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Battle of Pirot

Battle of Pirot
Part of Serbo-Bulgarian War
Street fighting in Pirot
Date26–27 November 1885[a]
Result Bulgarian victory
 Principality of Bulgaria  Kingdom of Serbia
Commanders and leaders
Lt.Col. Danail Nikolaev Milan I
Units involved
Western Army Nišava Army
80 guns
84 guns
Casualties and losses
1,050 killed and wounded 700 killed
560 wounded

The Battle of Pirot (Bulgarian: Битка при Пирот or Пиротско сражение) was a battle between the Bulgarian Western Corps and the Serbian Nišava Army during the Serbo-Bulgarian War. The battle was fought between the 26th and 27 November, 1885[a] and ended with a Bulgarian victory.


After the Bulgarian victory at the Battle of Slivnitsa, fought from 17-19 November 1885, the Bulgarian army counter-attacked. The Bulgarian troops defeated the Serbs at Gurgulyat (19 November) and Dragoman (22 November), and subsequently reached the city of Pirot,[1] where the Serbian Nišava army occupied defensive positions in the hills to the east of the town.

The battle

On 26 November, the Bulgarians defeated the Serbian cover forces along the border and moved on to Pirot. At around 15:00 on the same day, the Bulgarian advanced guard engaged the enemy, first achieving success on the left flank of the front, after the detachment of Captain Popov had seized the heights of Divan and Cherni Vrah. On the right flank, the 10th Regiment of the Serbian Šumadija Division was crushed and retreated followed by the two battalions sent to defend Pirot. During the skirmishes on the left flank, the Bulgarians had suffered 48 killed, 136 wounded and 27 missing, while the Serbians lost 67 soldiers, had 134 wounded and 85 captured.

During the night of 27 November, the Serbs regrouped. In the morning, the Bulgarians continued their advance. The column of Major Gudzhev attacked the Šumadija Division and, despite being outnumbered 2 to 1, the Bulgarians managed to push the Serbs to the river Temska. The retreat of the Šumadija Division forced the Drina Division to pull back as well and the Bulgarians pursued after them. On the left flank, the Bulgarians were also successful and the Serbs were defeated.


A day after the victory, the Bulgarian army prepared to attack the city of Niš, which was a target of Greater Bulgarian national project, but the Austro-Hungarian delegation in the Bulgarian capital made it clear that if the Bulgarian advance continued, Austria-Hungary would have intervened in the war on the side of Serbia. On 28 November, Bulgaria and Serbia agreed to sign a cease-fire.



  1. ^ Пейчев, А. и др. 1300 години на стража, София, 1984, Военно издателство, p. 211


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