Valentina Živković

Institute for Balkan Studies

Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts


The Vow of Ivan Crnojević to the Virgin Mary in Loreto under the Shadow of the Ottoman Conquest

Abstract: This paper looks at the circumstances in which Ivan Crnojević, a fifteenth-century ruler of Zeta (historic region in present-day Montenegro), made a vow to the Virgin in a famous pilgrimage shrine, the Santa Casa in Loreto (Italy), where he was in exile fleeing another Ottoman offensive. The focus of the paper is on a few issues which need to be re-examined in order to understand Ivan’s vow against a broader background. His act is analyzed in the context of the symbolic role that the Virgin of Loreto played as a powerful antiturca protectress. On the other hand, much attention is paid to the institutional organization of Slavs (Schiavoni) who found refuge in Loreto and nearby towns, which may serve as a basis for a more comprehensive understanding of the process of religious and social adjustment of Orthodox Slav refugees to their new Catholic environment.

Keywords: Ivan Crnojević, Cetinje, Zeta, Santa Casa in Loreto, confraternities, Schiavoni

UDC 94(497.16)"14"

929.731 Црнојевић И.


Original scholarly work