Herzegovina (/ˌhɛərtsɪˈɡoʊvɪnə/ HAIRT-si-GOH-vi-nə or
/ˌhɜːrtsəɡoʊˈviːnə/; Bosnian: Hercegovina,
Херцеговина, [xɛ̌rtsɛɡov̞ina]) is the southern region
of Bosnia and Herzegovina. While there is no official border
distinguishing it from the Bosnian geographical region, it is
sometimes asserted that the borders of the region are
Dalmatia to the
Montenegro to the east, Mount Maglić to the northeast, and
Mount Ivan to the north. Measurements of the area
range from 11,419 km2 (4,409 sq mi), or around 22%
of the total area of the present-day country, to 12,276 km2
(4,740 sq mi), around 24% of the country.
Herzegovina comes from the medieval duchy of Stjepan Vukčić
Kosača, who took the title Herceg [duke] of Saint Sava; hence the
Herzegovina 'land of the Herzeg'.
5.1 Early history
5.3 Ottoman period
5.4 Modern history
8 Image gallery
9 See also
10.1 Further reading
11 External links
Herzegovina in spring
The terrain of
Herzegovina is mostly hilly karst with high mountains
in the north such as
Čvrsnica and Prenj, except for the central
valley of the river
Neretva River. The largest city is Mostar, in the
center of the region. Other larger towns include Trebinje, Stolac,
Široki Brijeg, Posušje, Ljubuški, Grude, Konjic, and Čapljina.
Herzegovina and Bosnia are unclear and often disputed.
The upper flow of the
Neretva River lies in the northern parts of
Herzegovina, a heavily forested area with fast flowing rivers and high
Konjic and Jablanica lie in this area.
Neretva rises on Lebršnik Mountain, close to the border to
Montenegro, and as the river flows towards west, it enters
Herzegovina. The entire upper catchment of
Neretva constitutes a
precious ecoregion with many endemic and endangered species. The fast
flowing emerald river carves its way through the precipitius karst
terrain, providing excellent opportunities for rafting and kayaking,
while the spectacular scenery of the surrounding mountains and forests
is a challenging hiking terrain.
The Neretva's tributaries in the upper flow are mostly short, due to
the mountainous terrain: the Rakitnica River has cut a deep canyon,
its waters being one of the least explored areas in this part of
Europe. The Rakitnica River flows into
Neretva upstream from Konjic.
Neretva then flows towards northwest, through the town of Konjic.
The river enters the Jablanica Reservoir (Jablaničko jezero), one of
the largest in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The lake ends near the town of
Jablanica. From here on, the
Neretva turns southward continuing its
course towards the Adriatic Sea.
With mountains lining its shores gradually receding, the Neretva
enters a valley where the city of
Mostar lies. It flows under the
well-known old bridge (Stari most) and continues now more widely
flowing towards the town of
Čapljina and the
Neretva Delta in Croatia
before emptying into the Adriatic Sea.
Mostar is the best known and the unofficial capital. It is also the
only city with over 100,000 citizens. There are no other large cities
in Herzegovina, though some have illustrious histories. Stolac, for
example, is perhaps the oldest city in Herzegovina. There have been
settlements dating from the
Paleolithic period (Badanj cave). An
Illyrian tribe lived in the city of Daorson. There were several Roman
settlements alongside the Bregava River and medieval inhabitants left
large and beautiful stone grave monuments called stećak in Radimlja.
Trebinje, on the Trebišnjica River, is the southernmost city in
Bosnia and Herzegovina, near the border with Montenegro.
Ljubuški are known for their history and their rivers; the village of
Međugorje has religious importance for many Catholics.
In the modern Bosnian-Herzegovinian state,
Herzegovina is divided
between two entities,
Republika Srpska and the Federation of Bosnia
and Herzegovina. Republika Srpska's part of Herzegovina, commonly
referred to as
East Herzegovina or, as of late, "
Trebinje Region", is
administratively divided into municipalities of Trebinje, Bileća,
Gacko, Nevesinje, Ljubinje, Berkovići, Istočni
Mostar and Foča.
Within the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina,
administratively divided between the cantons of Herzegovina-Neretva
and West Herzegovina.
"East Herzegovina" or "
Trebinje Region" in Republika Srpska
Neretva Canton in Federation of B&H
West Herzegovina Canton
West Herzegovina Canton in Federation of B&H
Economic region of Herzegovina, planned since 2013.
The locals of
Herzegovina are known by the demonym Herzegovinians
(Serbo-Croatian: Hercegovci; sing. Hercegovac). While the population
Herzegovina throughout history has been ethnically mixed, the
Bosnian War in the 1990s resulted in mass ethnic cleansing and
large-scale displacement of people. The last pre-war census in 1991
recorded a population of 437,095 inhabitants.
