Balkan Military History is devoted to the study of the military history of the Balkans.
It is aimed primarily at wargamers and others with an interest in the region and its fascinating history.
This is the new home of Balkan Military History. We have been covering this subject for 18 years and it was time for a major rebuild. The old site is still there as an archive while we construct this new resource.
Struma Valley 1916-18
The latest edition of the New Mosquito (Salonika Campaign Society) features a series of articles on actions by XVI Corps in the valley. The main article covers brigade sized operations, ideal for wargamers. From a Scottish perspective, the daughter of a scout serving with 1/2 Scottish Horse is well worth a read.
Hail Inalcik passes away
World-renowned Turkish historian Halil İnalcık has died at the age of 100. İnalcık was one of the most respected historians in Turkey and the founder of the Department of History at Bilkent University.
Greece, The Decade of War
David Brewer's book covers the period from Mussolini's occupation of Albania in 1939, to the end of civil war in 1949.
The focus is on the occupation with chapters on the various resistance movements and support from SOE, as well as the impact of occupation on the people of Greece. The final chapters cover the civil war that started when the Germans withdrew. This is a very readable and well written study of the whole period. Recommended.
England and the Ottomans
Despina Vlami’s “Trading with the Ottomans: The Levant Company in the Middle East” explores the important but little-known history of the company that also represented England diplomatically with the Ottoman Empire since 1580. This theme is also explored in Jerry Brotton's book 'This Orient isle' which shows how Elizabeth 1 developed links with the Ottoman Empire as a counterweight to Spain and the Papacy..
Croat International Brigader written out of history
Dragutin Bilic was one of 1500 Croat volunteers who fought in the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War. He gave his life in the fight against fascism near Teruel in June 1937. The authorities in his native village of Betina on the Dalmatian coast have removed his name from the town square. You can protest this decision by writing to the Mayor Ivan Klarin.
Salonica 1916 - Out of the Birdcage
Our latest feature article is on another Balkan anniversary. The centenary of the allied advance out of Salonika in 1916 and the consequential battles on the Vardar, Doiran and the Struma River valley. This will also feature in the Editor's Balkan tour this year.
John Bellany Exhibition
During the First World War, the Scottish Women’s Hospitals were set up in war zones across Europe, including the Balkans. Scottish artist John Bellany (1942-2013) produced a series of oil paintings and drawings inspired by the experiences of the wounded soldiers and the nurses that cared for them. They are currently on display in an exhibition at the Scottish Parliament.
Professor Anthony Heywood argues we should remember the casualties and the mistakes, but equally understand that the Gallipoli campaign did have a vital strategic purpose, even if its design and execution were fatally flawed.
Ottoman Library goes digital
The IRCICA library in Istanbul has transferred exclusive reference books and documents about the Ottoman Empire in Ottoman Turkish to digital platforms, enabling researchers from all over the world to study history first-hand.
Sights to see in Serbia
We have revamped the Serbia travel page and included lots more pictures. These include the huge fortresses at Belgrade and Petrovaradin, as well as the medieval castles at Smederevo, Golubac and Ram.
Serbian stamps honour Scots WW1 heroines
Scottish women who volunteered in Serbia during World War One are being commemorated in a series of stamps. The British Embassy has teamed up with Serbia Post to celebrate the efforts of the Scottish heroines.
What's going on between Russia and Turkey?
Deepak Tripathi explains the history behind recent events in the Middle East.
Suleiman the Magnificent's tomb found in Hungary
What is thought to be the sultan's tomb has been located in a former Ottoman settlement that was destroyed in the 1680s and rediscovered in 2013. It is believed Suleiman's organs were buried in Hungary and his body taken back to his capital, where it is still entombed at the Suleymaniye Mosque, one of Istanbul's best-known sights.
2016 Balkan Centenaries
316AD: Battle of Mardia. Constantine defeated Licinius in Bulgaria.
1116: Venice defeated Hungarian relief of Zadar and dominated Adriatic for 700yrs.
1316: Battle of Manolada. Angevin's defeated Ferdinand and the catalans in Greece.
1716: Battle of Petrovaradin. Prince Eugene defeats the Ottomans
1916: Romania declares war on the Central Powers in World War One and the Salonica offensive begins.