Biography of King of Serbia Pedro I (1844-1921)

King of Serbia, Belgrade-born on July 11, 1844 and died in Topcider, near Belgrade, on 16 August 1921. He/She was the last King of Serbia and the first of the serbio-croata realm - Slovenian, which later would lead to Yugoslavia.

He was the third son of Alejandro Karageorgewitch and his wife Persida. He/She became heir to the Serbian throne following the death of his brother Svetozar (1847). When his father was forced to abdicate (1858), Pedro lived in exile for the next 45 years, in which reigned in Serbia Obrenovich House. With 14 years he/she went to Geneva to complete his studies and joined the school in 1862 military Saint-Cyr (Paris). He/She joined volunteer in the French army during the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1871), serving as a lieutenant and being awarded the Legion of Honor for his heroism. In 1875 Pedro organized an army of volunteers, paid with his own fortune, to fight on behalf of the Serbs in Herzegovina raised against Turkey; when Serbia declared war on Turkey in 1876, Pedro offered his help the Prince Milan, who did not accept it. In 1883 he/she was appointed Honorary Senator of Montenegro and that same year married Zorka, eldest daughter of Prince Nicolás Montenegro, who died in 1890, but not before have given him three children: Elena (born in 1884), Jorge (born 1887) and Alejandro (born in 1888).

In 1903 Pedro was elected King of Serbia (June 10), to death for murder of the follower of the dynasty Obrenovich, King Alejandro. Although the beginning of his reign was overshadowed by the political impossibility of punishing the murderers of his predecessor, his reputation as a liberal (translated John Stuart Mill's essay On Liberty in 1885) and their constitutional vocation helped him take control of the political situation in Serbia and to gain recognition abroad. Since it came to power, Pedro developed a foreign policy which aims to break the strong ties with Austria, established by Milan I (who reigned from 1868 to 1889, first as a Prince and then as King of Serbia) and to strengthen the relations with Russia. In domestic policy modified the Constitution, army and the education system and boosted the implementation of new agricultural techniques. The main political figure of his reign was Nikola Pai, who led campaigns during the Balkan wars of 1912 and 1913 and achieved important victories over Turkey and Bulgaria; the political exploitation of these victories by Pedro provided him with great authority and respect in his country, which had lacked his immediate predecessors. In June 1914, due to his advanced age and his precarious state of health, Pedro appointed regent to his heir, Prince Alejandro Karageorgevic (following the resignation of his brother Jorge), delegating most of their features in it. But after the outbreak of the first world war and the invasion of Serbia by the central powers (Germany and Austria), he/she returned to active politics and closely followed the vicissitudes of his army, taking part in 1915 in the withdrawal of the troops of the Adriatic (born in a bunk bed). After the defeat of the Serbian army, he/she left Serbia and took refuge in Thessaloniki, where he/she reorganized the troops, who took part in the eastern front offensive in September 1918. At the end of the war he/she returned to Belgrade, where on December 1, 1918 he/she was appointed King of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, with a territory enlarged and following his successor as Regent.

JMMT.