Manastiri u Opstini Irig i Fruskoj gori
Monasteries in the Commune of Irig and Fruska gora

In a low mountain range above Panonia known by a variety of names throughout history (Mons Pinguis, Mons Almus, Alma Mons and Fruska Gora), set between the rivers Sava and Danube, 35 monasteries were built in a marvelous natural setting. Fifteen have been preserved till today. Serbian orthodox church communities exist there at the monasteries of: Krusedol, Petkovica, Rakovac, Velika Remeta Divsa, Novo Hopovo, Staro Hopovo, Jazak, Mala Remeta, Grgeteg, Beocin, Privina Glava, Sisatovac, Kuvezedin, and Vrdnik- Ravanica. According to historical data, these monastery communities have existed since the first decades of the sixteenth century, but the legends relate their founding to the period between the 12th and fifteenth centuries. The monasteries are concentrated in an area 50 kilometers long, and 10 kilometers wide. In the course of five centuries of existance, these monasteries sustained the spiritual and political life of the Serbian nation.

The monasteries were founded in a period of great wars and migrations, and they became centers where the cult of the Brankovic Family (the last of the Serbian despotic families) was carefully nurtured, using the Nemanjic family dynasty as a model. Of equal importance in understanding the spiritual life of the Fruska Gora monasteries are the cults of individual saints, whose relics attracted both pilgrims and patrons to the monasteries. The donations of pilgrims and the highly developed sense of patronage among the Serbs served to heighten religious feelings, stimulating the further construction, decoration and replenishment of the monasteries. Monasteries of Fruska Gora are a unique part of the religious, educational, and cultural being of the Serbian nation, and cultural heritage of Yugoslavia.



The monastery church is dedicated to St. Pantelemon. According to the tradition. the monastery was founded by bishop Maksim. The reliable data about the monastery date back to 1545/46. There are no records about Staro Hopovo from the 17th century and the first half of 18th century. Not before 1751 were there records testifying to the existence of a church devoted to St. Nicholas, with walls made of wooden planks. Instead of that church, which was destroyed in an earthquake, the present one, dedicated to St. Pantelemon was built in 1752. In the new, single nave domed church, the throne icons, on the baroque iconostasis, were painted by Janko Halkozovic. During World War II, the church was damaged and the iconostasis was dismantled. The church itself underwent conservation and restoration after the World War II.


The monastery church is dedicated to St. Nicholas. According to tradition, the monastery was built by the Despots of the Brankovic family. The first reliable mention of the monastery is dated 1641. The present church was built in 1576 by the contribution of a group of benefactors particularly by Lacko and Marko Jovsic, citizens of Gornji Kovin. The church of Novo Hopovo is one of the largest and architecturally most important religious buildings of its time. The Monastery complex underwent some major changes during the 18th century under the influence of the Baroque, when the bell-tower was added to the church and the monks' quarters were built around it. In the second half of the 18th century, the old iconostasis was replaced by a high altar partition carved by Paul and Anton Rezner. The icons on this iconostasis were painted by Teodor Kracun in 1776. During World War II, the monastery was torn down, the iconostasis dismantled and damaged, while the mobile furniture was taken away. The monastery has been renovated as a whole, except the reconstruction of the bell-tower.


The monastery church is dedicated to the Annunciation. The monastery was founded between 1509 and 1516, by Bishop Maksim and his mother, Angelina, who were supported by Walachian Duke Jovan Njagoja Basaraba. During the final retreat of the Turks from Srem, in 1716, the monastery was damaged and the church burnt down. The renovation started in 1721, and was completed in the late 1760s. In 1726, a baroque bell-tower was added on to the West wing of the monks' quarters and between 1742 and 1750, the church underwent certain adaptations which did not significantly change its general original appearance. The monks' quartets were reconstructed and expanded in the same period. The church was originally decorated with fresco paintings in the 16th century. Its interior was covered with new oil wall paintings between 1750 and 1756, done by Jov Vasilijevic and Stefan Tenecki. On the West facade, there is a composition of the "Last judgment" from the end of the 17th century. The iconostasis was composed of icons differing in style and time of creation.


