Learn more about Zrenjanin
|Location in Serbia|
|Land area||230 km²|
| 79,545 (town)|
|Area code||+381 23|
|Time zone|| CET (UTC+1)|
|Mayor||Goran Knežević (DS)|
Zrenjanin (Зрењанин) is a city located in Serbia. It is situated in the northern Serbian province of Vojvodina at 45° 22' North, 20° 23' East. It is the administrative centre of the Central Banat okrug of Serbia. In 2002, the city's population was 79,545, while the Zrenjanin municipality had 131,509 inhabitants.
The town of (Veliki) Bečkerek / (Nagy) Becskerek was first settled in the 14th century, the first mention of it dates from 1326. The merchant town on the Begej river became a property of the Serbian prince Stefan Lazarević in the 14th century. The town was ruled by the Kingdom of Hungary until 1551 when it was conquered by the Ottoman Empire. During the Ottoman rule, the town of Bečkerek was mostly populated by ethnic Serbs.
In 1716 it was conquered by the Habsburg Monarchy and it developed significantly by Maria Theresia's order of 1769. According to the 1753 data, the town was mostly populated by Serbs and Germans. According to the 1773 data, the population of the town numbered 721 houses, of which 625 were Orthodox Christian, and 96 Roman Catholic.
During the Revolution of 1848-1849, the town was one of de facto capitals of Serbian Vojvodina, a Serbian autonomous region within Habsburg Empire. Between 1849 and 1860, it was part of a separate Austrian crownland known as the Vojvodina of Serbia and Tamiš Banat. After the abolishment of this province, the town was included into Torontal County, and was the administrative center of this county. After 1867, Bečkerek was located within the Hungarian part of Austria-Hungary.
According to the 1910 census, the city had 26,006 inhabitants, of which 9,148 most frequently spoke Hungarian language, 8,934 Serbian language, 6,811 German language, 456 Slovak language, and 339 Romanian language. The municipal area of the city had 54,715 inhabitants, of which 16,485 most frequently spoke German language, 14,445 Serbian language, 10,581 Romanian language, 8,573 Hungarian language, and 3,265 Slovak language. It is not certain whether Hungarians or Serbs were largest ethnic group in the city in this time, since 1910 census is considered partially inaccurate by most historians because this census did not recorded the population by ethnic origin or mother tongue, but by the "most frequently spoken language", thus the census results overstated the number of Hungarian speakers, since this was official language at the time and many non-Hungarian native speakers stated that they most frequently speak Hungarian language in everyday communication. The city was also home to 1,232 Jews, of whom many were native Hungarian speakers. Another problem is that the city and its municipal area were administered separatelly, thus the total population of the city and its municipal area counted together was 80,721 people, of whom 23,379 most frequently spoke Serbian language, 23,296 German language, 17,721 Hungarian language, 10,920 Romanian language, and 3,721 Slovak language.
After World War I, the city became part of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (later renamed to Yugoslavia). Between 1918 and 1922, it was a centre of a county within the Kingdom, between 1922 and 1929, it was part of the Belgrade oblast, and between 1929 and 1941 part of the Danube Banovina.
Between 1941 and 1944, it was under Axis occupation, and was part of the autonomous Banat within German-occupied Serbia. Beginning in 1945, Zrenjanin was part of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina within the new Socialist Yugoslavia, and from 1992 to 2003 it was part of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, which was then transformed into the state union of Serbia and Montenegro. Since the 2006 independence of Montenegro, Zrenjanin has been part of an independent Serbia.
Zrenjanin got its present name in 1946 in honour of the revolutionary hero Žarko Zrenjanin Uča (1902-1942). Žarko Zrenjanin was a leader of the Vojvodina Communists and wartime Partisans who during the World War II endured torture and months of incarceration by the Nazis, was released and later killed while trying to escape recapture.
Old Serbian name for the city was Bečkerek (Бечкерек) or Veliki Bečkerek (Велики Бечкерек). In Hungarian, the city is known as Nagybecskerek, in German as Großbetschkerek, in Romanian as Becicherecul Mare or Zrenianin, in Slovak as Zreňanin, in Rusin as Зрењанин, and in Croatian as Zrenjanin.
