Hungarian Slovenes

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Hungarian Slovenes (Slovene: Madžarski Slovenci, Hungarian : Magyarországi szlovének) are an autochthonous ethnic and linguistic Slovene minority living in Hungary. The largest groups are the Rába Slovenes (Slovene : porabski Slovenci, dialectically: vogrski Slovenci, bákerski Slovenci, porábski Slovenci) in the Rába Valley in Hungary between the town of Szentgotthárd and the borders with Slovenia and Austria. They speak the Prekmurje Slovene dialect. Outside the Rába Valley, Slovenes mainly live in the Szombathely region and in Budapest. [1]

Contents

History

Monument to the Slovene culture in Hungary, made from a rock from Mount Triglav, in the village of Orfalu (Andovci), Vas county Andovci-MaliTriglav.JPG
Monument to the Slovene culture in Hungary, made from a rock from Mount Triglav, in the village of Orfalu (Andovci), Vas county

The ancestors of modern Slovenes have lived in the western part of the Carpathian basin since at least the 6th century AD; their presence thus dates back to before the Magyars came into the region. They formed the Slavic Balaton Principality and were later incorporated in Arnulf's Kingdom of Carantania which extended to most of modern south-eastern Austria, southern Hungary and northern Croatia. After the Hungarian invasion in the late 9th century, most of the local Slavs were magyarized. Between the 11th and 12th century, the current linguistic and ethnic border between the Hungarian and Slovene people was established.[ citation needed ]

In the 10th century, the western border of the Kingdom of Hungary was fixed on the river Mura, so the region between the Mura and the Rába rivers, known in Slovene as Slovenska krajina and in Hungarian as Vendvidék, inhabited by Slovenes, remained in Hungary. After World War One, there was a failed attempt by a small group of Hungarian Slovenes to acquire independence (see Slovene March and Mura Republic). In 1919, the majority of the region was annexed to the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (later renamed to Yugoslavia), and became known under the name of Prekmurje. Only a small portion in the Vas County, in the triangle between the northern border of Slovenia, the Raba river and Austria, remained in Hungary.

In 1920, the number of Slovenes that had remained in Hungary was estimated at around 7,000, but in the next decades many of them emigrated to other Hungarian cities, mostly to Budapest. In 2001, there were around 5,000 Slovenes in Hungary, of whom only around 3,000 remained in their original settlement zone in western Vas county, with others living mostly in larger urban areas.

Language and terminology

The Hungarian Slovenes speak a specific dialect of Slovene (the Prekmurje Slovene), which is almost identical with the dialect spoken in the Prekmurje region of Slovenia. The traditional Magyar name for the Slovenes used to be Vendek or Vends; as a result, many Slovenes in Hungary accepted this name as a common denomination, although in their dialect, they always referred to themselves as "Slovenes". In the last decades of the 19th century, and especially during the Horthy regime, the denomination "Wends" was used in order to emphasize the difference between the Hungarian Slovenes and other Slovenes, including attempts in creating a separate identity.

Religion

Differently from their counterparts in Prekmurje, where there is a significant Lutheran minority, almost all Rába Slovenes are Roman Catholic, with religion playing an important role in their local traditions and communal life.[ citation needed ]

Slovenes in Somogy

In the 17th and 18th century numerous Slovene families from Vas County settled down in Somogy County. According to research, there were 16 Slovene settlements in three country districts (Csurgó, Nagyatád, Marcali). The Slovenes came to Somogy County from what is now known as Prekmurje in two waves: the first was caused by Ottoman attacks around 1600 and the second took place in the 18th century, when they escaped persecution of their Protestant faith. In most cases, the Slovenes who immigrated to Somogy gradually became assimilated into the local Hungarian surroundings. Today, only a few indications that evoke the historic presence of Slovenes in Somogy County still exist. Among them, the most evident is the local cuisine.

