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Voisinages fragiles

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Anastassios Anastassiadis

Une aire en mutation : les transformations dans l’Empire ottoman et l’espace balkanique au XIXe siècle et leur impact sur les questions confessionnelles

Inter-confessional Relations and Ethnicity in Late Ottoman Kosovo (1870-1913)

Relations interconfessionnelles et appartenance ethnique dans le Kosovo à la fin de lépoque ottomane (1870-1913)

Eva Anne Frantz

Résumé

Ce texte analyse les relations entre différents groupes socio-économiques, religieux et ethniques vivant au Kosovo sous les Ottomans, entre 1870 et 1913. L’auteure identifie les principaux éléments qui déterminent l’identité de ces différents groupes et la nature de leurs contacts. Elle soutient que les clivages religieux et socio-économiques de la société sont les facteurs les plus importants pour créer des frontières et des identités. Le texte rend compte également de la violence entre groupes, des raisons de sa présence et de sa montée graduelle au Kosovo, ainsi que des antagonismes ethniques et religieux comme éléments déterminants de l’identité collective. Pour décrire les violences entre groupes, l’auteure s’appuie sur des rapports des consulats européens présents au Kosovo à l’époque.

Texte intégral

  • 1 The administrative borders of the vilayet of Kosovo in the late Ottoman period do not correspond to (...)
  • 2 In the following the Albanian toponyms will be given. The spelling of the place names in the quoted (...)
  • 3 These were mostly Serbian-speaking, but we also find speakers of Bulgarian and other South Slav dia (...)
  • 4 Based on Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian, French and Italian sources Nathalie Clayer speaks of about one (...)
  • 5 Serb historians usually stress the violence of Albanians against Serbs and limit violent conflict t (...)
  • 6 Nathalie Clayer in this context uses the term ‘confessionalisation’, Clayer Nathalie 2011.

1Within the analysis of inter-confessional relations in South Eastern Europe in late Ottoman times, Kosovo1 constitutes a fascinating and valuable case-study due to its religious, linguistic and ethnic heterogeneity. In the region corresponding to today’s Kosovo, Albanian-speaking Muslims made up the majority of the population, followed by Serbian-speaking Orthodox. Still, we also find smaller numbers of Catholic Albanians mostly living in the western regions of Kosovo around Peja (Serb. Peć, Turk. İpek) and Gjakova (Serb. Đakovica, Turk. Yakova).2 The Slavic population was in its majority South Slavic-speaking Orthodox,3 but was also composed of Muslims and Catholics. Furthermore one could find in the region ethnic Turcs, Circassians, Roma, Jews and Aromunes.4 The Albanian Muslims were chiefly large estate owners and peasants, but also lower-level officials as for instance governors of kazas (kaimakam) and sancaks (mütessarif). In very small numbers Muslim Albanians were also higher-level officials like pashas of vilayets. In the following the inter-confessional relations between Muslims, Orthodox Christians and Roman Catholics living in late Ottoman Kosovo will be addressed by asking for the relevance of ethnicity within their contacts. The article focuses on the analysis of the inter-confessional relations within the Albanian- and Slavic-speaking population groups. It aims to show that it is not possible to speak of an “ancient ethnic hatred” between “the Albanians” and “the Serbs”, as at least for the late Ottoman period these categories prove to be anachronistic.5 The relations between the different religious and confessional groups were much more complex. In the following it will be pointed out that next to times of peaceful coexistence and close contacts between these different religious and linguistic groups either by living together or through mixed marriages, pilgrimages and friendships, we also find periods of segregation and even violence. After discussing the different identity options as well as spheres of segregation and contact between the different religious groups, the analysis concentrates on their violent relations by posing the question to what degree religion and ethnicity played a role in the dynamics of violence. It is suggested that until the First Balkan War, religion as an indicator of social status was a dominant factor that determined violent conflicts within and between the different population groups. Apart from that, elements of ethnicity were also of importance, even if they played a subordinate role in the examples presented in this article. As an increase and fluctuation of violence within the population can be perceived, the factors that lead to this rise will be addressed. Violence in this context is seen as strongly influenced by regional as well as imperial factors: the Tanzimat reforms and the following post-Tanzimat reforms of the Hamidian period (1876-1909), the interference of the Great Powers and the neighbouring Balkan states, local and regional actors as religious and secular influential personages, and in particular the wars between Christian Powers and the Ottoman Empire. Both, a reinforcement of religious identifications6 as well as a strengthening of ethnic affiliations can be distinguished.

Spheres of segregation and contact

  • 7 For a critical discussion of the concept of millet, see Ursinus Michael 1989, p. 195-207; Braude Be (...)
  • 8 This is also emphasized by Blumi Isa 2003a, p. 23-42.
  • 9 There exists a wide range of works on the theory and concepts of identity, which cannot all be list (...)
  • 10 Reinkowski Maurus 2005a, p. 121-142; Pichler Robert 2003, p. 293-315; Rrapi Gjergj 2003; Clayer Nat (...)
  • 11 This aspect is analyzed by Stephanie Schwandner-Sievers in the context of Northern Albania in the 1 (...)
  • 12 For the question on the relevance of language for identity formation, see Ismajli Rexhep 1991. More (...)
  • 13 For the several different Muslim identity patterns and identifications, see Clayer Nathalie 2007, p (...)
  • 14 The Fandi in today Northern Albania constituted a bayrak within the Catholic Mirdit tribe, which si (...)
  • 15 For the cultural and religious life, see the memoirs of Popović Janićije 1987.
  • 16 Vojvodić Mihailo 1984, p. 973. Also quoted in Malcolm Noel 1998, p. 231.

