, Štampa državne štamparije, Belgrade 1930
- J. J. Štrosmajer, apostol jugoslovenske misli, Savez sokola kraljevine Jugoslavije, Belgrade 1941
- Magnum Crimen. Pola vijeka klerikalizma u Hrvatskoj, Nakladni zavod Hrvatske, Zagreb 1948, Sarajevo 1960, Beograd 1986, Beograd 1994.
- SR Serbia: July 7th Award (1960)
- SFR Yugoslavia: Order of Labor with Red Banner (1961)
- SFR Yugoslavia: Medal for Merits for the People (1964)
- Ljetopis JAZU by JAZU, Zagreb 1979, pages 58, 673-4
- Galović, Tomislav (2009). "O stotoj obljetnici utemeljenja Katedre (1908.-2008." VI (6/7). p. 362-265).
- Mužić, Ivan (1967). Razmatranja o povijesti Hrvata. Split. p. 49.
- Novak, Viktor (1930). Antologija jugoslovenske misli i narodnog jedinstva. p. 63.
- Božić, Sofija (2010). "Croatian issue and the idea of united Yugoslavian people". Prilozi za književnost, jezik, istoriju i folklor (76): 17–29. Retrieved 6 January 2015.
- Novak, Viktor (1953). "Učešće dubrovačke flote u španskoj Nepobedivoj armadi". Zgodovinski časopis: Kosov zbornik. VI-VII: 604–611.
- published as Magnum tempus: ilirizam i katoličko sveštenstvo : ideje i ličnosti, 1830-1849 by Novak, Viktor; Nova knjiga, Belgrade, 1987
- published as Josip Juraj Strossmayer: apostol Jugoslovenske misli by Novak, Viktor; Savez sokola kraljevine Jugoslavije, Belgrade, 1941
- Magnum Crimen , pages I-XV
- Novo Vreme. 13 August 1941. Missing or empty
- Olga Manojlović Pintar, Milan Radanović, Milovan Pisarri, Nenad Lajbenšperger, Enzo (Enco) Traverso (2013). Rena Rädle and Milovan Pisarri, eds. "Mesta stradanja i antifašističke borbe u Beogradu 1941–44. Priručnik za čitanje grada" (PDF). Milan Radanović. pp. 140, 142.
- Richard West:Tito and the Rise and Fall of Yugoslavia, Faber & Faber, Nov 15, 2012
While in the camp, Novak met some of the refugees from the Axis-allied Independent State of Croatia (NDH), where he heard of crimes committed by the Ustasha and their clerical supporters. Upon his release in the autumn of 1941, Novak started to write Magnum Crimen, his massive work on the Croatian Catholic Church in the twentieth century.
- David G. Dalin, Joseph Bottum: The Pius War: Responses to the Critics of Pius XII, Lexington Books, Mar 16, 2010 page 248
- "Viktor Novak". Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts. Retrieved 9 January 2015.
- Radovan Samardžić: „Novak, Viktor“, Enciklopedija Jugoslavije, 1. izdanje, Zagreb 1965.
- Vasilije Krestić: "Viktor Novak: Ecclesia militans ratuje s Tyrševom ideologijom и Libellus accusationis : dva izostavljena poglavlja iz knjige Magnum Crimen Viktora Novaka", Zbornik o Srbima u Hrvatskoj = Recueil des Travaux sur les Serbes en Croatie ISSN: 0353-5967.- Br. 5 (2004), Belgrade 2004, pp. 7–80