Despot Stefan Tower

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The Dizdar Tower is a structure in Belgrade, Serbia, built ca. 1405, a couple of years after the city became the capital of Serbian Despotate under Despot Stefan. Despot Stefan Lazarevi? was a son of Lazar of Serbia, who died in the Battle of Kosovo on June 28, 1389 in the crucial battle that brought the Serbian Empire to collapse. However, most of present-day Central Serbia remained independent under his son Stefan for another fifty years, which allowed the northern Serbian cities, such as Smederevo, Belgrade or Kragujevac to further develop. Belgrade was proclaimed the capital of the Serbian Despotate in 1404. While most of the Balkans was conquered and suffered terribly under the Turkish yoke, Despot Stefan's Belgrade became one of the most prominent cities in medieval Europe. The population reached 50,000 as public buildings, royal courts, churches and fortifying walls were built. The city became a mecca for Balkan Christians and was the cultural and spiritual capital of this part of Europe. Belgrade was fortified with two great walls (surrounding Upper and Lower City), which contained most of its population as well as the magnificent palace of Despot, which was later destroyed. After the Despot's death, the Serbian Despotate was destroyed by the Turks and its last city, Smederevo, succumbed. Belgrade was taken by Royal Hungary after the Siege of Belgrade and served as its southern capital until 1521, when a month-long siege ended in capitulation and surrender to Turkey, which meant a decline in the city's importance for the next three centuries.

See also

  • Architecture in Serbia
  • Kalemegdan

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