Matija Zmajević (also Matej Zmajević, in Russia Matvei Khristoforovich Zmayevich Russian: Матвей Христофорович Змаевич) (January 6, 1680, Perast, Bay of Kotor - August 23, 1735, Tavrov, Russia) was admiral of the Baltic Fleet and the shipbuilder of the famous Russian Tsar Peter I the Great, and for whom he built a fleet in Voronezh.
He was born in a prominent Croatian Catholic family from Perast (Bay of Kotor). His uncle Andrija Zmajević, poet, was a renowned Roman Catholic bishop of Antivari (Bar). The family was in conflict with another Perast family of Bujović, and after Vicko Bujović was killed in a fight on city streets, Matija was forced to leave Perast for alleged involvement when he was 28. He escaped to the Republic of Ragusa (Dubrovnik) and further to Istanbul, where he found refuge with Russian ambassador Peter Tolstoy. In 1712, Tolstoy sent him with recommendations to Peter I. Impressed with Zmajević's education and maritime skills, the tsar accepted him in military service and sent him to Sankt Petersburg with the rank of Captain of Fregate, and he continued to quickly climb naval ranks.