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The title Grand Duke of Bosnia (Bosnian: Veliki Vojvoda Bosanski) was a court title in the Kingdom of Bosnia, bestowed by the King to highest military commanders, usually reserved for most influential and most capable among highest Bosnian nobility.[1][2][3][4] To interpret it as an office post rather than a court rank could be more accurate.[5][6]


Unlike usage in Western Europe or Central Europe, as well as in various Slavic lands from Central to North-East Europe, where analogy between Grand Duke and Grand Prince was significant, with both titles corresponding to sovereign lower than King but higher than Duke, in Bosnia title Grand Duke corresponded more to Byzantine military title megas doux.[6][7]

Like in rest of South Slavic neighboring states, and among their nobility, in Bosnia also existed the title knez or veliki knez, nominally analogous to Prince and Grand Prince, but in fact was medium to major feudal landlord, with corresponding influence in the Bosnian Stanak (also Great Bosnian Rusag (Bosnian: "veliki bosanski rusag"), Whole of Bosnia (Bosnian: "sva Bosna")), which was institute of assembly of all Bosnian nobility, regardless of rank and status.[6] Generally, Slavic word knez is often referred to ruler, sometimes analogous to King, thus veliki knez was more like High king than Grand duke.[8]

However, in neighboring countries title Duke, in Slavic Vojvoda, also had military signification, but in that sense "Grand Duke" was specifically, even exclusively, Bosnian title.[5]

Accordingly, title the Grand Duke of Bosnia was explicitly given by Bosnian ruler, at the time Ban or King/Queen respectively, to his/her highest-ranking military commanders.[8] As such, it was an actually more like an office rather than a court rank, although it was also a grade in the court order of precedence, and was often held by one individual at the time, rarely two.[5]


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Further readingEdit


  1. ^ Miller, William (2014). Essays on the Latin Orient. Cambridge University Press. p. 481. ISBN 9781107455535. Retrieved 16 February 2019.
  2. ^ Preveden, Francis Ralph (1962). A history of the Croatian people from their arrival on the shores of the Adriatic to the present day: with some account of the Gothic, Roman, Greek, Illyrian, and prehistoric periods of the ancient Illyricum and Pannonia. Philosophical Library. pp. 98, 99, 100, . Retrieved 16 February 2019.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
  3. ^ Zlatar, Zdenko (2007). The Poetics of Slavdom: The Mythopoeic Foundations of Yugoslavia. Peter Lang. p. 544. ISBN 9780820481357. Retrieved 16 February 2019.
  4. ^ Cvetković, Branislav (19 December 2014). "The Header to the Ten Commandments in the Hval Codex: a Contribution to the Semantics of Medieval Illumination". Ars Adriatica (in Croatian and English). pp. 155–172. Retrieved 16 February 2019.
  5. ^ a b c Kurtović, Esad (2009). Veliki vojvoda bosanski Sandalj Hranić Kosača (.pdf) (in Bosnian) (Historijske monografije; knj. 4 ed.). Institut za istoriju Sarajevo. ISBN 978-9958-649-01-1. Retrieved 10 January 2016.
  6. ^ a b c Fine, John Van Antwerp (1994). The Late Medieval Balkans: A Critical Survey from the Late Twelfth Century to the Ottoman Conquest. University of Michigan Press.
  7. ^ Filipović, Emir O. (2010). "Viteske svecanosti u Budimu 1412. godine i ucesce bosanskih predstavnika (Festivities held in Buda in 1412 and the participation of Bosnian magnates)" (.pdf/.html). Spomenica akademika Marka Šunjića (1927-1998), Filozofski fakultet u Sarajevu (in Bosnian and English). Filozofski fakultet u Sarajevu. Retrieved 10 January 2016.
  8. ^ a b Malcolm, Noel (2002). Bosnia: A Short History. Pan Books, Pan Macmillan of Macmillan Publishers Ltd. ISBN 978-0814755617. Retrieved 10 January 2016.

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