Published in The Eclectic Magazine of Foreign Literature, Science and Art. New York. Vol XVI – No. III, March, 1849, pp. 358-369. Originally published in The New Monthly Magazine.

The Ban Jellachich!  The very name plunges us into the midst of wild reminiscences, barbarous heroism, strange irregular grandeurs!  Sclavonic history is rich in all these half savage, bur fascinating glories.  See how they stride out before us, the two Nicklas Zrinyi, the hero of Szigeth and his descendants, Czerny Georg, leader of the Servians in their war for freedom, and a whole host of others!  The Ban! – the very title is full of romantic mysticism.  It is as if we heard that the Grand Master of the Teutonic Order or of the Swerdt-Brüder was encamped before the Brandenburg gate at Berlin.  We thought all these medieval magnificences had disappeared under the peruques.  Austrian as well as Prussian, of the eighteenth century.  We knew of nothing more venerable than Frederick the Great’s pig-tail and Kaiser Franz’s jack-boots.  But it seems all this not only lives, but lives very energetically and effectively.  People are beginning to ask not only what is a Ban, but who is the Ban?  And both are proper questions and well deserving to be answered, as we hope to show before we have closed this paper.

A Ban is a very respectable and a very real dignitary – something like our Lord Warden of the Marches, or more resembling still, the old, not new Italian Marchese, or German Margraf, but somewhat higher than all these – a sort of Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, as he was wont to be in the times of Henrys and Elizabeths, when he had Desmond insurrections to attend to – or in the time of Charles, when the Puritans of the North in fierce revolt against Charles represented the Hungarians as the Catholics under Ormonde for the moment, the Croats and Sclavonians.  In olden times there were many of these marches, or borders, or Banats, in the west and southwest provinces until by successive absorptions they were reduced to one, the united kingdom of Croatia, Sclavonia, and Dalmatia, which held watch and ward for the Austrian empire, on its most dangerous frontiers, against the still more barbarous Turks.  The „Ban“ or „lord“, as the name signifies, is the third of the Hungarian barons of the empire, holds in his own land the rank the Palatine and presides at the „Bantafel,“ or Ban council at Agram, as the Hungarian Palatine at the royal council at Pesth.  And high as is the honor, it has been raised still higher by the great men, (some of whom have been just noticed,) who have held it.  Of these none perhaps is even now more famous than the present bearer.  And yet we are only at the first or at most at the second chapter of his history.

Jellachich is a Croat – a Croat to our ears sounds something like Cossack.

We see a horde in the act of burning their way through defenseless villages, or marching through towns from which their inhabitants had fled, no grass growing where their horses’ hoofs once had trod; famine before, and pestilence behind, more dangerous to friend than foe, only a few massacres off from the exploits of the Turcoman and Tartar.  The leader of Croats, to keep Croats together, must be the worst Croat of them all.  Jellachich, as a sort of army-elected chief, could only have gained their hearts by much the same qualities as gave Alaric and Attilla their soldiers sovereignties, daring, active, cunning, cruel; the more barbarian, the more likely to be successful.  Such certainly has been very much the Magyar coloring of his portrait, and from old predilections in favor of Magyars, partly owing to that magnificent acclaim, „ Moriamur pro Rege nostro Maria Theresia,“ and partly, we believe, to their heroism, or at least heroic dress, we are inclined to trust ourselves implicitly to their accuracy.  Till lately, we candidly confess, we saw in the Ban little more than a stipendiary of absolutism; hired by the Kaiser, much as Goth or Dacian freebooter was hired and converted into a patrician or consul by the Caesers of old to bring back, when the empire was crumbling around them, some rebellious fly-away kingdom to a sense of unity and allegiance.  The Sclavonic version is of course different; it comes from the hand of an admirer.  But there is a third, which is neither Magyar nor Sclavonian, without favor as without hate.  Many of the features in the following outline come from one who stood near enough to see, but was clear enough from race-partialities to see rightly.

The Ban is an European prince, in the decent European sense of the word; equal to any in refinement, above most in energy and genius.  And it is a singular phenomenon, not less attractive to the philosophic historian than to the poet, the contrast which these broken-down monarchies present to the young democracies.  The impulse of progress seems to have worked less wonderfully, to have thrown up less mind, if more minds, than the despair of dissolution.  What has come forth from the cauldrons of France, Italy, and Prussia?  Yet Austria has made a new Æson out of the old; in her agony she has given birth to Radesky, Windisch-Grätz and Jellachich.

Jellachich – to begin with the man himself – is no Francesco Sforza, no Condotiere, no buccaneer of fame.  He is of a noble, almost of a Ban family.  Joseph Jellachich, (Jellacic,) Baron Jellachich de Buszin, is the eldest son of the Baron Franz Jellachich de Buszin, who, as retired field-marshal and proprietor of the 62d regiment of infantry, now Turszky, died at Agram in the year 1810.  Of Croatian parents on both sides, Joseph was born at Peterwarden, on the 16th of October of the same year, on the anniversary of the birth of the celebrated Czerny Georg, thirty years before.  In the child, the characters of father and mother were blended; under the letter, during the prolonged absence of his father in the French war, the earlier part of his education was passed, and from her gentle teaching were drawn all those soft and kindly affections, that early passion for poetry, and devotion to intellectual pursuits, which so mark him out from his fellows; his indomitable activity, his frank and firm spirit, his unaffected, dashing cheerfulness, he inherits from his father.  In his earliest infancy he was remarkable for the quickness of his perception, and the accuracy and tenacity of his memory; as years rolled on, he gave indications of great precision in all he applied to; already indications were visible of that eloquence for which he has since been distinguished.  His self-control and presence of mind were far beyond his age.  When eight years old he was presented to the Emperor; Kaiser Franz, struck by his intelligence and vivacity, took a particular liking to the boy, and had him forthwith placed in the Theresian Academy, which, despite of its cloistral and even ascetic character, has, somehow or other, turned out, in both the military and civil departments, some of the highest ornaments of the Austrian name.  In this school, Jellachich developed those powers for the acquisition of languages, which at a later period evinced themselves in the facility with which he spoke German, Italian, French, Magyar, and the several idioms of the Sclavonic.  His predilections, however, were military.  Military tactics, with their accompanying sciences, history, especially ancient, and modern literature, were his favorite studies.  With these be combined the usual corporeal exercises, and became an expert fencer, a good rider, and a first-rate shot.

At the age of eighteen, his physical and intellectual preparation being completed, he entered the army as sub-lieutenant in the dragoon regiment of his maternal grand-uncle, the General of Cavalry and Vice-Ban of Croatia, the Baron Kneserich, of St. Helena, then under the command of Colonel Olah von Nanas, and was sent to join whilst it was still garrison at Tarnow in Gallicia.

In this service he soon acquired the love and esteem of those around him.  Just and humane to his inferiors, true-hearted to his equals, punctual and submissive to his superiors, he was at once regarded in every respect as an excellent officer.  The Austrian army abounds in small societies, fraternities „auf Noth und Tod;“ they go far to maintain that military spirit and good fellowship which still keeps the army together.  He was their very soul.  His gay and intrepid bearing, his wild and vigorous enjoyment of life, his invincible good temper, his sparkling wit, fascinated and informed as with one spirit every circle in which he moved.  Of an iron construction, he was last at the table at night, first on horseback in the morning; in every freak, in every exploit always foremost.  And under all this, which so marked the future free-chosen chief of a bold, adventurous people, he concealed sources of the purest and gentlest poetry, a soul melting with tenderness, a spirit of devotion and self-sacrifice, almost absolute, to his own.  Though often in female society, he is said to have scarcely noticed the passions he awakened; his whole being hung upon his companions in arms, and the charities of his own home.  Over his mother and sister, of whom he was early deprived, the latter in the full lush of youthful beauty, he still mourns; to his two brothers, one, colonel in the Carlstadt border regiment, the other Chief d’Escadron in the dragoon regiment of the Archduke Franz Joseph, he was ever most devotedly attached.  But this somewhat dissipated life could not be continued long with impunity.  After five years his vigorous constitution began to give way.  He was attacked with a serious illness, accompanied with much suffering; at any moment it might have terminated in sudden dissolution.  Those who saw him at that period on his bed of sickness, and possibly, as they then thought it, of death, speak with admiration of the unaltered composure, and almost defying serenity with which he met the visitation.  And then, too, it was, that he composed most of his poems.  They well preserve the temper of mind in which they were written.  They breathe the daring and lofty aspirations of a young, unsatisfied mind after a nobler future, bitter sighs over his abruptly broken existence, and a thirst and hunger for the energetic and useful in deed and word: should Providence vouchsafe him an hereafter.  And so it happened; Providence proved merciful.  In 1825 he began gradually to recover his convalescence soon proceeded rapidly; before the year was over he was enabled to rejoin his regiment, then quartered at Vienna.  It would be difficult to describe the joy, the jubilee with which he was received by his fellow officers.  He was at once chosen by Major General Baron Geramb as his adjutant of brigade, and so serviceable did he render himself in this capacity, that on his regiment moving under Colonel Count St. Quentin for Poland, he was retained in the capital, nor allowed to follow till a year later.

When once more among his old comrades, he resumed all his old habits; he was the beginning, middle, and end of all proceedings.  Jellachich was everywhere in demand; nothing could be thought of, nothing done without Jellachich.  No one more precise, or even pedantic, in the performance of his military duties; but no sooner was the sabre thrown aside, than he was sure to be found at the head of his fellow-officers, in some desperate chase, through thick and thin, night and rain, after amusement.  After passing a joyous day in the stations near, he and his detachment were often in the habit of riding back miles together, to be in time for the parade of the morning.  Jellachich was a reckless rider.  On more than one occasion horse and rider escaped from pit and morass by his presence of mind, or the timely aid of his companions.  In the tumult of these wild expeditions it was that he composed most of his war and soldier songs, and in particular the „Garrison’s-Lied,“ or „Garrison Song,“ so well known and so heartily sung through the whole of the Austrian army.  A joyous chant it is, a biting satire on the old antiquated martinet system of Austrian tactics, but withal full of right good hope for the future, a hearty inspiring cheer, like the call of a trumpet, to good, fellowship, brotherly union, and an honest soldierly maintenance of military spirit and discipline.

And now the French Revolution of July broke out, and great was the bustle on every side.  In the apprehension of immediate war, augmentations, advancements, promotions, a general stir showed itself through the whole empire.  Jellachich profited with the rest.  Through the patronage of the then new President of the Council of War, Baron Von Radossevich, an old and grateful friend of his father’s, he was promoted to the rank of captain-lieutenant in one of the Hulan border regiments.  The separation from his old fellow-officers was on both sides a severe trial.  Nor to this day is it forgotten.  Eighteen years have now passed, but the evidences of his attachment are as strong as ever; whilst he is now, as always, their favorite.  His „Garrison’s.Lied“ they claim as their especial property; no joyous occasion is ever allowed to pass without thundering it out, as of old, in hearty chorus.  Nor was this confined to them; he soon added new friends to old; everywhere loved as soon as known, he succeeded in winning, as no other officer had yet done, the sympathy of the entire army.  In the beginning of 1837 Jellachich advanced another step.  We find him major of the Gollner regiment of infantry, now the regiment of the Archduke Ernest, and adjutant general to Count Vetter of Lilienberg, then military governor of Dalmatia.

From this period forth we must look on Jellachich as a new man; the turbulence of his youth began to settle down; he gradually assumed the more earnest passions of manhood.  In his new situation, and under the guidance of his gifted chief, he applied himself with eagerness to the study of the character and position of Dalmatia; a poor province, but to Austria of incalculable importance as was well seen by the sagacity of Napoleon.  On the death of Lilienberg, Jellachich, with the rank of lieutenant colonel, was appointed to the first Border regiment of the Banat, and in 1842 took its command as colonel.  At the head of this distinguished corps he repelled the incursions of the Bosnians, and by his courage and judgement at the affair at Posvid, gave already promise of his future military glory.

But military glory and talent were only means to an end.  Jellachich was soon to appear in a higher position and character than that of a mere successful commander.

The revolution of March, 1848, opened altogether a new era to the Austrian empire.  Rights, which had been well won by many a bloody and prolonged war, long claimed and long promised to a devoted people, were at length conceded, when they could no be refused, to all his states by the Emperor Ferdinand.  In the time, in the manner in which these concessions were made, there were many elements of confusion.  The court was reluctant, the people distrustful.  There had been a long inward struggle, under outward appearances of stagnation, not merely between sovereign and subject, but, as it is now known, between court and cabinet.  Even Metternich, behind the country, was far in advance of the Camarilla.  For some time past, at least wise, if not liberal, he saw, and warned, and would have effected as he had advised, many changes, as indispensable as they were just, not so much through love of reform as through fear of revolution.  No wonder then that with this consciousness―nations in these moments and matters have a sort of instinct―Hungary should have endeavored to secure, beyond the contingency of a reaction, her own liberties, and, as the most effectual mode, should have resolved to separate from the empire, and to set up for herself.  Not so Croatia―her object was the same as that of Hungary, but the means sound policy pointed out for its attainment widely different.  Had Hungary been an homogeneous community, with no antagonism of language, race, and religion, the course for each of the three states which compose her kingdom ought in policy and patriotism to have been the same.  But such is not the case; and here, as elsewhere, the results, naturally flowing from such diversity, have followed.  Apprehension of the future, resentment for the past, soon produced a total opposition of thought and action.  The possessors of power feared to share their power; the excluded from power claimed and proceeded to enforce its participation.  A Magyar ascendency was established; not in the sense of the common interests of Hungary, but of those of a faction in Hungary: like all factions, unjust and unwise, it claimed all for itself, and would share nothing with its fellow-subjects and fellow-countrymen, the Sclavonic races of Croatia and Dalmatia.  There was no excuse for this.  These races in number are superior to the Magyar, nor was there any other ground more tenable to justify such assumption.  In a mere brute conqueror such course might have been consistent; in men who demanded rights for themselves, who justified their efforts for separation on the ground of these rights, who went so far as to attempts to enforce them against Austria in favor of Italy, it was an absurd and unendurable atrocity.  It will best be understood by English readers by referring to similar hypocrisies in Irish history; to that cry of the Irish Protestant Parliament of 1782 for independence from England, in the name of Ireland, at the same time that they were disdainfully shutting out a large portion of Irishmen, the whole of the great Catholic masses, from its enjoyment; clamoring for a free constitution, as if a constitution for a party, and not for a country, could by any possibility be free.

Whilst in connection with Austria, as dependent member of the empire, as one only of the three united kingdoms, this monopolizing and excluding policy was hardly practicable.  To leave full range for the injustice, the Magyar must, in the first instance, be left to himself.  To oppress Sclavism there must be no monitor German or Tzeckian; no empire, no head, to control or command.  Hence, as the obvious preliminary, separation from Vienna became necessary, not so much from hostility to the Kaiser, as through detestation of the fellow-subject Sclave.  Not equality or freedom, but right to rule, and not be ruled, was their demand.  And there soon could be no mistake about the means.  Short only of a state open revolt to her still recognized king was the condition of Hungary from the month of April on.  She sent her ambassadors to Vienna, and later to Frankfort, as if altogether to a foreign power; she claimed the right of raising and disposing of her own troops, bound not by the general but special Hungarian oath; she used every effort to divert from their allegiance troops till then devoted to the emperor; she expressed her sympathies openly and unequivocally with the insurgents of Italy; she recalled her regiments from Lombardy, and refused all further aid for the continuance of the war; she repudiated all share in the imperial debt, all joining in the imperial contributions, all help of blood or money, „were the monarchy itself thereby to fall to pieces;“ in a word, in terms as plain as deeds could speak it, she declared her fixed determination to have nothing henceforward in common with the empire.  In this emergency Croatia saw herself a serf still, in a free country, involved in a life and death struggle for right and equality, in a furious contest for home and altar―the worst of all civil wars.  Aid had she none against the menaced wrong, but in her own right arm and the protection of the empire, which, however weak it might be against all, was all-powerful against each.  To the empire, then, and to its head she flew.  The emperor and the monarchy, one and undivided, was her battle-cry along the whole of her borders, a cry which burst the bonds which for 800 years had bound South Sclavonia to Hungary, and let loose on that devoted land, against the will and in despite of the remonstrances of Croatia herself, the wild hordes of the Raizes and Servians.

