Kingdom of Montenegro

The Kingdom of Montenegro (Serbian: Краљевина Црна Горa, romanized: Kraljevina Crna Gora) was a monarchy in southeastern Europe, present-day Montenegro, during the tumultuous period of time on the Balkan Peninsula leading up to and during World War I. Officially it was a constitutional monarchy, but absolutist in practice. On 28 November 1918, following the end of World War I, with the Montenegrin government still in exile, the Podgorica Assembly proclaimed unification with the Kingdom of Serbia, which itself was merged into the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes three days later, on 1 December 1918. This unification with Serbia lasted, through various successor states, for almost 88 years, ending in 2006.

Kingdom of Montenegro[1]
Краљевина Црна Горa
Kraljevina Crna Gora
Anthem: Ubavoj nam Crnoj Gori
Убавој нам Црној Гори
"To Our Beautiful Montenegro"
The Kingdom of Montenegro in 1914
Common languagesSerbian
Eastern Orthodox (official)[2]
GovernmentUnitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy
Nicholas I
Prime Minister 
 1910–1912 (first)
Lazar Tomanović
 1917–1918 (last)
Evgenije Popović
LegislaturePopular Assembly
Historical eraWorld War I
28 August 1910
30 May 1913
20 July 1917
28 November 1918
CurrencyMontenegrin Perper
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Principality of Montenegro
Kingdom of Serbia
Today part ofMontenegro
  1. ^ The political status of Kosovo is disputed. Having unilaterally declared independence from Serbia in 2008, Kosovo is formally recognised as an independent state by 101 UN member states (with another 13 states recognising it at some point but then withdrawing their recognition) and 92 states not recognizing it, while Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own territory.


1899 map of the Balkans; Montenegro is coloured magenta.

Prince Nicholas of Montenegro proclaimed the Kingdom of Montenegro in Cetinje on 28 August 1910, elevating the country from the rank of Principality. King Nicholas I had ruled the country as Prince since 1860, and had initiated several modernising reforms at the beginning of the 20th century, such as introducing a constitution and a new currency, the Montenegrin perper.

Montenegro joined the First Balkan War in 1912, hoping to win a share in the last Ottoman-controlled areas of Rumelia. Montenegro did make further territorial gains by splitting Sandžak with Serbia on 30 May 1913. But the Montenegrins had to abandon the newly captured city of İşkodra (Skadar in Serbian, modern-day Shkodër) to the new state of Albania in May 1913, at the insistence of the Great Powers. Esad Pasha made a deal to surrender the town to the Montenegrins in exchange for Montenegro supporting his claims in Central Albania. However, as Shkodër and the surroundings had a large ethnic Albanian majority, the area went to the state of Albania instead. When the Second Balkan War broke out in June 1913, Serbia fought against Bulgaria, and King Nicholas sided with Serbia.

During World War I (1914–1918) Montenegro allied itself with the Triple Entente, in line with King Nicholas' pro-Serbian policy. Accordingly, Austria-Hungary occupied Montenegro from 15 January 1916 to October 1918.

On 20 July 1917, the signing of the Corfu Declaration foreshadowed the unification of Montenegro with Serbia. On 26 November 1918, the Podgorica Assembly, an elected body claiming to represent Montenegrin people, unanimously adopted a resolution deposing king Nicholas I (who was still in exile) and unifying Montenegro with Serbia. Upon this event Nicholas I, who had previously supported unification with Serbia into a greater state with his dynasty playing the pivotal role, switched to promoting Montenegrin nationalism and opposing the union with Serbia, a position he maintained until his death in France in 1921.

On 1 December 1918, Serbia and Montenegro together formed a major part of the new Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (Yugoslavia).

During World War II, the occupying forces in Yugoslavia considered turning the Italian governorate of Montenegro into a puppet kingdom, but nothing came of these plans.


King of Montenegro (1910–1918)

Prime Ministers (1910–1916)

  • Lazar Tomanović (1910–1912)
  • Mitar Martinović (1912–1913)
  • Janko Vukotić (1913–1915)
  • Milo Matanović (1915–1916)
  • Lazar Mijušković (1916)

Prime Ministers in-exile (1916–1922)

  • Lazar Mijušković (1916)
  • Andrija Radović (1916–1917)
  • Milo Matanović (1917)
  • Evgenije Popović (1917–1919)
  • Jovan Plamenac (1919–1921)
  • Anto Gvozdenović (1921–1922)
  • Milutin Vučinić (1922)
  • Anto Gvozdenović (1922)

See also


  1. 1916–1922: Government-in-exile
  2. Constitution of the Principality of Montenegro, 1905, Article 40, "Paragraph 1: State religion in Montenegro is Eastern-Orthodox. Paragraph 2: Montenegrin Church is Autocephalous. It is independent from any other Church, but maintains dogmatic unity with Eastern-Orthodox Ecumenical Church. Paragraph 3: All other recognized religions are free in Montenegro.

Further reading

  • Živojinović Dragoljub R. (2014). "King Nikola and the territorial expansion of Montenegro, 1914–1920". Balcanica (45).

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