Prota Mateja Nenadovic (1777 – 1854) was the Duke in the First Serbian Uprising, the founder and president of the Sovereign Council and a diplomat. He established the first diplomatic contacts of the Rebels with foreign countries (Russia and Turkey).
He was born in Brankovina in 1777, in the family of Prince Aleksa Nenadovic. His most important work is Memoirs written in Serbian folk language.
Prota Mateja Nenadovic is one of the organizers of the First Serbian Uprising in Valjevo region, Duke and statesman. He traveled to Russia and established the first inbound links with her, and traveled several times to Austria to procure weapons and ammunition. He commanded part of the rebelion in the liberation of Valjevo and Šabac in 1804, Karanovac (now Kraljevo) and Uzice in 1805 and part of the cavalry at the Battle of Misar in 1806. From 1805 to In 1807 he was the first president of the Sovereign Council , and from 1807 to 1811 was it’s member, then the Tamnava Duke, and with Luka Lazarevic, commander of the insurgency forces on the Drina River.
In the Turkish offensive against Serbia in 1813, he commanded with Simon Markovic insurgents on the front of Loznica to the mouth of the Drina. After the fall of Serbia he moved to Austria and in the period 1814-1815. tried to get The Great Forces interested for the struggle of Serbia against Turkey. After the outbreak of the Second Serbian Uprising, he moved to Serbia, became Valjevo prince and member of the People’s Office. Because of disagreement with the mode of reign of the prince Milos, he was retired in 1832.
A member of the newly formed State Council became 1838, but because of disagreement with Prince Michael had to leave Serbia in 1840. After the arrival of Alexander Karadjordjevic in 1842, he became a state adviser to the Prince of Serbia; In 1844, he and his men quenched the Katana rebellion against the prince’s power; He retired in 1852. He died in Valjevo on December 11, 1854 (29. November 1854 by the Julian calendar).
He wrote a book of his memories „Memoirs“. His „Memoirs“, in addition to the literary value,
are a valuable document of time.
About the first session of the Council of Governors, the Sovereign Council;
„We find a certain peasant, and go and make us out of the linden, a desk and two benches; place in a single room; we place a single scarf on the desk, we placed the Holy Gospel and the monastery cross, and we do the meeting.“
Prota Matija, in the Voljavca monastery.