History of Budva

Budva a modern town at the very edge of the Adriatic seashore - has a rich historic past. Ancient history goes back to the 5 th century BC. According to numerous legends, Budva was the first town of the Illyrians. Its first inhabitants were the King and Queen of the historically known city of Thebes King Cadmus and Queen Harmonia. Already in the 2 nd century BC, Budva fell under Roman rule. Trading had developed by that time and the inhabitants were also cultivating grapes and olives. After the destruction of the Roman Empire, a period of Byzantine rule began. The people of Budva began their fight against Byzantine rule in 535 AD and finally succeeded when the Serbian Nemanjic dynasty came to the Montenegrin coastline (1184-1186).

The strongest growth of Budva was experienced in the Middle Ages, during the rule of Tsar Dusan. Budva even had a Statute that decreed the living conditions in the Middle Ages. Budva fell under the rule of the Venetian Republic in 1442. Apart from the pressure of the Venetians, Turks also troubled the inhabitants of Budva. They frequently attacked Budva and surrounding places and fought with the Venetians; in fact, Budva was under attack from both sides of this war, right up to beginning of 18 th century. In 1807 Budva was occupied by the French and in 1813 fell under Austro-Hungarian occupation, which ruled it for the next 100 years. Destroyed and reduced to poverty under the Austro-Hungarian rule, Budva was now at the beginning of WWI in 1914. Freedom from the Austro-Hungarian Empire finally came in 1918. This was only a short-lived break though and at the beginning of WWII, in 1941, Italy occupied Budva and its surrounding area. Liberation from Nazi rule was celebrated in Budva on November 22, 1944.