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  Home > Facts about Serbia > Facts > Belgrade


Situated at the confluence of the Danube and Sava rivers, Belgrade is an ancient settlement, whose oldest archaeological findings go back to the fifth millennium BC. It was founded as Singidunum by a Celtic tribe in the third century BC, while the first mention of Belgrade dates to 989. Throughout its long and turbulent history, Belgrade was captured by forty armies and rose thirty-eight times from the ashes.

Today, Belgrade is the political and administrative capital of Serbia and Yugoslavia. With its two million inhabitants, the city is of a major importance in traffic communications. Besides its significance as a road and rail junction, Belgrade is an important international river-to-sea and air port and telecommunications center. It possesses important agricultural and industrial capacities, particularly in the metal, ferrous metal and electronic industries, followed by trade and banking. The greater Belgrade area, with the cities of Smederevo and Pancevo, encompass 2000 square meters of free trade zone located on the banks of the Danube. Thirty per cent of Serbia's GNP is earned in Belgrade.

Belgrade is the capital of the Serbian culture. It has the greatest concentration of science and art institutions of national importance. It is the seat of the Serbian Academy of Science and Arts (SASA), founded in 1886 as the Serbian Royal Academy; Serbian National Library, founded in 1832; National Museum, founded in 1841 and National Theatre, founded in 1869. The city is also the seat of Belgrade University, founded in 1808 as the Great School and the University of Arts.

Belgrade has a status of a special district in Serbia with its autonomous authorities: the City Council, Mayor and City Government. Its territory is divided into 16 municipalities, and with its local government.


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