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Petrović-Njegoš dynasty

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The Petrović-Njegoš Montenegrin and Serbian Cyrillic: Петровић-Његош was the ruling family of Montenegro from 1696 to 1918, but the deposition was real only in 1921 Montenegro had enjoyed de facto independence from the Ottoman Empire from 1711 but only received formal international recognition as an independent principality in 1878

Montenegro was ruled from inception by Vladikas, Prince-Bishops, who had a dual temporal and spiritual role In 1697, the office was made hereditary in the Petrović-Njegoš family However, since Orthodox bishops are required to be celibate, the crown passed from uncle to nephew In 1852, Prince-Bishop Danilo II opted to marry and secularized Montenegro, becoming Prince Danilo I His successor, Nikola I, raised Montenegro to a kingdom in 1910 In 1916 King Nikola I was ousted by the invasion and occupation of his country by Austria-Hungary He was formally deposed by the Podgorica Assembly in 1918 as Montenegro was annexed by Serbia, which in turn merged into the emergent Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes

A period of eighty years of control from Belgrade followed during which Nikola I died in exile in France in 1921 followed shortly afterwards by the surprise abdication of his son and heir, Danilo III, the same year The latter's nephew, Michael Petrović-Njegoš, inherited the titles of his predecessors whilst in exile in France and survived arrest and internment by order of Adolf Hitler for refusing to head up a puppet Montenegrin state aligned to the Axis Powers Later, he served the SFR Yugoslavia as Head of Protocol He was succeeded by his son Nicholas Petrović-Njegoš in 1986 Nicholas returned to Montenegro to support the Montenegrin independence movement that went on to achieve full sovereignty in the 2006 referendum

In 2011, Montenegro recognized an official role for the Royal House of Petrović-Njegoš in Montenegro: to promote Montenegrin identity, culture and traditions through cultural, humanitarian and other non-political activities, which has been interpreted as a "creeping restoration" of the monarchy1

The present head of the house is Nicholas II of Montenegro


  • 1 History
    • 11 Origin
    • 12 Modern role
  • 2 Heads of the House of Petrović-Njegoš 1696–Present
    • 21 Prince-Bishops Vladikas of Montenegro 1696–1852
    • 22 Princes Knyazes of Montenegro 1852-1910
    • 23 King Kralj of Montenegro 1910-1921
    • 24 Line of Succession post-monarchy 1921–Present
  • 3 See also
  • 4 References
  • 5 External links



"Bogut" or "Boguta" is believed to be the oldest known ancestor of the Petrovic-Njegoš2 Bogut was alive at the time of the Battle of Velbazhd 1330 and the building of Visoki Dečani,3 and perhaps into the 1340s2 According to tradition, and recorded by some historians, the ancestors of the Petrović family settled in Muževice at the end of the 14th century, from the Bosnia region, from the area of Zenica or Travnik4 It is possible that Bogut at that time had moved to Drobnjaci with his son, Đurađ5 Đurađ or some of his sons were in the entourage of Marko Drago, an affluent Serbian nobleman who had served Serbian lord Vuk Branković 1345-1397, and as such they are believed to have also served the Branković family6 Đurađ and his five sons "from Drobnjaci" are mentioned in a document dating March 1, 1399,5 in which they gave several items to the depository of Dapko Vasilijev, an affluent Kotoran nobleman7

Modern roleedit

On the 12 July 2011 the Parliament of Montenegro adopted the Law on the Status of the Descendants of the Petrović Njegoš Dynasty18

The law "regulates the important issues regarding the status of the descendants of the Petrović-Njegoš dynasty, for the historical and moral rehabilitation of the Petrović-Njegoš dynasty for whom their dethroning was contrary to the Constitution of the Kingdom of Montenegro, a violent act of annexation in the year 1918" Article 1

The law recognises the descendants of King Nikola I in the male line and their wives as the descendants of the Petrović-Njegoš dynasty Article 2, and appoints the eldest male heir, namely Prince Nikola II, as the representative of the dynasty Article 5 It also affirms the House law of the dynasty by defining the succession to the headship of the dynasty as being passed down through the "male heir of the oldest male heir" Article 5

The law protects the use of the heraldic symbols of the dynasty by the representative of the dynasty, Prince Nikola II Article 6

Article 8 allows for members of the dynasty to obtain Montenegrin citizenship and also to be dual-nationals of other nations without losing their Montenegrin citizenship This is of particular relevance today as all of the members of the dynasty also hold French citizenship

The law also creates the non-political Article 10 Petrović-Njegoš Foundation Article 9, an organisation chaired by Prince Nikola II Article 10, with its aim to "affirm the Montenegrin culture and participation in humanitarian and development activities in the interest of Montenegro and its traditions" Article 9

From Montenegro's exchequer, the law allocates 43 million euros over a seven-year period to the Petrović-Njegoš Foundation Article 11 In addition, Prince Nikola II is entitled to a monthly income equivalent to the gross monthly earnings of the President of Montenegro Article 16

