Monday, July 19, 2010

The National Anthem of Serbia

The Serbian anthem was adopted in 1904, after Serbia became an independent nation in the 1880s. Upon forming the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes (later to be called Yugoslavia) in 1918, "Boze Pravde" was retained as the anthem of the Serbs within the federation. In fact, the first anthem of the federation, in use until 1943, uses part of "Boze Pravde" in the melody to represent the Serbs of the land. After World War II, "Boze Pravde" continued to be popular with Serbs, and identified as their anthem. During the Yugoslav civil war in the 1990s, Serbian areas that broke away from Croatia (Krajina) and Bosnia (Srpska) also used "Boze Pravde" upon their creation to identify themselves as a Serbian state. In August, 2004, 18 months after Yugoslavia became the new federation of Serbia and Montenegro, "Boze Pravde" was officially declared as Serbia's anthem by the Serb national assembly and was retained upon the dissolution of the union and Serbian independence in 2006.

The original lyrics, present in the former Yugoslav anthem, refer to the Serbian monarchy, which was replaced with a republican-style government in 1945. The current lyrics of the Serbian anthem replace the references to the king with references to the Serbian race. The lyrics were written by Jorvan Djordjevic, (1826-1900), founder of the Novi Sad Serbian National Theatre and the National Theatre in Belgrade. The music of the anthem is by a Slovene, Davorin Jenko.

The above stamp features the lyricist, Jorvan Djordjevic, issued in 2005 in a sheetlet composed of 8 Theater Personalities.