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To explain why peasants became Slovaks, this book asks why peasants did not become Hungarians, All-Slavs, or Czechoslovaks. Perhaps, however, the study of failed nationalism can help break the deadlock between the two camps. This book examines several failed attempts to appropriate, reinterpret or discard existing traditions.

The future, indeed, 4 Choosing Slovakia depends on the legacy of the past. By emphasizing failed national concepts, this narrative delineates some of the limitations on imagination and invention. All too often, historians describe national awakening as a triumphal morality tale in which heroic national awakeners found or redeem the nation, saving it from destruction. The national awakeners themselves, of course, understood their work in such heroic and primordialist terms. Nevertheless, historians who accept heroic narratives uncritically may go badly astray, treating failed national concepts as either pathetic objects of ridicule or existential threats.

Theorists of nationalism, speaking in the abstract, realize that the possibility of an alternative national community is morally neutral. I therefore justify my emphasis on failed national concepts as a corrective. Several authors have already traced the roots of modern Slovak nationalism for the Anglophone audience: the canonical Slovak success story needs critical debunking, not repetition or elaboration. This book therefore concentrates instead on the failure of Czechoslovakism, Slavism, and Hungarianism.

Of these three themes, furthermore, only Czechoslovakism has received any serious attention in Anglophone scholarship. Indeed, few scholars of Central or Eastern Europe have examined failed national movements, and fewer still have placed contingency in the forefront of analysis. A brief summary of such works may be instructive. Andrew Wachtel has studied the failure of Yugoslavism, usefully replacing the normal heroic narrative with tragedy. Wolff, however, worked almost exclusively from Italian National Awakening And Contingency 5 sources: the Morlacchi themselves rarely appear in his narrative.

Frederick Heymann attempted a joint history of Poland and Czechoslovakia, apparently seeking to explain why no common West-Slavic nation-state emerged, but his research seems to have persuaded him that Poland and Czechoslovakia were in fact quite different entities. In the marketplace of identities, why do only a few visions of the nation attract buyers? Why do some nationalisms fail? Firstly, I found it impossible to divide the Slovak intelligentsia into camps: the same individuals who outspokenly proclaimed their loyalty to Hungary also proclaimed their passionate Slavdom; and while a party of interwar Slovak nationalists vigorously rejected Czechoslovakia, the majority of Slovaks combined Czechoslovak and Slovak loyalties.

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I have therefore introduced a theory of multiple and simultaneous national loyalties. In Slovakia, national and linguistic concepts have diverged considerably, and influenced each other in a surprising fashion. This narrative pays particular attention to linguistic debates, which perhaps reflects the peculiarities of the Slovak case.

Several scholars have highlighted the importance of linguistic loyalties in Slovak nationalism. The chicken or the egg? Conversely, serious scholars of nationalism, particularly those working in the modernist tradition, understand that peasants were not always Slovaks; yet they accept a crude popular linguistics that appears to take for granted the primordial existence of the Slovak language. I suggest, however, that interdisciplinary analysis can provide a solution to the chicken-egg paradox. The final chapters of this book, therefore, focus on the development of Slovak linguistic concepts.

This narrative, finally, speaks to one of the great questions of history: the role of the individual, often reformulated in nationalism theory as the role of human will. The following chapter, chapter two, provides a brief survey of nineteenthcentury Hungarian history, the political context in which Slovak nationalism developed.

The analysis proper begins in chapter three with a study of Slovak loyalties to Hungary. Chapter nine, finally, suggests that the Czechoslovak republic, while attempting to promote a Czechoslovak nation, created the social conditions that generated Slovak particularist nationalism. Slovak national ideologies thus developed within a Hungarian context. This chapter provides a brief overview of the social position of Slovaks within Hungary, and the key events of nineteenth century Hungarian history.

The main theme of this narrative is the development of Hungarian nationalist ideas as they concerned Slovak interests. The relationship between Hungarian elites and the Habsburg family was often strained, but no foreign pretenders tarnished Habsburg legitimacy.

The population of Hungary contained extraordinary ethnic and religious diversity, which several observers saw as uniquely characteristic. I know of no other land in Europe which has so many nations, and speaks so many languages, in so many dialects. By , by which time census taking The Hungarian Context 9 had become systematic and sophisticated, Hungarian speakers were The Magyars crossed the 50 per cent mark in Ethnic groups in the kingdom of Hungary, as in several multi-ethnic societies throughout the world, were often concentrated on specific rungs of the social hierarchy.

Rusyns Ukrainians 5 and Romanians were mostly peasants. Germans lived mostly in towns, dominating artisan trades and the mining industry of northern Hungary. Hungarian Jews, as elsewhere in Central Europe, worked as merchants, tailors, moneylenders and innkeepers. Roma Gypsies , in addition to their proverbial talents as musicians, worked as blacksmiths or small traders.

In the mountainous parts of northern Hungary that are now administered by the Slovak republic, the nobility was almost exclusively Magyar or Magyarized, though a few Slavic-speaking nobles lived in the high Tatras. Slovaks were mostly peasants, laborers, or petty manufacturers. The mountainous soil in Slovakia is comparatively barren, and Slovak men often migrated seasonally to the plains for the harvest. In , English traveller Richard Bright, describing the services expected by Graf Hunyadi, compared the poverty and social exclusion of Hungarian serfs to that of American slaves.

He described Slovak peasants as follows: From the same little hat, covered with oil, falls the same matted long black hair, negligently pleated or tied in knots, and over the same dirty jacket and trowsers, is wrapped on each a cloak of coarse woolen cloth, or sheep-skin still retaining its wool. Whether it be winter or summer, 10 Choosing Slovakia week-day or sabbath, the Sclavonian of this district never lays aside his cloak, or is seen but in heavy boots.