2Before addressing the spaces of possible inter-religious contacts, the dynamics and patterns of identity construction will first be illustrated as they constitute a factor that framed the scope and setting of inter-religious and inter-ethnic communication. In late Ottoman Kosovo the determining factor in inhabitants’ identities and legal status was religious affiliation, the reason for which was - amongst others - the Ottoman millet-system which was fully elaborated in the course of the 19th century and enabled the Christian communities to regulate administrative, fiscal and religious matters.7 Nevertheless, the factor of religion should not be overemphasized.8 Collective identities9 were primarily constituted through layers of socio-professional and socio-economic as well as regional and local elements. In the mountainous regions of Western Kosovo bordering on today’s Northern Albania and Montenegro, in the Highland of Gjakova (Alb. Malësia e Gjakovës) and in western Dukagjin (Serb. Metohija) around Peja and Gjakova tribal systems thrived. Here exogamous and patrilineal systems with customary law and patriarchal patterns existed where the membership in a certain family, and the solidarity it implied, were decisive.10 Connected with these structures were notions of honour, pride and concepts of manhood linked to valour and power symbolized by the gun, which was essential for an Albanian mountaineer to carry.11 In the Highland of Gjakova lived the clans of the Krasniqi, Gashi and the Bytyçi, and west of these the Nikaj and Merturi whereas in the lowlands these tribal structures tended to break up and devolve into extended family patterns whose members partly still belonged to these clans. Besides the already mentioned clans, members of the Mirdit, the Berisha, the Shala and the Kelmendi clan also dwelt in Kosovo. An urban intellectual class or bourgeoisie did not exist except in Prizren and Skopje which showed a distinctive Ottoman urban culture. At the same time strong social differences existed due to a distinct urban-rural divide, exacerbated by a further divide between lowland and mountainous regions. A cohesive ethnic Albanian identity based on linguistic lines existed only to a limited degree and didn’t show a high degree of group mobilization.12 The Muslim Albanians, chiefly large estate owners and peasants, but also lower-level officials, tended to show a high degree of loyalty to the Sultan. However, this loyalty was characteristic not only of the Muslim population, but also for large parts of the Christian population. The religious groups themselves were certainly not homogenous.13 Within the Albanian-speaking Catholic population in Kosovo we find for example the particular group known as Fandi who lived in the vicinity of the Gjakova and Peja regions. They were members of the Mirdit clan who had emigrated probably in the 19th century but maybe even earlier from what is today Northern Albania. They held a privileged position in the local Ottoman police and military system in Western Kosovo which differed from the social status of other Albanian-speaking Catholic population groups in the region.14 The Slavic population was composed overwhelmingly of Serbian-speaking peasants, but also craftsmen and traders. Their identity construction was very much shaped by their socio-economic role. The merchants’ economic role for example favoured the development of a certain self-awareness among them. For a small part of the local Serbian-speaking population the cultural and educational life, which was organized by the Serbian school policy directed from Belgrade, shaped their identity in a religious but also ethno-national sense.15 It has to be kept in mind, though, that only a small number of the population could be reached at all, since the main bulk of it was illiterate, with school attendance being very low among them. It is denoting that even in 1912 the Serbian consul in Prishtina (Serb. Priština, Turk. Priştine) reported that some Serbs living in Mitrovica (Serb. Kosovska Mitrovica, Turk. Mitroviça) were promulgating the slogan “Kosovo for the Kosovans” (Kosovo Kosovicima).16 Although the category of “region” as a marker of identity for the Slavish “Kosovci” probably was only of limited dimensions, it still implicates the existence of pre-national identity patterns.

  • 17 Faroqhi Suraiya 2003, p. 167-168.
  • 18 See Duijzings Ger 2000, p. 37-39. For religious conversions, see Clayer Nathalie 1998, p. 16-39.

3The millet-system of the 19th century constituted an administrative unit based on confession that regulated certain matters such as tax collection, an education system and legal disputes where Muslims were not involved. It implied that the different religious groups operating in these economic, political and social spheres were segregated from each other. These structures favoured the religious identification of the population. Nevertheless, as already mentioned, religion should not be overemphasized. The importance of religion in identity construction can primarily be attributed to the fact that it constituted an indicator of social status. Social status, socio-professional and socio-economic conditions marked boundaries which only rarely could be overcome. The religious and confessional - and often also ethnic - separation corresponded with the existence of different quarters of towns and villages (mahalla) which often were dominated religiously and ethnically by one group.17 Everyday life was taking place in these quarters and constituted an important pillar of identity formation for the local population. Where is it thus possible to distinguish spheres of contact? The daily and weekly markets were one of the significant contact zones between the different religious and ethnic groups. Here Serbian craftsmen and traders as well as peasants gathered offering their products. The communication in this context was centred on everyday economic relations. Of a more private nature were intermixed marriages, the percentage of which is difficult to estimate. However it is more probable that Christian women were marrying Muslim men than otherwise, and it can be assumed that marriages between speakers of the same language were more prevalent. Further research in this field is to be undertaken. Close contacts between Christians and Muslims can particularly be found in religious life and practice, which was characterised by syncretistic phenomena. Religious conversions and processes of Islamization were often, but not always connected to conflict, violence and pressure.18

The factor of violence in everyday life

  • 19 Cf. Boehm Christopher 1984; Zurl Marino 1978; Nopcsa Franz Baron 1907, p. 429-437.
  • 20 Cf. Höpken Wolfgang 2001, p. 59-72. Höpken analyzes in this work the structural, cultural and situa (...)
  • 21 Blumi Isa 2003b, p. 86.
  • 22 For the Austro-Hungarian Kultusprotektorat, see Haider-Wilson Barbara 2004, p. 121-147; Benna Anna (...)
  • 23 “[…] un village, fameux repaire des bandits […]”. Lippich to Beust, Prisren, 18th of April 1871, nr (...)
  • 24 “[…] landesübliche Raubzüge gegen die angrenzenden Schafzucht betreibenden Bezirke […]”. Lippich to (...)

4Although we tend to think of violence in Kosovo today largely in terms of ethnic conflict or even “ancient ethnic hatreds”, the various forms of violence the consuls described in their frequent reports in late Ottoman Kosovo appear to have been to a large degree of everyday nature. They were prompted by shortages of pasturage, robbery for private gain or conflicts often solved by vendettas,19 and were favoured by the structural conditions in the region. In view of a missing state monopoly criminal prosecution was only to a limited degree possible. The common law was thus a way of regulating everyday living together.20 Besides everyday incidents, the sources often report violence along religious and social fault lines between Muslims and Christians, with a high level of violence not only between Albanian Muslims and Serbian Christians, but also within the Albanian-speaking population between Muslims and Catholics. Isa Blumi justly emphasizes that “[…] despite their seemingly irreconcilable differences, Christians and Muslims, Slavs and Albanians, maintained integrated social and economic lives […].”21 Certainly, in order to adequately understand the descriptions in the reports of the consuls we should consider perceptual patterns. As representatives of Austria-Hungary, which was exerting certain rights of protecting the Catholic population within the framework of the Kultusprotektorat,22 the consuls were in the first place interested in an adequate representation and protection of the Catholics. In the first place, they were thus reporting about violence and less about peaceful co-existence. Still, the violent incidents were not invented by the consul. In the 1870s Western Kosovo especially around Gjakova was increasingly the setting of brigandage, incendiary and murder; Gjakova is described as “[…] a village, famous recess for bandits […].”23 In Dibra “[…] customary raids against the sheep farming dictricts […]”24 are mentioned. Women are referred to in the context of girl kidnapping, forced marriage, abuse and rape. In January 1871 for instance a Slavic girl was robbed and forcefully married:

  • 25 “En attendant, la situation à Prisren est devenue fort désagréable; tout le monde est mal à son ais (...)