The monastery church is dedicated to St. Dimitri. Traditionally, it is linked to the king Dragutin, but more probably founded at the and of the 15th, or in the first decades of the 16th century. Under the name of Velika Remeta, it was mentioned in 1562. The monastery church was built as a single-nave building with a dome and exonatrhex, with a baroque bell-tower added in 1735. Both, the exterior and interior were painted in 1567-68. Some fragments are preserved in the niches of the facade and in the altar. The monks' quarters surrounding the church on four sides underwent an adaptation which brought them into accord with baroque bell-tower. The paintings on the iconostasis. which was dismantled during World War II have not been studied extensively. The iconostasis consisted of a set of icons varying in age, put together in 1850. The most important icons from the main tier were done in 1687. After the damage. caused to Velika Remeta in World War II, it was renovated on two occasions.


The monastery church is dedicated to the Ascension. The exact time of its founding is unknown. The records from the first half of the 18th Century, indicate that the church was built during the time of Metropolitan Serafim, in the second half of the l6th Century. The first reliable records about the monastery date from 1566-69. In the renovation of Vrdnik, carried out by the monks who flied from Ravanica, the monastery in Serbia, in 1697, the old late medieval stone church with a trefoil plan with wooden bell-tower was reconstructed. Since that time the monastery has also been called Ravanica, and the relics of prince Lazar were treasured in it till 1990. The present church was built between 1801 and 1811. The iconostasis of the old church was painted by Stanoje Popovic in 1743. Dimitrije Avramovic painted the new iconostasis, and the wall paintings in 1853. The three-sided quarters were built in the first half of the 18th Century, and reconstructed at the beginning of the l9th century. World War II left the monastery undamaged, but all movable valuables were taken away. The monastery has been partly renovated.


The monastery church is dedicated to the Holy Trinity. The monastery was founded in 1736, by a group of donors citizens of Novi Sad, Baja, Osijek, Sid and Sasinci. The construction of the church traditionally designed, lasted from 1736 to 1758. but, as early as 1741, it was ready to receive the brethren. Baroque bell-tower was added onto the West side and completed in 1803. The monks' quarters, surrounding the church on three sides, were built between 1736 and 1761. The icons on the baroque iconostasis were painted by Dimitrije Bacevic in 1769. The monastery underwent the general reconstruction between 1926 and 1930. During World War II the monks' quarters were damaged, while the church remained intact. The monastery has been partly reconstructed.


The monastery church is dedicated to St. Nicholas. According to tradition the monastery was founded by Zmaj-Ognjen Vuk in 1471. The first reliable facts are dated from 1545/46. The monastery was deserted before the Great Migration and renovated in 1708, by the metropolitan Isaija Dakovic. The old stone church was replaced by a new baroque. church around 1770. The new church was renovated between 1898 and 1901, according to designs done by Herman Bolle. The monks' quarters from the 18th century, surrounding the church on four sides, were also reconstructed on that occasion. The old masonry iconostasis, a work by Takov Orfelin from 1774 was torn down during the reconstruction. The new iconostasis was painted by Uros Predic in 1902. During World War II, the monastery was badly damaged, and since 1953 it has been gradually reconstructed. Conservation and restoration have been under way since 1987.


The monastery church was dedicated to the Shroud of the Mother of God. The foundation of Mala Remeta is traditionally ascribed to the Serbian king Dragutin. The first reliable record of Mala Remeta is found in Turkish sources of 1546. In the late 17th century, the monastery was renewed by the refugee monks of the monastery of Raca. This church was replaced by the present church. The construction of the church had begun in 1739, by the artisans Teodor Kosta and Nikola Krapic Tzintzars from the Greek town of Langa, and lasted over two decades. The donor was Stanko Milinkovic from the village of Suljam. The throne icons on the iconostasis at the new church were painted by Janko Halkozovic in 1759, while the author(s) of those in the upper tiers is/are not known. The murals dated 1910 were done by Kosta Vandelovic. The humble two-story quarters were built in 1758, on the South side of the church under the patronage of Jovan Jovanovic, who was a first lieutenant in the Petrovaradin regiment. The quarters were damaged during World War II and renovated in the post-war renovation.


