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Short History#

by Selma Rizvic, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, University of Sarajevo

Bosnia and Herzegovina is located on the Balkan peninsula in Southeastern Europe. It is a country with a rich history, where the people of different religions and nations have been living together for centuries. There still exist the remains of the Roman Empire, the Empire of Carlemagne, the Ottomans, the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

Bosnia as a country, was first mentioned in the tenth century AD, in the work of the Byzantine emperor and writer Constantine Porfirogenetus (De administrando imperio), as a small area with two cities: Katera and Desnik. The first known ruler was King (Ban) Borić from the XII century. One of the most important rulers of Bosnia during the Middle ages was Ban Kulin. From that time dates the first known document of the medieval Bosnian state.

The peak of the Bosnian State has been achieved during the reign of Tvrtko I Kotromanić. He proclaimed himself as a King of Bosnia (1377) and expanded the State borders. In the medieval European circles Bosnia was extremely appreciated: it had a royal family, palaces, a strong and powerful nobility, an unique culture.

During the expansion of the Ottomans, Bosnia was conquered in 1463 and became a part of the Ottoman empire. The Ottomans ruled Bosnia for about 500 years. They brought Islamic religion, their administrations and hierarchy. During their dominion in Bosnia, they built institutional infrastructure, cultural and religious objects, towns and roads. One of the oldest educational institutions in Europe, the Gazi Husrev bey Madrasa was built in Sarajevo in 1537 and has been active for about 480 years.

From the 1878 Bosnia and Herzegovina was part of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. During the Austro-Hungarian rule many institutions were built, such as churches, museums, cultural institutions, public buildings. In that period the first political parties were founded and the youth was educated at prestigious European universities. At the end of the World War I, Bosnia and Herzegovina became a part of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenians.

At the end of the Second World War, Bosnia and Herzegovina became a Republic within the Federation of Socialist Yugoslavia and stayed as such until 1992. At the referendum held on the 1st of March 1992, 64,3% of Bosnian citizens voted for independance. After the country was recognized by the United Nations, it was attacked by the Yugoslav National Army and Serb paramilitary formations, joined by the Bosnian Croat forces in 1993. The war in Bosnia was proclaimed as one of the most horrific conflicts in the modern history. It was ended by the Dayton peace agreement on 21th November 1995. The country was divided in two entities and a district. It has 14 governments and it is still under supervision of the Peace Implementation Council.

Scientific references:

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