Meanwhile the situation in Prisren has become very unpleasant; everybody feels ill at ease and fears distressing events. The enemies of the Pascha try to cause a breach of the peace, and in this effect they contacted the Muslims of Studenicha, a village in the surroundings of Prisren, where a Bulgarian girl was kidnapped and married to a young Turk, who […] was forced by the government to return his prey […].25

  • 26 See for example Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 5th of October 1874, nr. 4. HHStA PA XXXVIII/203.
  • 27 The Austro-Hungarian vice-consul writes about the Muslim villagers of Krusha who raided the forest (...)
  • 28 Lippich to Beust, Prisren, 19th of September 1870, nr. 7. HHStA PA XXXVIII/189 and Lippich to Andrá (...)
  • 29 The Albanian Catholic tribes living in the mountainous regions, who had been able to defend their r (...)
  • 30 “[…] sich aber außerdem auch den Haß der umwohnenden muselmännisch-albanesischen Stämmen zugezogen (...)
  • 31 “[…] Neckereien […], denen sie [= Fandi E. F.] von Seite der benachbarten muselmännischen Stämme au (...)

5In most cases the Muslim population comes to the fore as the main perpetrator of violence. In the consular reports the Muslim Albanians are often described as “fanatic”, and showing “a bad spirit towards the Christian and external inhabitants.”26 At the same time, the Christian population’s fear of Muslim violence is also very present in the consular reports. In fact, violence on the part of the Muslims was probably great. They were exerting their power and influence; they were armed and possessed an unchallenged position of advantage until the reforms of the Tanzimat. It has to be mentioned, though, that the Albanian Catholic were also armed to a great extent. The Orthodox Serb population was increasingly armed through the Serbian government from the beginning of the 20th century. This fact had a great influence on the coexistence of Christians and Muslims. One main source of violence was the Muslims’ exclusive understanding of their privileged legal status in Ottoman society and their reaction to influential Christian groups or Ottoman attempts to equalize the different religious groups in the context of the Tanzimat. Violence by Muslims can thus often be seen as caused by a feeling of being threatened and loosing their hitherto exclusive privileged status. Violence within the Albanian-speaking population groups between Muslims and Catholics illustrates the importance that religious affiliation played as an indicator of social status in these conflicts. Moreover, economic aspects (land and food shortages) were additional factors impacting the dynamics of conflict.27 In fact, it is difficult to determine exactly to what degree religion was a relevant factor, but it certainly played a role within the Albanian-speaking population. As made evident in the above mentioned case of the Fandi, there was a difference between the social status of Muslim Albanians and Albanian Catholics. This is an example of how Muslims acted violently against Christians when the latter possessed a privileged status which in the eyes of the Muslims was not legitimate. The Fandi played a vital role within the Ottoman police and war system in Kosovo as they formed a special entity to maintain public order in the region. Unlike other Catholics they were exempted from the poll tax (cizye) and had to supply irregular troops in times of war and special contingents for the police service in times of peace.28 Hence the possibility for the Fandi of bearing arms, a right usually forbidden to other Catholics.29 It is most likely that the privileged status which the Fandi possessed in contrast to other Catholic groups was the reason that “[…] they attracted the hatred of the surrounding Muslim-Albanian tribes […],”30 as noted the Austro-Hungarian vice-consul in an account of 1875. In the context of an attempted introduction of taxes on the Fandi, the Austro-Hungarian diplomat wrote in the same year about “[…] teasings […] to which they [= the Fandi, E.F.] were subjected by the neighbouring Muslim clans and which would entangle them in countless bloody quarrels […].”31

  • 32 This was true also in other parts of the Ottoman Empire. See Reinkowski Maurus 2005b; Findley Carte (...)
  • 33 Pllana Emin 1978, p. 214-221.

6The consular reports suggest that violence between Muslims and Christians increased after the Tanzimat-reforms32, which in Kosovo were partly initiated in the 1840s, but consistently enforced only in the 1860s, but even then with limited success.33 The violent reaction of Muslims to the reforms can be partly explained by the fear of an amelioration of the Christians’ social status. While aiming at modernizing the Ottoman Empire and equalizing the different religious groups, the reforms led to a confessionalisation of Ottoman society in Kosovo and to deepening conflicts within the population on the basis of religious differences. Through the reforms the Muslims felt their legal status to be threatened and declining. They feared they would lose their prominent position and reacted increasingly with violence. In 1877 the Austro-Hungarian vice-consul in Prizren described the situation in Kosovo as follows:

  • 34 “Gewalttaten gegen die Christen sind die nächsten Symptome, welche die Proclamirung ihrer verfassun (...)

Acts of violence against the Christians appear to be the next symptoms which are caused by the proclamation of their constitutional equality with the Muslims in this region. In Prizren a Serbian businessman was stabbed in the back by a Turkish shop-keeper. A Christian craftsman travelling here from Prishtina for the Christmas holidays was shot off his horse a few hours from here.34

7In another account of the same year the diplomat wrote:

  • 35 “[Die hiesigen Zustände] aber bilden eine bedenkliche Illustration zu den feierlich proclamirten Pr (...)

[The conditions here], though, constitute a critical illustration of the solemnly proclaimed principles of equality for all state subjects and the equalisation of all confessions. The local opinion about these pivotal points of the reform receives its best commentary in the remarks of the Muslim notables, […]. What, - they ask - is all this nonsense about? Could someone of a different faith ever become an Osmanli and can an Osmanli ever treat him as his equal? What do we care what this crazy governor tries to urge us to.35

  • 36 The Serbian vice-consul in Prishtina for example in 1890 reported about the rape of a 12-13-year-ol (...)

8Cases of murder, rape36 and plundering increased. The victims were not only Christian Orthodox and Serbian-speaking population groups but also Catholic Albanians.

  • 37 This is also pointed out in Blumi Isa 2003b.
  • 38 Austro-Hungarian diplomats report about violent abuse, murder and the closing of churches and schoo (...)
  • 39 See Clewing Konrad 2002, p. 185-186; Clewing Konrad 2000, p. 45-48; Müller Dietmar 2005, p. 122, 12 (...)