BEOCIN (opstina/commune of Beocin)

The monastery church is dedicated to the Assumption of Christ. The time of founding is unknown. It is first mentioned in Turkish records dated 1566-67, when its church was a small single-nave building modeled under the influence of traditional architecture. The monastery was damaged and deserted in the Austrian-Turkish wars and restored in 1699, by the refugee-monks from Raca, who also built a temporary wooden church in 1708. The present large church was built from 1732 to 1740 and the bell-tower with a porch in front of the West facade was completed in 1762. The monks' quarters, built between 1728 and 1771 are located to the South and West of the church. An extensive reconstruction of the monastery complex was carried out in 1893, and some minor changes were made in 1921. The iconostasis of the monastery church was made by Dimitrije Bacevic Janko Halkozovic and Teodor Kracun, in the 1750's and 1760's. Only one composition of the wall painting survived. It was painted by Janko Halkozovic in 1782. Simultaneously with the construction of the church, the previous chapel was built and fitted with an iconostasis in 1739. The present chapel was built in 1905, according to the design by Vladimir Nikolic. During World War II, the monastery was looted while the buildings were left intact.

BESENOVO (opstina/commune of Sremska Mitrovica)

The monastery church was dedicated to the Holy Archangels Michael and Gabriel. Besenovo was devastated in World War II, and the remains were taken apart immediately after the war. According to the legend. the monastery of Besenovo was founded by Serbian king Dragutin at the end of the 13th century. Other sources relate the founding of the monastery to the mid-l5th century, depending on the report made by an amalgamated commission while inspecting the monasteries of Srem in 1772. The first evidence of the existence of Besenovo is found in the earliest Turkish census of Srem from 1546. On the basis of the census of 1753, in which the monastery church is described in detail, it is known that the structure was old and that it was made of brick, but the date of building is not mentioned. The first reliable information about the chapel in the bell-tower dedicated to St. Kerikos and Julita, is from 1783. The monastery church had a cruciform plan with a cupola and narthex and there was only one entrance to the church, on the West side. The monastery churchyard was enclosed on three sides by the two-story monks' quarters. From the monastery church that was destroyed in a bombardment, in 1944, only the parts of the Iconostasis painted by Stevan Aleksic, in 1909, were preserved. The Monastery has not been renovated.

DIVSA (opstina/commune of Beocin)

The monastery church is dedicated to St. Nicholas. It is believed to have been founded by despot Jovan Brankovic in the late 15th century. The first reliable records of Turkish origin, date from the second half of the 16th century. It is assumed to have been deserted in the 17th century, while in the early 18th century it is mentioned as a possession of the monastery of Kuvezdin. The old, church was reconstructed in 1744, by the donation of Petar Jovanovic. The most extensive changes in the Church were executed by 1762-64, when a new exonarthex with a bell-tower, topped with a dome, was built by the donation of a hermit named Matej. Under the influence of the Baroque, the modest monastery cells were thoroughly reconstructed. The iconostasis of the renovated church was painted by Teodor Stefanov Gologlavac in 1754. The monastery was temporarily deserted from World War I till 1922. It was then reconstructed, to be severely damaged during World War II. Its iconostasis was dismantled, taken away and only partly preserved. Since 1980 the monastery has been once again inhabited and reconstructed.

KUVEZDIN (opstina/commune of Sremska Mitrovica)

The monastery church was dedicated to St. Sava and St. Simeon. Traditionally, its foundation is ascribed to Stefan Stiljanovic. The first reliable records of it are dated 1566-69. The original cruciform church with two domes, built by master builders from the Adriatic coast, was replaced in 1816 by a new classicist one with the bell-tower built in advance, in 1803. The three-sided monks' quarters, built in the 18th Century, acquired their final appearance in 1810. The iconostasis of the old monastery church made by Janko Halkozovic in 1772, was given away to the church in Opatovac, in the first half of the 19th century. The iconostasis and murals in the new church were done by Pavle Simic, in 1853. The baroque chapel in the monastery cemetery and the monastery church were ruined and devastated during World War II.

