On the right bank of the Danube, in the part where it flows through Serbia, traces of the first European and perhaps the world’s civilization were found.
On the territory of today’s Vinča settlement (Belgrade), 7,500 years ago, our ancestors lived in modern and functional houses and well-organized cities. They were engaged in agriculture, trade, art and various crafts.
Vinča was the metropolis of a highly developed civilization that stretched from Transylvania in the north to the Skopje basin in the south, and from the Adriatic Sea in the west to Sofia Field in the east.
That civilization gave the world the first wheel with an axle, the first alphabet, the calendar, the technology of fertilizing the land, and the discovery of metallurgy is considered the greatest contribution. They lived in coexistence with nature and knew that they were celebrating that life.
After 1000 years of peace and prosperity, the warrior hordes that arrived from the east brutally destroyed this civilization and continued their march towards the western part of the European continent. Fleeing from them, the majority found salvation in the Dinarides and the Carpathians. Over the years, they began to return from where they were driven away. The Romans called these inhabitants – Illyrians.
Gentius – the last Illyrian king
He ruled from 180 to 168. B.C. He never sobered up and had a very strong temper. The Illyrians overindulged in eating and drinking. They liked to drink „zobaja“ – a drink made from oats as well as mead. They celebrated Dualos, the Illyrian god of wine. For 200 years, they continuously waged war against Rome. In the end, they were defeated, but they got civil rights. Great Roman emperors such as Constantine, Galerius, Diocletian and Probus were born on the territory of today’s Serbia and were of Illyrian origin.
Prob – a Roman emperor of Illyrian origin
He was born in Sirmium, in today’s Sremska Mitrovica. He confirmed his Illyrian genes as a great warrior and experienced military leader. However, he was remembered for the fact that he was the first to transport the vine from the Apennine Peninsula and plant it on Fruška Gora. In those times of peace, his soldiers were not satisfied with their status. Instead of carrying out public works and viticulture, they preferred to go to war. So dissatisfied, they raised their hand against their emperor and killed him. He ruled the Roman Empire from 276 to 282 A.D.. .
Stefan Nemanja – grand prefect
Nemanjić is considered the progenitor of the Serbian medieval ruling dynasty. In Niš, in 1189, in the gate of the church of
St. Panteleimon, with mead, the best wine and a rich meal, he welcomed and hosted Frederick I Barbarossa, the emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, on his way to Jerusalem.
In 1196, Nemanja . retired from power and became a monk. He ended his monastic life in the Hilandar monastery on Sveta Gora. After his death, Nemanja’s relics were returned to Serbia, and a vine grew from his empty grave, which is still growing today.
Dušan Silni – the first Serbian emperor
All medieval Serbian rulers paid great attention to their own and monastery vineyards and were true lovers of good wine. In ancient charters as well as in legends, Stefan Uroš IV Dušan Nemanjić, better known as Dušan the Mighty, occupies an honorable place. place. In the laws he passed, the mention of numerous wine-growing places in Kosovo and Metohija hints at the first decrees on wine quality control and protection of geographical origin. From Velika Hoča to his court in the vicinity of Prizren, he built a 25 km long ceramic wine canal.