Herzegovina 1991 Ethnic Composition Hercegovina 1991. etnički
Croats generally populate the areas closest to the Croatian border
focused on Mostar, Ljubuški, Široki Brijeg, Čitluk, Grude,
Posušje, Čapljina, Neum, Stolac,
Ravno and Prozor-Rama.
Bosniaks mainly live in the areas along the Neretva, such as Mostar,
Konjic and Jablanica, to a significant extent in
Stolac and Čapljina,
and to a lesser extent in Nevesinje,
Gacko and Trebinje.
Serbs are the majority in eastern Herzegovina, including the
municipalities of Berkovići, Bileća, Gacko, Istočni Mostar,
Foča and Trebinje.
History of Herzegovina
Travunia (9th–14th century)
Saint Sava (1448–1482)
Sanjak of Herzegovina (1481–1851)
Herzegovina Eyalet (1833–1851)
Herzegovina Uprising (1875–1877)
See also: History of Bosnia and Herzegovina
Zachlumia and Travunija
Slavs settled in the Balkans in the 7th century. What later became
Herzegovina was divided between Croatia,
Travunija in the Early Middle Ages. Parts of the region were later
ruled by various medieval rulers, with the eastern part mostly within
Medieval Serbia, and the western part in the Kingdom of Croatia.
Stjepan II Kotromanić
Stjepan II Kotromanić and King
Tvrtko I Kotromanić
joined these regions to the Bosnian state in the 14th century.
Flag of the Herzog's lands, based on
Belgrade Armorial II
Belgrade Armorial II (ca.
Following the weakening of the Bosnian crown after the death of King
Tvrtko I, magnate
Sandalj Hranić and his nephew
Stjepan Vukčić of
Kosača family ruled the Hum region independently, only
nominally recognizing Bosnian overlordship. In a document sent to
Frederick III on January 20, 1448,
Stjepan Vukčić was titled Herzog
(duke) of Saint Sava, lord of Hum and Primorje, great duke of the
Bosnian kingdom, his lands (the Duchy of Saint Sava) became (much
later) known as Herzog's lands or Herzegovina.
Sanjak of Herzegovina
Flag of the
Herzegovina Eyalet (1833–1851)
In 1482, the lands of Stefan Vukčić's successors were occupied by
Ottoman forces. The Ottomans were the first to begin officially using
Herzegovina (Hersek) for the region. The Bosnian beylerbey
Isa-beg Ishaković mentioned the name in a letter from 1454. In the
Herzegovina was organized as a sanjak, the
Herzegovina, within the Bosnia Eyalet.
During the Long War (1591–1606),
Serbs rose up in Herzegovina
(1596–97), but they were quickly suppressed after their defeat at
the field of Gacko. The Candian War of 1645 to 1669 caused great
damage to the region as the
Republic of Venice
Republic of Venice and the Ottoman Empire
fought for control over
Dalmatia and coastal Herzegovina. As a result
Treaty of Karlowitz
Treaty of Karlowitz of 1699, the Ottomans gained access to the
Adriatic Sea through the Neum-Klek coastal area. The Republic of
Dubrovnik ceded this to distance themselves from the Venetian
Republic's influence. The Ottomans benefitted from this in gaining the
As a result of the Bosnian Uprising (1831–32), the Vilayet was split
to form the separate
Herzegovina Eyalet, ruled by semi-independent
vizier Ali-paša Rizvanbegović. After his death, the eyalets of
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina were merged. The new joint entity was after
1853 commonly referred to as Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Serbs in the
region revolted against the Ottomans (1852–62) and were aided by the
Montenegrins, who sought the liberation of the
Serb people from
Ottoman rule. The Herzegovinian
Serbs frequently rose up against the
Ottoman rule; culminating in the
Herzegovina Uprising (1875-78), which
was supported by the
Principality of Serbia
Principality of Serbia and Montenegro. Montenegro
did succeed in liberating and annexing large parts of Herzegovina
Berlin Congress of 1878, including the
Nikšić area; the
Herzegovina region annexed to
Montenegro is known as East
or Old Herzegovina.
As a result of the Treaty of Berlin (1878), Herzegovina, along with
Bosnia, was occupied by Austria-Hungary, only nominally remaining
under Ottoman rule. The historical
Herzegovina region in the
Montenegro was known as East or Old Herzegovina. The
Serb population of
Herzegovina and Bosnia hoped for annexation to
Serbia and Montenegro. The Franciscan order opened the first
Herzegovina in 1895 in Mostar.
