Zitije Hajduk Veljka Petrovica 11.pdf
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The Life and Legacy of Hajduk Veljko Petrovic
Hajduk Veljko Petrovic was one of the most famous and heroic leaders of the First Serbian Uprising against the Ottoman Empire in the early 19th century. His exploits and bravery inspired many folk songs and legends, as well as a biographical work by Vuk Stefanovic Karadzic, the reformer of the Serbian language and literature.
In his work, titled Zitije Hajduk Veljka Petrovica (The Life of Hajduk Veljko Petrovic), Karadzic presents a detailed account of Veljko's life, from his birth in a village in eastern Serbia around 1780, to his death in the siege of Negotin in 1813. Karadzic relies on historical facts, eyewitness testimonies, and his own personal admiration for Veljko, who he met and befriended during the uprising.
Karadzic portrays Veljko as a fearless and generous warrior, who fought with courage and skill against the superior Ottoman forces. He also highlights Veljko's kindness and honesty, as well as his loyalty to his fellow rebels and his respect for his superiors. Veljko was not a typical hajduk, a bandit or outlaw who lived in the mountains and raided the Turks. He was a patriot and a hero, who sacrificed his life for the freedom of his people.
Karadzic's Zitije Hajduk Veljka Petrovica is not only a valuable historical source, but also a literary masterpiece of Serbian prose. It is written in a clear and simple language, with vivid descriptions and dialogues that bring Veljko's character and deeds to life. It is also a testament to Karadzic's love and admiration for Veljko, who he considered as a role model and a friend.
One of the most famous battles that Veljko participated in was the siege of Negotin, a town on the Danube river, in 1813. Negotin was the last stronghold of the Serbian rebels, who were facing a massive Ottoman invasion that aimed to crush the uprising. Veljko was appointed as the commander of Negotin by Karadjordje, the leader of the uprising, and he vowed to defend it to the last breath.
In total, 16,000 Turkish soldiers attacked Negotin, which was defended by 3,000 Serbian soldiers. Veljko fortified Negotin, built a moat and towers, and waited for the Turks. The tallest tower in which Veljko resided, was named Baba Finka. In the moats, together with Veljko were his brothers Milutin and Miljko.
The siege lasted for three months, during which Veljko and his men resisted bravely and inflicted heavy losses on the Turks. Veljko also led several daring raids and counterattacks, often fighting hand-to-hand with the enemy. He was wounded several times, but he never gave up. He inspired his men with his courage and charisma, and he became a legend among both Serbs and Turks.
Veljko's heroic resistance lasted for three months, during which he and his men repelled several Turkish assaults and inflicted heavy casualties on the enemy. Veljko also led some daring raids and counterattacks, often fighting hand-to-hand with the Turks. He was wounded several times, but he never gave up. He inspired his men with his courage and charisma, and he became a legend among both Serbs and Turks.
However, Veljko's situation became desperate as the Turkish reinforcements arrived from Wallachia, and the expected help from other Serbian regions never came. Veljko sent several letters to Karadjordje, the leader of the uprising, asking for assistance, but Karadjordje was unable to send any troops, as he was facing his own problems with the Ottoman invasion.
Veljko decided to fight to the end, rather than surrender or flee. He said: \\\"I will not leave Negotin, even if I have to die here. I will not abandon my people and my homeland.\\\" On July 18, 1813, Veljko was killed by a Turkish cannonball that hit his tower. His death was a great blow to the Serbian rebels, who lost one of their best commanders and heroes. 061ffe29dd