9Another reason for the increase in violence between the religious and confessional groups can be attributed to outside influences. Besides the Tanzimat-reforms, the interference of the Great Powers and the neighbouring Balkan states,37 as well as the wars between Christian Powers and the Ottoman Empire have to be mentioned here. It is important, though, to see that this growing interference from outside powers was partly regarded as the interference of Christian states and not of nation-states. It is possible to notice that particularly during times of war between the Ottoman Empire and Christian States violence in Kosovo erupted, and inter-religious relations worsened. Even if Kosovo after 1878 was not a region directly involved in war until the First Balkan War, the repercussions for the region were immense. As a consequence of the wars in which the Ottoman Empire was defeated, large Muslim population groups were expelled, which stimulated the fears of the Muslim population in Kosovo and gave rise to violent reactions among the Muslims. After the Montenegrin-Serbian-Ottoman war of 187638 and the subsequent Russian-Ottoman war of 1877-78, violent expulsions of nearly the entire Muslim, predominantly Albanian-speaking population in the sancak of Niš and Toplica during the winter of 1877-78 by Serbian troops were carried out. The displaced persons (alb. muhaxhirë, türk. muhacir, serb. muhadžir) took refuge predominantly in the Eastern parts of Kosovo. They constituted a major factor that led to the worsening of inter-religious and inter-ethnic relations and encouraged further violence.39 The Austro-Hungarian vice-consul Jelinek reported in April of 1878 as follows:

  • 40 “Zu der allgemeinen Misstimmung der muselmännischen Bevölkerung haben unstreitig auch die andauernd (...)

The continuous arrivals of Muslim refugees from the Serb- and Russian-occupied Turkish territories have indisputably contributed not a little to the general discontent among the Muslim population; and still more the misery among the refugees, aggravated by the typhoid epidemic that has broken out among them in many places. In the Prizren district 5000 refugees, and in Djakova 2000 have been accommodated, of course, in the most appalling manner. An immediate and highly regrettable consequence of the present precarious political situation, particularly for the Christians, is the general insecurity of life and property, which has been steadily worsening in Prizren and its suburbs for some time, in the most alarming ways. At least eight Greek-orthodox Slavs were treacherously murdered recently on the road between the railway stations at Lipljan and Veressovitz [Ferizaj, serb. Uroševac, E.F.], […] including Prizren’s; and the panic among the Christians concerning the Muslims goes so far that all traffic in the city ceases as soon as the sun goes down, and no one dares, even during the day, to venture alone into the neighbourhood, even for a few minutes.40

  • 41 Mikić Đorđe 1988, p. 26-28.
  • 42 See the contribution of N. Andriotis in this volume.

10The muhaxhirë were highly hostile to the local Slav population. Conflicts also broke out among Albanians as certain elements of the indigenous population of Kosovo did not welcome the muhaxhirë, since they constituted a potential economic rival.41 Another factor which again stimulated the fears of the Muslim population in Kosovo and gave rise to violent reactions among the Muslim population was the Greek-Ottoman war of 1897 as a consequence of the Cretan crisis of 1896, with its immense repercussions for the Muslim population.42 The reform programme pursued by the Great Powers since 1903 in Macedonia as a result of the eponymous Question contributed to the development of a context of anguish among Muslims. Local Muslims regarded the Great Powers as Christian states interfering in internal Muslim matters. As a consequence, violence on the part of the Muslim population increased as they again feared a diminution of their status. Finally, the competing territorial expansive ambitions of the Balkan neighbouring states Serbia, Bulgaria and Greece fostered inevitably an increase of tension among the different groups of the Ottoman population. The First Balkan War with its immense violence constituted a culminating and also turning point in the history of Kosovo.

  • 43 The fear of the Christian population of the Muslims are mentioned in several accounts, see Lippich (...)
  • 44 See for example Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 5th of October 1875, nr. 24 as well as Lippich to And (...)

11Analyzing the relationship between Muslims and Orthodox Christians and the question of an Albanian-Serbian conflict in Kosovo, the question of the dimension of ethnicity has to be addressed. To what extent is it possible to speak about an ethnic conflict already at the end of the 19th century or should we refer rather to a religious and/or social conflict? Already in the beginning of the 1870s the Christian population’s fear of Muslim violence is described in many sources.43 I argue that while moments of violence caused by ethnic tensions are also present, religion as an indicator of social status was in certain aspects more decisive. Within the violent Muslim attitude against Christians, it seems that violence in general was quantitatively and qualitatively more pronounced between Albanian-speaking Muslims and Serbian-speaking Orthodox than between Muslims and Catholics which can be interpreted as an indication that ethnic affiliation did play a role.44

  • 45 Until the opening of the first Serbian consulate in Kosovo, i.e. in Prishtina in 1889 (in Skopje al (...)
  • 46 “[...] dans un journal de Belgrade qui dit, n’eût été l’appui du Consul russe, les chrétiens slaves (...)
  • 47 See Zambaur to Gołuchowski, Mitrovica, 26th of February 1904, nr. 13 as well as Zambaur to Gołuchow (...)
  • 48 Radenić Andrija 1998, p. 115.

12But there is also evidence that suggests that the fears of the Christian population were partly stirred up through overblown accounts of violent Muslim acts by the Russian45 and Serbian consuls, and also directly from Belgrade. It was reported, for example, that a Belgrade newspaper wrote about the threat of massacres of Slavic Christians and warned about “Muslim fanaticism”.46 The later reports of the Serbian consul reveal a more “ethnicized” terminology. The reports of the Serbian consuls in Kosovo are full of “atrocities” committed by the local Albanian population. While certainly there was a high factor of violence committed by “Albanians” against “Serbs”, the sources suggest that the Russian and Serbian consuls at times exaggerated the numbers of Serbs who were killed or robbed by Albanians. There are several cases where it was not clear who was the culprit. In some of these cases the Serbian consuls blamed the Albanian side.47 In contrast to the Serbian consuls the Austro-Hungarian diplomats operated within categories based on religion resulting from the Austro-Hungarian Kultusprotektorat which shaped their understanding of the dynamics in the region. The Serbian consuls, on the contrary, only seemed to see the ethnic aspect of violence speaking of “the Albanians” and “the Albanian movement” against the “Serbian nation”.48 This can be attributed to the ethnopolitics that Serbia fostered after 1878. In the Serbian case we can speak of an instrumentalisation of violence which was interpreted in ethnic categories. It can be assumed that the Serbian and Russian consuls hyperbolizing the numbers of Serbs who were the victims of Albanian-Muslim crimes also propagated these fears within the local Serb population itself, contributing to or often perhaps causing fear of the Albanians among the Slavic population. These claims certainly must have had repercussions for the Serbian population by making them afraid of the Albanians in an ethnic and no longer in a religious sense.