PRIVINA GLAVA (opstina/commune of Sid)

The monastery church is dedicated to the Council of the Holy Archangel Michael. According to the legends Privina Glava was founded by a man named Priva, in the 12th century. The monastery was named after him, so the tradition says. The legend also links the monastery to Jovan Brankovic and his brother, Bishop Maksim, who founded the monastery in 1496. The first documented evidence of Privina Glava is rendered by Turkish tax records of I566-67. The Monastery church is a single-dome structure with a trefoil base built between 1741 and 1760, after the model of the Novo Hopovo monastery church. The monastery residences were built on the South and partially on the East side of the church, between 1753 and 1771. The so-called zoograph icons on the old iconostasis were painted by Stanoje Popovic in 1747. The icons on the new iconostasis were painted by Andre Sartist in 1786. The murals in the central part of the church were made by Kuzman Kolaric between 1786 and 1791.

PETKOVICA (opstina/commune of Sremska Mitrovica)

The monastery church was dedicated to St. Petka. According to the tradition, founded by the widow of Stefan Stiljanovic, despotess Jelena. The monastery is first mentioned in Turkish documents of 1566-67. The church has a trefoil ground plan that has still been preserved, except for the wooden bell-tower, which was replaced in the mid-18th century. The fresco paintings, a good portion of which has been preserved, were finished in 1588. In the 18th century, the church was renovated several times, and in 1735 got a new iconostasis with a large carved cross. During World War II, the church was deserted and the icons carried off and lost forever. The iconostasis was destroyed and the cross moved to the Museum of Srem, in Sremska Mitrovica. The monastery has been partly renovated.

RAKOVAC (opstina/commune of Beocin)

The monastery church is dedicated to St. Cosmas and St. Damianos. According to a legend written in 1704, Rakovac is the heritage of a certain man, Raka, courtier of despot Jovan Brankovic. The legend states that Raka erected the monastery in 1498. The monastery got its name after him. The monastery was mentioned in the first Turkish census of Srem in 1546. The addition of a baroque bell-tower on to the West church facade, in 1735, entailed certain changes in the trefoil shape of the church and the whole monastery complex. The monks' quarters acquired their final appearance in 1771, surrounding the church on three sides. The church was supposed to be painted at the beginning of the 16th century. The only preserved parts of the frescos are those in the tambour of the dome. The icons on the baroque iconostasis were done by Vasilije Ostojic in 1763. The single-nave chapel in the monastery graveyard dedicated to the Shroud of the Mother of God, built in 1751, houses the iconostasis painted by Janko Halkozovic and Vasilije Ostojic, in 1755. The monastery was severely damaged in World War II and a lot of cultural, historical, and artistic valuables were irretrievably lost. The church has been reconstructed.

SISATOVAC (opstina/comune of Sremska Mitrovica)

The monastery church is dedicated to the Birth of the Mother of God. The foundation of the monastery is ascribed to the refugee monks from the Serbian monastery of Zica who tore down the original church of St. Nicholas called Remetsko, and erected on its site a new church, which was dedicated to the Virgin, and named Sisatovac. The reliable facts illustrating the life of the monastery date from the mid-l6th century. In 1543, the relics of St. Stefan Stiljanovic were brought from Siklos to the monastery. The old two-domed church, which had been built by masters from Adriatic coast, Jovan and Gaspar, was destroyed in 1778. A new, larger one, donated by the bishop Vikentije Jovanovic-Popovic was built on its site. The monks' quarters were erected on three sides, while the fourth was closed by the church itself. The quarters acquired their present appearance at the beginning of the 19th century. The cemetery chapel was dedicated to St. Paul and St. Peter, and the chapel was built in 1750. The iconostasis and murals for the new church were made by Grigorije Davidovic-Obsic, in 1795. The monastery was destroyed during World War II. The reconstruction of the monastery is under way.