Battle of Pristina 1389

Like many of my trips I overheard someone talking about a battle and a historian who was willing to provide a tour and narration so I asked if I could come along.  I had no idea the site or battle existed and I’ve become interested in exploring history and it’s sites so I figured, why not.  Some of us loaded ourselves into some vehicles and convoyed out to a historical site known as The Battle of Kosovo, also known as the Battle of Kosovo Field or the Battle of Blackbird’s Field (Serbian: Косовска битка, Бој на Косову; Kosovska bitka; Boj na Kosovu; Turkish: Kosova Meydan Savaşı). The war was between the Serbs and invading Ottoman empire and both armies suffered huge losses. The Ottomans ended up winning and controlling the area due to forces in the east they ultimately sent into the area.

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The day I went over was cold and windy and the historian that met us provided some background information which I barely recall as I found myself exploring the site rather than listening.  When you enter it’s apparent the site is old and in disrepair but still remains due to the construction materials, which were stone.

The site itself overlooked Pristina and was on high ground as I think originally it had some strategic significance.  Anyhow, the signs and placards were all in Serbian or Albanian and I had no idea what was on them but I took some photos nevertheless. I was able to enter through an open door that someone had left unlocked or it perhaps it could not be locked. The staircase wound itself around the interior until I was able to exit onto the roof area.  This area on top offers an excellent vantage point and perhaps the tower was at least designed for this purpose.  I was indeed able to see quite a distance and for an army watching for the enemy the tower would provide a great advanced warning.

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The wind was blowing and I believe it was December at the time so none of us remained on the top very long as the novelty of the whole thing wore off quickly,  I made my way to the bottom, snapped a couple photos and wandered over to the vehicles to depart.  Oddly enough despite the lack of tourists there was a guard at the gate when we entered and he was still there wehn we left.  I was told he guards the place during the day year round.  I’m not sure why as the whole place was in somewhat of a state of disarray and largely unmaintained. But, Kosovo is a new country and perhaps the economics at the present time preclude allocating funds for the site.  Perhaps in the future.  The guide did indicate the periodicaly groups will come out and have a picnic an on even fewer occasions politicians will use the place as a focal point to rally the population.  So, even today it is useful even if it goes largely unused by the locals.  I’m not sure if I’ll ever return but at least I can say I was there.

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