The vicissitudes of such plans are quite beyond the scope of this book; note merely that liberal Magyar noblemen were responsible for ending Hungarian serfdom. Some Slovaks voiced their opposition to serfdom, but none played an important role in its abolition. No large town on the territory of the future Slovak republic had a predominantly Slovak population before the twentieth century. Several towns in the north of Hungary had been founded with medieval royal charters based on German city law; these mostly had German populations.

Czechoslovak urbanization and ethnic cleansing have left the city overwhelmingly Slovak today, but Hungarian and German are still widely spoken. Martin, the location of several nineteenth-century Slovak national institutions, had an overwhelmingly Slovak population throughout the nineteenth century, but was then and now a small provincial town. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, northern Hungary was an unusually urban part of Hungary.

Economic development had The Hungarian Context 11 social consequences: modernizing Hungary acquired proletarian workers, professional middle classes and decadent aesthetes, but these new social types were concentrated in Budapest, not the territory of the future Slovak Republic.

The large cities of the Habsburg Empire attracted Slovaks from the highlands by the tens of thousands; Slovaks contributed to the urban proletariat in Vienna, Budapest, Debrecen, and so on. At the end of the eighteenth century, the only literate social class in Slavic northern Hungary was the clergy.

A small secular Slovak intelligentsia, dominated by teachers, journalists, and lawyers, emerged in the second half of the nineteenth century. Slovak clerics, unsurprisingly, were divided along confessional lines; though Catholic-Protestant rapprochement for the sake of national solidarity proved a major theme of nineteenth-century Slovak history. Slovaks were mostly Catholic, with a Lutheran minority of around 15 per cent. Slovak patriots took the Christian character of their nation more or less for granted. Before the twentieth century, Jews in northern Hungary were not generally attracted to Slovak culture; Jewish assimilation in Hungary tended to produce Magyars.

Hungarian domestic politics was dominated by the Hungarian nobility, which was unusually vigorous by European standards. While the natio Hungarica saw itself as a sovereign political community, it was a social elite that excluded non-nobles. In , after a long and often strained apprenticeship under Maria Theresa, Joseph II finally ascended to the Austrian throne. Joseph genuinely desired to improve the lives of his subjects by increasing the efficiency of the imperial administration.

Joseph can be counted among the Enlightened despots, but was not particularly successful: pedantic, tactless, and uncharismatic, he could not understand why his well-intentioned reforms provoked so much popular resistance. And only he who is inexperienced in matters of Austrian government says that he was mistaken. By replacing Latin with German, Joseph hoped to make the imperial administration more efficient. Joseph chose German on utilitarian grounds. He treated his polyglot domains as a single unit, and on this basis German was the obvious choice for an official language.

German was the language of several Habsburg provinces Lower and Upper Austria, Tyrol and the Habsburg capital city, and was also spoken by significant minorities in several others Bohemia, Moravia, Silesia, Hungary, Transylvania. Even in provinces with small German populations Galicia, Bukovina , what German population existed was urban, and thus better able to provide administrators than the local peasantry.

No other language of the monarchy had anything approaching this geographic range, and no other language of the monarchy, except perhaps the demographically insignificant Italian, could boast equivalent literary achievements. The Hungarian nobility, however, restricted its horizons to the kingdom of Hungary. Inside the kingdom, German was the language of the highest aristocracy, which spent much of its time in Vienna, and of sundry merchants, soldiers, and officials.

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The nobility as a whole, however, mostly spoke Hungarian, and protested so vigorously against the introduction of German, that Joseph eventually backed down. The French Revolution temporarily put an end to Habsburg reforms, particularly in Hungary, where a Jacobin conspiracy was uncovered in Reform-minded circles and nervous monarchs cooperated during the Revolutionary wars, but when peace returned, so did the desire for reform.

The Hungarian Context 13 Hungarian liberals perceived their country as backwards in comparison to Britain, France, and even the more developed provinces of Austria. The Reform Era was an age of progress and development for Hungary. Inspired by social organizations he had observed in England, he also founded a racetrack and casino in Budapest; both became important national institutions. Hungarian national concepts evolved considerably during these years.

The origin of this new nationalism was the desire to overcome confessional differences. The Magyars, the dominant political group in the kingdom, began to emphasize their racial superiority. Hungarismus began to change into Magyarismus, and the less powerful groups — Slovaks, Rumanians, Croatians and Germans — were made to feel that they were inferior to the Magyar rulers. Slovak thinkers continued to promote variants of the Hungarus concept throughout the nineteenth century, long after Magyars had discarded it. This sounded the death knell for the Hungarus concept as far as public opinion was concerned.

It was discarded as a possible variant of Hungarian national concepts. With hindsight, it hardly stood a realistic chance of realization anyway. For the Magyar nobility, the Hungarian language became an important symbol of opposition to German-speaking Vienna, and the willingness to extend social rights to lesser nobles who lacked the advantages of a Latin or German education.

For lesser nobles, patriotism and personal interest coincided: Hungarian language administration promised abundant administrative sinecures for Hungarian-speakers. Hungarian reformers were only willing to accept into their ranks commoners who could display visible refinement and education. The resulting pressure for cultural homogeneity came to permeate all facets of Hungarian public life. One Hungarian county considered passing a law requiring public balls to play a Hungarian dance after every Polka.

In , Hungarian became obligatory for clergy, and the official language for royal petitions and communication between central and county authorities except in Croatia. Finally, in Hungarian became the sole language of the Hungarian courts, chancery, and parliament. Deputies unfamiliar with Hungarian received a six-year grace period to learn the new language,34 but even this concession was granted only grudgingly and resentfully. These would be 60, teachers of the Hungarian language, and after three years, 60, houses and in them , souls would be Magyarized.

After three years, these 60, soldiers would be billeted in another 60, houses, and if this process repeats for 12 years, then 1,, souls can be Magyarized. The monolingual national concept of ethnic Magyars ultimately came to be known as the Magyar politikai nemzet [Hungarian political nation]. Consequently, while a country can have only one nation, it can have a variety of peoples.

