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Curious Facts about Serbia

Updated: Sep 9, 2023

1. Serbia is the world's largest producer of plums and raspberries.

2. Belgrade is a smoker's paradise. There are three kids of places here: Places where smoking is allowed, places where smoking is forbidden and places where smoking is strictly forbidden. These places all have something in common-the fact that you can smoke in any of them.

A mystery girl who looks like me smoking in Belgrade.
Definitely not me smoking in Belgrade.

3. Nikola Tesla, the super scientist, inventor and electricity wizard was a Serb!

4. Marina Abramović is a Serb, known for her art installation, The Artist is Present.

5. Milla Jovović,

AKA Milica Bogdanovna Jovović

AKA Alice of the Resident Evil series is part Serb and part Ukrainian!

6. Josep Broz Tito was a Serb and Marshal of Yugoslavia. He's known for weaving together a mosaic of diverse identities and forging Yugoslavia into a harmonious symphony of different voices.

7. Gavrilo Princip was a Bosnian Serb member of the Young Bosnia movement who wished to end the Austro-Hungarian reign in Bosnia and Herzegovina. He assassinated Austrian archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife, Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg, at age 19, which eventually led to the start of World War I.

Three-man assassination team Trifko Grabež, Milan Ciganović and Princip in Kalemegdan Park, May 1914
Three-man assassination team Trifko Grabež, Milan Ciganović and Princip in Kalemegdan Park, May 1914.

8. Mileva Marić, a Serb, who also happened to be Albert Einstein's first wife, was the second woman to complete the full program at Zürich Polytechnic's math and physics department. Debate continues about her role in Einstein's early work, but it is of note Einstein gave her his Nobel Prize money.

Albert Einstein and his first wife, Mileva.
Albert and Mileva Einstein, his first wife in 1912.

9. Wolves have been venerated by Serbs for ages. Pagans would often call their children Vuk (Serbian for "Wow") as they believed this would protect them from evil. Vuk remains common male name in Serbia to this day.

10. An element unique to the Serbian Orthodox Church is the Slava. Each family has a patron saint, regarded as a protector and passed from father to son and husband to wife. Slava is a family's annual celebration of their saint's feast day. This can sometimes last 2-3 days. Frescoes and icons common in Orthodox churches were viewed as reminders of the presence of God, and in the days when congregations were largely illiterate, were used to communicate a visual story that could be universally understood.

Inside of Saint Sava's Church in Belgrade, Serbia.

11. Orthodox churches in Serbia are oriented east, symbolically facing the light of God and the eschaton.

Saint Sava worked on the religious and cultural enlightenment of the Serbian people, educating in Christian morality, love and mercy, meanwhile also working on the church organization.
Church of Saint Sava in Belgrade, Serbia.

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