The Petrovic-Njegoš Foundation has its seat in Montenegro "The Descendants of the dynasty are given the continuous use of the house of King Nikola I of Montenegro in Njegušiits gardensand meadow-land"

"Descendants of the dynasty will have built for them a family home in Cetinjeand be given an apartment in Podgorica" Article 12

To carry out their official functions Prince Nikola II has the right to use State objects and resources and "the exclusive right of use of the first storey" of the Petrović Palace Dvorac Petrovića in Podgorica, "and when protocol requires, use of the ground floor with priority over other users" Article 13

The law allows for Prince Nikola II to act as a representative of the Government of Montenegro and perform other protocolar and non-political functions Article 7 The first such undertaking was made by the Prince in July 2011 when he represented the Prime Minister of Montenegro, Igor Lukšić, at the requiem of Otto von Habsburg, former Crown Prince of Austria-Hungary

When performing functions on behalf of the Government, Prince Nikola II and the other members of the dynasty are afforded full State protocol Article 15

Heads of the House of Petrović-Njegoš 1696–Presentedit

Prince-Bishops Vladikas of Montenegro 1696–1852edit

  • Prince-Bishop Danilo I Šćepčev Petrović-Njegoš 1696–1735
  • Prince-Bishop Sava II Petrović-Njegoš 1735–1781
  • Prince-Bishop Vasilije III Petrović-Njegoš joint ruler with Sava II 1750–1766
  • Prince-Bishop Petar I Petrović-Njegoš Saint Peter of Cetinje, Sveti Petar Cetinjski 1782–1830
  • Prince-Bishop Petar II Petrović-Njegoš 1830–1851
  • Prince-Bishop Danilo II Petrović-Njegoš 1851–1852 - became Prince in 1852 as Danilo I

Princes Knyazes of Montenegro 1852-1910edit

  • Danilo I, Prince of Montenegro 1852–1860
  • Nikola I, Prince of Montenegro 1860–1910 - became King in 1910

King Kralj of Montenegro 1910-1921edit

  • King Nicholas I of Montenegro 1910–1921
  • King Danilo of Montenegro 1921
  • King Michael of Montenegro 1921

Line of Succession post-monarchy 1921–Presentedit

  • Ex King Michael of Montenegro 1929–1986,abdicated renouncing his dynastic claim to King Alexander I of Yugosavia
  • Nicholas, Prince of Montenegro, styled Crown Prince Nicholas II of Montenegro 1986–Present, current Pretender to the Throne
    • Boris, Hereditary Prince of Montenegro born 1980, the Grand Voivode of Grahovo and Zeta, is his heir

See alsoedit

  • The Petrović-Njegoš family tree


  1. ^ a b Zakon o statusu potomaka dinastije Petrović Njegoš
  2. ^ a b Etnografski muzej Cetinje 1963, p 75
  3. ^ Reljić 1976, p 30
  4. ^ Miljanić 1989,

    Odakle su preci Petrovića doselili u Muževice i u koje vrijeme nije dovoljno rasvijetljeno Prema tradiciji, a i zapisima nekih istoričara, doselili su iz Bosne, iz okoline Zenice, ili Travnika i da su u Drobnjake doselili, kako navodi Kovijanić, krajem 14 vijeka

  5. ^ a b Srpsko istorijsko-kulturno društvo "Njegoš" u Americi 1983, p 73
  6. ^ Etnografski muzej Cetinje 1963, p 70
  7. ^ Miljanić 1989,

    Kovijanić je u kotorskom sudsko-notarskim spisima pronašao i prepisao sljedeće: Od Đurđa Bogutovića iz Drobnjaka i njegovih sinova Vukca, Radina, Heraka, Pribila i Ostoje primio je 1 marta 1399 godine Dapko Vasilijev, ugledni i imućni kotorski vlastelin u depozit ove stvari: šest srebrnih pojaseva, zavijenih u šest marama, težine 19 i po funti, dvije tacne sa izvjesnim srebrnim pucadima, težine pet unči, takođe dvije kutije perla sa svitom i sa četiri puceta perla, težine u svemu 10 unči

  8. ^ PM Luksic hosts reception in honour of Montenegrin Royal House of Petrovic Njegos
  • Etnografski muzej Cetinje 1963 Glasnik: Bulletin pp 69–75 
  • Srpsko istorijsko-kulturno društvo "Njegoš" u Americi 1983 Glasnik Srpskog istorijsko-kulturnog društva "Njegoš" 
  • Reljić, Ljubomir 1976 Jovan Erdeljanović: život i delo : Temelji naučne tradicije naše etnologije p 30 
  • Vojislav Miljanić 1989 "Detalji iz života predaka Petrovića-Njegoša za vrijeme boravka ispod planine Njegoš" Istorijski zapisi br 3-4, 1989 
  • Историски записи 1989 
  • Nikola and Milena, King and Queen of the Black Mountain
  • The Rise and Fall of Montenegro's Royal Family by Marco Houston

External linksedit

  • The Njegoskij Fund Public Project Private family archives-based digital documentary fund, focused on history and culture of Royal Montenegro
  • Official website of the Royal House of Montenegro

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