Population:4.5 million (1914)Capital:Belgrade (1914 population 90,000)Head of State:Head of Government: Prime Minister Nikola Pašić (12 September 1912 – 1 December 1918)Entered the war:28 July 1914 (Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia)Ceased hostilities:11 November 1918 (armistice with Germany)Ended status as belligerent:4 June 1920 (Treaty of Trianon between the Allies and the newly-formed Republic of Hungary)
- General Facts
- Participation in The War
- Military Forces
1. Peacetime strength 1914: 90,000 2. Reserves 1914: 420,000 3. Mobilised 1914: 530,000 4. Total mobilised to October 1915: 710,000 In October 1915 the Central Powers launched their fourth invasion of Serbia. This time the intervention of Bulgaria proved decisive. Faced with certain defeat on their home soil, the Serbian government and high command decided to retreat to the Albanian coast and keep fighting rather than capitulate. At least 300,000 Serb soldiers and refugees attempted to cross...Military dead (all causes):450,000Civilian dead:650,000
The Day When the Serbian and U.S. Flags Flew Together Over the White House. Relations between Serbia and the United States of America during World War I, the “Great War,” were as friendly allies. July 28, 1918, however, was especially important for Serbs and Americans. On this day America marked the fourth anniversary of the beginning of the Great War, when, according to the words of U.S. Secretary of State Robert Lansing, “honorable Serbian people were forced to defend their country ...
People also ask
What is the meaning of the Serbian flag?
What does Serbia's flag symbol mean?
Was Serbia a rogue state in 1914?
What does the Serbian flag look like?
ca 1914-1918 place made France Physical Description linen (overall material) thread (overall material) Measurements overall: 4 7/8 in x 4 7/8 in; 12.3825 cm x 12.3825 cm ID Number 2011.0086.01 catalog number 2011.0086.01 accession number 2011.0086 Credit Line
- Introduction: Did Serbia Want Crisis and War in 1914?↑
- The Serbian Army in The Great War↑
- The Serbian War Contribution↑
- Prisoners of War↑
- The Home Front: Economy and War Financing↑
- Occupation and The First Rebellion in The Occupied Countries↑
Due to its geopolitical position in the Balkans, Serbia can be understood only through the broader framework of the confronted interests of the Central Powers and the Entente at the time. Austria-Hungary had developed its own Balkan projects as early as 1906, and Russia, Italy and Germany had their own plans. The Balkan nations developed their particular plans, too, collectively aimed at accomplishing national liberation goals at the expense of the declining Ottoman Empire. Conversely, both the Ottoman Empire and Austria-Hungary experienced internal ethnic strife from Poland to Italy and the Balkans. The old Empire was also eager to improve its credibility as a Great Power. Furthermore, at some point Austria-Hungary’s interests became closely aligned with those of Germany. The Balkan Wars improved the positions of Serbia and Russia. In spite of the success with the creation of Albania and the resultant severing of Serbia’s access to the sea, Austria-Hungary felt frustrated because i...
The events in the summer 1914 caught the Serbian army wholly unprepared for war. According to Nikola Pašić’s estimates, Serbia and its army needed at least three years for rearmament and for the development of new military formations in the south. The inflow of the new contingent of conscripts from the south had not started until April 1914. Serbia needed a much longer period for the development of a new railroad network in the southern and western parts of the country, as well as for the construction of a bridge over the Danube to establish a rail connection with Romania. These views were shared by the General Staff and Prince Alexander. The Serbian army lacked at least 120,000 rifles, heavy and mountain artillery, ammunition, means of transportation, camping equipment, some 300,000 complete sets of uniforms, medical equipment, medical staff, newly trained men to replace some 50,000 deceased and handicapped from the Balkan Wars, and some 6,000 horses. Prime Minister Pašić, fully aw...
The Serbian contribution to the Allies' joint efforts was considerable. According to Conrad von Hötzendorf, he employed almost 400,000 of his troops on the Serbian front throughout 1914, in contrast to 921,000 on the Russian front. The total casualties of the Balkan front climbed to 273,813 (28,285 dead, 122,122 wounded, 46,716 with maladies, 76,690 captured or disappeared) in 1914, and 29,000 dead, wounded and captured in 1915.In 1915, the Germans suffered some 12,000 casualties and the Bulgarians some 30,000 on the Serbian front alone. The Serbian Army suffered as well. During the first month of hostilities, the Serbian Army losses included 2,068 killed, 11,519 wounded and 8,823 captured or lost. The subsequent combats and war victories in late 1914 accounted for 20,208 dead, 84,185 wounded and 36,336 captured or lost.However, the worst loss of lives would come in the first months of 1915 when an estimated 27,000 men, many of them wounded, died of typhus. It was very difficult for...