Conclusion

  • 49 The close ties between Albanian-speaking Muslims and Slavic Muslims is particularly evident during (...)

13The inter-confessional relations between Muslims, Orthodox Christians and Roman Catholics living in late Ottoman Kosovo on the basis of consular reports show a high level of violence. Nevertheless, while there were spheres of segregation favored by the millet system as for example the mahallas, as well as limited communication possibilities such as geographical dismemberments and weak infrastructure (which were not addressed in this analysis), we can still distinguish times of peaceful coexistence and closer contacts between these groups. In this case the central relevance of the market place as an economic communication centre can be mentioned. Contacts to a great degree, though, were characterized by violent conflicts. Religion as an indicator of social status was one of the relevant factors, while ethnicity still played a subordinate role. Furthermore, violence is not only seen as emerging from within the local population but as strongly influenced by regional as well as imperial factors including Ottoman reforms, the interference of the Great Powers and the neighbouring Balkan states, and in particular the wars between other Powers, perceived as Christian, and the Ottoman Empire. Considering that Muslim-Albanian versus Orthodox-Serbian opposition was much more pronounced than violent conflicts between Catholic Albanian and Serbian-Orthodox populations (groups hardly mentioned in the consular reports), the argument of the relevance of religion as a determining factor in violent conflict is underlined. At the same time, the relations between Albanian-speaking Muslims and Slavic Muslims were agreeable and close, while between Muslim Slavs and Orthodox Slavs religion constituted a barrier which could not be overcome.49 We should thus not overemphasize the factor of ethnicity in violent conflicts between Serbian- and Albanian-speaking population groups in late Ottoman Kosovo.

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Archival & primary sources

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Clayer Nathalie, “Le Kosovo: berceau du nationalisme albanais au xixe siècle?”, Kosovo. Les Annales de lautre islam 7 (2000-2001), p. 145-167. Also published in Clayer Nathalie, Religion et nation chez les Albanais, xixe-xxe siècle, 2003, p. 197-220.

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Clewing Konrad, “Der Kosovokonflikt als Territorial- und Herrschaftskonflikt, 1878-2002”, in Beyer-Thoma Hermann, Griese Olivia and Lengyel Zsolt K. (eds.), Münchner Forschungen zur Geschichte Ost- und Südosteuropas. Wekstattberichte, Munich, Ars Una, 2002, p. 181-214.

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Clewing Konrad, “Religion und Nation bei den Albanern. Von Anspruch und Wirkungsmacht eines Religionen übergreifenden Nationenkonzepts”, in Mosser Alois (ed.), Politische Kultur in Südosteuropa. Identitäten, Loyalitäten, Solidaritäten, Frankfurt a. M. et al., Lang, 2006, p. 147-181.

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Duijzings Ger, Religion and the Politics of Identity in Kosovo, London, Hurst, 2000.

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Faroqhi Suraiya, Kultur und Alltag im Osmanischen Reich. Vom Mittelalter bis zum Anfang des 20. Jahrhunderts, Munich, C. H. Beck, 2003.

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Findley Carter Vaughn, Bureaucratic Reform in the Ottoman Empire. The Sublime Porte, 1789-1922, Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1980.

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Frantz Eva Anne, “Violence and its Impact on Loyalty and Identity Formation in Late Ottoman Kosovo: Muslims and Christians in a Period of Reform and Transformation”, Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs 29 (2009), p. 455-468.

Frantz Eva Anne 2009b

Frantz Eva Anne, “Gewalt als Faktor der Desintegration im Osmanischen Reich - Formen von Alltagsgewalt im südwestlichen Kosovo in den Jahren 1870-1880 im Spiegel österreichisch-ungarischer Konsulatsberichte”, Südost-Forschungen 68 (2009), p. 184-204.

Frantz Eva Anne 2011

Frantz Eva Anne, « Catholic Albanian Warriors for the Sultan in Late Ottoman Kosovo: The Fandi as a Socio-professional Group and their Identity Patterns », in Clayer Nathalie, Grandits Hannes and Pichler Robert (eds.), Conflicting Loyalties in the Balkans. The Great Powers, the Ottoman Empire, and Nation-Building, London, I. B. Tauris, 2011, p. 182-201.

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Giesen Bernhard, Kollektive Identität. Die Intellektuellen und die Nation 2, Frankfurt, Suhrkamp Verlag, 1999.

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Haupt Heinz-Gerhard, Tacke Charlotte, “Die Kultur des Nationalen. Sozial- und kulturgeschichtliche Ansätze bei der Erforschung des europäischen Nationalismus im 19. und 20. Jahrhundert”, in Hardtwig Wolfgang, Wehler Hans-Ulrich (eds.), Kulturgeschichte heute, Göttingen, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1996, p. 255-283. Höpken Wolfgang 1996

Höpken Wolfgang, “Flucht vor dem Kreuz? Muslimische Emigration aus Südosteuropa nach dem Ende der osmanischen Herrschaft (19./20. Jahrhundert)”, Comparativ 6 (1996), p. 1-24.

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İnalcik Halil 1973

İnalcik Halil, “Application of the Tanzimat and its Social Effects”, Archivum Ottomanicum 5 (1973), p. 97-127. Ismajli Rexhep 1991

Ismajli Rexhep, Gjuhë dhe etni. Artikuj dhe ese, Pristina, Dukagjini, 1991.

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Jagodić Miloš, Srpsko-albanski odnosi u Kosovskom vilajetu (1878-1912), Belgrade, Zavod za Udžbenike, 2009. Kaser Karl 1992

Kaser Karl, Hirten, Kämpfer, Stammes. Ursprünge und Gegenwart des balkanischen Patriarchats, Vienna, Cologne, Weimar, Böhlau, 1992.

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Malcolm Noel, Kosovo. A Short History, New York, New York University Press, 1998.

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Mikić Đorđe, Društvene i ekonomske prilike kosovskih Srba u xix i početkom xx veka – od čifčijstva do bankarstva, Belgrade, Srpska Akademija Nauka i Umetnosti, 1988.

Müller Dietmar 2005

Müller Dietmar, Staatsbürger auf Widerruf. Juden und Muslime als Alteritätspartner im rumänischen und serbischen Nationscode. Ethnonationale Staatsbürgerschaftskonzepte, 1878-1941, Wiesbaden, Harrassowitz, 2005. Peruničić Branko 1985

Peruničić Branko (ed.), Pisma srpskih konsula iz Prištine, 1890-1900, Belgrade, Narodna knjiga, 1985.

