Vratko Nemanjić

Vratko Nemanjić - Jug Bogdan

Elder Jug Bogdan (1881 painting)


Milica, future Princess (married Tsar Lazar)

Jugović brothers

Titles and styles

Family Nemanjić
Father Vratislav
Religion Orthodox Christianity

Vratko Nemanjić (Serbian: Вратко Немањић, pronounced [ʋrâtko němaɲitɕ]; fl. 1325-1355) was a 14th-century Serbian medieval warrior and Hero character known as Jug Bogdan (Југ Богдан, pronounced [jûɡ bôɡdaːn]) in Serbian epic poetry.

He was born in the early 14th century to Vratislav of the Nemanjić Dynasty, the son of Dmitar, and grandson of Prince Vukan (r. 1202-1204).[1] He was a commander of Serb Emperor Stefan Dušan, and was sent with Serbian-Greek Jovan Oliver to negotiate with Byzantine Emperor John VI Kantakouzenos prior to the Byzantine civil war of 1341–1347 in which the Serbian Empire would fight on both sides. Vratko and Oliver led the Serbian army to attack Serres on orders by John VI Kantakouzenos.

He was the father of Milica who was the wife of Prince Lazar, the ruler of Moravian Serbia.[2]

Tower of Jug Bogdan, Prokuplje.
Davidovica monastery, burial place of Jug Bogdan.

The Church of Jug Bogdan in Prokuplje, known among the locals as "the Latin church" after Venetians lived in the city briefly, was built by Jug Bogdan in the 14th century on a hill on the previous location of a 5th-century church which in turn was at the location of a temple from the 2nd century dedicated to Hercules. Parts and Frescoes of the two previous churches have been found.

Serbian epic poetry

In the Serbian epic poems, Jug Bogdan is the father of the Jugovići (nine Jugović brothers). One of his daughters Anđelija is married to Banović Strahinja, but was kidnapped by Ottoman vassal Vlah Alija. Strahinja asks Jug Bogdan if he and his brothers-in-law (the Jugovići) could rescue her, but Jug Bogdan refused, since Anđelija had slept with the Turk, and brought great shame to the family.

Church of Jug Bogdan

He was killed together with his nine sons by the eight pasha (the seven before him had been killed) of the Ottoman Empire during the Battle of Kosovo. Where he is said to have fallen there is today a monument with a large white cross standing and the inscription:

"Honor to the ancestors who taught us how to create a great fatherland. We will guard it and agree that it is more difficult to guard than to acquire.[3]


  1. Girardet, Klaus Martin (2007). Kaiser Konstantin der Grosse: Historische Leistung und Rezeption in Europa. p. 140. ISBN 9783774934740.
  2. "Od roda Nemanjića".
  3. Staging the past: the politics of commemoration in Habsburg Central Europe ... Maria Bucur,Nancy Meriwether Wingfield
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