On Tuesday, the Serbian Royal Family attended a very special book launch. This was the royal historical biography by Serbian historian, Dusan M. Babac called “Peter I – The Liberator King”, published by the Belgrade publishing house, Evro Book. The book launch took place at the ceremonial hall of the Belgrade City Assembly, once the court of King Peter the Great of Serbia.
The guests at the special event were greeted by Peter I’s great-grandson, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Alexander of Serbia, who gave some opening remarks for the launch.
“It is my great pleasure to greet you at the promotion of the book, “Peter I – The Liberator King”, by the member of the Privy Council, Dusan Babac. The reign of my great-grandfather, His Majesty King Peter I, is remembered as the golden age of parliamentary democracy. King Peter I was remembered as the most beloved ruler and as the Liberator King. I congratulate Dusan for giving us this book, through his devoted work. I am very grateful to him for this and I warmly recommend his book to everyone!”, said the Crown Prince in his short address.
Peter I reigned as the last King of Serbia (1903–1918) and as the first King of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (1918–1921). Since he was the King of Serbia during a period of great Serbian military success, he has been remembered by the Serbian people as King Peter the Liberator. For example, he fought with the French Foreign Legion in the Franco-Prussian War. He married Princess Zorka of Montenegro, daughter of King Nicholas, in 1883. King Peter was the supreme commander of the Serbian army in the Balkan wars, as well.
The Serbian Royal Court says that over the past 100 years, since the conclusion of the First World War, an impressive number of books about Peter the First have been published, but this book represents a unique political and historical analysis of the circumstances that accompanied the life and reign of one of the most prominent figures in Serbian history.
The book contains more than 300 paintings and photographs – many of which have been unknown to the public until now. For the first time, photographs of some personal items of King Peter have been published, such as the wedding crowns of Prince Peter and Princess Zorka from Cetinje from 1883; the triptych of the icon that King Peter received as a gift from the Russian Emperor Nicholas II; two prayer crosses that the King gave to the monastery Hilandar during his visit in 1910; and the first X-ray in Serbia in 1905, which shows King Peter’s hand with a bullet fragment from the French-Prussian War.