PRINCIPALITY OF SERBIA IN 1848 – SOVEREIGNTY ACTS OF A VASSAL STATE
Keywords:Principality of Serbia, sovereignity, assembly, 1848.
The revolutionary year of 1848. left a deep mark on events in the Principality of Serbia. The vassal status of Serbia was not an obstacle in Serbia acting as a state with all elements of sovereignty. The „Hungarian Revolution” did not only endanger the rule of Vienna in Hungary, but also the status of Serbs, who had personal autonomy in the Austrian Empire. Sending volunteer units under the command of Stevan Knićanin, with Vienna’s approval, represented an act of sovereignty. Franz Joseph himself treated Serbia as a neighboring country and not as an autonomous Turkish province. In the Principality of Serbia itself the state apparatus behaved in accordance with the current historical moment. Even though the National assembly was not envisioned as a part of government authority, it was convened on Saint Peter’s Day in 1848. The assembly was convened primarily because of events in the neighboring monarchy, but it had a much deeper social and state-building character. The demands of the assembly members and the government’s responses were an image of the dynamic development of social and state relations in Serbia. Even though the majority of considered demands was not fulfilled, the mere convocation of the assembly, its flow and importance, have exceeded the importance of a political event caused by an international situation.
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