Once, numerous children could be seen on pastures, guarding and tending flocks of sheep, goats and herds of cows. Children used to be the only available shepherds in families raising livestock. Our forefathers spent their childhood on pastures of Herzegovina, Montenegro, Šumadija and Stara planina, having a piece of cheese in their colourful sacks, running after the sheep, armed with a stick. Some would even have a wooden flute. There are also shepherds whose profession is taking care of the animals, particularly in the mountainous regions where livestock is taken to summer pastures. A shepherd’s profession entails a semi nomadic lifestyle, watching constantly over the animals – keeping them together and safe from wolves. he has a sheepdog to help him and there may often be a horse. Whereas a shepherd’s profession used to be quite common in the past, today is rather hard to find one, even if it is a very well paid job in many regions.
Čoban, Tur. çoban, (from Persian šoban),–ban, meaning a keeper, guardian
RELIGION AND TRADITION
In Christianity, a shepherd, as a keeper of the flock, is a symbol of Christ, who said that He was a Good Shepherd, giving His life for His sheep, for the Church. Also, every priest and a bishop is called a shepherd, and the office of a shepherd means a service in managing the Church. A Bishop’s staff, a Crosier, actually comes from a shepherd’s staff.
In early fresco paintings we find a common representation of Christ as a young beardless boy, carrying a lost lamb over his shoulder, known as the Good Shepherd.