With this act they transform a people to a nation … likewise with this act, a people stamps its name, its character and its language on the land it settles, the society it establishes, and the political life it lives. It follows from this that in Hungary an aspect of political life is national only if it is Hungarian. The Magyar politikai nemzet nevertheless proved an effective rhetorical device for those Magyars who sought to justify Magyarization. Ferenc Pulszky expressed representative Maygar attitudes: What do we Hungarians demand of the Slavs … [? We want that all public documents in Hungary, including baptismal registries and assembly protocols, will be written in Hungarian, we want that the language of instruction will be Hungarian, which to some degree in Protestant schools has already been carried out in the course of this year, with a word, that the Hungarian language in every respect accepts all the rights of Latin; Slavic may be satisfied with those rights that it possessed earlier — Hungarian will however never violently force itself into the domestic circle.

It is completely natural that this too, with increasing education, will also become slowly Hungarianized [hungarisiert] … the most enthusiastic Slav becomes a Hungarian when he becomes a lawyer. Hungarian reformers believed, correctly, that a Slavic-speaking middle class would eventually challenge Magyar dominance of Hungary. They also feared, perhaps with justification, that an educated Slavic subculture posed a threat to the political unity of the kingdom. Yet even this exception proves the rule: assimilating Jews received a warmer welcome in Hungary than elsewhere in Central Europe.

Slavic intellectuals believed in their right to cultivate their language and literature, and bitterly resented all attempts at Magyarization. The Language War soured Slovak-Hungarian relations, and while the conflict ebbed and flowed, zero-sum linguistic conflict has remained a permanent feature of Slovak-Magyar relations ever since. The Language War was overtaken by great events beyond the Hungarian frontiers. On 24 February , the Bourbon monarchy was overthrown in Paris, and as the news reached Central Europe, a series of revolutions erupted in Italian, German, and Romanian lands.

The Habsburg Empire was shaken to its foundations: the government of Klemens von Metternich fell, Emperor Ferdinand I abdicated, and National Guards took power in the main cities of the Habsburg Empire. A flood of patriotism and optimism inundated the monarchy. Serfdom was abolished, and freedom of the press proclaimed. The leading figure in the Hungarian revolution, Lajos Kossuth, had won his reputation and influence through his outstanding ability as a journalist.

Polish and Ruthenian representatives from Galicia, with the peasant revolt of fresh in their minds, exchanged particularly harsh words. But no national group proved willing to sacrifice its particular interests in the name of Slavic solidarity. The longing for Slavic unity never fully recovered from the shock of this discovery. In the end, the congress was dissolved by imperial soldiers. Slovak leaders tried to reconcile Hungarian citizenship with Slavic loyalties.

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Peasant uprisings in Transylvania caused great material destruction. Kossuth fled to the Ottoman Empire, thence to Britain and America, and eventually died in Italian exile. All three had actively participated in the Language War; all three will be discussed in great detail below. Despite intermittent popular support,59 three attempts to instigate a general rising failed, and the volunteers were always defeated when they fought the Hungarian militia. This poor showing reflects Slovak military inexperience: the Slovak intelligentsia, recall, mostly consisted of priests and pastors. From a military perspective, the Hungarian Revolution had posed a bigger threat to Habsburg rule than any other national movement in the Empire.

Hungarian patriots organized several armies to resist the Habsburg forces, and won their share of victories. Indeed, the Habsburg government felt compelled to ask Imperial Russia for military assistance. The Habsburg Empire, in A. A new administration had to be appointed from scratch. Franz Joseph was understandably reluctant to entrust the Hungarian nobility that had led the Hungarian Revolution with much power.

Slovak memories of the Bach Regime are not nearly as dark as those of the Hungarians, since the pressure to Magyarize vanished. Nevertheless, Slovak national activity was forbidden, and members of the Slovak National Council were placed under house arrest. The strongly Catholic flavor of NeoAbsolutism also alienated the influential Slovak Lutheran intelligentsia. Nor did the new administration of Hungary create a Slovak autonomous region.

The Bach-era frontiers disregarded ethnographic boundaries,65 though two northern provinces of Hungary somewhat correspond to the Slavic zone see figure 2. Bohemia, Moravia, Galicia and Croatia existed not only as imagined communities, but also as administrative units with distinctive legal traditions, providing Czech, Polish and Croatian politicians with an arena in which to fight the national struggle.

Even the Rusyns of Subcarpathia briefly enjoyed an autonomous national district after the Revolution of The 11 July treaty of Villafranca forced the Habsburg monarchy to cede Lombardy to France and Piedmont, destroying its hegemony in northern Italy. This defeat in Italy, combined with Prussian success in the perpetual scrimmage for influence in the German Confederation, led Franz Joseph to seek greater domestic support. He dismissed Bach, lifted restrictions on press freedom and, with the February Patent of , created a parliament for the Empire.

Hungary received 85 seats in this reformed Reichsrat, far more than any other province. When Czech deputies began their own boycott in , Franz Joseph was forced to acknowledge that he had not reconciled his reform-minded subjects. When war broke out with Prussia in , the Reichsrat was suspended. The Hungarian Context Figure 2. Parliamentary politics, however, proved an ineffective means for promoting Slovak aims: the electoral law specified a property threshold so high that most Slovaks were disenfranchised. Slovaks attempted to compensate by seeking alliance with Rusyns in Subcarpathia, with whom they shared a Slavic language and social exclusion.

Two Slovaks won seats in the elections, but in , all Slovak candidates were defeated. The injustice of this complete disenfranchisement from Hungarian political life led Hurban to exclaim that Slovaks would defend their interests outside of parliament if denied representation inside it; this outburst cost him a fine and six months imprisonment. The Hungarian Context 25 Political winds, however, blew against the Slovak movement. Defeated by the Prussian army in , Franz Joseph, decided to make a deal with Hungarian liberals.

