PIROT (Turkish Shehr-Kcey), a Servian town, i2^m. from the Bulgarian frontier at Tsaribrod, on the railway line between Nish and Sofia. Pop. (1900), 10,428. Pirot is the seat of the prefecture for the department of the same name, with a tribunal, several schools and a custom-house. It is the only proper industrial town in Servia, having numerous small factories for the manufacture of thin cloth (shayak), woollen braid (gaylan), and especially carpets. Its carpets have a great reputation in the Balkan Peninsula for their quaint designs, durability and freshness of colour. Pirot has a medieval fortress, believed to have been built on the site of the Roman fortress Quimedava, on the military road leading from Old Naissus to Phiiippopolis. The town is of great strategical importance, for which reason the Russian plenipotentiaries at the Berlin congress (1878) stubbornly tried to include it within the Bulgarian frontier, while Austria and some other Powers insisted that it should be given to Servia. In the war between Servia and Bulgaria in 1885 the Bulgarians occupied and held it until the conclusion of peace.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)