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Pichler Robert, “Gewohnheitsrecht”, in Kaser Karl, Gruber Siegfried and Pichler Robert (eds.), Historische Anthropologie im südöstlichen Europa. Eine Einführung, Vienna, Cologne, Weimar, Böhlau, 2003, p. 293-315. Pllana Emin 1978

Pllana Emin, Kosova dhe reformat në Turqi, Pristina, Enti i Historisë së Kosovës, 1978.

Reinkowski Maurus 2005a

Reinkowski Maurus, “Gewohnheitsrecht im multinationalen Staat: Die Osmanen und der albanische Kanun”, in Kemper Michael, Reinkowski Maurus (eds.), Rechtspluralismus in der Islamischen Welt. Gewohnheitsrecht zwischen Staat und Gesellschaft, Berlin, De Gruyter, 2005, p. 121-142.

Reinkowski Maurus 2005b

Reinkowski Maurus, Die Dinge der Ordnung. Eine vergleichende Untersuchung über die osmanische Reformpolitik im 19. Jahrhundert, Munich, R. Oldenburg, 2005.

Rrapi Gjergj 2003

Rrapi Gjergj, Die albanische Großfamilie im Kosovo. Vom Original übersetzt von Kristë Shtufi. Redigiert von Helmut Eberhart und Karl Kaser, Vienna, Cologne, Weimar, Böhlau, 2003.

Schwandner Stephanie 1996

Schwandner Stephanie, “Identität, Ehre und Staat in Nordalbanien. Hintergründe ethnizistischen Denkens auf dem Balkan”, in Hardten Eggert, Stanislavljevic André and Tsakiris Dimitris (eds.), Der Balkan in Europa, Frankfurt a. M., Lang, 1996.

Thëngjilli Petrika 1978

Thëngjilli Petrika (ed.), Kryengritjet popullore në vitet 30 të shekullit xix (dokumente osmane), Tirana, Akademia e Shkencave e Republikës Popullore të Shqipërisë, 1978.

Uka Sabit 1994

Uka Sabit, Dëbimi i shqiptarëve nga Sanxhaku i Nishit dhe vendosja e tyre në Kosovë, 1878-1912, 2 vols., Pristina, Valton, 1994.

Ursinus Michael 1989

Ursinus Michael, “Zur Diskussion um„ millet “im Osmanischen Reich”, Südost-Forschungen 48 (1989), p. 195-207.

Zurl Marino 1978

Zurl Marino, Krvna osveta u Kosovu, Zagreb, August Cesarec, 1978.

Notes

1 The administrative borders of the vilayet of Kosovo in the late Ottoman period do not correspond to the today existing borders of Kosovo that were established only after 1945. The vilayet of Kosovo which with the name Kosovo was created only in 1877 comprised much larger parts. Besides the Kosovo of today it included also the sancak of Novi Pazar (Alb. Tregu i Ri, Turk. Yeni Pazar, today split between Serbia and Montenegro), today North Eastern Albanian and Northern Macedonian parts with Skopje (Alb. Shkup, Turk. Üsküb), Tetovo (Alb. Tetova, Turk. Kalkandelen) and Kumanovo (Alb./Turk. Kumanova), the region around Plav and Gusinje (now Montenegrin) and until 1878 the sancak of Niš (Alb. Nish, Turk. Niş) and the region of Debar (Alb. Dibra, Turk. Debre). These regions until the administrative reforms in 1867 belonged to the eyalet of Niš, the eyalet of Skopje and after 1865 to the Danube vilayet and the vilayet of Monastir. In 1868 the vilayet of Prizren was created with the sancaks of Prizren, Dibra, Skopje and Niš which existed until 1874.

2 In the following the Albanian toponyms will be given. The spelling of the place names in the quoted documents will be used throughout.

3 These were mostly Serbian-speaking, but we also find speakers of Bulgarian and other South Slav dialects. Often the frontier lines between the language groups were fluid.

4 Based on Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian, French and Italian sources Nathalie Clayer speaks of about one million inhabitants for the vilayet of Kosovo, see Clayer Nathalie 2007, p. 75. An Austro-Hungarian statistic from 1877 gives the following numbers for the vilayet of Kosovo, including the sancaks of Prizren, Prishtina (Serb. Priština, Turk. Priştine), Niš, Skopje, Novi Pazar and Pirot (Turk. Şehirköyü): 389000 Muslim Albanians, 15000 Catholic Albanians (only in the sancaks of Prishtina and Prizren), 361 500 Orthodox Bulgarians (= Orthodox Slavs belonging to the Exarchy, they are mentioned not only in the Macedonian region, but also in the sancaks of Prishtina and Prizren), 8500 Muslim Bulgarians (in the sancaks of Prizren and Skopje), 174000 Orthodox Serbs, 50000 Muslim Serbs (= Slavic Muslims, as well as in the sancak of Novi Pazar, they are also mentioned in the sancak of Prizren), 1000 Catholic Serbs (= Janjevci, Catholic Slavs, today they have a Croatian identity, living in the village of Janjevo near Prishtina), 71 000 Muslims of mixed ethnicity, 13 000 Circassians (mostly in the sancaks of Prishtina and Niš), 23500 Muslim Roma, 2000 Orthodox Roma, 3000 Aromunes (out of which 2000 in the sancaks of Prizren and 700 in Skopje), 2000 Jews (mostly in the sancak of Skopje and Niš, but in smaller numbers also in Prishtina and Novi Pazar). See the statistic in the account of Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 17th of March 1877, nr. 9. Haus-, Hof- und Staatsarchiv (henceforth HHStA) Politisches Archiv (henceforth PA) XXXVIII/219. For demographic data based on Austro-Hungarian, Italian, Serbian archival and ethnographic sources, see also Bartl Peter 1968, p. 52-64; Clewing Konrad 2000, p. 17-63.

5 Serb historians usually stress the violence of Albanians against Serbs and limit violent conflict to these categories. See for example: Bataković Dušan T. 1992; Jagodić Miloš 2009.

6 Nathalie Clayer in this context uses the term ‘confessionalisation’, Clayer Nathalie 2011.

7 For a critical discussion of the concept of millet, see Ursinus Michael 1989, p. 195-207; Braude Benjamin, Lewis Bernard 1982.

8 This is also emphasized by Blumi Isa 2003a, p. 23-42.

9 There exists a wide range of works on the theory and concepts of identity, which cannot all be listed here. In the following ‘identity’ is understood as being constructed, fluid and changeable. See for example Giesen Bernhard 1999; Assmann Aleida, Friese Heidrun 1998. On national identity, see Haupt Heinz-Gerhard, Tacke Charlotte 1996, p. 255-283. For a critical assessment of the concept, see Brubaker Rogers, Cooper Frederick 2000. In my article, I thus prefer to use the terms ‘identity patterns’, ‘identity options’ and ‘identifications’.

