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Kovilj (Ковиљ) is a village located in the Novi Sad municipality, in the South Bačka District of Serbia. It is situated in the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina. The village has a Serb ethnic majority and its population numbering 5,599 people (2002 census).


In Serbian, the village is known as Kovilj or Ковиљ, in Croatian as Kovilj, and in Hungarian as Kabol.

The Serbian name of the village derived from Serbian word "kovilj", which is a name for one sort of flower grass.


The village is divided into Gornji Kovilj (Upper Kovilj) and Donji Kovilj (Lower Kovilj), which were two separate settlements in the past, but today are parts of one single settlement.

History and culture

In the 13th century, a settlement named Kabul was mentioned at this location. Other names used for the settlement in the past were Kaboli and Kobila, hence it is presumed that name of the settlement derived from Slavic word "kobila" ("mare" in English).

Donji Kovilj was first mentioned in 1554, and Gornji Kovilj in 1702. Two villages were joined in 1870. Near the village is well known Kovilj Monastery. The monastery was reconstructed in 1705-1707, but according to the legend, it was founded by the first Serb archbishop Saint Sava in the 13th century. There are also two Orthodox churches in the village, from 1824/28 and 1846 respectively.

Historical population

  • 1961: 5,448
  • 1971: 5,290
  • 1981: 5,279
  • 1991: 5,242

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