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Drniš is a town in Croatiamarker, located in inland Dalmatia at halfway between Šibenikmarker and Kninmarker. Its municipality population is 8,595 (2001), with 3,332 in the town itself and the rest in two dozen surrounding villages. In the 2001 census, 91.16% of the population declared themselves Croats.

History

The name Drniš was mentioned for the first time in a contract dated March 8th 1494. However there are traces of older Middle Ages' fortress built by Croatian aristocrat family Nelipić at the site called Gradina dominating the landscape. The town was conquered by the Ottoman Turks in 1522 due to its strategic location. Many buildings from this time period are still preserved today. During the Baroque period, the mosque built by the Turks was transformed into a church. In 1918 the town was occupied by Italian troops who remained there until a withdrawal in 1921, as a result of the Treaty of Rapallo. The town subsequently became a part of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenesmarker.

On September 16, 1991 during the Croatian War of Independence, Drniš was attacked by forces of the 9th Corpus of Yugoslav People's Army and militia of SAO Krajina led by general Ratko Mladić. The Croatian population fled under mortar fire, and town was incorporated in Republic of Serbian Krajina. The town and surrounding Croatian villages suffered extensive demolition and looting in that period. In August 1995, Drniš was restored to Croatian government control during the military action Operation Storm, and the Serbian population fled to Serbiamarker or Bosnia and Herzegovinamarker. This time the surrounding Serbian villages suffered extensive devastation and looting.

Heritage

The village of Otavicemarker near Drniš is the place where the noted sculptor Ivan Meštrović spent his childhood. A museum has been built which has an exhibition of the archeological rests from the neolithic and Roman eras, along with Croatianmarker history.

The composer Krsto Odak (1888-1965) was born in Siverić near Drniš. Politicians Božidar Adžija and Dražen Budiša and sculptor Ivan Mestrovic were also from the area. Famous center from Croatian national basketball team, Stojko Vranković is also from Drniš.

The area is also known for its agricultural orientation and a once notable mining center.

Towns and Villages in Municipality

Badanj, Baljcimarker, Biočić, Bogatić, Brištane, Velušić, Drinovci, Drniš, Gradac, Žitnić, Kadina Glavica, Kanjane, Kaočine, Karalić, Ključ, Kričkemarker, Lišnjak, Miočić, Mirlović Polje, Kalik, Pakovo Selo, Parčić, Ružić, Pokrovnik, Radonić, Sedramić, Siverić, Tepljuh, Trbounje, Širitovci, Štikovomarker.

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