10 Reinkowski Maurus 2005a, p. 121-142; Pichler Robert 2003, p. 293-315; Rrapi Gjergj 2003; Clayer Nathalie 2000/2001, p. 145-167; Elsie Robert 2001; Baxhaku Fatos, Kaser Karl 1996; Bartl Peter 1995, p. 56-60; Kaser Karl 1992.

11 This aspect is analyzed by Stephanie Schwandner-Sievers in the context of Northern Albania in the 1990s, but with references also to the 19th century, see Schwandner Stephanie 1996, p. 77-102.

12 For the question on the relevance of language for identity formation, see Ismajli Rexhep 1991. More on this aspect in my ongoing dissertation.

13 For the several different Muslim identity patterns and identifications, see Clayer Nathalie 2007, p. 45-51.

14 The Fandi in today Northern Albania constituted a bayrak within the Catholic Mirdit tribe, which since the nineteenth century was regarded as one of the most important and famous clans in today’s northern Albania. See Reinskowski Maurus 2005b, p. 115-141; Bartl Peter 1978, p. 27-69. See also Frantz Eva Anne 2011.

15 For the cultural and religious life, see the memoirs of Popović Janićije 1987.

16 Vojvodić Mihailo 1984, p. 973. Also quoted in Malcolm Noel 1998, p. 231.

17 Faroqhi Suraiya 2003, p. 167-168.

18 See Duijzings Ger 2000, p. 37-39. For religious conversions, see Clayer Nathalie 1998, p. 16-39.

19 Cf. Boehm Christopher 1984; Zurl Marino 1978; Nopcsa Franz Baron 1907, p. 429-437.

20 Cf. Höpken Wolfgang 2001, p. 59-72. Höpken analyzes in this work the structural, cultural and situative factors of violence in the Balkans in general.

21 Blumi Isa 2003b, p. 86.

22 For the Austro-Hungarian Kultusprotektorat, see Haider-Wilson Barbara 2004, p. 121-147; Benna Anna Hedwig 1954, p. 13-46; Ippen Theodor Anton 1901-1902, p. 298-310.

23 “[…] un village, fameux repaire des bandits […]”. Lippich to Beust, Prisren, 18th of April 1871, nr. 6. HHStA PA XXXVIII/193. See a similar account Lippich to Beust, Prisren, 5th of May 1870, nr. 6 nr. HHStA PA XXXVIII/189.

24 “[…] landesübliche Raubzüge gegen die angrenzenden Schafzucht betreibenden Bezirke […]”. Lippich to Beust, Prisren, 9th of Juni 1874, nr. 3. HHStA PA XXXVIII/203.

25 “En attendant, la situation à Prisren est devenue fort désagréable; tout le monde est mal à son aise et craint des événements fâcheux. Les adversaires du Pacha tentèrent de troubler l’ordre public, et à cet effet ils se mirent en rapport avec les musulmanes de Studènitchan, village des environs de Prisren, où une fille bulgare avait été ravie et mariée à un jeune turc, lequel, forcé par le gouvernement de rendre sa proie, […].” Lippich to Beust, Prisren, 7th of January 1871, nr. 1. HHStA PA XXXVIII/193. Lippich refers to several cases of girl kidnappings in 1876. See Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 23rd October 1876, nr. 27. HHStA PA XXXVIII/213. For another case with a subsequent forced Islamization, see Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 27th of February 1877, nr. 8. HHStA PA XXXVIII/219.

26 See for example Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 5th of October 1874, nr. 4. HHStA PA XXXVIII/203.

27 The Austro-Hungarian vice-consul writes about the Muslim villagers of Krusha who raided the forest which belonged to the Catholic village of Zym. See Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 24th of April 1872, nr. 2. HHStA PA XXXVIII/197.

28 Lippich to Beust, Prisren, 19th of September 1870, nr. 7. HHStA PA XXXVIII/189 and Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 30th of August 1875, nr. 19. HHStA PA XXXVIII/207. These privileges of the Fandi have to be seen in the context of the privileges of the Mirdits in general.

29 The Albanian Catholic tribes living in the mountainous regions, who had been able to defend their right to carry weapons, were a notable exception to the rule.

30 “[…] sich aber außerdem auch den Haß der umwohnenden muselmännisch-albanesischen Stämmen zugezogen haben […]”. Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 30th of August 1875, nr. 19. HHStA PA PA XXXVIII/207.

31 “[…] Neckereien […], denen sie [= Fandi E. F.] von Seite der benachbarten muselmännischen Stämme ausgesetzt sein und welche sie in zahllose blutige Händel verflechten würden, […]. Daß die Besorgniß der Fandesen vor Conflicten mit ihren muselmännischen Nationsgenossen keine unbegründete sei, wird Jeder zugeben, der da weiß, wie dem Albanesen die geringfügigsten Ursachen Anlaß zu blutiger Fehde und das erste Glied jener Kette von Vergeltungen werden, welche Familien und ganze Stämme Jahre hindurch in den schrecklichen Zustand der Blutrache versetzen.” Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 4th of May 1875, nr. 5. HHStA PA XXXVIII/207.

32 This was true also in other parts of the Ottoman Empire. See Reinkowski Maurus 2005b; Findley Carter Vaughn 1980; Davison Roderic Hollet 1963; İnalcik Halil 1973, p. 97-127. Violence was probably an everyday feature of life in Kosovo, in the same degree as in other rural societies, even before the Tanzimat. See Thëngjilli Petrika 1978.

33 Pllana Emin 1978, p. 214-221.

34 “Gewalttaten gegen die Christen sind die nächsten Symptome, welche die Proclamirung ihrer verfassungsmässigen Gleichstellung mit den Muselmännern hierlandes im Gefolge haben zu wollen scheint. In Prizren wurde ein serbischer Geschäftsmann von einem türkischen Ladenbesitzer durch einen Messerstich im Rücken verwundet. Ein von Pristina zu den Weihnachtsfeiertagen her reisender christlicher Handwerker ward einige Stunden von hier vom Pferde geschossen.” Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 8th of January 1877, nr. 1. HHStA PA XXXVIII/219.