It was at this moment, pregnant with the destinies of their country and the integrity of the monarchy, that a Croatian deputation arrived at Vienna.  They came to lay at the foot of the throne the expression of their fears―of their devotedness.  They pledged „Gut“ and „Blut“ for the maintenance of the Imperial crown, the union of the empire.  But they implored the emperor to give them means and opportunity to redeem this pledge.  They prayed him to place at their head a chief who could lead them, and whom they would follow.  They solicited him to nominate a man equal to the emergency, to appoint as their Ban the Colonel Joseph Jellachich.

The emperor was not insensible to the dangers which were fast gathering around him, and sympathized in their apprehension and resentment at the proceedings in Hungary.  He granted the prayer.  Jellachich was appointed Ban of the three united kingdoms, and in a few days after covered with honors.  He was successively created privy counsellor, field-marshal, proprietor of two regiments, and general commandant-in-chief of the Banat, Waradin, and Carlstadt districts.

The new Ban at once comprehended the weight and responsibility of his position.  They were not ordinary times; it was not an ideal dignity.  A great Sclavonic movement had begun; not volunteered, but provoked, therefore more likely to be passionate and perilous.  He was called on to master and guide it.  Thereby only could the rights of his own race, religion, and land be vindicated, the rights and power of the emperor maintained, the freedom, with the order of the whole community consolidated.  „My lot,“ says he, writing confidentially at this time to a friend, „is cast.  I take the straightforward path, the frank and open course; if I stand, well; if I fall, I fall as a soldier, a patriot, and a faithful servant of my emperor and lord!“

But this was no easy task; to master the movement, it was first necessary to master the sympathies of his countrymen, to penetrate himself with the fullness of Sclave nationality, to seize and wield the common heart.  But this he sought not by blind fanaticism to the phantom of Pansclavism, as the German papers have asserted, nor by servile submission to the pretensions of the Czar, its assumed head, as was echoed from the Tribune of Pesth to the Aula of Vienna, still less by any miserable coquetry for a momentary popularity with all parties.  Jellachich was the idol of his nation, but his secret was simple and honest.  He was so by force of character and virtues; he was so because quick and bold in the hour of danger; with iron hand he seized and worked the rudder of the state, and over surf and rock bore the laboring vessel gallantly and safely into port.  Indefatigable, universal, everywhere present, and on every emergency, haranguing the people, admonishing the authorities, adjuring the clergy, in the street, at the council, from the altar, praising and punishing, conciliating and organizing, he was the very man for the times, as the times were very times for him.  Nothing discouraged him; nothing daunted him.  He met the popular tumult and the enemy’s charge with the same boldness, the same composure.  A turbulent meeting had disputed some of his orders; he entered it without notice or attendants; the murmurs, every moment growing louder, rang along the benches, till at last one who seemed to act as spokesman for the others, relying on their numbers stepped forward and exclaimed.

            „No! though at the head of ten thousand bayonets thou shalt never intimidate us.“

            Jellachich struck his sabre calmly aside, and replied―

            „And without arms, the Ban keeps order and quiet in the land.“

The resistance of the crowd was charged into admiration; enthusiastic „Zivios!“ burst forth from every side.

And thus it was that he succeeded in breathing into the South Sclavonic movement one feeling and one will.  Every heart clung to him as to the only champion of his country’s rights, or preserver of her good order and peace.  Croatia was not without its ultra-democratic party; even among the Sclaves there were sympathizers with the Hungarians, but whatever may have been their opinions or views, their numbers were few.  The great mass of the nation, beyond all question, had but one political creed―union with the empire, maintenance of their nationality, full development of its resources and liberties, on a perfect equality with every other portion of the state.

In the excitement naturally resulting from the collision of two such powerful elements, it could hardly be expected that decencies and proprieties of literary warfare would be much regarded.  The arrows shot forth from the Hungarian press against the Ban, whose crime, after all, was not more than endeavoring to obtain for Croatia what the Magyar looked for Hungary, and who in a juncture of general weakness and faithlessness gave a signal example of energy and devotedness to his country and sovereign, were sent back, it is true, by the Croatian.  But there was this difference between them; the Croatian press did not intermeddle with the domestic affairs of Hungary; it acted on the defensive, it defended the cause of the Ban and the country, and however provoked, always replied with dignity and self-control.  But the time was past in which such weapons could much avail.

Newspaper invectives were no longer adequate to repress his growing power.  Recourse was had to other expedients.  It was sought to render him suspected in the eyes of the very sovereign whom he was laboring to serve.

Sick and feeble lay the emperor in the royal palace at Innspruck.  It was a remote and retired spot.  Many of his best friends were absent; he was surrounded by an Hungarian ministry.  Through all the borders the irruption of the Raizes and Servians had produced alarm; the cry of „the country is in danger“―that tocsin cry which creates so much of the danger it affects to apprehend, was heard on every side.

The Ban, it was represented, might easily have prevented or repressed this inroad; he allowed the torrent to grow, to advance, to burst all bounds; the cause of this apathy was obvious; the movement originated from himself.  It was not less easy to connect him with the Pansclvist attempts in Prague.  In a word, the object at which he aimed was no longer to be concealed, ascendency of the Sclave at the expense of the other races of the empire.  These representations had their effects; the conspiracy succeeded.  The emperor declared the Ban destitué from all his offices and dignities; but, fearful still of the consequences, required that public effect should not be given to the edict, unless in case of his refusal to abide by the decisions of the Hungarians.  A more signal instance of court intrigue and short-sighted as well as ignoble policy―dangerous not less to the Magyar than to the Sclave―one more calculated to bring liberty as well as monarchy into contempt―could not have been devised.  Jellachich was forthwith put to the test.  He was enjoyed not to attend the approaching meeting, on the 5th of June, of the Diet of Agram, and summoned to appear instead at Innspruck to answer the charges preferred against him.  This injunction, inspired by Hungarian influence, was well calculated for its purpose.  It was an important occasion and meeting, that which was about to take place; deputies from all the Croatian provinces were about to assemble at Agra; grave affairs, nay, the greatest which could affect the feelings and interests of a people, were on the point of being discussed.  It had another object.  The session was to be preceded by the solemn installation of the Ban.  An ordinary man might have obeyed the mandate; the Ban knew at whose suggestion it had issued; he set at naught the summons, and on the appointed day appeared at Agram, and not at Innpruck.  Enthusiastic was his welcome; great the jubilee with which he was received by all classes of his countrymen.  His installation was performed amidst universal acclamations by the Greek or non-united Bishop and Patriarch of Karlowitz, partly in consequence of the Bishop of Agram being absent, partly from a wish to give evidence in his own instance, that, even in Croatia, religion and church were now free.  And strange the contrast the proceedings of that day presented to any one acquainted with the secret machinations and duplicity of the court.  In the very moment in which he was denounced as traitor by his sovereign, stood Ban Jellachich in the Diet Hall at Agram, doing all that in him lay to rouse, by his eloquence, the affections and energies of his hearers to loyalty and devotedness to that same prince; and so unconscious, or so doubtful of the real opinions of the emperor did he feel, that but a few days after, (the 12th of June,) at the head of a deputation composed of Colonel Denkstein, Count Nugent, Count Ludwig Erdödy, Baron Franz Kulmer, Count Karl Draskovich, and several others, he set out, without hesitation, for Innspruck.  His progress through the Tyrol, in the midst of Alpine songs, patriotic music, festal arches, popular cheerings, was one brilliant triumphal march.  The Tyrolese sympathized with the Croatians; they were distinguished by the same spirit of devotion to the Imperial House; they had beside some old reminiscences; the name of Jellachich was not unknown amongst them.  Many an old rifle in those mountains had fought in the victorious field of Feldkirch under his father.  On his arrival, no communication was made to him―not a word spoken of the edict sanctioned by the emperor but six days before.  Prince Paul Esterhazy, the then Minister of Hungary for Foreign Affairs, had received instructions from Pesth not to allow of any interview between him and the emperor.  On this being communicated to the deputation, it determined at once on instantly returning, the Ban first conveying in clear terms to the emperor, that he did not hold it to be consistent with the dignity of his majesty, nor with his own, to submit to the control of an Hungarian ministry.

But whilst the empire was thus divided against itself, the court gave proof of being scarcely less separated into different parties.  The same man who was refused all approach to the sovereign, was received not only without difficulty, but with open arms, by the Archduke Franz Karl and Archduchess Sophia.  An audience, through their intervention, was, at last, obtained; out apprehensive of its results, Esterhazy and the Hungarian ministry, no longer able to prevent it, required to be present.  The archduke endeavored to meet this new difficulty; the Ban still remained firm in his resolution; he would make no advance to the Hungarians.  A middle term was at last found; a public was substituted for a private audience.  On the appointed day, (19th of June,) the deputation, with Jellachichn at their head, appeared before the assembled court.  All then at Innspruck―emperor and empress, archdukes and archduchesses, the whole of the corps diplomatique, the usual cortége of state officers, lords, and ladies attended.  The Hungarian ministry likewise appeared.  It was a remarkable scene―Jellachich stood out before his Croatians, before the élite of the nation, and addressed, in his and their name, the emperor.  In glowing language he placed before the sovereign the perilous state of the monarchy; the devotedness unto death of a true and valorous people.  He spoke of the rights of both, of the interests of both, eloquently and courageously.  It was not fitting that faithful servants should be trodden into dust, or passed away with the stroke of a pen to others at the very moment they were laying at the foot of the throne their urgent prayers, that the bonds which held them to the empire should be rendered more indissoluble than ever.  Croatia was its right arm―the border provinces its bone and muscle; though not forming more than the five-and-thirtieth portion of the monarchy, they furnished not less than one-third of its infantry, and could, when necessary, make it double.  Such a land and people―such hearts and arms were not, in an hour like this, of danger, recklessly to be cast away.  The effect was striking; the court was moved, many shed tears.  It was something new to see a man of genius, vigor, and intrepidity, addressing a weak and sickly sovereign face to face, before friend and foe.  It carried the mind back to times when individuality, still strong, broke down all barriers of rank or position, and ruled by the force of personal prowess and mind.  The charges were no longer pressed; the intervention of the Archduke John was sought and employed, with a view to remove the imputations of the Hungarians.

The act of dismissal was not formally cancelled, but the Ban was allowed de facto to continue in the full exercise of his high trust.  Every one felt assured that the emperor looked only for the favorable moment to withdraw an edict which it was now clear had been extorted from him against his will.  The Archduke John addressed him an autograph letter of congratulation in the most affectionate terms, „An meinen lieben Barnus“―„To my dear Ban.“  The audience was scarcely over when he was received by the Archduke Franz, and the Archduchess Sophia, in the most friendly manner.  The Prince Esterhazy seemed to expect a visit; this not taking place, he visited the Ban.  It is said they remained closeted for more than an hour; and that the prince on leaving the apartment, apparently much excited, was heard to exclaim, in passing through the Croatians assembled in the antechamber, „What a man!  I must myself go to Pesth; this matter must henceforth take another direction.“

And thus he left Innspruck, in the midst of the caresses of the court, the defeat of reconciliation of his enemies, the exultation of his friends, and the jubilee of the people.  His return was a festival!  And all this was an illusion―a fraud―a snare!

He had now reached Lienz, a small village on his way homeward, when taking up the papers of the day, amongst them the „Wiener Zeitung,“ the first thing which struck his astonished and indignant eye under the date of 19th of June, the very day of his audience with the emperor, was the edict for his dismissal―the edict which was not to have been acted on, and of the existence of which not one single tongue had ventured to utter to him a syllable during the whole of his stay at Innspruck!  Nor was this all; as if the court could be true to none, the document reluctantly yielded was rendered by a ruse inoperative; it was published without the counter-signature of an Hungarian minister.  The Ban was insulted and derided; the Hungarian was duped and foiled.  It is hard to say how such a government could inspire or deserve confidence.  But this was only one step in that labyrinth of follies and duplicities, which render this page of Austrian history as contemptible as it is mysterious.

At this news, as may well be imagined, the whole of South Sclavonia was in a flame.  Through all their bounds and borders there was but one cry of sorrowful and scornful indignation at the ignoble treachery of the court.  The Ban was silent.  None of the papers of the day contain one single word of reproach or resentment from him.  But looking back to time and place, to men and circumstances, bitterly must his true heart have felt and deplored this wound so prepared and so struck.  His reception by the emperor, the deep concealment, on every side, of the hostile edict, the friendly advances of the archduke and archduchess, the selection of the Archduke John as the mediator; all these matters taken together showed how little he could, in future, count on such a government―how little it was intended that their mandates should be respected or obeyed.  The Ban was silent, but not so the Croatian Diet.  They bore not the wrong with the same meekness or humility.  In bold, but just phrase, they represented to the emperor their veneration and love for their chief, their grief at the injury which had been perpetrated against him.  In his wounds they had been wounded; in his interests their interests had been sacrificed.  Their allegiance and union with the empire still remained unshaken, but they asked how was it that while the light of freedom had arisen over every other land in the empire, they alone should be bowed down under the yoke of a foreign dominion.  To Hungary and Hungarian intrigue they traced this edict, and in proportion to their attachment to the Ban, was their indignation at such interference.  These sentiments were re-echoed by the troops along the frontier.  They were the sentiments, indeed, of the whole nation.

Under these circumstances the Ban considered himself justified in paying no regard to the Imperial edict.  He knew how unreal it was in every respect, and trusted to future events for his justification.  He returned at once to Agram, where he was met with unbounded enthusiasm, and so far from retiring into a private capacity, as was intended, he employed to the utmost every means which his official position gave him, redoubled every exertion, took every measure to put the country in a state of defense, to win still more the confidence of his compatriots, to rouse and prepare for the uncompromising maintenance of their nationality.  Neither the mandate of the sovereign nor the Austrian and German press, (then by no means favorable,) nor the fierce denunciations of the Magyar orators and writers, neither private intrigue nor public attack had any effect in diverting him from this purpose.  No longer confined to Croatia, he journeyed through all Sclavonia, and everywhere found the same reception, everywhere the same determination to support and defend him in the coming emergency.

Events soon proved how just and wise were these precautions.  So far from visiting this contumacy with chastisement, the court of Vienna found itself reduced to try other means for the accomplishment of its purpose.  It was thought that by mutual explanations an arrangement might still be devised acceptable to both, and sufficient to tranquilize these angry elements.  A conference was proposed to take place at Vienna. Bathyany, the Hungarian minister, was there; Jellachich was invited to meet him; he acceded; his reception in the Imperial capital was encouraging; immense multitudes came out to meet him.  He had scarcely reached the Badener Bahnhof, when cries resounded on every side, „Where is Jellachich?“ During his stay in the city his residence in the Kärnthnerstrass was surrounded by crowd of admirers.  The officers of the garrison honored him on the 29th of July with a serenade and a „Fackelzug.“  Nor had the slight interruption attempted by the Hungarian party any other effect than to furnish him with an opportunity of addressing the Viennese from his window, in a speech terminating with these words: „My cause is the cause of honor; therefore am I ready to lay before you frankly all my feelings and intentions.  I am no foe to the noble Hungarian nation, but to those only who, hurried on by their separation tendencies, for their own selfish ends, would rend Hungary from Austria, and thus render both weak.  I, my brothers, I wish a great, a strong, a powerful, a free, an undivided Austria.  Long live our beautiful fatherland! and long live Germany!“

Notwithstanding these demonstrations, the conference of Vienna produced no peaceful result.  It was soon obvious that compromise was impracticable.  Jellachich did not indeed require the political separation of the Sclavonian border territories from the Hungarian united kingdom, but he did require a due recognition of the national and local interests of the Sclavonian races, and in that view the suppression of the Hungarian ministries of war and finance, which by establishing an altogether independent action of the Magyar element, left the Sclavonic more or less at its mercy; in a word, he demanded the surrender of that independence which had been set up by Hungary since March, 1848, and a re-entrance into the relations of the other provinces of the Austrian monarchy.