Matters that affected both halves of the empire, such as monetary policy, were dealt with by a complicated and constantly contested system of dual ministries. The emperor retained personal control over the army and foreign policy. Economically, the Ausgleich was also a success. During the Bach regime, an average of kilometers of railroad were built each year, after the Ausgleich, the figure jumped to The total assets in Hungarian banks more than tripled between and Nevertheless, many scholars hold the Ausgleich responsible for ultimate the collapse of the Habsburg monarchy by stifling Slavic aspirations.

During the s, Magyar politicians had scrupulously acknowledged the multi-ethnic nature of Hungarian society. After the Ausgleich, Magyars lost the desire to make these symbolic gestures. Slava celebrations in The Ausgleich gave the noble-dominated Hungarian parliament a free hand over nationality questions in the kingdom.

They responded with the infamous Nationalities Law of , law XLIV, which gave legal expression to the concept of the Magyar politikai nemzet. This equality of rights, insofar as it applies to the several languages in use in this country, may be modified by special dispositions only so far as these comport with the unity of the state, the practical necessities of government, and the administration of justice.

Though universities would be Hungarian, departments in minority literatures were permitted paragraph In the so-called Bihar points, he had insisted that Hungary retain an independent military and rejected any common ministries for the monarchy as a whole. Tisza became Prime Minister in This is especially the case in the northwestern Slovak counties, which are in any case the hotbed of Pan-Slavism.

But given the implacability of Magyar chauvinism, what was the best course of action for Slovak patriots? Answering this difficult question split the Slovak intelligentsia into two schools. One circle, daunted by the magnitude of defeat, argued that the The Hungarian Context 29 Memorandum had made unproductively radical demands and that modest objectives stood a better chance of being achieved. Step by step they accepted the Ausgleich and reduced Slovak demands up to the borders of collaboration. One Ondrej Halas had his mandate rejected seven times. The supremacy and hegemony of the Magyars is fully justified.

The government then prosecuted Hlinka and his colleagues for provocation, which brought the matter to international attention. The following year, they issued a joint protest against the Millennium celebrations in Budapest. The political events that led to the creation of a Czechoslovak state have been well-documented elsewhere, and will be briefly discussed in the final chapter. The essential point is that the Treaty of Trianon detached Slavic northern Hungary from the kingdom of Hungary. Most Slovak leaders welcomed this as liberation from tyranny. Fear of Slavic disloyalty to the kingdom of Hungary had inspired the policy of Magyarization, but Magyarization had caused so much discontent that Slovak leaders, when presented with the choice of continued loyalty to Hungary or an untried Czecho-Slovak Republic, chose the devil they did not know: Czechoslovakia.

The Slovaks suffered irreplaceable losses in their national potential. History, despite a popular proverb to the contrary, is not always written by the victors; but can only be written by the literate.

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The policy of Magyarization antagonized precisely that section of Slovak society capable of recording its discontent for future generations. The Slovak intelligentsia unwaveringly opposed Magyarization and suffered persecution in consequence, but Slovak peasants, laborers, and craftsmen rarely felt persecuted by Magyarization because they were not seriously affected.

Throughout the nineteenth century, the Slovak peasantry showed a surprising quiescence, even by the lethargic standards of peasant populations. Consider the Slovak volunteers, the only Slovak organization to resist the Hungarian state with force of arms. When the Slovak National Council organized the volunteers in Vienna, it could only find 50 Slovak recruits, though many more Slovaks rallied to it after it crossed into Hungary.

A Slovak independence movement from the s provided precedent and thus implicit justification for the ethnic partition of Hungary. Before the Treaty of Trianon, however, even Slovaks who had been radicalized in America expressed Hungarian loyalties. The following chapter will argue that Slovaks felt a genuine sense of loyalty and affection for the Hungarian homeland throughout the long nineteenth century.

Slovak nationalists vigorously resisted Magyarization and displayed tenacious loyalty to their own language, however imagined. Nevertheless, they sought to fulfill their national aspirations within the context of the Hungarian state. The most common tactic was to proclaim both autochthony and loyalty to the Hungarian kingdom.

Since Slovak aims could only be achieved if Magyar policy makers were converted to a multi-ethnic vision of Hungary, Slovak patriots also sought reconciliation with ethnic Magyars. Hungaro-Slavism combined political loyalty to the kingdom of Hungary with cultural loyalty to a Slavic linguistic collective.

These linguistic loyalties were very complex; subsequent chapters will discuss the interplay of All-Slavic, Czechoslovak, and Slovak particularist concepts. This chapter examines political arguments, cultural phenomena, and patriotic organizations inspired by Hungaro-Slavism. Several histories of Slovakia mistakenly equate opposition to Magyarization and opposition to the Hungarian state. To demonstrate the ubiquity of Hungaro-Slavic loyalties, this chapter errs on the side of excessive documentation, discussing the canonical figures of nineteenth century Slovak history perhaps at the cost of excessive repetition.

The following chapter will examine Hungaro-Slavic national concepts as a form of nationalism. Hungaro-Slavism was an ideology of being Hungarian. Hungaro-Slavism, by contrast, proclaimed that one could be the latter without being the former. Let us begin by examining the Hungarian terminology in some detail. Szamota treated all these terms as stylistic alternatives, though the word Pannonian, popular with Hungarian political writers, sometimes implied [Hterritorial].

Hungary has seven million people A hundred great cities are enclosed with it, … The Hungarian, Slav, and German have a homeland here, but the Slavs are possibly the most powerful in number. The second couplet, claiming that Slavs have numerical superiority over other ethnic groups in Hungary, juxtaposes the Hungarian Slav with an ethnically Magyar Uher [Hethnic].

