Kosovo Polje(redirected from Field of Blackbirds)
An intermontane basin in southern Serbia, Yugoslavia; between the Kopaonik Range on the north and the Šar Planina on the south. Length, 84 km; width, up to 14 km; elevation, 500-700 m. It is a hilly plain, composed chiefly of ancient lacustrine and fluvial deposits. The climate is moderate continental, with 600-700 mm of precipitation annually. The basin is drained by the Sitnica River system (Morava basin). Kosovo Polje has long been known as the breadbasket of Serbia. Major crops include corn, wheat, and barley; there is horticulture and viticulture in the foothills. Lignite and magnesite are mined. The region’s major cities are Priština, Kosovska Mitrovica, and Uroševac. The Belgrade-Skopje railroad line passes through the area.
On June 15,1389, a decisive battle took place on Kosovo Polje near Priština between the united forces of the Serbs and Bosnians (15,000-20,000 men), led by the Serbian prince Lazar, and the army of the Turkish sultan Murad I (27,000-30,000 men). De-spite the heroic opposition of Lazar’s forces the battle ended in victory for the Turks. Lazar was captured and killed. Serbia became a vassal of the Ottoman Empire and later was fully incorporated into it (1459). The battle of Kosovo Polje and the Serbs’ heroic struggle against the Turks were reflected in Serbian epic poems.