35 “[Die hiesigen Zustände] aber bilden eine bedenkliche Illustration zu den feierlich proclamirten Principien der Gleichberechtigung aller Staatsangehöriger und der Gleichstellung der Confessionen. Die hier über diese Angelpunkte aller Reform herrschende Auffassung erhält ihren besten Commentar durch die Äußerung der muselmännischen Honoratioren, […]. Was soll, - meinten sie, - der Unsinn heißen? Kann ein andersgläubiger je zu einem Osmanli werden und kann ein Osmanli ihn je als seines Gleichen behandeln? Was kümmert uns, was dieser Verrückte /: der Gouverneur: / uns da einzureden versucht.” Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 15th of January 1877, nr. 2. HHStA PA XXXVIII/219.

36 The Serbian vice-consul in Prishtina for example in 1890 reported about the rape of a 12-13-year-old Christian girl by a “Turkish” gendarm. He comments this incident against Christians as typical of the region, see Peruničić Branko 1985, p. 33.

37 This is also pointed out in Blumi Isa 2003b.

38 Austro-Hungarian diplomats report about violent abuse, murder and the closing of churches and schools. See for instance Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 15th of January 1877, nr. 2. HHStA PA XXXVIII/219.

39 See Clewing Konrad 2002, p. 185-186; Clewing Konrad 2000, p. 45-48; Müller Dietmar 2005, p. 122, 128-138; Uka Sabit 1994. Clewing (as well as Müller) sees the expulsions of 1877/78 as a crucial reason for the acuminating of the interethnic relations in Kosovo and 1878 as the epoch year in the history of the Albanian-Serbian conflict. For the Muslim emigration from South East Europe in the 19th and 20th century in general, see Höpken Wolfgang 1996, p. 1-24. For the significance of the muhaxhirs in the formation of the League of Prizren (1878-1881), which in the academic literature is generally considered as the beginning of the Albanian national movement, see Clewing Konrad 2006, p. 160-163.

40 “Zu der allgemeinen Misstimmung der muselmännischen Bevölkerung haben unstreitig auch die andauernden Zuzüge muselmännischer Flüchtlinge aus den von den Serben und Russen besetzten türkischen Territorien, und mehr noch das unter den Flüchtlingen herrschende Elend, verschlimmert durch die unter denselben an vielen Orten ausgebrochene Typhus-Epidemie, nicht wenig beigetragen. Im Prizrener Bezirke sind 5000, im Djakova’er circa 2000 der Flüchtlinge, selbstverständlich in der nothdürftigsten Weise, untergebracht. Eine unmittelbare, zunächst für die Christen höchst bedauerliche Folge der gegenwärtigen prekären politischen Situation ist die allgemeine Unsicherheit des Lebens und des Eigenthums, welche sich seit einiger Zeit auch in Prisren und der nächsten Umgebung in sehr bedenklicher Weise verschlimmert hat. Auf der Strasse von hier nach den Eisenbahnstationen Lipljan und Veressovitz, […] einschliesslich Prisren’s, wurden in der letzten Zeit circa acht griechisch-orientalische Slaven meuchlings ermordet, und die Panique der Christen vor den Muselmännern geht so weit, dass mit dem Sonnenuntergange jeder öffentliche Verkehr in der Stadt aufhört und dass man es nicht wagt, selbst bei Tage, sich einzeln in die nächsten Umgebungen von wenigen Minuten Weges zu begeben.” Jelinek to Andrássy, Prisren, 30th of April 1878. Printed in: Actenstücke aus den Correspondenzen des kais. und kön. gemeinsamen Ministeriums des Äussern über orientalische Angelegenheiten (Vom 7. April 1877 bis 3. November 1878.) Wien 1878, nr. 148, p. 95-96, here 96. Another account which refers to about 40 000 refugees in Kosovo, see Jelinek to Andrássy, Prisren, 6th of August 1878, nr. 16. HHStA PA XXXVIII/225.

41 Mikić Đorđe 1988, p. 26-28.

42 See the contribution of N. Andriotis in this volume.

43 The fear of the Christian population of the Muslims are mentioned in several accounts, see Lippich to Beust, Prisren, 7th of January 1871, nr. 1. HHStA PA XXXVIII/193.

44 See for example Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 5th of October 1875, nr. 24 as well as Lippich to Andrássy, Prisren, 3rd of November 1875, nr. 26. HHStA PA XXXVIII/207.

45 Until the opening of the first Serbian consulate in Kosovo, i.e. in Prishtina in 1889 (in Skopje already in 1883), it was in the first place Russia as the protector state of the Balkan Orthodox population that agitated for the interests of the Slavic population also in Kosovo. See for example the published memoirs of Jastrebov, the Russian consul in Prizren: Jastrebov Ivan Stepanović 1904; Blumi Isa 2003b, p. 92-95.

46 “[...] dans un journal de Belgrade qui dit, n’eût été l’appui du Consul russe, les chrétiens slaves de Prisren auraient dû s’expatrier pour se sauver du danger d’un massacre. L’article finit en disant qu’à Prisren comme ailleurs le fanatisme musulman est un danger constant pour les chrétiens et qu’il causera la perte de l’Empire Ottoman.” Lippich to Beust, Prisren, 20th of January 1871, nr. 2. HHStA PA XXXVIII/193.

47 See Zambaur to Gołuchowski, Mitrovica, 26th of February 1904, nr. 13 as well as Zambaur to Gołuchowski, Mitrovica, 16th of July 1904, nr. 47. HHStA PA XXXVIII/385. In an account of the Serbian vice-consul we read about Albanians having attacked the monastery Dečani, where amongst others a Serbian monk was killed. Stanković to Đorđević, Priština, 13th of February 1892, nr. 16. Arhiv Srbije (in the following AS), Ministarstvo Inostranih Dela (in the following MID), Političko Odeljenje (in the following PO), fasc. II / dos. I. In a following account it becomes clear that there was no incident between Serbian monks and Albanians, but between Catholic and Muslim Albanians in Zym. Stanković to Đorđević, Priština, 21st of February 1892. AS MID PO, fasc. II / dos. I.

48 Radenić Andrija 1998, p. 115.

49 The close ties between Albanian-speaking Muslims and Slavic Muslims is particularly evident during the proceedings of the League of Prizren. In the beginning of the movement Catholic Albanians for example were not invited. For the relationship between religion and nation within the Albanian national movement, see Clewing Konrad 2006; Clayer Nathalie 2003.

Auteur

Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna. The following article was completed in december 2007. It reflects an early stage of research of my Ph.D. thesis with the title “Between Violence and Peaceful Coexistence. Muslims and Christians in Late Ottoman Kosovo, 1870-1913” at the University of Vienna. Cf. further publications of my research with regard to the topic of the present article: Frantz Eva Anne 2009a and Frantz Eva Anne 2009b.

© École française d’Athènes, 2013

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