The other most relevant reminiscence of Slovene presence is the wedding custom in Tarany, where the figure of the guest caller at weddings, still present in the local traditions of the Slovenes from the Rába and those from the Prekmurje region in Slovenia, has been maintained. Both in Tarany and in the Rába Region the guest caller is dressed in a robe decorated with knitting. In addition, he carries a stick with a hedgehog fur wrapped round its bottom. The customs at the deathbed, the vigile and funerals are also similar. Furthermore, the descendants of the Slovenes in Somogy do not observe the typical Hungarian Easter Monday custom, in which men and boys douse women and girls with Eau de Cologne, otherwise typical in the region.

Whereas the Slovenes from the Rába Region still maintain their language and culture, the consciousness of the inhabitants of Tarany about their ancestors is in constant decrease. In the 2001 Hungarian census, just 44 people declared themselves Slovene in the Somogy County.

Frequent Slovene names in Hungary

Prominent Slovenes in Hungary

See also

Related Research Articles

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Prekmurje

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József Kossics, also known in Slovene as Jožef Košič, was a Hungarian-Slovenian writer, Catholic priest, ethnologist, linguist, poet, and historian.

István Küzmics was the most important Lutheran writer of the Slovenes in Hungary.

Ferenc Sbüll was a Hungarian Slovene poet and Catholic priest in Hungary. He was born in Turnišče, a village in the Prekmurje region of Slovenia, then part of the Zala County of the Kingdom of Hungary. He studied in Kőszeg, Szombathely and Vienna. He wrote both secular and religious poetry in his native Prekmurje dialect. He died in Dolenci.

Mihály Bakos, also known in Slovene as Miháo Bakoš or Mihael Bakoš, was a Hungarian Slovene Lutheran priest, author, and educator.

István Zsemlics or Zsemlits was a Slovene author and Catholic priest.

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The Slovene lands or Slovenian lands is the historical denomination for the territories in Central and Southern Europe where people primarily spoke Slovene. The Slovene lands were part of the Illyrian provinces, the Austrian Empire and Austria-Hungary. They encompassed Carniola, southern part of Carinthia, southern part of Styria, Istria, Gorizia and Gradisca, Trieste, and Prekmurje. Their territory more or less corresponds to modern Slovenia and the adjacent territories in Italy, Austria, Hungary, and Croatia, where autochthonous Slovene minorities live. In the areas where present-day Slovenia borders to neighboring countries, they were never homogeneously ethnically Slovene.

József Borovnyák

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Prekmurje Slovene

Prekmurje Slovene, also known as the Prekmurje dialect, East Slovene, or Wendish, is a Slovene dialect belonging to a Pannonian dialect group of Slovene. It is used in private communication, liturgy, and publications by authors from Prekmurje. It is spoken in the Prekmurje region of Slovenia and by the Hungarian Slovenes in Vas County in western Hungary. It is closely related to other Slovene dialects in neighboring Slovene Styria, as well as to Kajkavian with which it retains partial mutual intelligibility and forms a dialect continuum with other South Slavic languages.

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Republic of Prekmurje

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The Prekmurje Slovenes are Slovenes from Prekmurje in Slovenia and Vendvidék and Somogy in Hungary. The Prekmurje Slovenes speak the Prekmurje Slovene dialect and have a common culture. The Hungarian Slovenes (Porabski Slovenci) and Somogy Slovenes also speak the Prekmurje Slovene dialect.

Károly Krajczár was a Hungarian Slovene teacher and writer. He was born in Apátistvánfalva. He wrote Slovene textbooks and collected ethnological objects.

Slovene minority in Italy, also known as Slovenes in Italy is the name given to Italian citizens who belong to the autochthonous Slovene ethnic and linguistic minority living in the Italian autonomous region of Friuli – Venezia Giulia. The vast majority of members of the Slovene ethnic minority live in the Provinces of Trieste, Gorizia, and Udine. Estimates of their number vary significantly; the official figures show 52,194 Slovenian speakers in Friuli-Venezia Giulia, as per the 1971 Census, but Slovenian estimates speak of 83,000 to 100,000 people.

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