This, as may be easily imagined, was resisted with no less obstinacy by the Hungarian minister.  In a country which aimed at total separation, and had accomplished it in part, it was a question of life and death.  The negotiations were broken off―the Hungarians on their side, in greater difficulty than ever, with their position exposed through the apathy of the imperial troops; Jellachich, on his, more than ever conscious of his advantages, hastened respectively to make immediate preparations for war.  Notwithstanding the two battalions sent from each of the frontier regiments to Italy, he had still left in each district from 4000 to 5000 volunteers.  „With God, and be heroes!“ was the old cry of the departure of the Borderers, whenever the emperor called them to join his standard in war―„With God, and be heroes!“ arose from the sick and the sound, the young and the old.  „With God, and be heroes!―our women and children will guard our borders from the Turks;“ greeted him on every side.  Croatia and Sclavonia imposed and submitted to the heaviest burthens; as by the stroke of a magician’s wand, arms, artillery, provisions, magazines stores, sprung up in profusion―none of the munitions of war were wanting.  This was attributed at the time to the secret aid of the Austrian minister of war; it may be doubted whether he then contributed anything beyond sympathy; later, indeed, determination and success may have attracted or compelled such aid.  Such indeed was the whole policy of this vacillating cabinet; following events instead of guiding them, determined by temporary expediency instead of eternal justice, to friend and foe equally dissimulative, attempting to keep together the fragments of the empire, and every day infusing new solvents calculated to loosen and divide.

Jellachich had now completed his arrangements.  With the fervent support of his own Croatians, and the warm wishes of many Austrian regiments, and no very determined opposition on the part even of the Hungarians themselves, armed at every point, he stood ready to pass the frontier of Hungary.

Civil war was imminent; a few still looked (they were very few) to the mediation or control of the emperor.  In this crisis, on the 4th of September, 1848, appeared in the Agramar Zeitung, an imperial edict in open recantation of all former measures on the subjects, restoring the Ban to all public honors and functions in recognition „of his wise and patriotic services!“  But this, too, was without the signature of an Hungarian minister.  It thus looked little less than a formal declaration of war against Hungary.  It was so interpreted.  The ferment, the consternation it produced is well known.  An Hungarian deputation hastened to Schöbrun; it was received, but none but the most evasive answers returned.  The court would enter into no explanation, no discussion, until the Kossuth ministry had been dismissed.  This was complied with.  A Bathyany ministry was formed, but to no purpose; the old Kossuth spirit still breathed through it.  Neither the court nor Jellachich gained by the alternation.  New complications succeeded.  The Archduke Stephen had at first attempted, in quality of viceroy, to conduct affairs; this he soon found to be impossible; a semi-provisional government, a species of Kossuth and Szemere dictatorship was appointed; it had given way to the Bathyany ministry, and this now had failed.  In the mean time the dangers which threatened Hungary, every day increased.  Jellachich had passed the Drave on the morning of the 11th of September, with the main body of his army, and was now advancing towards the capital.

The „Landwehr“ was called out, and the very same Diet which refused the archduke more extensive powers, now called on him to do his duty as Palatine, and to place himself at the head of the insurrection.  For a moment he hesitated, and appeared disposed to take the command of the troops, but, on the 17th of September, instead of appearing, as was expected, at their head, be escaped to Vienna, on the plea of making one more effort for conciliation.  This last link with the court being broken, Hungary now stood in open revolt.  Every exertion was made, but the means and chances were unequal.  The national guard, the army of the Drave, were for the most part composed of raw recruits; a feeble force against 30,000 or 40,000 men Jellachich, who now stood at Great Kanisa ready to strike the decisive blow.

But in this moment of suspense, Vienna gave a new direction to events, the flight of the emperor to Olmütz left little doubt what course it was now intended to pursue.  The rural population had never forgotten their traditional attachment to the House of Hapsburg, and the emperor still maintains something in all his weakness of that good-natured homeliness, which smoothened down with the peasant so much of the harsher form of absolutism in the time of his predecessors.  On the way they crowded out from villages with song and shout to meet their Kaiser.  Woe to the „Studiosus“ who on that day dared to show himself with red cap or red handkerchief, albeit of the national guard, amongst them.

At Egginburg the whole neighborhood gathered round the Imperial carriage.  The emperor had made way for them, and addressed them in the old paternal tone of Kaiser Franz―„Children! what I’ve promised I’ll keep.  Robott, tithes, and all those other matters have ceased.  I’ve sanctioned and signed it, and so it shall remain.  Your emperor gives you his word for it, and you may believe your emperor.  I mean well towards you, but in Vienna there are people who do not mean well towards me, and who wish to seduce you.  As I can no longer help myself, I must, unfortunately, send military amongst them to make them act better,“ &c, &c.  [The very words of the emperor, if we are to trust the report: “Kinder was ich versprochen hab’ das halt ich; Robott, Zehend, und das andere hat angehört; ich hab’s sanctionirt, unterschrieben und dabei bleibt’s: eure Kaiser gibt euch sein Wort darauf, und glaubt’s dem Kaiser; ich mein‘s gut mit euch; aber in Wien gieb’s Leut‘ die’s nicht gut mit mir meinen, und die euch auch verführen wollen: und da kann ich mir nicht helfen ich wird leider Militär hinschicken müssen,“ u. s. w.] These words were received with more applause than would have been the most studied oration.  The old spoke of the late „blessed“ emperor, and the women hung out „schwarz-gelbe“ handkerchiefs, the imperial colors.  The Austrian peasant is conservative, and looks with something akin to detestation on the unintelligible theories and wild uproar of the towns.  So long as he is allowed to reap what he sows, the patriotism of the Aula appears to him incomprehensible.  The court saw enough to convince it, that it could rely on the country, in case of any measure against the towns; no aid could come to them from that quarter; no landsturm cry would be obeyed.  The movements of Windisch-Grätz and Jellachich were now safe.

And day after day, closer and closer drew the lines―move after move, until tower and pawn were shut in by bishop, king, and knight; and the issue of the great game no longer appeared doubtful.  Few sieges in modern times have been so fraught with the wild and wayward, with huge and harsh contrasts of men and things.  A sovereign with outstretched arm and uplifted sword over his own capital; his Parliament sitting within, as without, protesting allegiance; without, as within, proclaiming freedom; resisting in despite of their allegiance the still constitutional head of the state; in despite of their protestations in favor of liberty, ready to crush it; nationalities of all kinds (even Hungary has several) under new banners, the very opposite to those under which they had at first set out.  „Deutschthum“ in alliance with „Sclaventhum;“ Sclaventhum at variance with itself, witness the letter of the Ban to his Bohemian brethren, and their expostulations in answer from Prague―surely there were never joined in more tangled web so many and such various views and passions.  At night might be heard on the Rother-Thurm bastion, the bivouac of the Windisch-Grätz grenadiers, chanting, with might and main, in the Leopoldstadt near―„Was ist der Deutschen Vaterland?“ whilst the university, „Fuchs-lied“―„Was kommt dort von der Höh,“ was converted into a „Soldaten-Lied“ for the occasion, and every now and then the burthen―„Vom ledernen Jellachich,“ mixed jovially with Sclavonic lay and music, the Aula imitated ludicrously and fantastically by the camp.

The day, long certain, though long delayed, at last arrived, and the short, pregnant telegraphic dispatch, „The Imperial troops are in possession of the city,“ told all.  With them entered Jellachich―not into a conquered, as many hold, but into a liberated town.  It looked as if the capital had drawn in by some singular convulsion the blood from the extremities to the heart.  All its far-off and heterogeneous elements were that day pressed together, visibly represented, written down in broad and flaring line and color, in its streets; strange sights, uncouth sounds; the many-handed and party-colored power, there for the first time self-conscious, actual and acting in one narrow sphere.  Jellachich entered, but not before he had driven back the Hungarians from the frontier, which he had passed in defiance of the people as he had sat at the „Bantafel“ at Agram in defiance of the sovereign, as he held it to a higher order and wiser policy than that of either.  At three o’clock on 2d of November, he entered at the head of a regiment, of cuirassiers, preceded by a division of the Sereschener corps―a wild and fierce mass, the famous „Red Mantles.“  Red caps, red cloaks, with dagger, and pistol, eastern-wise in belt, carbine, or rifle, or sabre in hand; „never saw I,“ says an eye-witness, „a set of more thorough-looking bandits, in the whole course of my life.“  And in the midst of these, amongst them but not of them, rode the Ban, in his grey hussar cloak―a noble-looking personage of right gallant and knightly bearing.  No sooner had he passed the Burgthor than salutations and vivats greeted him on every side; handkerchiefs waved from fair hands, men joined their shouts; while with that courtly and joyous grace which has always distinguished him, he returned the compliments with bows to the windows above, and with responding cheers to the crowds below. „Blushes of burning shame,“ says one who stood near him, „flushed up my cheek at the sight, familiar as I was with the versatility of the people, and taught not then for the first time to despise them.“

Yet there was some excuse for all this, both in those who knew the man, and in those who for the first time beheld him irrespective of all cause and purpose for which he came.  No harsh deeds of blood, no reckless squandering of human life, no brutal trampling on the rights and fruits of civilization have been laid to his charge.  He seems taken from the bosom of its most favored recesses, not to rouse or urge on barbarous hordes to the destruction of its glories, but to guide and control them as far as he can.  He bears even in his externals the indications of this refinement.  Jellachich is scarcely of the middle size, not coarsely, but muscularly built, a man more of moral than physical power.  His high and clear forehead, bald nearly of hair; his black, keen, and easily kindled eye, a grave yet friendly expression of countenance, but above all a singularly gentle melancholy about the mouth, mark a man in whom very opposite elements are favorably blended.  Those best acquainted with his habitual existence, bear testimony to the accuracy with which these physical characteristics express the moral man.  Kindliness and sociability are interwoven in his whole nature, always ready with word and deed, always equal, always acceptable, he throws unreservedly his heart and door open to every sorrow, every wrong.  Eager for all action, intellectual as well as bodily, distinguished as a statesman, not unknown as a writer, he is a stranger to no department, but his paramount, his true vocation is war.  In character and conduct noble, of the most chivalrous valor and honor, generous, liberal, a true son, an ardent lover of his country, a soldier, poet, patriot combined, master not of the arms only but of the inmost hearts of his countrymen, he seems to stand out from the general mass of historic personages of our day, as destined to perform not merely a romantic, but a great part, in the history of a mighty futurity.  And to this, not his own will alone may lead him, but the very necessities by which, as by Greek fate, or Mohammedan fatalism, he seems to be borne on.  „Vienna is in the hands of the Imperial troops,“ is not the whole of this history; the epoch closes not here.  Who will say that the rude expression of the Frankfort orator―„The Austrian empire is a black-yellow lie“ (eine schwarzgelbe lüge)―be false or true?  Who will say, that it is a heap of fragments, or an incorporation of states?  Who will say that the object which kept together the assailants during the moment of attack being now gained, it will no longer prevent them breaking out into discord again?  The Vienna, and the Diet, and the Aula questions, may be settled, but is it not only to make way for the Magyar, the Sclavonian, the Servian, the Tzechian, and the Italian, lowering gloomily behind?  Should Hungary succeed, straight snaps asunder the last link which binds her to the empire.  Should the empire succeed, should Jellachich at last be enabled to humble or restrain her, who can answer even in his despite, for the justice or the wisdom of the Imperial Camarilla, after such proofs of the puny intrigue and Stuart-like faithlessness with which it played with events and nations, even against him?  Is Austria prepared to listen to the call of Prague, and to set herself up as the Sclavonic empire of Europe, expurging herself of Germanism and Magyarism at the same time?  Who in the midst of such repellants working inwardly; can look with hope abroad for the iron hand of some Otho or Frederick to compress her anew?  Cohesion wanting, what other energy can supply its place?  Where the centripetal is not, and the centrifugal is in such furious action, who can doubt, sooner or later, of the inevitable result?  And in the breaking loose of this planet from its orbit, in the breaking up of this Austrian world into fragments and smaller worlds of its own, in the resolving into kingdoms what now is empire, who may say how much, or what may fall to the lot of any nation or of any men?  Here, as elsewhere, mind will command matter, and people, for their own sakes, re-arrange themselves under some symbol, some guaranty of order, of permanence, of certainty―under chiefs or kings.  Half of those who have become such in the history of mankind, have been long masters in the hearts of the people before they were written down in document or title―sovereigns.  As Hapsburg began, so may Jellachich begin.  The Ban-viceroy of Croatia is not stranger in sound or fact, than the Pasha-viceroy of Egypt, in a decaying monarchy, first its officer, then its rival, then one of its monarchs himself.  In such a parcelling or promotion, an Illyrian, a Croatian, a South Sclavonian crown is quite as natural as a Prussian, a Westphalian, or a Hanoverian.  Margraves and Electors are not better stuff for such dignities than Bans.  And, above all, it should be remembered, the cause has been, and is, Sclavonic and the head of Pansclavism, the Czar will take care that a member of the race, and virtually, if not nominally, his feudatory―„aura toujours droit.“

„Le premier qui fut roi, fut un soldat heureux!“ says the poet.  Few periods are more likely to give a new illustration of the aphorism than the present, few soldiers more fitted to justify it, than the Ban Jellachich.

Transcribed by Nikola Dedić

Student of history, University of Mostar

Ban Jelačić! I samo ime baca nas usred pustolovnih sjećanja, surova junaštva, čudne nesvakodnevne veličine! Slavenska povijest bogata je ovim okrutnim, a opčaravajućim veličinama. Pogledajte kako oni prolaze ispod nas, dvojica Nikola Zrinskih, junak sigetski i njegovi potomci; Crni Đorđe, vođa Srba u njihovoj borbi za slobodu i cijela legija drugih! Ban! ― I sam naslov pun je romantična misticizma. To nam zvuči kao da smo čuli da se Veliki Meštar Njemačkog Reda ili od Swerdt-bratstva utaborio pred Brandenburškim vratima u Berlinu. Mi smo mislili da su sva ovakva srednjovjekovna veličanstva nastala u osamnaestom stoljeću zajedno s vlasuljama, austrijskim i pruskim. Mi nismo znali za ništa časnije od perčina Fredrika Velikoga i militarističkih čizama Kajzera Franca. Ali izgleda ne samo da sve ovo postoji, nego živi vrlo ustrajno i djelatno. Ljudi se počinju pitati ne samo što je Ban, nego tko je Ban? Oba pitanja su prikladna i zaslužuju odgovor, a nadamo se taj odgovor i dati, prije nego dokončamo ovaj članak.

Ban je vrlo cijenjen i uistinu pravi dostojanstvenik ― nešto kao naš Lord Warden of Marchesa [vojni zapovjednik], ili još više odgovara starom, ne novom, talijanskom Markezu, ili njemačkom Markgrofu ― ali nešto više nego svi ovi ― neka vrsta irskog Lorda Lieutenenta, kakav je običavao biti u vrijeme Henrika i Elizabete, kad je trebao skupljati vojsku, ili u vrijeme Karlovo, kad su puritanci sa sjevera u žestokoj pobuni protiv Karla bili kao danas Mađari, a katolike pod Ormondom u ovo vrijeme predstavljaju Hrvati i Slaveni. U starija vremena bilo je više ovakvih pokrajina, ili krajina, ili banovina u zapadnim i jugozapadnim provincijama, dok nisu bile okupljene u jednu državu, ujedinjenu kraljevinu Hrvatsku, Slavoniju i Dalmaciju, koja je držala stražu i čuvala austrijsko carstvo na granicama koje su bile najviše ugrožene, protiv još okrutnijih Turaka. „Ban” ili „lord”, što sam naslov znači, treći je po redu od baruna u mađarskom kraljevstvu carevine, a u svojoj zemlji ima čast Palatina i predsjednika „Benfatelu” ili Banskom vijeću u Zagrebu, kao što mađarski Palatinat predsjeda kraljevskom vijeću u Pešti. Koliko god je to visoka čast po sebi, još je više ona uzdignuta velikim ljudima koji su je obnašali (neke od njih smo spomenuli u početku). Od takvih ljudi vjerojatno ni jedan nije tako glasovit kao današnji nositelj banske časti. Ali mi smo tek na prvom ili najviše drugom poglavlju njegove životne priče.

