Confessionalization on the Frontier

The Balkan Catholics between Roman Reform and Ottoman Reality

Antal Molnár
Collana: Interadria. Culture dell’Adriatico, 22
Pubblicazione: Giugno 2019
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pp. 268, 17x24 cm, bross.
ISBN: 9788833130804
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This book presents a lesser-known chapter of the cultural history of the Ottoman Balkans, the world of its Catholic communities and institutions. Alongside Orthodox Christians, Muslims and Jews, Catholics lived in nearly every area of the Balkan Peninsula in the 16th and 17th centuries. The great religious revolution of the early modern age, confessionalization, did not leave the Balkan Catholics untouched. Unlike the Christian confessional states of Europe, the Ottoman Empire, with Islam as its state religion, neither assisted nor impeded the formation of denominations, but put many obstacles in the way of their institutional growth. The confessionalization of Catholics in the European frontier regions of the Ottoman Empire thus resulted in a peripheral and unestablished Catholicism.
This book explores the peculiarities of this local Catholic confessionalization in the Balkans through a micro-analytical approach. The prime objective of the book is to contribute – through an exploration of the history of the Balkan Catholics – to the renewal of research into the early modern Mediterranean world.

  • 1. Introduction
  • 2. Bosnian Franciscans between Roman Centralization and Balkan Confessionalization
    • 1. Preliminary remarks
    • 2. Medieval heritage
    • 3. Impacts of the Ottoman invasion
    • 4. Roman intentions, Bosnian failures
    • 5. Catholic or Franciscan confessionalization?
  • 3. The Holy Office and the Balkan Missions before the Foundation of the Congregation of Propaganda Fide (1622)
    • 1. Gaps in a historiographical revolution
    • 2. The Holy See and the missions before 1622
    • 3. The beginnings of the Balkan missions
    • 4. The Franciscan mission to the Bulgarians
    • 5. The Jesuit mission in Ottoman Hungary
    • 6. The Roman Inquisition: forerunner of the Congregation of Propaganda Fide?
  • 4. Venetian South-Eastern Europe and Ottoman Hungary
    • 1. The church-history dimension of Venetian south-eastern Europe
    • 2. Early 17th-century plans for the Balkan and Hungarian missions
    • 3. Venice and Dalmatia – the centre of the Balkan missions?
    • 4. Source
  • 5. Struggle for the Chapel of Belgrade (1612-1643)
    • 1. Introduction
    • 2. Ragusan trade in Ottoman Balkans and Hungary
    • 3. Ragusan priests and Bosnian Franciscans
    • 4. The establishment of the Jesuits in Belgrade: the beginnings of the chapel feud (1612-1622)
    • 5. From the feud over the chapel to the trade wars (1622-1632)
    • 6. Towards compromise (1633-1643)
    • 7. Conclusion
  • 6. The Struggle for the Chapel of Novi Pazar (1627-1630)
    • 1. Preliminary remarks
    • 2. The location
    • 3. The conflict
    • 4. Analogues and lessons
  • 7. The Catholic Missions and the Origins of Albanian Nation-Building at the Beginning of the 17th Century
    • 1. Nations in the early modern age: the challenges of a Balkan investigation
    • 2. Nation-building and the Catholic missions
    • 3. The beginnings of the Albanian national idea
    • 4. Pietro Massarecchi and the Kosovar roots of the Albanian national idea
    • 5. Francesco Bianchi and the historical formulation of Albanian national consciousness
    • 6. Progress in the 17th century and failure in the 18th century
  • 8. The Serbian Orthodox Church and the Attempts at Union with Rome in the 17th Century
    • 1. The limits of historiography and the sources
    • 2. The Serbian and Ottoman identification of the Orthodox Church
    • 3. Attempts at union in the periphery of the Serbian church
    • 4. Mission impossible?
  • 9. The Balkan Missions under the Pontificate of Innocent XI (1676-1689): from Apogee to Ruin
    • 1. Preliminary remarks
    • 2. The Balkan missions in the years before the Great Turkish War
    • 3. The Balkan model of Catholic Confessionalization
    • 4. Ruin and regeneration
  • 10. La Schiavona. A Bosnian Girl between Catholic Hagiography and Balkan Female Transvestism
    • 1. The source
    • 2. The story of Magdalena Pereš-Vuksanović
    • 3. A woman in men’s clothing – motif and interpretations
  • Glossary of Ottoman and South Slavic Terms
  • Maps
  • Bibliography
  • Index of names and places

Cover illustration: Belgrade in the 17th century. “Bellegrad oder Grichisch Weißenburg”, in Heinrich Ottendorff, Der weeg von Ofen auff Griechisch-Weisenburg Belgrad oder die Beschreibung der allda gelegenen Palanken und derselben gantzen gegend, [1667], Österreichisches Staatsarchiv, Kriegsarchiv (Wien), AT-OeStA/KA KPS LB K VII k, 2-15 delta (detail).

Antal Molnár

Antal Molnár is former director of the Hungarian Academy in Rome, actually director of the Institute of History, Research Center for the Humanities, and associate professor at the Eötvös Loránd University (both in Budapest). His publications include 16 scholarly volumes, among them Le Saint-Siège, Raguse et les missions catholiques de la Hongrie Ottomane 1572-1647 (2007), Confessionalization on the Frontier. The Balkan Catholics between Roman Reform and Ottoman Reality (2019); co-authored with Tamás Tóth, The Falconieri Palace in Rome (2016).

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