Statehood Day Of The Republic Of Serbia
Statehood Day is a holiday that’s observed on the 15th of February in Serbia. Also known as Sovereignty Day, this 2-day holiday is the national public holiday of the country and commemorates the anniversary of the First Serbian Uprising and the first Serbian Constitution.
Since it’s a public holiday, schools and government offices are closed on this day, as are some businesses. This holiday is celebrated with parades, concerts, and plays. Festivities also include church services and memorials, as well as a reception by Serbia’s Royal Family.
The History Of Statehood Day In Serbia
Serbia was under the control of the Ottoman Empire during the 15th century. In 1804, 70 Serb nobles were slaughtered—an event that would become known as the Slaughter of the Dukes. This would cause a Serbian uprising that began on the 14th of February.
The uprising was supported by the Ottoman Empire’s Sultan, but Serbia’s demand for autonomy led them to try to suppress the movement. In 1805, the Serbs had defended themselves against these attacks and had formed their own government.
In 1813, the Ottoman Empire retook Serbia, and a second uprising began in 1815 and lasted through 1817. The result of this uprising was Serbia became a Principality. On February 15, 1835, Serbia adopted a Constitution known as the Sretenje Consitution or the Candlemas Constitution.
Observing Statehood Day In Serbia
Over the course of this two-day holiday that begins on February 15th, a variety of events take place all over Serbia. Serbia’s Royal Family holds a reception that served a plum brandy known as slivovitsa, and cevapi—a meal made of minced meat. There are also concerts, parades, and plays held all over the country.