Slovaks only began to draw a lexical distinction between [Hethnic] and [Hterritorial] during the Reform Era. The earliest texts to make this distinction were written in German. Magyaren, on the other hand, are only those who form the main nation, those who call themselves the Magyarok. By ugarskom we understand the whole kingdom, including all peoples [narode], who live there; namely slavjane, magjare, Germans, Vlachs, etc. A notable instance of this contestation occurred in a famous correspondence, published in , between Czech nobleman Leo Thun and Hungarian Count Ferenc Pulszky.

It may be that they originally had an equal right to both names, but the way things have developed, one understands with the word Ungarn all citizens without considering language or nationality; if we were therefore to fulfill the demands of the Magyaren, we would decide the question in advance to their advantage.

Pulszky, however, refused to acknowledge that the topic was worth discussing. The philological dispute whether to say magyarisch or ungrisch always seems very peculiar, because I, accustomed to thinking in Hungarian, find no relevant expression for these divided concepts — seriously Hungaro-slavism: Imagining A Slavic Hungary 39 pursuing a dispute on this topic would be more appropriate, in my opinion, for the age of the Byzantine Greeks than for our own. My sweetheart works in Pest my heart longs for her and I left her there I do not know where I am going.

Ay, my God, my God What do I achieve by sighing? Ay, whether a widow or young girl, Who will be my sweetheart? My translation indicates the original languages: Slavic, Latin, Hungarian. Figure 3. Knowing a sermon is useful, The immature do not think about it … youth: All sermons have been published, if one would gain praise with them, The desire for praise makes the fruit go rotten and leads to lost merit … not intelligence. Above the Slovak hills, dark clouds are gathering; The moon, on this day after days, in the tall sky, Above the Slovak hills, from mother in the Tatras, On this clear night of nights, is flickering; And from hill to hill, the land knows to array the land, As the Slovak nation sends out the call to arms.

Consider Miroslav Hurban, whom contemporaries saw as the main leader of the Slovak volunteers. Hurban, as Hroch might have predicted, had started his patriotic work editing volumes of poetry. He later participated in the Prague Slavic Congress. Of the Slovak leaders of his generation, Hurban paid the most attention to land reform, arguing that peasants should receive land with the abolition of serfdom. Spending the night at a Moravian inn, the innkeeper asked him where he was from.

My love for you is great, but even greater is my love for the Hungarian homeland! Sweetly pleasing is this name! How much blood has flown to the glory of this name! But that blood belonged not to one nation alone: for the holy Hungarian land streams of youthful blood have gushed … from the Tatras and the Carpathians, from … the shores of the Sava, from the Danube and Tisza and from the broad fields of the lowlands. Oh my dear homeland, Hungarian land, my heart beats for you with an ardent love.

Other examples would be easy to cite; such rhetoric was ubiquitous. That the Hungarian Rusyns and Slovaks should be recognized by the Magyars in parliament as a nation having equal rights as themselves. That they will have national parliaments with their own permanent Slovak-Rusyn committee, having the right and obligation to guard the national rights of Slovaks and Rusyns … 3.

That there will be founded national schools, initially grade schools, urban institutes in the diocese, and foundations for educating teachers, further advanced literary institutes, namely gymnasia, lyceums, academies, polytechnical foundations, and a university.

Let language learning be Slovak and Rusyn, and free learning the basis of national education … 5. That no nation in Hungary will be declared a ruling nation, and all will have equal rights. Hungaro-slavism: Imagining A Slavic Hungary 47 Even after the optimistic atmosphere of the March days gave way to paranoia and conflict, the Slovak leadership retained its Hungarian loyalties. That the Slovak nation, around 3 million strong, be recognized as a nation within well-defined state borders.

We demand that country, which we have inhabited since the most ancient times, where our own language is normally used domestically and in public life, … be united from many countries into a united political whole which has never ceased to be called a Slovak country, Slovakia.


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Nevertheless, they were only willing to make this choice when forced by extreme circumstances. Most Slovaks, through most of the Revolution, sought to secure linguistic rights within Hungary. Even the March petition shows no desire for Slovak statehood: the idea of an independent Slovak political unit apparently had not occurred to anyone. Instead, Hungaro-Slavism was briefly transformed into Austro-Slavism. After the revolutionary confrontation abated, however, Slovak nationalists returned to their traditional Hungaro-Slavism.

Lichard makes clear that Slovaks were also Hungarians [uhri]. In this political sense, we Slovaks too are Uhri; but from the national point of view we cannot be and are nothing else but Slovaks. In the state of Hungary-Austria, and particularly in the country of Hungary. Slovaks patriots saw no distinction between Slovak and Hungarian loyalties: the one implied the other. For this reason, they have decided to found a Matica, all the Slavic nations of Hungary together.

Certainly they extended their patriotic activity beyond the Slovak ethnoterritory, and sought to collaborate with Slavs other than Slovaks. The Slovak Memorandum, which demanded a Slovak administrative district, also proclaimed Hungarian loyalties. The leading figures of the Memorandum movement, however, expressed similar Hungarian loyalties when speaking to a Slovak audience. Hungaro-Slavism survived in the early decades of the twentieth century.

An outspoken proponent of Czechoslovak unity, he had a prominent political career in the first Czechoslovak republic. We are in Hungary and we want to preserve our rights [there]. As late as , Slovak politicians saw themselves as political Hungarians. It came into being in the early nineteenth century, in response to Magyarization, and disappeared in the early twentieth.

Other nationalism theorists, however, anticipate the phenomenon of Hungaro-Slavism. The attractions of Hungaro-Slavism are obvious: it offered Slovaks linguistic and cultural fulfillment without the threat of political or military conflict. After the collapse of the Habsburg Empire, of course, Slovak thought underwent a revolutionary transformation. Hungaro-Slavism transforms the story of Hungarian ethnic relations during the nineteenth century.