            Jelačić je Hrvat ― Hrvat u našim ušima zvuči nešto kao Kozak.

Predočavaju nam se horde u trenutku paljenja nezaštićenih sela, ili kako koračaju kroz gradove iz kojih su građani pobjegli, trava ne raste kud progaze kopita njihovih konja; glad ispred i pošast iza njih, opasniji prijateljima, nego neprijateljima, nešto manje krvoločni nego Turci ili Tatari. Vođa Hrvata, da bi ih očuvao na okupu, mora biti gori Hrvat od sviju. Jelačić, kao neka vrsta među vojnicima odabrana vođe, mogao je zadobiti njihova srca samo osobinama sličnim onima kakvim su se istaknuli Alarik i Atila u svojim vojničkim vladavinama: smioni, djelatni, lukavi, okrutni: što okrutniji, to uspješniji. Zasigurno, ovako su Mađari obojili portret bana Jelačića, i iz stare naše naklonosti u korist Mađara, djelomično radi njihove stare vjernosti „Moriamur pro Rege nostro Maria Theresia” (1) i djelomično njihova junaštva, ili barem radi njihove junačke odore, mi smo trebali bezuvjetno vjerovati u točnost njihovih izjava. Sve do prije kraćega vremena, moramo ispovijedati, mi smo vidjeli u Banu nešto malo više od apsolutističkog plaćenika, unajmljena od cara, slično kao što je bio unajmljen gotski ili dačanski dobrovoljac, a zatim bio pretvoren u patricija ili konzula od strane starih rimskih Cezara da bi, kad se imperij počeo raspadati, neko pobunjeno kraljevstvo na periferiji carstva mogli ponovno ukrotiti i u njem povratiti osjećaj zajedništva. Slavenska verzija o Banu, naravno, drugačija je; ona dolazi od obožavatelja. Ali postoji i treća verzija, koja nije ni mađarska niti slavenska, bez naklonosti, kao i bez mržnje. Mnoge od činjenica koje slijede dolaze od onoga tko je stajao dosta blizu da bi se mogao osvjedočiti, ali je bio i udaljen toliko od razne pristranosti da može objektivno prosuđivati.

Ban je europski princ, u pravom europskom značenju te riječi; ravan bilo kome u profinjenosti, iznad većine i energičnosti i genijalnosti. I to je jedinstvena pojava kontrasta koja ove polurazbijene monarhije predstavljaju, nasuprot mladim demokracijama, što nije manje zanimljivo za mudra povjesnika nego za pjesnika. Nagon napretka imao je izgleda manji učinak u ovim monarhijama radi pomanjkanja intelektualnih djelatnosti, zato vlada razočarenje i zdvajanje, ali se tu pojavljuju ljudi jaka uma. Što je sve izišlo iz kotlova Francuske, Italije i Pruske? Ipak Austrija je od jednog starog Aesona napravila novog; u svojoj agoniji ona je rodila Radetzkog, Windisch-Gratza i Jelačića.

Jelačić ― da odpočnemo o njemu kao čovjeku ― nije Francesco Sforza ili Condotiere. On nije neki famozni gusar. On je plemićke, gotovo banske obitelji. Josip Jelačić, barun Jelačić Bužinski, je najstariji sin baruna Franje Jelačića Bužinskog, koji je, kao umirovljeni podmaršal i vlasnik 62. pješadijske regimente, sada Turszky, umro u Zagrebu 1810. godine. Od hrvatskih roditelja s obiju obiteljskih loza (2), Josip je rođen u Petrovaradinu 16. listopada 1801., na godišnjicu rođenja proslavljenoga crnog Đorđa, koji je rođen trideset godina prije njega. U djetetu su se ujedinile odlike oca i majke. Za njegov rani odgoj brinula se majka, dok je otac bio dugo odsutan u ratu s Francuzima. Od njezine nježnosti naslijedio je blage i uljudne odlike, ranu ljubav za pjesništvo i revnost za intelektualna nastojanja, što ga izrazito odvaja od njegovih kolega. Njegovu žeđ za djelatnošću, njegov iskren i čvrst duh, njegovu jednostavnu i živahnu šaljivost je naslijedio od svoga oca. U svom najranijem djetinjstvu bio je izvanredan u brzini svojih zapažanja, kao i u točnosti i postojanosti pamćenja. Kako su godine odmicale davao je znakove velike točnosti u svemu čega se prihvatio. Već tada su bili očiti znakovi njegova govorništva, po čemu je poznat. Njegova umjetnost i prisutnost duha bile su iznad njegovih godina. Kad je imao osam godina bio je predstavljen caru. Kajzer Franjo, uočivši njegovu inteligenciju i okretnost, posebno ga je zavolio i poslao ga u Terezijansku akademiju, koja je ― usprkos svom samostanskom i asketskom značaju ― odgojila, na ovaj ili onaj način, neke od najpoznatijih austrijskih uglednika u vojničkom i civilnom životu. U školi je Jelačić razvio dar za jezike, a kasnije se to vidjelo u načinu kojom lakoćom on govori njemački, talijanski, francuski, mađarski i nekoliko slavenskih jezika. Ali imao je posebnu naklonost prema vojničkom zvanju. Ratna taktika, s drugim prikladnim znanostima, kao što su povijest, posebno stara i moderna književnost, bile su njegovi najdraži predmeti. Usporeno s njima, vježbao je tjelesne vještine. Tako je postao vještak u mačevanju, dobar jahač i strijelac prvog reda.

Kad je imao osamnaest godina, kad su njegove umne i fizičke pripreme završile, ušao je u vojnu službu kao potporučnik u konjičkoj regimenti kojoj je bio na čelu daljnji stric njegove mame, konjički general i podban Hrvatske, barun Knežević od sv. Jelene. Zapovjednik mu je bio Olah von Nanas. Jelačić je bio poslan u garnizon u Tarnovo u Galiciji.

Na toj dužnosti on je ubrzo pridobio ljubav i štovanje sviju koji su s njim služili. Pravedan i human svojim podređenima, blizak i iskren svojim kolegama, točan i poslušan svojim starješinama. Bio je odmah prihvaćen kao izvanredan časnik. Austrijanska vojska je bogata društvancima, bratstvima „auf Noth und Tod”(3). Koja čine mnogo u čuvanju vojničkog duha i drugarstva što još drže vojsku jedinstvenom. On je bio njihova prava duša. Njegovo veselo i smiono držanje, njegova pustolovna i snažna ljubav sa životom, njegova osvajačka dobra narav, njegova briljantna domišljavost, opčaravali su i poučavali svaku skupinu u kojoj je dospio. Željezne tjelesne građe, uvečer je bio zadnji za stolom, ujutro prvi na konju; u svakoj zgodi i nezgodi uvijek je prednjačio. I uz sve to što je krasilo budućeg slobodno-izabranog vođu hrabra i smiona naroda, skrivao se poseban, gotovo neograničen, izvor najčistijeg i najnježnijeg pjesništva što rastapa dušu nježnošću, duh revnosti i samozataje. Iako često u ženskom društvu, kažu da je jedva i započeo strasti koje je u ženama budio; njegovo cijelo biće bilo je posvećeno drugovima u vojsci i ljubavi za svoj dom. On još ne može prežaliti svoju majku i sestru (4) koje je u mladosti izgubio, a sestra mu je umrla u cvijetu svoje ljepote i mladosti. Bio je veoma blizak obojici svoje braće(5), od kojih je jedan bio pukovnik u Karlovačkoj graničarskoj regimenti, a drugi zapovjednik eskadrona u konjičkoj regimenti Nadvojvode Franje Josipa. Ali njegov donekle neumjeren život nije mogao dugo ostati bez posljedica. Nakon pet godina vojničkoga staža njegov snažan život je popustio. Spopala ga je teška bolest, popraćena mučnim bolovima; u svakom času mogao je podleći smrti. Oni koji su ga vidjeli u tim danima na njegovu bolesničkom, ili kako se tada mislili, vjerojatno smrtnom krevetu, govore s odanošću o njegovoj nepromijenjenoj sabranosti i gotovo prkosnoj vedrini kojima je primao sve koji su ga posjećivali. I baš tada je napisao većinu svojih pjesama. One dobro izražavaju mirnoću uma u kojoj su bile napisane; odišu smionošću i ponosnim žudnjama mladog, nezasićenog uma za časnijom budnošću, gorkim uzdisajima radi nenadne životne opasnosti, te gledaju i žeđu za odvažnim i korisnim pothvatima u riječi i djelu, ako mu Providnost daruje budućnost. Tako se i dogodilo, Providnost se pokazala milostivom. Godine 1825. njegovo zdravlje počelo se pomalo popravljati, a zatim naglo se oporavilo; još prije završetka godine, on se uspio pridružiti svojoj regimenti, koja je tada bila smještene u Beču. Teško je opisati veselje i uzbuđenje kojim su ga dočekali njegove kolege časnici. General-major barun Geramb ga je odmah izabrao za svog pobočnika brigade. On se pokazao tako nezamjenjiv u svojim dužnostima da je pri polasku Jelačićeve regimente u Poljsku, pod zapovjedništvom pukovnika grofa St. Quentina, bio zadržan u glavnom gradu. Nisu ga pustili da ide za svojom regimentom godinu dana.

Kad se ponovno našao među svojim kolegama nastavio je svoj stari način života; bio je u središtu svih događaja. Jelačić je bio tražen svugdje. Ništa se nije planiralo ni radilo bez Jelačića. Nitko točniji, čak i pedantniji, u izvršavanju vojničkih dužnosti. Ali samo što je sablja bila bačena u stranu, on se sa sigurnošću našao na čelu svoje klape u kakvom vratolomnu trčanju, preko brda i dolina, noću i po kiši, za zabavama. Poslije dana provedena u veselju u okolnim mjestima, on i njegova skupina su često bili viđeni kako jahaju zajedno miljama da bi bili na vrijeme za jutarnju paradu. Jelačić je bio bezbrižan jahač. Više puta su i konj i jahač izbjegli kakvu jametinu ili baruštinu samo zahvaljujući njegovoj prisutnosti uma ili pravovremenoj opreznosti njegovih drugova. Upravo u gunguli ovakvih izleta on je napisao većinu svojih ratnih i vojničkih pjesama, posebice „Garrison’s Lied” ili „Garnizonska pjesma”, tako dobro poznata i tako srdačna pjevana u cijeloj austrijskoj vojsci. To je radosna pjesma, zajedljiva satira zastarjele prestroge austrijske vojne taktike, ali i puna prave i dobre nade za bolju budućnost, u srcu nadahnjujuća veselica. Kao zov trube za pravo drugarstvo, bratsko zajedništvo i iskren vojnički poticaj za ratnički duh i disciplinu.

I tad je Srpanjska revolucija izbila u Francuskoj. Varnice su vrcale na sve strane. U slutnji neposredna rata, vojna pojačanja, napredovanja, promaknuća i opće komešanje je izbilo po cijeloj carevini. Ovo je bilo od koristi Jelačiću kao i drugima. Pod zaštitom novog Predsjednika Ratnog vijeća, baruna Von Radoševića, koji je bio stari i zahvalni prijatelj Jelačićeva oca, Jelačić je bio promaknut u čin kapetana prve klase u jednoj hulanskoj pograničnoj regimenti. Odvajanje od njegovih starih kolega bilo je veoma teško i za njega i za njih. Nije to zaboravljeno do danas. Prošlo je već osamnaest godina od tada, ali očito je da njegova privrženost starim drugovima čvrsta kao što je bilo i prije: on je sada kao i uvijek njihov miljenik.

Njegovu „Garrison’s Lied” oni svojataju kao svoju posebnu svojinu; ne prođe ni jedna vesela prigoda a da se ona srdačno i gromkim glasovima ne otpjeva, kao u ona stara vremena. Ali ovo nije bilo ograničeno samo na njih, on je ubrzo uz stare prijatelje dobio i nove; svugdje je bio voljen čim bi ga upoznali, on je uspijevao pridobiti ― kao nijedan časnik prije njega ― simpatije cijele vojske. Početkom 1837. Jelačić je bio promaknut za još jedan čin. Postao je major u pješadijskoj Gollner regimenti ― kasnije regimenta Nadvojvode Ernesta ― i glavni pobočnik grofu Wetter von Lilienbergu, tada vojnom guverneru Dalmacije.

Od tog vremena trebamo gledati Jelačića kao novog čovjeka; mladenački nemiri su se počeli smirivati, postepeno je u njemu sazrijevala muževna ozbiljnost. U novim prilikama i pod utjecajem njegova nadarenog starješine, on se potpuno posvetio proučavanju značaja i sudbine Dalmacije, koja je siromašna provincija, ali Austriji neizmjerno važna, kako se moglo vidjeti i iz Napoleonove oštroumnosti. Kad je umro Lilienberg, Jelačić, tada potpukovnik, bio je prebačen u Prvu graničarsku regimentu u Banatu, i 1842. postao je pukovnik. Na čelu ove istaknute vojne skupine on je odbio napade iz Bosne i svojom hrabrošću i dobrom prosudbom u sukobu u Posvidu, dao je znakove svoje vojne slave koja ga je čekala u budućnosti.

Ali vojna slava i nadarenost su bile samo sredstvo za određeni cilj. Jelačić će se ubrzo pojaviti na visokim položajima i s karakterom jačim od obična uspješna vojnog zapovjednika.

Ožujska revolucija 1848. otvorila je još jedno doba za Austrijsku carevinu. Car Ferdinand je dao svim svojim državama, koje su bile teško pobjeđivane u mnogim drugim i krvavim ratovima, dugo tražena i dugo obećavana vjernom narodu široka prava, kad ih više nije bilo moguće nijekati. Bilo je puno zbrke u to vrijeme radi načina kako su careva popuštanja bili provedena. Dvor je na svakom koraku zatezao, a narod je bio sumnjičav. Ispod vidljive stagnacije carevine vodila se nevidljiva borba ne samo između vladara i podanika, nego, kako je to poznato, između Dvora i Vlade. Čak i Metternich, kao čuvar države, bio je puno napredniji od kamarile. Već za neko vrijeme prije revolucije, iako ne napredan ali barem mudar, Metternich je uočio probleme i o njima opominjao Dvor. I bile bi od koristi njegove preporuke da treba mnogo toga promijeniti što je bilo neizbježivo kao i pravedno, ne toliko iz ljubavi za reformu koliko iz straha od revolucije. Ne treba se čuditi dakle što u takvoj atmosferi Mađarska ― nacije, naime, u ovakvim trenucima i pitanjima imaju neku vrstu nagona ― pokušava osigurati, osim reakcionara, svoje slobode, te odlučuje da je najuspješniji način ostvarenja tih prava izdvajanje iz carevine i postati neovisna. S Hrvatskom to nije bio slučaj ― njezin cilj je bio isti kao mađarski, ali način borbe kako do toga doći bio je sasvim drugačiji. Da je Mađarska bila homogena zajednica, bez suparništva jezika, rasa i religija, razvoj događaja u svakoj od triju država, koje tvore njezino kraljevstvo, bio bi isti. Ali to nije slučaj. I ovdje, kao i u drugim sličnim prilikama, rezultati su bili logičan plod takvih različitosti. Bojazan za budućnost i odbojnost prema prošlosti, brzo su urodili potpunom odsutnošću misli i djela. Oni koji su držali vlast bojali su se podijeliti je s ostalima. Oni koji su bili bez sudioništva u vlasti svojatali su je i pođoše je provoditi u djelo. Mađarska nadmoć je bila uspostavljena, ne u smislu zajedničkih interesa cijele Mađarske, nego samo jednog sloja u Mađarskoj. Kao sve frakcije, nepravedne i nerazumne, taj je sloj prisvajao sve sebi, i nije htio ništa dijeliti sa svojim podanicima i svojim sugrađanima, sa Slavenima u Hrvatskoj i Dalmaciji. Za ovo nije bilo izgovora. Drugi narodi su brojniji od Mađara, a nije bilo kakva ni drugog opipljivijeg razloga za opravdavanje ovakva prisvajanja. U običnu surovu osvajaču ovakav postupak bi vjerojatno bio razumljiv, ali ljudi koji su zahtijevali prava za sebe, koji opravdavali svoje napore za samostalnošću na temelju tih prava, koji su išli toliko daleko te su pokušavali uspostaviti ta prava protiv Austrije, a na korist Italije, to nijekanje prava drugima bilo je proturječje i nepodnošljiva okrutnost. Engleski čitatelji će ovo najbolje razumjeti ako se podsjete sličnu podlost u irskoj povijesti; na ovaj vapaj irskog protestantskog parlamenta iz 1782. za nezavisnošću od Engleske, u ime Irske, ali u isto vrijeme ti parlamentarci su prezirno onemogućavali velikom dijelu Iraca i svim katoličkim masama da i oni budu uživatelji te nevinosti; vapaj za slobodnim ustavom, kao da ustav za jednu stranku, a ne za cijelu državu, može i pod kakvim uvjetima biti slobodan.

