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Kosovo Field

Kosovo Field (kôˈsôvô) [key], Serbian Kosovo Polje [field of the black birds], WSW of Priština, Kosovo, site of a battle in which the Turks under Sultan Murad I defeated Serbia and its Bosnian, Montenegrin, Bulgarian, and other allies in 1389. Before the battle Milosh Obilich, a Serb, posing as a deserter, was taken into the tent of Murad, whom he stabbed to death; he was immediately slain, as was Prince Lazar of Serbia after being captured. The battle of Kosovo Field broke the power of Serbia and Bulgaria, which soon passed under Ottoman rule. The battle figures prominently in Serbian poetry. In another battle on the site in 1448, Sultan Murad II defeated an army led by John Hunyadi. The harsh repression of Kosovo Albanian separatist movements by Serbia's government (see Kosovo) was due in part to the historical significance placed on Kosovo Field by Serb nationalists.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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