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Since the Magyars developed the Magyar politikai nemzet early in the nineteenth century, Anglophone historians, who rarely read both Hungarian and Slovak, have dismissed multi-ethnic Hungarian loyalism as transient and insignificant. Slovak historians also date the decline of multi-ethnic Hungarian national concepts to the early nineteenth century.

It could not in any way have been written in the years The Magyars, however, were not the only Hungarians, and Slovak thinkers perpetuated multi-ethnic Hungarian national concepts for much longer. Hungaro-Slavism was not a holdover from the eighteenth century, but a response to the Magyarization and the Magyar politikai nemzet. Hungaro-slavism: Imagining A Slavic Hungary 53 The Slovak emphasis on Hungarian citizenship, invoked to win linguistic rights within a Hungarian context, explains why Slovaks expressed so little interest in Russia as a protector or political ally.

Despite Hungarian and German fears, hardly any Slovaks showed an interest in becoming part of a Russian state. Even if one ignores political loyalties to focus exclusively on linguistic nationalism, Russians occupied a less important place in the Slovak imagination than Czechs, Rusyns and Croats. Given repeated Slovak declarations of loyalty to Hungary, the hysterical tone of Magyar rhetoric seems, at the very least, counterproductive. Magyar leaders chose to remain willfully unaware of Slovak loyalism, apparently because of their tremendous fear of Russia.

Perhaps Magyar anxieties would be assuaged if Slovaks could simply explain their position more clearly? Slovak leaders thus tried to solve the problem of Magyarization through gentle persuasion until the First World 54 Choosing Slovakia War, by which time members of the Hungarian parliament had spent eight decades ignoring Slovak grievances.

The Austrian side listed the denomination of the banknote in all the languages of the Austrian half of the monarchy: Czech, Polish, Romanian, Italian, Slovene, Croatian, Serbian in Cyrillic, otherwise identical with the Croatian , and Ruthenian. The interwar Hungarian government, by contrast, symbolically claimed the non-Magyar nationalities of former Hungary by printing German, Slovak, Serbian, Ukrainian and Romanian on its banknotes.

Hungaro-Slavism was a form of nationalism, and even followed the Hroch schema. It appeared in German-language texts directed at an interethnic read: Magyar audience, but also in Slovak journalism and private correspondence. It endured to the end of the Habsburg monarchy. Nevertheless, Hungaro-Slavism has not received its due attention in Slovak historiography: to the best of my knowledge, only Theodore Locher has even attempted an analysis. Yet it depends on a selective reading of the historical record.


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Solidarity and mutual respect were dominant themes in Slovak nationalism throughout the nineteenth century. Several scholars have defined nationalism in terms of political sovereignty or the desire to achieve it. One answer to this question lies in the rhetoric of historical actors. Slovak authors never developed a consistent terminology, so formulations of dual nationality varied. Nevertheless, Hungaro-Slovak dual nationality forms a coherent tradition, since similar national concepts justified similar political goals. He discussed dual nationality at length in his Apologie des ungrischen Slawismus.

If one asks which language they speak at home, what their mother language is, among which people they Slovak Theories Of Dual Nationality 57 grew up and were educated? How many sweet and dear things this word contains! We would call this a Panslavism of love. Such fine distinctions stood little chance of winning a mass audience.

This is an important difference. Then the nation is merely an ape for other national nations. It would rather know every foreign language before its own, it works well, but it works on the publications of other nations, but not for its own movement. This bewildering terminology, however, obscured a straightforward political stance: both wanted the Hungarian government to stop the policy of Magyarization and accept Slavic cultural ambitions. To the best of my knowledge, theories of Hungaro-Slavic dual nationalism were not published in the s, since discussions of nationality were interrupted throughout the Habsburg lands under the Bach regime.

Theories of Hungaro-Slavic nationality, however, lay fallow until the collapse of neoabsolutism. During the s, however, thinkers in the HungaroSlavic tradition began to devise an effective terminology for articulating dual national loyalties. So by us in Hungary [w Uhorskej], there can be no demands of a Slovak nation, even if these Slovaks were a hundred times as numerous, but there can only be a Hungarian nation.

Linden: I understand this to mean that all Slavs are our brothers. Yet their nationalities are different, and when one should deal with national-political affairs, with nationally organized communities, districts, local communities, with communal, district and local meetings, from national officials and professors, with schools in the mother tongue, then the Hungarian parliament must separate into national curia.

This means that the following curia must be established: Serbian, Slovak, Magyar, and Romanian, and each of these curia should deal only with the national-political affairs of its own nation. Slovak leaders then attempted to appropriate the phrase for their own ends. All of these genetic nations, forming the political nation, are completely equal. Slovak Theories Of Dual Nationality 63 3. In Hungary, there are two administrative languages: The state and the municipal.

The state language is exclusively Magyar. The state language is used exclusively for every act of state, in other words in the parliament, in the ministries, and in the highest court. Municipal languages are used in cities and counties. In cities and counties the municipal language is the language in daily use by the absolute majority of the inhabitants.

Slovaks are a nation by reason of their thoughts, language, life, poetry, literature, common life, virtues, piety, wisdom, glory; nationality, that is shame. The status of nationhood apparently implied legitimate political sovereignty; to cede it would have meant abandoning the right to claim collective political rights. Zmertych formulated Hungaro-Slavic dual nationality so clearly that I have adopted his vocabulary. Zmertych also demarcated a clear border between the two different nations. A political nation, according to Zmertych, has five characteristics: A lawful leader, a well-defined fatherland, its own constitution and laws, its own customs and habits, and its own history.

Zmertych saw no need for linguistic nations to have political or administrative expression. Slovak Theories Of Dual Nationality 65 These formulae of Hungaro-Slovak dual nationalism may strike modern readers as exotic, but they represented the main stream of Slovak thinking in the nineteenth century. The continuity of Hungaro-Slavic theories throughout the nineteenth century is striking. Figure 4. Further research would presumably uncover other similar formulae: theories of dual national loyalty accurately express the HungaroSlavism that dominated nineteenth century Slovak nationalism.