Interwar Austrian data suggested that the toll of captives and deserters on the Serbian front, in other words those who were "lost in action", amounted to 80,276, According to Serbian data from January 1915, the POW command in Niš registered 568 officers and 54,906 soldiers, but the number would rise with the arrival of those who had been previously wounded and had been treated in hospitals. Finally, in the officers’ POW camp in Niš, were 734 officers, and about 57,000 soldiers and NCOs. The small number of POWs were scattered out of the command’s notion, the wounded and doctors on the first place. The catastrophic typhus epidemic, which lasted through the winter months of 1915, claimed some 20 to 25 percent of lives; estimates indicated that 9,000 were lost during the retreat to the Adriatic in December 1915. Lastly, some 638 officers and 21,320 soldiers were relinquished to the Italians in Valona. Fewer than 3,000 had remained in Serbia according to Serbian estimates and were libe...
The Serbian economywas basically agricultural and export-based. Coal and mineral mining, textile, glass, wood, bricks and armament production made up most of its economy. Serbian currency (dinar) value was based on gold, silver and foreign loans. The currency conversion rate to the French franc was one-to-one. The previous Balkan Wars pushed Serbian financial and economical sources to the limits. With the war debt, Serbia had to repay a total of 1.15 billion francs, but it needed longer to heal from the financial impact on its economy. Immediately before the July crisis, Serbia succeeded in obtaining a French loan of 130 million francs. The unexpected war put its recovery and future at stake. The Serbian government was fully aware that the harvest would provide enough food for the people and cattle during 1914, but not for 1915. Since there would be no export of goods, financial stability would be jeopardized as well. The only way out was to appeal to the Allies to provide Serbia wi...
In late 1915, the military defeat and withdrawal of the Serbian Army finally enabled Austria-Hungary to carry out premeditated plans for the solution of the “Serbian question.” In effect, all the plans drafted since 1906 had envisaged partition, diminishing semi-sovereign remnants and incorporating them into the Austro-Hungarian zone of interest. Montenegro was also viewed as part of the “Serbian Question.” According to the plans, Macedonia and eastern parts of Serbia would go to Bulgaria. In the pre-war years there was some division among Austrians and Hungarians on this matter, even among Austrians themselves. Hungarians at first opposed the idea of Serbia’s incorporation as a whole under the monarchy on the ground that there were too many South Slavs already. The new circumstances and the strong attitude of Bulgaria against any restoration of Serbia prompted radicals in Wien to come up with a drastic solution. The Hungarian suspicions remained as they had been before. In 1916, Se...
The reverberations of the Balkan Wars among its South Slav populous, coupled with fears for the integrity and credibility of the Great Power, led Austria-Hungary to act decisively in accordance with the plans developed since 1906. The monarchy was also frustrated by the results of the Balkan Wars since they had obstructed all its Balkan projects except influence in the newly established Albanian state. The Sarajevo assassination on 28 June 1914 masterminded and carried out by the local members of Young Bosnia was embraced as a good enough pretext to convince the public in both Austria-Hungary and Germany, that war was necessary. The Serbian government was aware of Austro-Hungarian hostility since the country was exhausted after the two wars. It did its best to retain the stable relationship and prevent any action abroad that could lead to war, but in vain: Austro-Hungarian officials and the press pointed the finger at the Serbian government as a principle culprit. In spite of lackin...
- Military Forces
- See Also
- External Links
Austria-Hungary precipitated the Bosnian crisis of 1908–09 by annexing the former Ottoman territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which it had occupied since 1878. This angered the Kingdom of Serbia and its patron, the Pan-Slavic and Orthodox Russian Empire. Russian political manoeuvring in the region destabilised peace accords that were already unravelling in what was known as "the powder keg of Europe". In 1912 and 1913, the First Balkan War was fought between the Balkan League of Greece, Bulgaria, Serbia, and Montenegro and the fracturing Ottoman Empire. The resulting Treaty of London further shrank the Ottoman Empire by creating an independent Principality of Albania and enlarging the territorial holdings of Bulgaria, Serbia, Montenegro, and Greece. When Bulgaria attacked both Serbia and Greece on 16 June 1913, it lost most of its Macedonian region to those countries, and additionally the Southern Dobruja region to Romania and Adrianople (the present-day city of Edirne) to Turkey i...
The standing peacetime Austro-Hungarian army had some 36,000 officers and non-commissioned officers and 414,000 enlisted personnel. During the mobilization, this number was increased to a total of 3,350,000 men of all ranks. The operational army had over 1,420,000 men, and a further 600,000 were allocated to support and logistic units (train, munition and supply columns, etc.) while the rest – around 1,350,000 – were reserve troops available for replacing losses and the formation of new units...
The Serbian military command issued orders for the mobilization of its armed forces on 25 July and the mobilization began the following day. By 30 July, the mobilization was completed and the troops began to be deployed according to the war plan. Deployments were completed by 9 August, when all of the troops had arrived at their designated strategic positions. During mobilization, Serbia raised approximately 450,000 men of three age-defined classes (or bans) called poziv, which comprised all...
These figures detail the number of all Austro-Hungarian troops concentrated on the southern (Serbian) theater of war at the beginning of August 1914 and the resources of the entire Serbian army (the number of troops actually available for the operations on both sides was however somewhat less): Serbia's ally Montenegro mustered an army of some 45–50,000 men, with only 14 modern quick firing field guns, 62 machine guns and some 51 older pieces (some of them antique models from the 1870s). Unli...
