In the latter half of the 15th century Sofia, owing to its situation at the junction of several trade routes, became an important centre of Ragusan commerce.
The treaties of Carlowitz (1699) and Passarowitz (1718) deprived the Turks of all the Primorje, or littoral of Herzegovina, except the narrow enclaves of Klek and Suttorina, left to sunder the Ragusan dominions from those of Venice.
Ragusan policy was usually peaceful, and disputes with other nations were frequently arranged by a system of arbitration called stanicum.
A compact with the Turks, made in 1370 and renewed in the next century, saved Ragusa from the fate of its more powerful neighbours, Servia and Byzantium, besides enabling the Ragusan caravans to penetrate into Hungary, Croatia, Bosnia, Servia, Bulgaria and Rumania.
Meanwhile, Ragusan vessels were known not only in Italy, Sicily, Spain, Greece, the Levant and Egypt, but in the more northern parts of Europe.
In the 16th century the Ragusan merchants went even to India and America, but they were unable to compete with their rivals from western Europe.
Jackson, Dalmatia, the Quarnero and Istria (Oxford, 1887), gives the best account of Ragusan architecture and antiquities.
The course of Ragusan trade may be studied in C J.
Educated at Rome, he took orders and was sent to Ragusa, where he was appointed professor of rhetoric. When the French seized Ragusa, Napoleon placed Appendini at the head of the Ragusan academy.
Silistria flourished under Ottoman rule; Hajji Khalifa describes it as the most important of all the Danubian towns; a Greek metropolitan was installed here with five bishops under his control and a settlement of Ragusan merchants kept alive its commercial interests.
The oldest document written in the vernacular Servian is considered to be a charter by which Kulin, the ban of Bosnia, grants certain commercial privileges to the Ragusan merchants in 1189.
Two of the finest works of this early period of the Servian literature of Ragusa are the poem Dervishiyada, written by the Ragusan nobleman Stepan Guchetich (1495-1525), rich in humour and satire, and the poem Yegyupka (" The Gipsy Woman "), written by Andreas Chubranovich (1500-1550), a goldsmith by profession and a very original and clever lyrical poet.
In Dalmatia, where the Ragusan journal Slovinac has served, like the Agram Rad, as a focus of literary activity, there have been numerous poets and prose writers, associated, in many cases, with the Illyrist or the nationalist propaganda.
Another remarkable Ragusan poet was Hectorovich (1486-1572), who wrote the poem Ribanye (" The Fishing and Talking with Fishermen "), and anticipated a new movement in Servian literature by publishing three national songs as he heard them from the popular bards (guslars).
But the true glory of Ragusan literature was established by its three poets, Ivan Gundulich (1558-1638), Gyon Palmotich (1606-1657) and Ignacius Gyorgyich (1675-1737).