While Slovaks expressed Hungaro-Slavic ideas in both the Slovak language press and private correspondence, their national discussions were most sophisticated and theoretical when written in German for a Magyar audience. However, Slovak theories of dual nationality call for a substantial re-evaluation both of the traditional narrative of Slovak nationalism, and of the high-political school of nationalism discussed in the last chapter.

This definition, however, leads inevitably to the conclusion that the nineteenth century Slovak intelligentsia, which fought so tirelessly if ineffectively for Slovak rights, contained no Slovak nationalists! Slovak patriots reaffirmed their loyalty to the Hungarian kingdom repeatedly and, I believe, sincerely. While they vigorously defended their language and consistently demanded an autonomous region, they explicitly disassociated the struggle for linguistic rights and autonomy from political independence.

This conclusion is less absurd than it first appears and yields interesting new interpretations. The Slovak volunteers, for example, become a faction on the winning side of a Hungarian civil war. Nevertheless, the nineteenth-century Slovak intelligentsia cannot be understood solely in Hungarian terms, and the desire for statehood thus does not explain the emergence of Slovak nationalism. Nineteenth-century Slovak nationalists were Hungaro-Slavs: they sought to combine political loyalty Slovak Theories Of Dual Nationality 67 to Hungary with cultural loyalty to a Slavic culture, variously imagined.

Before the Revolution of , the Croatian national movement resembled its Slovak counterpart: both opposed Magyarization in the name of a linguistic collective, and both Croatian and Slovak nationalists participated in the same All-Slavic politics. We want to have our national language, given to us by nature itself. We know that when the language of a nation dies, the nation dies with it. To have our national literature, because without national literature, the language must go down to ruin … 5. To remain, as we have been until now, brethren of the Magyars, under the Hungarian constitution.

The medieval Croatian kingdom had long enjoyed legal distinctiveness within the kingdom of Hungary, and Magyar liberal reformers were willing 68 Choosing Slovakia to grant Croatia a special status, not least because respect for Croatian legal rights legitimated their own demands against Vienna. Nagdoba Croatia was not an independent state; it did not even have the authority of an Austrian Crownland. It did, however, possess all the powers demanded in the Slovak Memorandum. Compared to the Croats, Slovaks were disenfranchised.

Slovaks lacked a political district, any school system beyond the elementary level, and the right to use their language in regional administration or local courts. This denial of nation status accompanied specific acts of oppression. In which province? Striving for political independence must not be treated as a defining characteristic of nationalism.

The Magyar political elite consistently opposed the development of Slavic culture in Hungary, hoping instead to assimilate the Slavs to Magyar culture. The Slovak political movement came into existence precisely to resist Magyarization. So why did Slovaks so consistently invoke a nation that united them with their primary enemies? This hope persisted during the early months of the Revolution.

We believe that they want to direct every effort to solve the struggles between nationalities. A nationalist cannot have a lickspittle approach to his model. Or are you, my Lord, for your own person, against the idea of Magyarization? Ei, if this were the case, so we beg you, that you make your thoughts clear as soon as possible, because your word is a talisman, and in its possession we would become more peaceful. Slovak linguistic nationality, he wrote, has never been disputed by the Hungarians, even though it cannot be denied that in the previous thirty years — as the giant ghost of Panslavism appeared in the literature and the Hungarians, in the first stages of building their own nationality, afraid and the first to be threatened by this same ghost, were stunned; — and even later as well — and some things happened in which the linguistic national demands of the Slovaks were cut short; but today, by contrast, there are no longer any rational Hungarians who would not acknowledge the previous concepts with regret.

Pastor, your grace, I thank you from the heart … that you have brought me onto the path of righteousness, you may be certain that I see that the Slovak demands are just, and I am convinced that liberty, equality and fraternity will only reign in our country when they are fulfilled. If the Magyars would only recognize the injustice of Magyarization, they would appreciate the Slavic contribution to the Hungarian kingdom and willingly help Slovaks promote their culture.

While the Polish, Czech and Croatian intelligentsias fought to control provincial governments that roughly corresponded to ethnic territories, the Slovak national territory was subsumed within Hungary. Such a district never came into being, however, so Slovak leaders hoped to achieve their national goals through moral persuasion.

Nevertheless, this strategy of nationalist supplication proved unsuccessful. Slovak demands mostly concerned language rights, which unfortunately are a zero-sum game: Slovak gains would necessarily come at Hungarian expense. Magyar pundits, journalists and policy makers ignored Slovak political appeals in the name of a multi-ethnic Hungary, and proved consistently unwilling to grant Slovaks any collective rights.

Magyar stubbornness and chauvinism may have ultimately proved selfdefeating. It created bitterness and desperation among the Slovak intelligentsia. That said, Slovaks might never have broken with Hungary had traumatic defeat in the First World War not shattered the legitimacy of the Habsburg imperial system.

Special emphasis, however, must also be placed on the diversity of linguistic national concepts in nineteenth-century Slovakia. Indeed, Slovak Austro-Slavism is conspicuous by its absence. The diversity of linguistic concepts, however, cannot be explained away. North Hungarian Slavism, in effect, combined Slovaks and Rusyns into a single collective. Several northern Hungarian counties contained both Slovak and Rusyn populations; by proclaiming the unity of North Hungarian Slavs, Slovaks hoped that Slovaks and Rusyns together could form a broader political base.

A Slovak mining district elected him to the Hungarian parliament in ; he won electoral support from Slovaks on the basis of his education, Czech contacts, and possibly his Slovak spouse. The Magyar elite had not forgotten his collaboration with the Russian army, proclaimed him a traitor and refused to recognize his mandate for parliament. North Hungarian Slavism was a fashion of , vanishing when it ceased to yield political dividends. But so long as Slovaks sought to work 74 Choosing Slovakia with Rusyn leaders, they justified the alliance with an appropriately imagined national community.

