Home | History | Families | Life | Manuscripts | Gallery | Download | Links | Map of the site | E-mail | About us | FAQ


    The Nemanjics
    The Lazarevics
    The Brankovics
    The Mrnjavcevics
    The Kotromanics
    The Balsics



  The Balsics
Serbian: Balsic /Ba:lshitch/


n the coins of the Balsic family the wolf's head turned to the right side is a constant detail. This particular shape of the helmet and the shield can be seen on the seal of duke Balsa from 1385, while the crown and coat are clearly shown on the coins of Balsa III.There are many disputes on the coat of arms itself since some later presentations include eight-sided golden or silver star. Romanian family of Bals whose members believed that the Balsics were their ancestors also have golden star on the red shield. Serbian royal family of Obrenovic (1830-1904) used their family relations with this Romanian family to prove that they originated from the Balsics, that is, from the Nemanjics and therefore that they were the legal owners to the crown of Serbia.

The very first written document relating to the Balsics family is in the chart of Uros issued to the Republic of Dubrovnik from 1360. We do not know for sure of their origin but their name is suggesting Roman origin which led many historians to believe that they came form Naples.

The founder of the family, Balsa I, was controlling one village only but with the help of his sons, he conquered Gornja Zeta and the following towns: Skadar, Kotor and most probably Bar. They fought Albanian nobleman Carlo Topi who captured Djuradj and liberated him in 1366 when they reached the peace. Already in 1368 Djuradj is controlling Ulcinj and being so powerful he rejected king Uros as his master and becomes his enemy. Djuradj is mentioned with prince Lazar as the organiser of the religious convention of 1375 which proves that he was very powerful and influential nobleman of his time.

His youngest brother Balsa II becomes the next heir and he defeated the forces of king Tvrtko and makes peace with him  with the assistance of Venice in 1385.The Turks started to invade his lands and he gets killed in the battle of Satursko polje the same year (1385). The grandson of Balsa I, Djuradj, is the next heir and at first he becomes the ally of the Turks but later he turns to the Catholics and becomes the enemy of the Turks leaving all his lands to the pope Bonifacius IX if he does not produce an heir. His son, Balsa III, started to conquer the old lands of the family and with the help of the Turks he captures Skadar. Being successful negotiator he manages to balance his power among Venice, Hungary and the Turks but after he dies at the court of his uncle, prince Stefan Lazarevic (who became the heir to the Balsics' lands) Venice captures all their territories.










Quick links

  Print this page  

Free Newsletter


Click to subscribe

 Home | History | Families | Life | Manuscripts | Gallery | Download | Links | Map of the site | E-mail | About us | FAQ