Dok je bila povezana s Austrijom, kao ovisan član carevine, kao samo jedan od triju ujedinjenih kraljevstava, ovakva mađarska monopolistička i ekskluzivistička politika bila je teško provodiva. Da bi mogao praviti ovakve velike nepravde, u prvom redu, Mađar mora biti sam. Da bi mogao tlačiti slavenstvo, ne smije postojati njemački ili češki nadglednik; ne smije carstvo, ne car, ne kontrola ili zapovijed. Dakle, kao očiti preduvjet, odvajanje od Beča je postalo neminovno, ne toliko iz neprijateljstva prema caru, koliko radi mržnje prema slavenskim podanicima. Ne jednakost ili sloboda, nego pravo gospodariti, a ne biti podložan gospodarenju, bio je njihov zahtjev. I ubrzo se vidjelo kakvim se metodama želi Mađarska poslužiti. Od mjeseca travnja Mađarska je bila gotovo u otvorenoj pobuni protiv još priznatog svog kralja. Ona je poslala svoje poklisare u Beč, zatim u Frankfurt, kao u kakve strane države; ona je zahtijevala pravo novačiti svoju vlastitu vojsku i upravljati njom, koju bi obvezivala ne opća nego posebna mađarska zakletva. Ona je pokušala sve da do tada vjernu vojsku odvrati od vjernosti caru. Ona je otvoreno i nedvojbeno izrazila svoje simpatije za talijanske pobunjenike. Ona je povukla svoje regimente iz Lombardije i odbila je svoju pomoć za dalje ratovanje. Ona je odbila sudjelovati u otplati carevinskih dugova, odbila je dati bilo kakve doprinose carevini bilo u krvi ili novcu. „Nek se kraljevska kuća kao takva raspadne radi toga”. Ukratko, kao što njezina djela očito govore, ona je izrazila čvrstu odluku da neće više ništa imati zajedničkog s carevinom. U ovakvim prilikama Hrvatska je još osjećala kmetom, u slobodnoj državi, suočena s borbom za život i smrt za svoje pravo i ravnopravnost, u žestokoj utrci za domovinu i vjeru ― još najgore građanski ratovi. Ona nije imala pomoći protiv navale zla osim svoje desnice i u obrani carstva, jer koliko god je ono bilo nemoćno protiv sviju naroda u carevini, bilo je svemoćno protiv njih pojedinačno. Hrvatska je zato poletjela carstvu i svom vođi. Car i carevina ― jedna i nedjeljiva, bio je njezin ratni poklik uzduž svih njezinih granica, zov koji je raskinuo veze koje su kroz 800 godina spajale južne Slavene s Mađarskom i koji je s tom vjernom zemljom, protiv volje Hrvatske i protiv njenih prigovora ― otpustio pomamne raške i srpske horde.

U ovom trenutku, sudbonosnom za hrvatske zemlje i za cjelovitost monarhije, hrvatsko je poslanstvo došlo u Beč. Došli su pred prijestoljem iznijeti svoje bojazni ― i svoju vjernost. Oni su obećali  „Gut” i „Blut” za očuvanje carske krune, za ujedinjenu carevinu. Ali su molili cara da im da sredstva i prigodu da potvrde ovo obećanje. Oni su molili cara da im postavi na čelo vođu koji bi ih bio sposoban povesti i kojeg bi oni bili voljni slijediti. Oni su tražili da za tu dužnost imenuje čovjeka dorasla teškom trenutku u kojem su se nalazili, da imenuje za Bana pukovnika Josipa Jelačića.

Car je bio svjestan opasnosti koje su naglo rasle oko njega. Imao je razumijevanje za njihove osjetljivosti i bojazni od onoga što se događalo u Mađarskoj. On je udovoljio njihovoj molbi. Jelačić je imenovan Banom Trojedine Kraljevine, i nekoliko dana kasnije obasut je častima. Bio je imenovan predsjednikom Banskog vijeća, podmaršal, vlasnik dviju regimenta, i glavni zapovjednik u vojnim oblastima Banata, Varadina i Karlovca.

Novi Ban je odmah shvatio težinu i odgovornost svog položaja. Nisu to bila obična vremena; nije to bila idealna čast. Veliki slavenski pokret je bio počeo; ne samoinicijativno, nego je bio izazvan, dakle vjerojatnije više strastven nego opasan. Ban je bio pozvan da s njim ravna i da ga predvodi. Jedino tako su prava njegova naroda, vjere, i zemlje mogla biti obranjena, prava i vlast careva sačuvani, sloboda, s poretkom cijele zajednice učvršćena. „Moja sudbina”, rekao je on pišući tada povjerljivo jednom prijatelju, „je zacrtana. Ja stupam na put koji je pravo naprijed, iskren i otvoren pravac; ako ostanem uspravan, dobro, ako padnem, past ću kao vojnik, domoljub, i vjerni sluga svog cara i gospodara”!

Ali ovo nije bila mala odgovornost; da bi mogao ravnati pokretom trebalo je prije zadobiti naklonosti njegovih sugrađana, prodrijeti puninom svoje slavenske nacionalnosti, osvojiti i zavladati običnim srcima. Ovo je on nastojao ostvariti ne na osnovi fanatizma panslavističke utvare, kako su njemačke novine tvrdile, niti sluganskom poslušnošću carevim zahtjevima, ili da bi mislio carevom glavom, kako je to odjekivalo od peštanske Tribune ― do Bečke Aule, i još manje na trenutačnoj mizernoj popularnosti među svim strankama. Jelačić je bio idol svoje nacije, ali njegova je tajna bila jednostavnost i iskrenost. On je bio takav snagom svoje osobnosti i vrline. Takav je bio jer bijaše brz i hrabar u trenutku opasnosti. Sa željeznom rukom je preuzeo i upravljao kormilom države, i kroz valove i hidrine izveo je taj mukotrpni brod junački u luku. Neumoran, univerzalan, svugdje nazočan, u svakoj potrebi, bodreći narod, na sjednici, s oltara, pohvaljujući i kažnjavajući, pomirujući i organizirajući, on je bio pravi čovjek za ta vremena, kao što su to bila prava vremena za njega. Nije ga ništa moglo obeshrabriti; ništa ga nije moglo zastrašiti. On je gledao u opći društveni i politički metež i u juriš neprijateljske vojske istom hrabrošću, istom prisutnošću duha. Na nekom bučnom sastanku su osporavali neke od njegovih naredaba. On je nezapažen ušao u taj skup. Žamor je rastao sve jači. Odjekivalo je iz klupa, dok nije neki koji je mislio da govori u ime drugih, istupio naprijed i ustvrdio:

            „Ne! Premda si na čelu deset tisuća bajuneta, ti nas nećeš nikada zastrašiti”.

            Jelačić je mirno odbacio svoju sablju i uzvratio:

            „I bez oružja, Ban čuva red i mir u zemlji”.

Odbojnost prisutnih se promijenila u divljanje; ushićeno su vikali „Živio”! sa svih strana.

I tako je on uspio udahnuti u Južnoslavenski pokret jedan osjećaj i jednu volju. Svako je srce prianjalo uz njega kao uz pravog borca za prava svoje domovine, ili čuvara reda i mira u njoj. Hrvatska nije bila bez svoje ultra demokratske stranke. Bilo je mađarskih simpatizera čak i među Slavenima, ali što su da su bile njihove misli i pogledi, bili su po broju neznatni. Najveću dio nacije, bez sumnje, imao je samo jedan cilj ― zajedništvo s carevinom, očuvanje nacionalnosti, puni razvoj svojih snaga i sloboda, na potpunoj jednakosti sa svakim drugim krajem u državi.

U nemiru, koji je bio naravan ishod sudara dviju tako jakih stranaka, teško je bilo očekivati da će se netko od njih pridržavati uljudnosti i pravila iz ratnih priručnika. Strijele koje su bile odapete u mađarskom tisku protiv Bana, čija krivnja, ustvari, nije bila ništa drugo nego nastojanje da osigura Hrvatskoj isto ono što su Mađari tražili za Mađarsku, i koji se u vrijeme opće krize i bez vjernosti pokazao kao jedini primjer odvažnosti i odanosti svojoj zemlji i svom vladaru, Hrvati su, istina je, uzvratili tim istim strijelama. Ali je postojala ova razlika među njima: hrvatski tisak se nije miješao u unutarnje poslove u Mađarskoj. Njihovo pisanje je bilo obrambeno, branili su Bana i zemlju, i bez razlike na težinu provokacije, uvijek su odgovarali ponosno i suzdržljivo. Ali vrijeme je bilo prošlo kad je takvo oružje moglo pomoći.

Novinske psovke nisu bile više dovoljne suzbiti jačanje Banove vlasti. Prišlo se drugim metodama. Pokušali su ga osumnjičiti u očima vladara komu je on nastojao služiti.

Bolestan i slaba uma ležao je car u svojoj palači u Innsbrucku. Bilo je to samotno i mirno mjesto. Mnogi od njegovih najboljih prijatelja bili su odsutni, a bio je okružen mađarskim ministarstvom. Provale Rašana i Srba kroz sve granica prouzročile su uzbunu. Graja: „zemlja je bila u opasnosti” ― taj otrovni poklik, koji sam stvori toliko opasnosti koliko ga nastoji spriječiti, čuo se na sve strane.

Ban, tvrdilo se, može lako spriječiti ili ugušiti ovakve provale. On je onaj koji je dopustio da bujica raste, da napreduje, da provali sve brane. Uzrok ove apatije bio je očit: tvrdilo se da je on sam organizirao ovakav pokret. Nije ga bilo teže spojiti ni s panslavističkim pokušajima u Pragu. Ukratko, svrhu njegovih nastojanja nije više trebalo prekrivati, a to je bila nadmoć Slavena na račun drugih rasa u carstvu. Ovakve priče imale su svoj utjecaj: zavjera je uspjela. Car je lišio Bana svih njegovih dužnosti i časti. Ali, još u strahu od posljedica, naredio je da ukaz ne bude iznijet na javu, osim u slučaju da on odbije prihvatiti mađarske odluke. Nije mogla biti stvorena gora i kratkovidnija dvorska spletka, kao i neznalačka odluka ― opasna ne manje za Mađare nego za Slavene ― izračunata da donese prezir slobode i monarhije. Jelačić je time bio stavljen u kušnju. Bilo mu je saopćeno da ne dođe na iduću sjednicu Sabora, 5. lipnja u Zagrebu, nego je umjesto toga bio pozvan u Innsbruck da bi odgovorio na optužbe iznesene protiv njega. Ova zabrana, nadahnuta mađarskim utjecajem, bila je dobro izračunata u svojoj namjeri. Bila je to važna prigoda i zasjedanje, koje se približavalo. Zastupnici svih hrvatskih krajeva trebali su se sastati u Zagrebu. Ne samo važne, nego najvažnije stvari, koje su bile sudbonosne za osjećaj i interes naroda, trebale su biti raspravljene na toj sjednici Sabora. Zasjedanje je imalo i drugu svrhu. Prije otvaranja Sabora, Ban je trebao biti svečano ustoličen. Običan čovjek bi možda i izvršio naredbu, ali Ban, znajući kako je do te naredbe došlo, ignorirao je poziv i na određeni dan došao je u Zagreb, a ne u Innsbruck. Bio je dočekan oduševljenjem. Bio je primljen velikom radošću od sviju slojeva svoga naroda. Njegovo ustoličenje s velikim odobravanjem predvodio je grčki ili neunijatski biskup i patrijarh iz Karlovca, djelomično zato što je zagrebački biskup bio odsutan, a donekle i iz želje da se pokaže da su i u Hrvatskoj vjeroispovijest i crkva sada slobodni. Obredi tog dana prigodom ustoličenja bili su čudna suprotnost svakome tko je upoznat s tajnim spletkama i dvoličnošću bečkog Dvora. Upravo u samu trenutku kad je bio optužen od svog vladara za izdaju, stajao je Ban Jelačić u Saborskoj dvorani u Zagrebu, služeći se svom svojom nadarenošću, svojom govorničkom snagom, ljubavlju i snagom svojih slušatelja da bi pokazao svoju vjernosti odanost tom istom vladaru. I tako, ili ne znajući ili sumnjajući u točnost carevih nakana, on je samo nekoliko dana kasnije (12. lipnja) na čelu delegacije sastavljene od pukovnika Danksteina, grofa Nugenta, grofa Ludovika Erdödija, baruna Franje Kulmera, grofa Karla Draškovića i nekoliko drugih, otišao bez oklijevanja u Innsbruck. Njegovo putovanje kroz Tirol, kroz Alpe koje su odjekivale pjesmom i rodoljubnom glazbom, kroz slavoluke i svestrano bodrenje naroda, bilo je svečan pobjedonosni marš. Tirolci su bili uz Hrvate, oni su se sjećali i starih uspomena: Jelačića ime nije bilo nepoznato. Mnogi su se stari veterani u Tirolu borili na pobjedničkom Feldkich polju pod zapovjedništvom njegova oca. Po njegovu dolasku u Beč nitko mu ništa nije saopćio niti mu je itko i riječi rekao o carevoj zapovjedi od prije samo šest dana. Princ Pavao Esterhazy, tadašnji Ministar vanjskih poslova u Mađarskoj, dobio je naredbu iz Pešte da ne dopusti nikakav razgovor između Jelačića i cara. Kad je ovo bilo saopćeno delegaciji, bilo je odlučeno istog časa vratiti se u Hrvatsku, ali prije toga Jelačić je poručio caru da se nije dolikovalo carevu visokom veličanstvu, a ni njegovu, podleći kontroli mađarskog ministarstva.