Assuming that Slovak leaders invoked whatever national concept promoted their political aims best explains nineteenth century Czechoslovakism. On the ruins of all cultural centers in Slovakia we must doubly proclaim the inevitability of this unity, we must cultivate it with all our strength, sustain ourselves with the fruits of this our common culture. To understand the development of Slovak nationalism after , therefore, requires a closer examination of Slovak linguistic nationalism.

Slovak linguistic thought turns out to be even more complex than Slovak national thought. This is a mistake: as observed above, Slovak thinkers promoted diverse linguistic concepts. The intellectual history of Slovak linguistic loyalties has a complex trajectory with several phases, and its turning points differ from the milestones of Hungarian political history. A discussion of Slovak linguistic thought requires an appropriate analytical vocabulary.

This breaks with existing precedent, so this chapter ends with a critique of existing terminology and a plea for new analytical terms. It refers to 1 a series of standardized conventions for spelling and grammar, as codified in dictionaries and school primers. To specify this first meaning, scholars frequently use a modifying adjective, e. Since every town or village has its distinctive speech peculiarities, the speech of any arbitrarily defined territory always differs from neighboring territories.

Analyzing political claims legitimated with linguistic arguments requires that all three concepts be distinguished with a neutral analytical terminology. Proper linguists, for their part, frequently declare the entire discussion pointless: as R. We should instead ask how language-hood, as a political and cultural form, has been institutionalized.

How has it worked as a practical category, classificatory scheme and cognitive frame? A script, in this sense, is more than an alphabet: it also implies grammatical rules and a standardized vocabulary. This book, however, is not a linguistic study and does not pretend to provide a comprehensive treatment of Slovak linguistics. The narrative concentrates instead on the national meanings of script codifications. Standardized spelling and orthography depend on schooling, and thus on the idiosyncratic choices of individual grammarians and pedagogues.

The Kralice Bible had a Moravian origin: it had been written in the Moravian town of Kralice and was most frequently published in Halle or Prague. The narrative can now turn to the history of Slovak linguistic nationalism, and its complex interaction with the history of Slovak script codification. The next chapter examines Slovak All-Slavism, the dominant theme in Slovak linguistic nationalism for the first half of the nineteenth century.

It emphasizes All-Slavism, the idea that all Slavs speak the same language, since this was the dominant theme in Slovak thought. Balancing the perceptions of nineteenth-century Slovaks with the linguistic reality of nineteenth-century Slovakia can be a delicate business. What can be said about the linguistic situation in on the lands which now constitutes the Slovak Republic? Apart from a Magyar-speaking fringe on the southern frontier with Hungary, German-speaking urban communities in the high Tatras, and assorted tiny linguistic minorities, the speech used on this territory belonged to the Slavic linguistic family.

Slovak linguistic ideology therefore addressed not only the Slovak-Hungarian relationship, but also the relationship between Slovak varieties and the rest of the Slavic world. The Slavic-speaking world contains considerable diversity in both speech pronunciation, grammar, vocabulary and script alphabet, spelling. Reference works usually present their 80 Choosing Slovakia taxonomy as timeless and unchanging, though they sometimes acknowledge the presence of dissenting opinions.

Northern Hungary was relatively slow to develop important centers of Slavic literary life. Slavic documents from northern Hungary date back to ,5 but other parts of the Slavic world had already developed important traditions of scholarship and learning by this date. Relative provinciality persisted into the nineteenth century. Before , most books published on the territory of the future Slovak republic were written in Latin.

Another 9 per cent were published in Slavic, 9 per cent in German, 1 per cent in Hungarian, and 0. Since print-culture came relatively late to Slavic north Hungary, it developed under the influence of external models. The Kralice Bible, whose orthography inspired the first attempts to render Slovak speech in print, had originally been imported from the Czech lands. Change from one hexachord to another was possible, called a mutation. A major problem with the system was that mutation from one hexachord to another could introduce intervals like the tritone that musicians of the time considered undesirable.

To avoid the dissonance, a practice called musica ficta arose from the late 12th century onward. This introduced modifications of the hexachord, so that "false" or "feigned" notes could be sung, partly to avoid dissonance. That means they refer to a group of notes around the marked note, rather than indicating that the note itself is necessarily an accidental.

The use of either the mi-sign on F or the fa-sign on G means only that "some kind of F goes to some kind of G, proceeding by a semitone". As polyphony became more complex, notes other than B required alteration to avoid undesirable harmonic or melodic intervals especially the augmented fourth, or tritone , that music theory writers referred to as diabolus in musica , i. Nowadays "ficta" is used loosely to describe any such un-notated accidentals. The implied alterations can have more than one solution, but sometimes the intended pitches can be found in lute tablatures where a fret is specified.

The convention of an accidental remaining in force through a measure developed only gradually over the 18th century. Before then, accidentals only applied to immediately repeated notes or short groups when the composer felt it was obvious that the accidental should continue.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Look up accidental in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. The most common accidentals. From left to right: flat , natural , and sharp. The two double accidentals. From left to right: double flat and double sharp. A common notation for quarter tones. From left to right, half-flat, flat-and-a-half, half-sharp, sharp-and-a-half. New York: Routledge, New York: W. Double flat —lowers the pitch two half steps. The Flat, Sharp, and Natural. A Historical Sketch. Proceedings of the Musical Association, 16th Sess.

Norton, : — Latin test in Martin Gerbert, Scriptores ecclesistici de musica sacra potissimum, 3 vols. Blasien, , —46, See also Clause V. Citation on pp. Harvard Dictionary of Music 2nd ed. Harvard University Press. Bent, David W. Hughes, Robert C. Musical notation. History of music publishing Music engraving Popular-music publisher Sheet-music publisher Scorewriter. Mensural notation Music stand Sight-reading Sight singing Transcription.

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