Herzegovina in Austria-Hungary
Austria-Hungary annexed the province, leading to the Bosnian
Crisis, an international dispute which barely failed to precipitate a
world war immediately, and was an important step in the buildup of
international tensions during the years leading up to the First World
War. The assassination of the
Archduke Franz Ferdinand
Archduke Franz Ferdinand came as a
direct result of the resentment of the
Serbs of Bosnia and Herzegovina
against Austro-Hungarian rule.
During World War I,
Herzegovina was a scene of inter-ethnic conflict.
During the war, the Austro-Hungarian government formed Šuckori,
Muslim and Croat militia units.
Šuckori units were especially active
Herzegovina became a part of the newly formed Kingdom of
Croats and Slovenes (later renamed Kingdom of Yugoslavia). In
Herzegovina fell once again under the rule of the fascist
Independent State of Croatia. During World War II,
Herzegovina was a
battleground between fascist Croat Ustaše, royalist Serb Četniks,
and the communist Yugoslav Partisans;
Herzegovina was a part of the
Independent State of Croatia, administratively divided into the
counties of Hum and Dubrava, then in 1945, PR Bosnia and Herzegovina
became one of the republics of Second Yugoslavia. It remained so until
the breakup of Yugoslavia in the early 1990s.
During the Bosnian War, large parts of western and central Herzegovina
came under control of the Croat republic of
Herzeg-Bosnia (which later
joined the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina) while eastern
Herzegovina became a part of Republika Srpska.
Serbian Orthodox Eparchy of Zahumlje and Herzegovina
Roman Catholic Diocese of Mostar-Duvno
Herzegovina there are many beautiful and well-known natural
landmarks, such as the falls of Kravica. These consist of several
waterfalls near the city of
Ljubuški and a popular spot for the local
people, to take a bath in the hot Herzegovinian weather, or just to
enjoy the view.
The Hutovo blato is a bird reserve, one of the most important in
Europe and a gathering place for many international ornithologists.
Vjetrenica cave is a cave system near the border with Croatia, in the
Ravno municipality. The cave has not been explored totally yet, but it
is open to visitors. More and more species are being discovered there
and it is a unique ecosystem with cave animals and other interesting
Blagaj is also known as the origin of the Buna River, inside a cave
Neum at the Adriatic Sea, Bosnia and Herzegovina's only coastal town,
is also a popular tourist attraction.
Međugorje has one of the most visited sites in Bosnia and
Herzegovina, receiving more than one million visitors each year.
Rock formation "Hajdučka vrata" on Čvrsnica
The "Old Bridge" ("Stari most") in Mostar, rebuilt in 2004.
Neum and the Herzegovinian coast.
Počitelj, Old town
Rama Lake in Prozor-Rama
Neretva River in Mostar, 2004
Bilećko jezero (
Sutjeska National Park
Michael of Zahumlje
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina dictionary definition Bosnia and
Herzegovina defined". yourdictionary.com. Retrieved 2014-10-24.
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^ "Dictionary, Encyclopedia and Thesaurus - The Free Dictionary".
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razvojna agencija za Hercegovinu (REDAH) in conjunction with the EU
RED Project, Bosnia and Herzegovina, November, 2004, pp 24-26
^ John V.A. Fine, "The
Medieval and Ottoman Roots of Modern Bosnian
Society", in Mark Pinson, ed., The Muslims of Bosnia-Herzegovina:
Their Historic Development from the Middle Ages to the Dissolution of
Yugoslavia, Harvard Middle East Monographys 28, Harvard University
Center for Middle Eastern Studies, 2nd ed, 1996 ISBN 0932885128,
^ B. Djurdjev, "Bosna" in Encyclopaedia of Islam 2nd ed, P. Bearman,
Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel, W.P. Heinrichs, eds.
^ Official results from the book: Ethnic composition of
Herzegovina population, by municipalities and settlements,
1991. census, Zavod za statistiku Bosne i Hercegovine - Bilten no.234,
Sarajevo 1991. 1991.
Bataković, Dušan T. (1996). The
Serbs of Bosnia & Herzegovina:
History and Politics. Paris: Dialogue.
Ćirković, Sima (2004). The Serbs. Malden: Blackwell
Curta, Florin (2006). Southeastern Europe in the Middle Ages,
500–1250. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Fine, John Van Antwerp Jr. (1991) . The Early
A Critical Survey from the Sixth to the Late Twelfth Century. Ann
Arbor, Michigan: University of Michigan Press.
Fine, John Van Antwerp Jr. (1994) . The Late
Medieval Balkans: A
Critical Survey from the Late Twelfth Century to the Ottoman Conquest.
Ann Arbor, Michigan: University of Michigan Press.
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bosanskih vladara do Tvrtkove krunidbe (1377. g.). Zagreb: Grafički
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