Ali dok je carevina tako bila podijeljena protiv same sebe, Dvor je isto tako dokazao da je i sam podijeljen u različite klike. Isti čovjek kome nije bilo dozvoljeno pristupiti blizu cara, bio je primljen ne samo bez poteškoće, nego raširenih rukama, od Nadvojvode Karla i Nadvojvotkinje Sofije. I njihovom zaslugom došlo je, na koncu, i do prijema kod cara. U strahu za ishod tog primanja, Esterhazy i mađarsko ministarstvo, koji nisu mogli to spriječiti, tražili su da budu prisutni na tom prijemu. Nadvojvoda je bio spreman prihvatiti ovu otežavajuću okolnost, ali Ban je ostao postojan u svojoj odluci. On nije popustio Mađarima. Konačno je došlo do kompromisa: umjesto javnoga došlo je do privatnoga primanja. Na određeni dan (19. lipnja), hrvatska delegacija s Jelačićem na čelu došla je pred okupljeni Dvor. Svi su tada bili u Innsbrucku ― car i carica, nadvojvoda i nadvojvotkinja, cijeli diplomatski kor, uobičajena pratnja državnih službenika, plemići i gospođe bili su prisutni. Mađarsko ministarstvo također je došlo. Bila je neobična slika ― Jelačić je stajao pred Hrvatima, pred elitom nacije, i progovorio caru u ime svoje i njegovo. Prekrasnim jezikom je pred vladarom opisao pogibeljne prilike u kojima se nalazila monarhija i vjernost do smrti pravog i junačkog naroda. Govorio je govornički i hrabro o pravima i interesima obiju stranaka. Nije bilo pravo da vjerni podanici budu zgaženi u prašinu, ili otpisani drugim potpisom pera u samu času kad oni stavljaju pred noge prijestolja svoje hitne molbe da veze koje su ih povezivale s carstvom budu čvršće nego ikada prije. Hrvatska je bila carevinska desna ruka ― pogranične provincije njezina kralježnica i mišić. Premda ne sačinjavaju više od trideset i pet posto carevine, oni čine jednu trećinu njezine pješadije, i mogu, ako ustreba taj broj podvostručiti. Takva zemlja i narod ― takva srca i ruke nisu, u času opasnom kao ovaj, za tek tako nemarno odbaciti. Učinak je bio izvanredan. Dvor je bio uzbuđen, mnogi su od prisutnih proplakali. Bilo je to nešto izvanredno vidjeti čovjeka puna muževne snage i neustrašivosti, kako govori slabašnom i boležljivom vladaru licem u lice, pred prijateljima i neprijateljima. To je podsjećalo na vremena kad je osobnost, još jaka, razbijala sve prepreka između staleža i položaja i vladala snagom osobnih sposobnosti i umom. Optužbe se nisu više iznosile. Nadvojvoda Ivan je bio zamoljen za posredništvo. On je to pristao i bio je od koristi u otklanjanu mađarskih podvala.

Naredba za Banovo svrgnuće nije bila formalno opozvana, ali je Banu bilo dozvoljeno de facto nastaviti raditi na svojoj visokoj dužnosti. Svatko je osjećao da je car gledao samo za povoljan čas da bi opozvao svoju naredbu koja je, bilo je očito, bila iznuđena protiv njegove volje. Nadvojvoda Ivan je Banu poslao potpisano pismo s najljubeznijim riječima, „An meinem lieben Banus” ― „Mom dragom Banu”. Primanje kod cara je bilo tek završilo kad je Ban bio primljen kod Nadvojvode Franje i Nadvojvotkinje Sofije na najprijateljskiji način. Izgleda da je princ Esterhazy također očekivao Banov posjet, ali kako se to nije dogodilo, on je posjetio Bana. Kažu da su bili u zatvorenoj sobi više od sat vremena, a zatim kad je princ napuštao Banove odaje, očito vrlo uzbuđen, čulo se da je uzviknuo, prolazeći između Hrvata u predvorju sobe, „Kakav čovjek! Ja osobno moram otići u Peštu i ovi događaji od sada moraju krenuti drugim pravcem”.

I tako je Jelačić otišao iz Innsbrucka, u zagrljajima dvorskim. Njegovi neprijatelji su bili pobijeđeni ili razoružani, njegovi prijatelji ushićeni i narod razdragan. Njegov povratak bila je svečanost! Ali sve ovo bila je obmana ― prevara ― zamka!

Kad je došao u Linz, malo selo na putu kući, i kad je uzeo u ruku dnevne novine, među njima Wiener Zeitung, prva stvar koja mu je udarila u začuđene i razjarene oči pod nadnevkom od 19. lipnja, na sami dan njegove audijencije kod cara, bio je ukaz o njegovu svrgnuću s banske stolice ― ukaz koji je trebao ostati samo na papiru, a nitko u Innsbrucku nije našao za shodno kazati mu ni slovca o njegovu postojanju! Nije to bilo sve: kao da Dvor nije mogao biti iskren prema nikom, dokument koji je bio nevoljko izdan, lukavštinom je bio učinjen neprimjenjivim; predan je u javnost bez supotpisa jednog od mađarskih ministara. Ban je bio uvrijeđen i ismijan, a Mađar prevaren i izigran. Teško je reći kako takva vlast može nadahnuti ili zaslužiti povjerenje. Ali ovo je bio samo jedan korak u labirintu ludorija i dvoličnosti, koje ispunjaju ovu stranicu austrijske povijesti, koja je toliko za prezir koliko je misteriozna.

Na ovu vijest ― kako se lako može i zamisliti ― svi su južni Slaveni bili u plamenu. Kroz sve njihove pokrajine i pogranične krajeve čuo se jedinstven krik žalosna i prezirna gnjeva radi sramotne Dvorske izdaje. Ban je šutio. Nijedne novine iz tih dana nisu zabilježile ni riječi kritike ili gnjeva s njegove strane. Ali gledajuć unazad na ta vremena i mjesto, na ljude i okolnosti, u dubini njegova srca mora da je bilo puno gorčine i jada radi ove rane pripremljene i zadane na takav način. Njegovo primanje kod cara, duboko zataškana tajna, na svim stranama, o pakosnom ukazu, prijateljsko laskanje Nadvojvode i Nadvojvotkinje, izbor nadvojvode Ivana kao posrednika, sve ove činjenice zajedno uzete pokazale su kako je malo on mogao računati na ovakvu vladu u budućnosti ― kako se malo moglo očekivati da njihove zapovijedi budu poštovane i izvršavane. Ban je šutio, ali ne hrvatski Sabor. Saborski predstavnici nisu podnosili nanijetu im uvredu takvom poniznošću i krotkošću. Oni su hrabro, izrazili caru svoje obožavanje i ljubav prema svom vođi i svoju žalost i bol radi nepravde koja mu je nanesena. S njegovim ranama i oni su bili ranjeni. S njegovim interesima i njihovi interesi su bili žrtvovani. Njihova vjernost i zajedništvo s carstvom nije bila potresena, ali su pitali kako se to moglo dogoditi da ― dok u svakom drugom dijelu zemlje svijetlo slobode je zasjalo ― samo oni bi trebali poviti svoje šije pod jarmom stranog tlačitelja. Oni su ukazali da je spletka oko careve naredbe došla iz Mađarske i od Mađara. U razmjeru s njihovom odanošću Bana bila je i njihova gorčina radi takva pačanja drugih u hrvatske poslove. Ovakvi osjećaji su također odjeknuli među vojskom uzduž granice. Bili su to, uistinu, osjećaji cijele nacije.

U ovakvim okolnostima Ban je osjećao da nije dužan voditi računa o carskom ukazu. On je znao kako je ukaz bio nerazborit u svakom pogledu, i vjerovao je da će događaji koji budu slijedili dokazati da je on bio u pravu. On se odmah vratio u Zagreb, gdje je bio dočekan neograničenim veseljem, i umjesto da se povuče u privatni život, kako mu je bilo namijenjeno, on se poslužio svom vlašću koja mu je proizlazila iz banske časti, udvostručio je svaki napor, poduzeo je svaku mjeru koja mu je proizlazila iz banske časti, poslužio svom vlašću koja mu je proizlazila iz banske časti, udvostručio je svaki napor, poduzeo je svaku mjeru da bi narod pripremio za obranu, da bi pridobio još veće povjerenje svojih sunarodnjaka, da bi ih probudio još veće povjerenje svojih sunarodnjaka, da bi ih probudio i pripremio za nekompromisno čuvanje njihove nacionalnosti. Ni zapovijed vladareva, niti austrijski i njemački tisak (koji u ono vrijeme nisu nipošto bili naklonjeni Banu), ni žestoki napadi mađarskih govornika i pisaca, niti privatne spletke, ni javni napadi nisu imali kakva utjecaja na Banov zacrtani cilj. Ne samo da je ostao u Hrvatskoj, dok je proputovao cijelu Slavoniju i svugdje je naišao na isti doček, svugdje na istu spremnost podržati ga i braniti u nadošloj opasnosti.

Događaji su ubrzo dokazali kako su opravdane i mudre bile ove pripreme. Što se tiče kazne radi neposlušnosti, bečki Dvor se našao u nevolji i morao je pokušati pronaći druge načine da bi ostvario svoju svrhu. Smatrali su da bi se pregovorima još moglo pronaći rješenje prihvatljivo za obje strane i dovoljno sredstvo za smirivanje razjarenih protivnika. Bilo je predloženo da se održi sastanak u Beču. Bethany, mađarski ministar, već je bio tamo. Jelačić je bio pozvan da se s njim susretne i on je prihvatio poziv. Način na koji je bio Ban primljen u glavnome gradu carevine bio je ohrabrujući. Ogromno mnoštvo je izišlo na ulice za njegov doček. On je jedva stigao do Badener Bahnhofa, kad su se glasovi orili na sve strane: „Gdje je Jelačić”? Dok je boravio u gradu, njegovo boravište u Kortherstrasse bilo je okruženo mnoštvom obožavatelja. Časnici vojarne iskazali su mu čast 29. srpnja serenadom i mimohodom. Nije bio ništa lakši pokušaj s mađarske strane da ga omete niti je imao drugi učinak osim što mu je to dalo prigodu da može održati govor građanima Beča sa svog prozora, kad je na koncu rekao ove riječi: „Moja bitka je bitka časti; dakle jesam li ja spreman pred vama izložiti sve svoje osjećaje i namjere. Ja nisam neprijatelj plemenitog mađarskog naroda, nego samo protiv onih, koji, potaknuti svojim separatističkim tendencijama, za svoje sebične ciljeve, žele odvojiti Mađarsku od Austrije, i tako oslabiti obadvije. Ja, braćo moja, želim slavnu, jaku, moćnu, slobodnu i nerazdijeljenu Austriju. Živjela naša lijepa domovina! I živjela Njemačka”!

Usprkos ovim demonstracijama, sastanak u Beču nije urodio plodovima mira. Bilo je uskoro jasno da nekakav opći kompromis nije bio moguć. Jelačić nije uistinu zahtijevao odvajanje slavenskih pograničnih krajeva od mađarskog kraljevstva, ali je zahtijevao dužno priznanje nacionalnih i mjesnih interesa slavenske nacije i u tom smislu tražio je obuzdavanje mađarskih ministarstava rata i financija, koji su svojim potpuno samostalnim mađarskim pothvatima, doveli Slavene na svoju milost i nemilost. Ukratko, on je zahtijevao da se Mađari odreknu svoje neovisnosti koju su bili proglasili u ožujku 1848., i za obnovu odnosa s drugim provincijama austrijske monarhije.

Ovo su, kako se može lako zamisliti, mađarski ministri odbili ne s manjom upornošću. U zemlji, kojoj je bila svrha potpuno odcjepljenje i koja je to djelomično i ostvarila, bilo je to pitanje života i smrti. Pregovori su bili prekinuti ― Mađari, što se njih tiče, bili su u težim prilikama nego ikada prije. Bilo je to jasno iz apatije carske vojske. Jelačić, na svojoj strani, svjesniji nego ikada prilika koje su mu bile naklonjene, požurio je pripremati se za rat. Osim što su dvije čete bile poslane u Italiju iz svake graničarske regimente, on je još u svakom okružju imao od 4 000 do 5 000 dobrovoljaca. „S Bogom i budućim junacima”! bio je stari poklik na polasku Krajišnika na vojnu, kad ih je god car pozvao pod svoju ratnu zastavu. „S Bogom i budućim junacima”! reklo je zdravo i bolesno, staro i nejako. „S Bogom i budućim junacima! ― naše žene i djeca će čuvati naše granice od Turaka” bili su usklici koji su Bana dočekali na sve strane. Hrvatska i Slavonija su prihvatile najteži teret. Kao nekim čarobnim štapićem, oružje, topništvo, opskrba, skladišta, pojavili su se u obilju. Ništa od ratnih potrepština nije nedostajalo. Govorilo se u to vrijeme da je ova sprema došla kao tajna pomoć od austrijskog ministra rata, ali treba sumnjati je li on išta ovom doprinio osim svojih simpatija. Kasnije, uistinu, možda su ustrajnost i uspjeh Hrvata privukli ili iznudili takvu pomoć. Takva je zaista bila cijela politika ovog neodlučenog kabineta, koji je slijedio događaje umjesto da ih predvodi, vođen časovitim koristoljubljem umjesto vječnom pravdom, udvarajući se jednako i prijatelju i neprijatelju, pokušavajući zadržati zajedno dijelove carevine, ali svaki dan ubrizgavajući novu tekućinu koja ih je proračunato sve više razlučivala i dijelila.

Jelačić je već bio završio svoje pripreme. S gorućom potporom svojih Hrvata, i toplim željama mnogih austrijskih vojnih četa, i ne vrlo odlučnom opozicijom čak i na samoj mađarskoj strani, dobro naoružan, bio je spreman prijeći mađarsku granicu.

Građanski rat bio je neizbježiv. Neki su (u vrlo malom broju) još očekivali posredovanje ili da će car preuzeti stvar u svoje ruke. U ovoj krizi pojavio se u Agramer Zeitungu od 4. rujna 1848. carev ukaz koji je opozvao sve dotadašnje mjere protiv Bana i vratio je Banu sve njegove javne časti i dužnosti, iz priznanja za njegov „mudri i rodoljuban rad”! Ali i ovo je bilo bez potpisa mađarskog ministra. I ova činjenica je zato izgledala malo manje nego formalna objava rata protiv Mađarske. Bilo je to tako protumačeno. Dobro je poznato kakvo vrenje i stravu je ovo proizvelo. Jedna mađarska delegacija je požurila u Schönbrun i bila je primljena, ali dobiveni su odgovori samo najneodređenije naravi. Dvor nije htio davati nikakva razjašnjenja, niti ući u razgovore dok Kossuthova vlada ne bude smijenjena. Tako se i postupilo. Bathyanyeva vlada je bila formirana, ali sve je ostalo po starom ― isti Kossuthov duh je u njoj vladao. Ni Dvor niti Jelačić nisu ništa dobili tom promjenom. Slijedile su nove zamršenosti. Nadvojvoda Stjepan prvo je pokušao, u ulozi potkralja, donositi odluke, ali je ubrzo uvidio da je to nemoguće. Polu-privremena vlada kao jedna vrsta Kossuthove i Szomereove diktature bila je imenovana. Popustila je ta vlada pred Bathyanyevom vladom, i to je sad propalo. U međuvremenu opasnosti protiv Mađarske su rasle svakim danom. Jelačić je već bio prešao Dravu u jutro 11. rujna, s glavninom svoje vojske, i napredovao je prema glavnom gradu.

„Landwehr” [mađarski domobrani] bili su pozvani, i isti Sabor koji je odbio Nadvojvodi dati širu vlast u ruke, sada ga je pozvao da vrši svoje dužnosti kao Palatin, da stane na čelo vojske. Za časak je on zatezao odgovorom, zatim je izgledalo da je spreman preuzeti komandu vojske, ali 17. rujna umjesto da se pojavio ― kako je bio očekivan ― na čelu vojske, on je pobjegao u Beč, izgovarajući se da će pokušati još jednom posredovati među zaraćenim stranama. Kada je i ova posljednja veza bila prekinuta s Dvorom, Mađarska je bila u otvorenoj pobuni. Svaki je napor bio učinjen, ali sredstva i prigode nisu bile prikladne rješenju problema. Nacionalna garda, dravska vojska, bila je uglavnom sastavljena od novih regruta. Bila je to slabašna snaga protiv 30 000 ili 40 000 Jelačićevih ljudi, koji su već bili u Velikoj Kaniži i spremni zadati Mađarskoj odlučujući udarac.