It is assumed that Zrenjanin's original name, Bečkerek/Becskerek, comes from Hungarian word kerek ("forest, grove") and the surname of the 14th century nobleman, Emre Becsei, who had large estates in the area. Therefore the name would be translated into English as "Becsei's Forest". The original name gained a modificated meaning "great/big/major" in the languages of the Banat (Serbian: Veliki or Велики, Danube Swabian: Groß, Hungarian: Nagy, Romanian: Mare), as opposed to a village of the same name in the Romanian Banat, that is usually referred to as small Bečkerek (cf. Serbian: Mali Bečkerek or Мали Бечкерек, Danube Swabian: Kleinbetschkerek, Romanian: Becicherecu Mic, Hungarian: Kisbecskerek).
 Inhabited places
Zrenjanin municipality includes the city of Zrenjanin and the following villages:
- Banatski Despotovac
- Belo Blato
- Jankov Most
- Lukino Selo
 City quarters
- Zeleno Polje
- Četvrti Jul
- Mala Amerika
- Mužlja, a former village, joined with Zrenjanin in 1981.
 Ethnic groups (2002 census)
The population of the Zrenjanin municipality is composed of:
- Serbs (74.81%),
- Hungarians (10.76%),
- Yugoslavs (1.93%),
- Romanians (1.9%),
- Roma (1.87%),
- Slovaks (1.81%),
- and others.
Settlements with Serb ethnic majority are: Zrenjanin, Banatski Despotovac, Botoš, Elemir, Ečka, Klek, Knićanin, Lazarevo, Lukićevo, Melenci, Orlovat, Perlez, Stajićevo, Taraš, Tomaševac, Farkaždin, and Čenta. Settlements with Hungarian ethnic majority are: Lukino Selo and Mihajlovo. Settlement with Romanian ethnic majority is Jankov Most. Ethnically mixed settlements are: Aradac (with relative Serb majority) and Belo Blato (with relative Slovak majority).
 Architectural monuments
- City Hall, built in 1816, re-constructed in 1887, neobaroque, Gyula Partos and Ödön Lechner.
- Finance palace, today National museum, built in 1894, neorenaissance, Istvan Kiss.
- Theatre, built in 1839, classicism, the oldest theatre building in Serbia.
- Court House, built between 1906 and 1908, romantism, Sandor Einer and Marcus Rehmer.
- Cathedral, built between 1864 and 1868, romanesque, Stevan Đorđević.
- Bukovac palace, built in 1905, neorenaissance.
- Old Vojvodina hotel, built in 1886, neorenaissance, Bela Pelkl.
- Grammar School, built in 1846, re-constructed in 1937 and later.
- Uspenska church, built in 1746, baroque, the oldest church in the city.
- Small bridge, built in 1904, the oldest bridge in the city.
- Trade academy, built in 1892, neorenaissance, Istvan Kiss.
- Bence's house, built in 1906, seccesion.
- Vavedenska church, built in 1777, baroque.
- Evangelic church, built in 1837, classicism.
- Protestant church, built in 1891, neogothic.
Zrenjanin has many places of interest like City Hall, the Cathedral, Freedom Square, King Aleksandar I Street, etc.
Hotel "Vojvodina" is situated on Liberty Square (*** category). There is a Tourist Information Office in the building of National Museum (Subotićeva 1).
Zrenjanin has a long sports tradition. First clubs were established during 1880s.
 Twin towns
- Image:Flag of Hungary.svg Békéscsaba, Hungary
- Image:Flag of Romania.svg Arad, Romania
- Image:Flag of Romania.svg Timişoara, Romania
 See also
 External links
- Information Source about things related to city of Zrenjanin and its area (in Serbian language)
- The official presentation of the municipality and city of Zrenjanin (in Serbian and English language)
- The official website of the Roman Catholic diocise of Zrenjanin
- The official website of the "Vojvodina" hotel
- Website of the local weekly magazine "Zrenjanin"
|Municipalities and cities of Serbia||Image:Flag of Serbia (state).svg|