The Serbian campaign started on 28 July 1914, when Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia and her artillery shelled Belgrade the following day. On August 12 the Austro-Hungarian armies crossed the border, the DrinaRiver (see map). Initially, three out of six Austro-Hungarian armies were mobilized at the Serbian frontier, but due to Russian intervention, the 2nd Army was redirected east to the Galician theater. However, since the railroad lines leading to Galicia were busy with transport of other troops, the 2nd Army could only start its departure northward on 18 August. In order to make use of the temporary presence of the 2nd Army, AOK allowed parts of it to be used in the Serbian campaign until that date. Eventually, AOK directed significant parts of the 2nd Army (around four divisions) to assist General Potiorek's main force and postponed their transportation to Russia until the last week of August. Defeats suffered in the first invasion of Serbia eventually forced AOK to transfe...
Early in 1915, with Ottoman defeats at the Battle of Sarikamish and in the First Suez Offensive, the German Chief of the General Staff Erich von Falkenhayn tried to convince the Austro-Hungarian Chief of Staff, Conrad von Hötzendorf, of the importance of conquering Serbia. If Serbia were taken, then the Germans would have a direct rail link from Germany through Austria-Hungary, then down to Istanbul and beyond. This would allow the Germans to send military supplies and even troops to help the...
During the preceding nine months, the Serbs had tried and failed to rebuild their battered armies and improve their supply situation. Despite their efforts, the Serbian Army was only about 30,000 men stronger than at the start of the war (around 225,000) and was still badly equipped. Although Britain and France had talked about sending serious military forces to Serbia, nothing was done until it was too late. When Bulgaria began mobilizing, the French and British sent two divisions, but they...
Course of the campaign
The Austro-Hungarians and Germans began their attack on 7 October with their troops crossing the Drina and Sava rivers, covered by heavy artillery fire. Once they crossed the Danube, the Germans and Austro-Hungarians moved on Belgrade itself. Vicious street fighting ensued,and the Serbs' resistance in the city was finally crushed on 9 October. Then, on 14 October, the Bulgarian Army attacked from the north of Bulgaria towards Niš and from the south towards Skopje (see map). The Bulgarian Firs...
The Serbian army was evacuated to Greece and joined up with the Allied Army of the Orient. They then fought a trench war against the Bulgarians on the Macedonia Front. The Macedonian front in the beginning was mostly static. French and Serbian forces re-took limited areas of Macedonia by recapturing Bitola on 19 November 1916 as a result of the costly Monastir Offensive, which brought stabilization of the front. French and Serbian troops finally made a breakthrough in the Vardar Offensive in...
End of the War
The ramifications of the war were manifold. When World War I ended, the Treaty of Neuilly awarded Western Thrace to Greece, whereas Serbia received some minor territorial concessions from Bulgaria. Austria-Hungary was broken apart, and Hungary lost much land to both Yugoslavia and Romania in the Treaty of Trianon. Serbia assumed the leading position in the new Kingdom of Yugoslavia, joined by its old ally, Montenegro. Meanwhile, Italy established a quasi-protectorate over Albania and Greece r...
Before the war, the Kingdom of Serbia had 4,500,000 inhabitants. According to The New York Times, 150,000 people are estimated to have died in 1915 alone during the worst typhus epidemic in world history. With the aid of the American Red Cross and 44 foreign governments, the outbreak was brought under control by the end of the year. The number of civilian deaths is estimated by some sources at 650,000, primarily due to the typhus outbreak and famine, but also direct clashes with the occupiers...Bjelajac, Mile: Serbia, in: 1914-1918-online. International Encyclopedia of the First World War.Tasić, Dmitar: Warfare 1914-1918 (South East Europe), in: 1914-1918-online. International Encyclopedia of the First World War.
The Principality of Serbia was a state in the Balkans that came into existence as a result of the Serbian revolution which lasted between 1804 and 1817. Despite brutal oppression and retaliation by the Ottoman authorities, the revolutionary leaders, first Karađorđe and then Miloš Obrenović, succeeded in their goal to liberate Serbia after centuries of Turkish rule.
The Serbian Cross is a national symbol of Serbia, part of the coat of arms and flag of Serbia, and of the Serbian Orthodox Church. It is based on the tetragrammic cross emblem/flag of the Byzantine Palaiologos dynasty, with the difference that in Serbian use the cross is usually white on a red background, rather than gold on a red background. It is composed of a cross symbol with four "fire striker" shapes, originally four Greek letters beta. Serbian tradition attributes the letters to Saint Sav
Mar 31, 2010 · Serbia's Great War 1914-1918 by Andrej Mitrović (no photo) Synopsis: Mitrovic's volume fills the gap in Balkan history by presenting an in-depth look at Serbia and its role in WWI. Serbia did play a key role at the start of the conflict but British and American historians have paid little attention to the topic.
River Flotilla Commander. Captain (N) Andrija Andrić. Insignia. Flag. Naval ensign. The Serbian River Flotilla ( Serbian: Речна Флотила / Rečna flotila) is a tactical brigade-level brown water naval branch of the Serbian Armed Forces headquartered in Novi Sad, with additional units based in Belgrade, and Šabac.