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Montenegro

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MONTENEGRO (native Tzrnagora, Turkish Karadagh, all meaning Black Mountain), formerly an independent principality of Europe, situated in the W. part of the Balkan Peninsula, and bounded by Albania, the Adriatic, and the former Austrian provinces of Herzegovina and Dalmatia; area, about 3,630 square miles; pop. about 250,000. The surface is everywhere mountainous, being covered by an extension of the Dinaric Alps, rising to the height of 8,850 feet. There are, however, a few beautiful and verdant plains and valleys, in which the soil is tolerably fertile. The principal river is the Moratcha. About half of the Lake of Scutari, besides sev eral smaller lakes, lies within the Mon tenegrin boundary. The climate is healthy, Forests of beech, pine, chestnut, and other valuable timber cover many of the mountain sides. Fruit trees of all kinds abound, especially in the sheltered valleys, where even almonds, vines, and pomegranates ripen. Agriculture is in a very rude and inefficient state, though every cultivable piece of land is planted with Indian corn, potatoes, tobacco, rye, wheat, cabbages, or some other useful plant. Sheep, cattle, and goats are reared in great numbers. Manufactures, with exception of a coarse woolen stuff, are unknown. The chief occupations of the Montenegrins are agriculture and fishing, trade being altogether left to foreigners. The exports are sheep and cattle, mutton-hams, sumach, honey, hides, cheese, butter, and other agricul tural produce. The chief towns are Cettinje, the capital; Podgoritza; Nik sich; and the seaports Dulcigno and Antivari. The Montenegrins are pure Serbs and speak a Serbian dialect. They are generally of tall stature and well proportioned. The men go at all times fully armed, whatever be the occupation in which they are engaged, and all be tween 18 and 50 years of age (estimated at 29,000) are liable to military service. In religion they are of the Greek Church. Education, though once neglected, is free and compulsory. Montenegro was nomi nally a constitutional monarchy, with a state council of eight members, but the king was practically absolute.

Montenegro, first appearing as a prin cipality under the name of Zeta in the 4th century, was subject to the great Serbian kingdom till about 1389. In 1516 the secular prince abdicated in favor of the Archbishop Vavil, who then formed Montenegro into a theocratic state, under an autocratic vladika or•celibate prince bishop. The dignity was inherited through brothers and nephews, and after 1697 became hereditary in the family of Pet rovitch Njegos. The history of Monte

negro for many years is a record of deadly struggle with the Turks, and of a slowly growing civilization among its inhabitants. In 1852 Danilo became vla dika, but in 1855 he married, threw off his ecclesiastical character, assuming the title of hospodar or prince, and trans formed his land into a secular princi pality, the independence of which was soon recognized by Russia. Danilo was assassinated in 1860, and Nicholas I. was proclaimed his successor, Aug. 14, of that year. In 1861-1862 he engaged in a not altogether successful war against Turkey; but in 1876 he joined Serbia and in 1877-1878 Russia against his heredi tary foe, with the results that 1,900 square miles were added to his territory by the Treaty of Berlin; that the port of Antivari and all the waters of Mon tenegro were closed to the ships of war of all nations; and that the administra tion of the maritime and sanitary police on the coast was placed in the hands of Austria.

Montenegro suffered severely in the World War. At the first invasion of Serbia by the Austrian armies, Monte negro lost no time in declaring war against the Central Empires. Although the army numbered only about 40,000 men, they were at once placed in the field. A separate army was dispatched by Austria to invade Montenegro and to prevent a junction of the Serbian and 'Montenegrin armies. This force, how ever, was repulsed, and from the top of the strongly fortified Mount Lovcen, the Montenegrins carried on the bombard ment of Cattaro held by the enemy. On Aug. 10, 1914, the Montenegrin infantry delivered a strong attack against the Austrian garrisons, but they were un able to make good the advantage they first gained. They successfully resisted the Austrians in the second invasion of Serbia and almost succeeded in reach ing Sarajevo in Bosnia. With the begin ning of the third invasion, however, they were compelled to retire before greatly superior numbers, and Serbia was finally overrun by Austro-German armies. Mon tenegro was also invaded and for the remainder of the war was in the posses sion of the Central Powers. King Nich olas fled to Italy and then to France.

The government was transferred to Bordeaux. In December, 1918, King Nicholas was deposed by the National Assembly, on account of attempts made previously to bring about peace with Austria. On the creation of the state of Jugoslavia, Montenegro became a part of this kingdom. See JUGOSLAVIA.