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Serbia’s rich cultural heritage is quintessential to understanding, both European and global, human spirituality and culture.
Traces of a prehistoric culture found at Lepenski Vir, dated 7,000 BCE, have earned this archaeological site the nickname “cradle of Europe”. Over time the culture of Lepenski Vir was succeeded by the Neolithic cultures of Starčevo and Vinča, as witnessed by the remains of buildings, tools, weapons and household items, which also testify to the immense importance of the Danube for the development of prehistoric humans.
Situated at the very border of the Roman Empire, Serbia is the site of major battles for the expansion of the Empire, as well as for its survival. Testaments to this are found in the numerous remains of cities and roads built during more than six centuries of Roman reign in this region, as well as in the fact that as many as 16 Roman emperors were born in modern-day Serbia!
Due to the importance of archaeological sites, for the understanding of Roman culture and history, Serbia’s ancient Roman sites are included in the Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe and the remains of the monumental Roman palace Felix Romuliana have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The spiritual and cultural life of medieval Serbia took place within the church, which is why the country’s many Orthodox Christian monasteries are among the
most important monuments of the era. Built between the 12th and the 17th Centuries, well-preserved and richly adorned with some of the most beautiful frescoes of their time, Serbian monasteries are an important segment in the rich tapestry of not only Serbian, but also global cultural heritage.
Due to their immense cultural and historic importance, three monastery complexes (Stari Ras with Sopoćani, Studenica monastery and a collection of monasteries in Kosovo and Metohija) have been declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites.