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Krajina (pronounced  [krâjina] ) is a Slavic toponym, meaning 'frontier' or 'march'. The term is related with kraj or krai , originally meaning "edge" [1] and today denoting a region or province, usually distant from the metropole.



The Serbo-Croatian word krajina derives from Proto-Slavic *krajina, derived from *krajь, meaning "edge", related to *krojiti, "to cut"; [1] [2] the original meaning of krajina thus seems to have been "place at an edge, fringe, borderland", as reflected in the meanings of Church Slavonic краина, kraina, [2] and Old East Slavic окраина, okraina. [3]

In some South Slavic languages, including Serbo-Croatian and Slovene, the word krajina or its cognate still refers primarily to a border, fringe, or borderland of a country (sometimes with an established military defense), and secondarily to a region, area, or landscape. [2] [4] The word kraj can today mean an end or extremity, or region or area. Archaically extrapolated, it could mean "army" or "war"; [4] this meaning developed from the earlier meaning of "borderland" in a manner analogous to the French word campagne. [2] The term is equal to German Mark and French marche. [5] In the Habsburg Empire, a large region in modern Croatia was referred to as a Military Frontier (Militärgrenze; Vojna krajina).

In other Slavic languages (including the Chakavian and Kajkavian dialects of Serbo-Croatian), the term has other meanings, either a territorial name (cf. Krajna in Poland, from Old Polish kraina, meaning region, borderland, extremity [2] ) or word with meaning "a land, landscape" (e.g. in Polish, Slovak, Czech or Sorbian). In Slovenian, the word means both "landscape" and march.

Geographical regions

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia-Herzegovina and Croatia shared






Political regions

Subdivisions of Austria-Hungary:

Political units formed by rebel Serbs at the beginning of the Croatian War of Independence (1991–95):

Political unit formed by Serbs in the prelude (1991) of the Bosnian War (1992–95):

Where the term "Serbian Krajina" or "Krajina" alone is used, it most often refers to the former Republic of Serbian Krajina.

In Russia:

In Slovakia:

In Czech Republic:

In Ukraine:


See also

Related Research Articles

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Bosanska Krajina

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Čapljina City in Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bosnia and Herzegovina

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SAO Krajina

The Serbian Autonomous Oblast of Krajina or SAO Krajina was a self-proclaimed Serbian autonomous region (oblast) within modern-day Croatia. The territory consisted of majority-Serbian municipalities of the Republic of Croatia that declared autonomy in October 1990. It was formed as the SAO Kninska Krajina, but, upon inclusion of additional Serb-populated areas, changed its name simply to SAO Krajina. In 1991 the SAO Krajina declared itself the Republic of Serbian Krajina, and subsequently included the other two Serbian SAOs in Croatia, the SAO Western Slavonia and the SAO Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Syrmia.

SAO Bosanska Krajina

The Serbian Autonomous Oblast of Bosanska Krajina was a self-proclaimed Serbian Autonomous Oblast within today's Bosnia and Herzegovina. It was sometimes called the Autonomous Oblast of Krajina, or the Autonomous Region of Krajina (ARK). SAO Bosanska Krajina was located in the geographical region named Bosanska Krajina. Its capital was Banja Luka. The region was subsequently included into Republika Srpska.

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Kninska Krajina

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Dalmatian Hinterland

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  1. 1 2 Rick Derksen (2008), Etymological Dictionary of the Slavic Inherited Lexicon, Brill: Leiden-Boston, page 244
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 “*krajina” in Oleg Trubačóv (ed.) (1974–), Этимологический словарь славянских языков [Etymological dictionary of Slavic languages], Moscow: Nauka, volume 12, pages 87-88
  3. Max Vasmer (1986), Etimologičeskij slovarʹ russkogo jazyka [Etymological Dictionary of the Russian Language], in 4 vols (second edition), Moscow: Progress — Translated from German and supplemented by O. N. Trubačóv
  4. 1 2 Group of authors (1969). "Кра̏јина". Речник српскохрватскога књижевног језика, vol. 3 (in Serbo-Croatian). Novi Sad/Zagreb: Matica srpska/Matica hrvatska. p. 30.
  5. Group of authors (1972). "Krajina". In colonel-general Nikola Gažević (ed.). Vojna enciklopedija, vol. 4 (in Serbo-Croatian). Belgrade. p. 681.
  6. (in Croatian) Excerpt from the book I. Marinović, B. Šutić, M. Viskić: Baćina: Prošlost Baćine, Udruga Pagania, Ploče, 2005, ISBN   953-95132-0-0