Ali u ovom trenutku neizvjesnosti, Beč je dao novi pravac događajima, carev bijeg u Olmütz ostavio je malo sumnje kojim putem je namjeravao krenuti. Seljačko pučanstvo nije nikada zaboravilo svoju tradicionalnu privrženost Habsburškoj kući, i car u svojoj nemoći imao je još nešto one domaće jednostavnosti, koja je ublažavala kod seljaka onaj surovi oblik apsolutizma u vremenima njegovih predšasnika. Na njegovu putu u Olmütz oni su nahrlili iz sela s pjesmom i usklicima da bi susreli svog Kajzera. Teško ti ga „Studiosusu” [učenu čovjeku] koji je taj dan imao hrabrosti pokazati se među seljacima u crvenoj kapi ili s crvenom maramom oko vrata, usprkos nacionalnoj straži.

U Egginburgu cijelo naselje se skupilo oko carske pratnje. Car je dozvolio da mu se seljaci približe i naslovio ih je u starom očinstvu duhu cara Franje ― „Djeco! Što sam obećao ja ću izvršiti. Tlaka, nameti, i sve one druge stvari su prestale. Ja sam to naredio i potpisao, i te će naredbe ostati. Vaš car vam to potvrđuje svojom riječju, i vi možete vjerovati svom caru. Ja vam želim sve najbolje, ali ima takvih u Beču koji ne žele meni dobro, i koji vas žele obmanuti. Budući da ja ne mogu više pomoći sebi, moram, na žalost, poslati vojsku na njih da ih prisile pametnije se ponašati”, itd. itd.(6) Ove su riječi dobile veći pljesak nego bilo kakav brižno pripremljeni govor. Stariji su govorili o bivšem „blaženom” caru, a žene su bile nakićene crno-žutim rupcima, carskim bojama. Austrijski seljak je konzervativan i gleda s nečim sličnim mržnji na nerazumljive teorije i suludi metež u gradovima. Dokle god mu je dozvoljeno da žanje ono što je posijao, domoljublje Aule njemu se čini neshvatljivo. Dvor je uvidio toliko da je bio uvjeren da se može osloniti na seljake u slučaju bilo kakvih pothvata protiv građanstva; pomoć mu nije mogla doći s gradske strane ― nikakav se poziv na vojsku ne bi poslušalo. Windisch-Grätzov i Jelačićev pokret bili su sad sigurni.

I dan za danom, frontovi su se približavali bliže i bliže pomak za pomakom, dok nisu biskup, kralj i vitez zaokružili topa i pješaka; i pitanje velike igre nije više bilo u dvojbi. Mali broj znakova u novijim vremenima bio je tako krcat surovošću i zagrižljivošću, s golemim i surovim kontrastima ljudi i stvari. Vladar s ispruženom rukom i izvučenom sabljom nad samim svojim glavnim gradom; njegov Parlament zasjeda u gradskim zidinama; njegovi podanici unutar i izvan grada otkazuju vjernost; unutra kao i izvana, objavljuju slobodu, daju otpor premda ispovijedaju vjernost još legitimnoj glavi u državi; usprkos njihovim protestima za slobodu, spremni su tu istu slobodu pogaziti; nacionalnosti svih boja (čak i u Mađarskoj ih ima nekoliko) pod novim zastavama, bili su potpuno suprotni onoj zastavi pod kojom su na početku krenuli. Njemstvo u savezništvu sa slavenstvom, koje je bilo u neskladu samo sa sobom (pogledaj pismo Banovo njegovoj češkoj braći i njihova predika kao odgovor iz Praga). Sigurno nikada nije bilo zapleteno u isto vrzino kolo toliko stranaka s toliko različitih pogleda i želja. U noći se moglo čuti na Rother-Thurm bedemu, u tom beskrvnom prenoćištu Windisch-Grätzovih vojnika, kako pjevaju u obližnjem Leopoldstadtu, napinjući se iz petnih žila, „Was ist der Deutschen Vaterland”?, dok je sveučilišna, „Fuchslied” ― „Was kommt dort von der Höh” bila preinačena za tu prigodu u „Soldaten-Lied”, svako toliko čuo se pjev ― „Von ledernene Jelačić”, veselo pomiješan sa slavenskom pjesmom i glazbom. Vojničko taborište je oponašalo Aulu smiješno i s puno mašte.

Onaj dan, koji je zasigurno morao doći ― iako predugo čekan ― konačno je osvanuo, i kratka ali sadržajna telegrafska poruka rekla je sve: „Grad je u rukama carske vojske”. S njom je ušao Jelačić, ne, kako mnogi misle, u pobijeđeni, nego u oslobođeni grad. Izgledalo je kao da je glavni grad s nekim jedinstvenim grčevitim trzajem usisao novu krv iz žila u svoje srce. Svi njegovi podijeljeni i različiti sastojci bili su tog dana združeni, slikovito rečeno, kao ispisane široke i plamsave linije u bojama na ulicama grada. Čudni prizori, čudni glasovi; višestruka stranački bojena snaga, tada, po prvi put samosvjesna, stvarna i djelatna u jednom uskom prostoru. Jelačić je ušao, ali ne prije nego što je odbio Mađare od granice, koju je on prešao usprkos nekima dok je bio u „Bantafelu” u Zagrebu, usprkos carevim, suprotnim naredbama, iz poslušnosti ― kako je on vjerovao ― većoj sili i mudrijoj politici nego onoj carevoj ili opozicijskoj. U tri sata 2. studenog, on je ušao na čelu regimente oklopnika, prije koje je ušao jedan odred mobiliziranih vojnika ― razuzdana i bijesna rulja u glasovitim „crvenim kabanicama”. Crvene kape, crveni ogrtači, nož i samokres na istočnjački način za pasom, karabinka, ili puška, ili sablja u ruci. „Nikad nisam vidio”, kaže jedan očevidac „skupinu veće rulje u svom životu”. I usred ovih, među njima ali ne jedan od njih, jahao je Ban u svojoj sivoj husarskoj kabanici. To je osoba plemićkog izgleda, junačkog i viteškog držanja. Samo što je on prošao „Burgthor”, pozdravi i usklici su ga dočekali na sve strane; rupčići su lepršali u nježnim rukama, muški su se pridružili njihovim usklicima; dok je on s onom uljudnom i ljupkom dražešću, koja ga je uvijek resila, uzvraćao pozdrave s naklonima prema prozorima iznad sebe, odgovarajući poklicima masama koje su bile niže njega. „Rumenilo velike sramote”, kaže jedan koji je bio blizu „prošlo mi je licem nad tim prizorom, premda sam bio vrlo svjestan različitosti naroda, na pomisao da tad po prvi put nisam prezirao taj narod”.

Ali bilo je i nekog izgovora za sve ovo, i za one koji su Bana poznavali i za one koji su ga po prvi put vidjeli, bez razlike na razlog i namjere radi kojih je on došao. Nitko ga nije okrivio za krvavu surovost, ili nemarno uništenje ljudskih života, ili za brutalno gaženje prava i uljudbenih ostvarenja. On je izgleda bio ponukan iz najplemenitijih civilizacijskih dubina, ne izazvati i ne nukati barbarske horde na rušenje njezinih kulturnih uspjeha, nego vojsku upućivati i držati pod kontrolom kako je najbolje mogao. Čak i svojom vanjštinom on izražava ovu profinjenost. Jelačić je jedva osrednje veličine, nije grub, ali je dobro građen, čovjek više moralne nego tjelesne snage. Njegovo visoko i bistro čelo, gotovo bez kose, njegove crne, bistre i lako razdražljive oči, njegovo ozbiljno ali prijateljsko lice, ali povrh svega jedinstvena nježna melankolija oko usta, označavaju čovjeka u kome su upravo suprotni elementi skladno sjedinjeni. Oni koji su najbolje upoznati s njegovim svakodnevnim životom, svjedoče za točnost kako su ove tjelesne značajke točan odraz čovjeka od značaja. Dobrota i društvenost su pomiješane u njegovoj cijeloj naravi. Uvijek je spreman riječi i djelom, uvijek podoban, uvijek pristupačan, bez ustezanja, on otvara srce i vrata svakoj žalosti, svakoj nepravdi.

Željan svake djelatnosti, umne kao i tjelesne, uzorit kao državnik, nije nepoznat ni kao pisac, on nije stranac ni jednom polju rada, ali njegovo najvažnije i pravo zvanje jest ratničko. U karakteru i vladanju plemenit, od najveće viteške hrabrosti i časti, darežljiv, slobodar, pravi sin i ljubitelj svoje zemlje, vojnik, pjesnik, domoljubac, sve spojeno u jedno; majstor ne samo oružja nego i najskrovitijih srca svojih sugrađana, izgleda da on odskače od običnih povijesnih osoba naših dana, kao da je predodređen ispuniti ne samo romantične, nego i silne stvari u povijesti velike budućnosti. I na ovom putu kao da ga ne vodi samo njegova volja, nego da je, slično grčkom kobnom usudu, ili muhamedanskom fatalizmu, bio rođen za velika djela. „Beč je u rukama carske vojske”, tu nije čitava povijest; to razdoblje se ne zatvara tu. Tko može reći da li su grube riječi frankfurtskog govornika ― „Austrijska carevina je crno-žuta laž” (eine schwarzgelbe Lüge) ― krive ili točne? Tko će reći je li to hrpa komadića, ili ujedinjene države? Tko će reći hoće li ono što je držalo napadače zajedno u momentu napada koji je uspio, zadržati ih na okupu i sačuvati od nejedinstva? Pitanja Beča, parlamenta, Aule mogu biti riješena, ali nije li to samo otvaranje puta Mađarima, Slavenima, Srbima, Česima i Talijanima, koji se nazire na mračnom obzorju? Ako bi se Mađarska odcijepila, linija koja je veže s carevinom pukla bi. Bi li se carevina trebala odcijepiti? Bi li je Jelačić konačno trebao poniziti i obuzdati? Tko na ovo može odgovoriti čak i u svojoj zlobi, jer pravda ili razum carske Kamarile, poslije onakvih dokaza sićušnih intriga i stuartovske bezvjerje kako se pokazala u događajima i prema nacijama, čak i protiv njega? Je li Austrija spremna poslušati zov Praga, i postati Slavenska carevina Europe, perući ruke od germanizma i mađarizma u isto vrijeme? Tko usred takvih sukobljavajućih snaga koje djeluju unutar carevine, može gledati s nadom prema vani i tražiti krepku ruku nekog Ota ili Fredrika da je ujedini i učvrsti iznova? Združenost treba željeti. Koja druga snaga može to nadomjestiti? Gdje nema centripetalnih snaga, i gdje centrifugalne snage u tako žestokoj djelatnosti, tko može sumnjati u neizbježivu posljedicu? I u izbacivanju ove planete iz njezine putanje, razbijanju austrijskog svijeta u dijelove i manje samostalne svjetove, u uspostavi kraljevina gdje je sada carevina, tko može reći koliko, ili kakva sreća može stići i jednu naciju ili ikojeg čovjeka? Ovdje, kao i drugdje, razum će upravljati tvarima, i narod, radi sama sebe, prestrojit će se pod nekim znakom, nekom garancijom reda, stabilnosti, sigurnosti ― na čelu s vođama ili kraljevina. U povijesti čovječanstva pola onih koji su poslali takve vođe bili su zadugo gospodari u srcima naroda prije nego su bili zapisani u ispravama ili dobili naslov ― suverena. Kako je Habsburgovac počeo, može tako početi i Jelačić. Ban-potkralj Hrvatske nije čudniji ni u imenu niti stvarnosti nego Paša-potkralj u Egyptu. U monarhiji koja se raspada; prvo njezin časnik, zatim njezin suparnik, te i sam jedan od njezinih monarha. U takvoj diobi i promaknuću, ilirska, hrvatska, južnoslavenska kruna je sasvim prirodna kao i pruska, vestfalijska ili hanoverska. Markgrofovi i Izbornici u Svetom Rimskom Carstvu nisu ni po čemu bili bolji za takva dostojanstva nego Ban. I, povrh svega, treba imati na umu, da je povod tomu bilo, i još jest, slavenizam, a glava panslavizam. Car će se pobrinuti da jedan član slavenstva, stvarno ako i ne nominalno, kao njegov podanik bude uvijek u pravu.

„Le premier qui fut roi, fut un soldat heureux”! (Prvi koji je bio kralj, bio je sretan vojnik!) rekao je pjesnik. Rijetke su prigode kao ova danas da ilustriraju ovaj aforizam, a mali je broj da ga opravdaju, kao što je to Ban Jelačić.

Prijevod nepotpisanog članka „Jellachich, Ban of Croatia” objavljen u The Eclectic Magazine of Foreign Literature, Science and Art XVI, Br. III, ožujak 1849., st. 358-369. New York. Članak je pretiskan iz The New Monthly Magazine.

S engleskoga preveo Ante Čuvalo

Napomena prevoditelja

Ban Josip Jelačić je opet postao nazočan u glavnom gradu svoje Hrvatske. Budući da Banova osobnost i politička uloga nisu se uklapale u povijesnu montažu Karla Marxa i onih koji su provodili njegovu teoriju u praksu, ne samo njegov spomenik u Zagrebu, nego i njegovo ime htjelo se izbrisati iz povijesti i iz srca hrvatskog naroda. Znamo, nije se tu radilo samo o Banu, nego o svemu što je on označavao. Htjelo se sravniti sa zemljom sve ono što je upućivalo da je Hrvatska imala svoju tešku ali ponosnu prošlost i time joj osujetiti bilo kakvu budućnost. Ali, veličanstvena proslava (16. listopada 1990.) Banova povratka u srce glavnoga grada Hrvatske također je više od samog Bana i njegove povijesne veličine. Ustao je Ban i ustala je i Hrvatska! Živjet će Hrvatska i živjet će Ban, koji će i dalje ostati simbol hrvatskog otpora svima koji žele zavladati hrvatskim zemljama.

Pripreme za povratak i obnovu spomenika Bana Jelačića ponukale su me prelistati literaturu na engleskom jeziku iz polovice prošlog stoljeća i pogledati jesu li Englezi pisali o Banu, i, ako su pisali, kako su njega i njegovu ulogu u revolucionarnoj 1848. procjenjivali. Ovaj članak je tiskan prvo u The New Monthly Magazine u Engleskoj, a zatim je pretiskan u newyorškom The Eclectic Magazine of Foreign Literature, Science and Art; svezak XVI, br. III, ožujak 1849, st. 358-369.

Nažalost taj članak o Banu je nepotpisan. Vjerojatno mu je pisac jedan od britanskih poklisara, koji je u to vrijeme službovao u Monarhiji. Nadam se da će uz pomoć britanskih povjesničara biti moguće otkriti autora. Članak je pisan u stilu tog vremena. Pisac je zaljubljen u romantične ličnosti u vremena kad su se osobe od značaja uzdizale iznad običnih smrtnika i premošćavale društvene diobe koje su bile sve vidljivije tijekom prošlog stoljeća. Premda je piščev stil prilično gizdav, vjerujem čak i za njegovo vrijeme, prijevod sam nastojao približiti duhu hrvatskog jezika koliko sam mogao i znao.

Pored piščeva divljenja Banu i njegovoj osobnosti, on vrlo dobro uočava prilike u kojima su se našli Hrvati i ima razumijevanja za njihove pravedne zahtjeve. Na kraju članka on pomalo nastoji i odškrinuti vrata budućnosti i svojim čitateljima tumači da se ne začude ako u skoroj budućnosti Ban Jelačić postane kralj samostalne Hrvatske. Njegova predviđanja nisu se ispunila, ali, vjerujem, da Banu, koji je bio proigran i ponižen od bečkog Dvora, ne će biti žao što nije postao kralj samo ako njegova Hrvatska u ova vremena ostvari svoju potpunu slobodu i samostalnost.

Ante Čuvalo

Objavljeno u mostarskoj književnoj reviji Osvit, broj 3 ― 4, 1998, st. 7 ― 33.


(1) Mađari i Hrvati su oslovljavali Mariju Tereziju kao da je bila kralj, a ne kraljica. (Napomena prevoditelja.)

(2) Jelačića majka, Ana Barunica Portner von Höflein, bila je iz Bavarske. Umrla je 1837. (n.p.)

(3) „Svi za jednoga, jedan za sve”!

(4) Josipova sestra Cilija umrla je 1830. (n.p.)

(5) Banova dva brata bili su Jurica i Antun. (n.p.)

(6) Careve riječi na njemačkom su bile: „Kinder was ich versprochen hab’ das halt ich; Robott, Zehend, und das andre hat aufgehört, ich hab’s sanctionirt, unterschrieben und dabei bleibt’s: eure Kaiser gibt euch sein Wort darauf, und glaubt’s dem Kaiser: ich mein’s gut mit euch; aber in Wien gieb’s Leut’ die’s nicht gut mit mir meinem, und die euch auch verführen wollen: und da kann ich mir nicht helfen ich wird leider Militar hinchichen müssen” u.s.w.



In the light of the recent Russian invasion and bloody war against Ukraine, an overview of the Panslavic movement(s) in the 19th century might add to a better understanding of today’s tragic events


A short review of its development and meaning(s)

Over a century or so ago there was much talk about the unity of all Slavs and that turned into an intellectual movement known as Panslavism.  It was a dream about a new and glorious future for the Slavic race.  On the other hand, some other races (as at the time linguistic families were referred to) were fearful of the possible threat that might come out of such a unity.  But neither the dreams nor the fears came to reality.

The term Panslavism implied a Slavic solidarity in many areas of life and not just a political unity.  It was an attempt to find common roots among different Slavic nations.  Although linguistic and cultural similarities were obvious, the whole movement was based on idealistic feelings and, as such, the Slavs never came to any kind of brotherly unity.  Though, some did attempt to use it for their immediate political interests.  Instead of Slav unity, we are witnessing much animosity among the Slavic nations because of some forced unions created in recent history.  One can reasonably say that even the idealism of the Panslavists contributed to the hostilities among some of today’s Slavic peoples. 

The movement of Panslavism had been strongly influenced by 19th century Romanticism.  It developed among the intellectuals and it never gained popularity or even understanding neither among the common people nor among those that controlled the political power at the time.  Furthermore, Panslavism did not mean the same thing even to the Panslavists coming from different Slavic nations.  All of them looked at it from their own perspective and saw in it their own dreams and projections regarding possible Slavic unity. 

The origins of Panslavism

The word Panslavism was introduced by the Slovak attorney and writer, Ján Herkeľ (1786–1853).  He used it for the first time in his treatise Elementa Universalis Lingue Slavicae, published in Budapest in 1826.  In this work, he did not discussed the Slavic political unity but only the linguistic common grounds.  On the basis of such conclusion, he advocated a universal Slavic language.(1)  But later on, after 1848, the word began to be used for political designs too.

Even-tough the word Panslavism was new in the vocabulary, the idea of the Slavic ethnic, linguistic, religious, and even political unity preceded Herkel for several centuries. He was the father of the word but not of the idea. The Slavs, especially the Western and Southern Slavs, for a long time were threatened by the Ottoman invasions, and some of them had already been conquered and occupied by this leading superpower of the time.  On the other hand, there had been a desire on the part of Germanic powers to extend their border more and more eastward.  Russia among the Slavs was the only power that could challenge those threats, although some of the brother-Slavs already felt the heavy weight of Russian power. 

Besides the political situation, there had been a feeling that the Slavs were rich in culture and in spirit although the other races were looking down upon them, or even some were open enemies of the Slavic culture.  So this richness and power, many thought, should be unified and brought forth to the world stage where the Slavs would be appreciated, and be even superior to the others.  According to that vision, by being united they would be able to stand up to the Turks, the Germans, and other non-Slavs.

The first published writings about the ethnic unity and an all Slavic feeling are found among the Croatian humanists.  Some of them were: Juraj Šižgorić from Šibenik (c. 1445-1509), Vinko Pribojević, a Dominican friar from Hvar (mid-15th c. – after 1532), and Mavro Orbini, a Benedictine abbot from Dubrovnik (mid-16th c. – 1614).  They glorified their Slavic heritage and history.  Orbini wrote a book entitled Il Regno degli Slavi (The Realm of the Slavs), published in 1601.  It was a history book mixed with legends.  He envisioned the glorious past of the Slavs and their common heritage.  The work became very popular and it was even translated into Russian in 1722 by the order of Peter the Great.(2)

Another important Croatian writer who wrote on the subject was Ivan Gundulić (1589-1638).  He dreamed of a mutual assistance among the Slavs in order to get rid of the Turks from the occupied Slavic lands and to regain their freedom.(3)  His inspiration came from the Polish-Lithuanian victory over the Turks at Chocim/Khotyn (1621).  After so many years of war with the Turks, a Slavic nation defeated the much feared Janissaries.  He praised Poland and her ruler for this brave victory.  For him, Poland was the glory of the Slavs.  In the famous epic “Osman”, he poured out his love for Poland and her prince Vladislav, and gave his heartfelt support to the idea of Slavic solidarity.(4)

However, the father of the Panslavic idea was another Croatian, Juraj Križanć.  He was the first man who not only talked about the idea of a Slav union, but he did something about it.  He had two main goals in life: Slavic unity and bringing all Slavs to the fold of the Catholic church.  But his zeal and idealism had not been shared by others, and neither of his two goals ever came to be realized.

Križanić was born near the city of Karlovac in Croatia in 1617 or 1618.  He studied philosophy and theology in Zagreb, Graz, Bologna and Rome, and became a priest.  While serving as a parish priest in the diocese of Zagreb, he began to dream about missionary work among the Orthodox Russians that included not only religious but also political aspects.  He wanted to promote an all-Slavic unity.  In 1646, he went to Poland to prepared his way to Russia.  In February 1647, we find him in Smolensk and in October of the same year in Moscow.  Then, he came back to Poland and in March of 1650 he came to Vienna, then he traveled to Istanbul.  From there Križanić traveled to Rome and went back to Moscow in 1659.(5)

While traveling, Križanić wanted to learn about Russians (and the others in the region) as much as possible and to make some contacts for a possible future work.  He was interested in the Russian Orthodox church, their liturgy, customs, language, politics, and other facts of Russian national life.  He considered all the Slavs as one nation.  Only the Greeks led some of them astray, he believed.  They were responsible for the schism and not the Russians.  He thought if the Russians could just see this fact they would accept Catholicism and keep Slavic tradition within the Church.  They would also see their role among the Slavs, unite all of them and lead them to a cultural and political renaissance, where all of them would share the glory that they justly deserved.

Križanić’s plan of action was to go to the Moscovite court and slowly gain their confidence.  By his writings, teaching, and other activities he planned to influence their thinking and in this way they would see the true light of their mission among the Slavs and in the world as a whole.  Once they comprehend these ideas they would become the leaders of the Slavic movement and a new future would dawn for all of them. 

Križanić came to Moscow for the second time on September 27, 1659 and introduced himself to the officials as “Sbrljanin Juraj Ivanov Bilis” from the Bosnian town of Bihać.(6)  He covered up his true identity because if he had stated his real name and profession he would have been rejected right away.  He worked for a while for the government but it did not take too long for the Russians to suspect his origins and his real profession.  For that reason they exiled him to Tobolsk in Siberia.  He stayed there from 1661 to 1676, fifteen long years!

While in Tobolsk, Križanić wrote several works on different subjects but the best know is Politika.  After his exile he went to Poland where he became a Dominican friar and an army chaplain.  He saw the glory of Jan Sobieski in his victory over the Turks near Vienna in 1683.  However, he was killed during the siege of Vienna, serving as a chaplain in the Polish military forces.  Križanić’s ideals about the Slav unity and the great role of the Russians in it were completely ignored in Russia and his writings were forgotten.  Several centuries later, however, Russian Panslavists will recognize and use him for their own purposes.  

Some facts should be pointed out in order to see the importance of Križanić.  He was the first one to show the way for Slavic unity beyond poetic expressions.  Also, he did not turn to Poland as the leader of the Slavs but to Orthodox Russia.  Although a Catholic priest, he was a Russophile.  He wrote in a mixture of Croatian and Russian languages, hoping to start a linguistic unity among the Slavs.  While Gundulić saw Turks as the enemy, Križanić looked at both, the Turks and the Germans, as the enemies of the Slavs.  Some scholars of the Nineteenth century considered him as a pioneer of Russian Panslavism, or one could say Panrussianism.  However, he did not advocate Russian domination among the Slavs but imagined the Russian tzar as a big brother and a helper to other Slavs.(7)  Križanić’s ideas and his vision of Slavic and Church unity, as well as the cultural and political rebirth of the Slavs, did not find fertile grounds.  He was much ahead of his time. It was only after the French Revolution, the Napoleonic wars, and German Romanticism that a new feeling and a sense of identity among the Slavs began to emerge, and Panslavism was a byproduct of that national reawakening. 

Panslavism of the Nineteenth century

German Romanticism had a strong influence among the European intellectuals as a whole, and among the Slavic educated circles in particular.  It helped them to rediscover the pride in their common Slavic past.  The German scholar Johann G. Herder (1744-1803) had the biggest share of influence on the future Panslavists.  He wrote about the Slavs and saw in them something new; something that would refresh the whole European culture.  He even envisioned a new mission and a glorious destiny for the Slavic race.(8)  Herder rediscovered and recognized the common Slavic cultural unity and its potentiality.  The idea came at the right time and it spread among the Slavs very fast.

One of the first Slavic scholars to inaugurate inter-Slavic studies and to establish intellectual contacts among the different Slavic nations was a Czech scholar, Josef Dombrovsky (1753-1829).  His works dealt mostly with linguistic and cultural subjects and not with political problems or designs.(9)  Another Czech Panslavist of the time was Josef Jungmann (1773-1847).  He too pleaded for a common Slavic language. 

Two well-known Slovak Panslavists were Jan Kollar (1793-1852) and Paul Josef Šafárik (1795-1861). Both were Lutherans by religion.  Kollar was a Lutheran minister and a poet who preached not only the Gospel but also the cultural unity of the Slavs.  His tombstone bears an inscription which calls him the “High Priest of Panslavism”.(10)  These two Slovak Panslavists laid the groundwork and helped to create an atmosphere for future studies of the common Slavic past from which a new future, they hoped, would raise.

Kollar’s works influenced many intellectuals in other Slavic nations.  The national movement in Ukraine, for example, was strengthened by Kollar’s Panslavistic ideas.  The greatest of the Ukrainian poets of the time, Taras Shevchenko (1814-1861) was one of the Panslavists.  He and his friends, like Izmail Ivanovich Sreznevsky (1812-1880) and Nikolay Ivanovich Kostomarov (1817-1883), organized the “Brotherhood of St. Cyril and Methodius” in 1845.  The brotherhood, however, was soon suppressed by the Russian government but the idea of unity of all the Slavs based on federalist principles was kept alive.(11)

Polish Panslavism developed in specific political and religious circumstances and, therefore, had its own characteristics. The Poles at the time lived in three different countries (Prussia, Russia and Austria).  The Russians, their “brother-Slavs”, were one of the oppressors and Poles could not look to them for help.  In regard to the Ukrainians, the Poles were seen as past oppressors and could not be trusted.  A traditional strong Catholicism among the Poles was a source of strength and a refuge for them but a resentment for others. 

Among the first Polish intellectuals to talk about Slav reciprocity was Jan Kossakowski (1755-1810), the bishop of Vilnius.  He even influenced Kollar and his Panslavism.  His lecture “A Glance at Czech Literature and the Relations between Slave Tongues,” which he delivered at Warsaw in 1804, became well publicized and much talked about.(12)

After the defeat of Napoleon, another Polish Panslavist, a priest and one of the greatest Poles of the Enlightenment, Stanisław Staszic (1775-1826) turned to the Slavs and particularly to the Russians.  He advocated Slavic union and accepted a Russian primacy in the future brotherly equality.  The Slavic union, according to him, would lead to a federation of Europe and also to a permanent peace.  He envisioned this new Europe shaping up in which the Slavs would play a great role, especially the Russians in the political and the Poles in the cultural field.(13)

Another example of Polish Panslavism is Count August Cieszkowski (1814-1894).  He saw that the third and final stage of history belonged to the Slavs, who would practice real Christian love for all of mankind.  The Slavs were called to this because they were peace and freedom loving people.  Bronisław Ferdynand Trentowski (1808-1869) was a Panslavist who believed that Polish and Russian cooperation would guarantee the success of the union.  For Joachim Lelewel (1786 – 1861) a new social order would be established in the Slavic union.  It would be a kind of peasant democracy.  In such a democratic union Poland would be the head of the Slavs.  Prince Adam Czartoryski (1770-1861, a friend and a former adviser to Alexander I, also advocated the unity of the Slavs.  But after the Polish uprising of 1830, as a leading Polish emigrant, he sought to utilize the Slav movement for the cause of Polish liberation.

The leading men of Polish messianism were people like: Kazimierz Brodziński (1791-1835), Adam Mickiewicz (1789-1855), Juliusz Słowacki (1809-1849), and Zygmunt Krasiński (1812-1859).  Although there were some differences among them concerning Panslavism and the Polish role among the Slavs and in Europe, basically they not only envisioned the unification of the Slavs but also that the salvation of the world would come through Polish Catholicism.  They saw Poland as the most faithful nation to Christ.  Poland was “the Christ of the Nations,” being sacrificed for the universal liberty and equality.  The Slavs shared in this Christian mission, but Poland was the leader of this universal redemption.

In 1848, Mickiewicz proclaimed his new program in which he advocated the union of all Western Slavs under the Polish leadership against the Russians and their imperialism.  He and his followers dreamed of the Slavic federation which presumed a radical change in the existing European political order.  But, as it is well-known, nothing came out of such fantasies that were based on the romantic idealism of the time.(14)

Among the Slavs in Southern Europe, Panslavism was seen both in the cultural and political light.  It was a mixture of rising nationalism after the Napoleonic wars, cultural renaissance, and romantic Panslavism, as well as the political struggle against the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian oppression.  All of these and other factors played a role in the Panslavistic movement among the Croats, Slovenes, and Serbs. 

One of the most important names of Panslavists among the Croats was Ljudevit Gaj (1809-1872), a poet and a visionary with great political dreams.  He organized the first “Illyrian club” (1828) among the students in Graz and soon after in Pest, where he met Jan Kollar.  The term Illyrian signified first of all the Croatian but also the Slavic solidarity on a wider scope.  The Illyrian movement had a “minimal and maximal” program.  The minimal plan consisted of defending the national independence and gathering of the national Croatian lands, and the maximal was the liberation and union of all the Slavs, first in the Balkans and then in other parts of Europe.(15)  One of the reasons why the Illyrian movement had been so strong in Croatia was a desire among the Croatians for independence and cultural revival.  Gaj and other Croatian Panslavist saw a future political union of the Slavs as a federation based on equality.  Other Croatian leaders of the movement were Count Janko Drašković (1770-1856), Josip Juraj Strossmayer (1815-1905), Franjo Rački (1828-1894), and Ivan Kukuljević (1816-1889), among others.

France Prešern (1800-1849) played an important role in the national awakening among the Slovenes.  But he stressed the importance of national identity and did not pay much attention to Panslavic interests.  Dr. Janez Bleiweis (1808-1881), Valentin Vodnik (1758-1819), Bartolomej Kopitar (1780-1844), and Fran Levstik (1831-1887) were inspired by the general Slavic revival and the ideal of Slavic unity.  But the Slovene leaders basically looked for the cooperation and unity of the Slavs within the Austro-Hungarian empire.(16)

Among the Serbian writers of the time we find Vuk Karadžić (1787-1864) and later on Branko Radičević (1825-1863), Đuro Jakšić (1832-1878), and Zmaj Jovan Jovanović (1833-1904).  All of them played an important role in the cultural awakening of the Serbs, especially those outside Serbia.  But among the Serbs in general a strong nationalistic feeling prevailed over the wider concept of Slavism.  The Serbs looked always more to Russia and to their common Orthodox religion than to other Slavs.  In the political plans, the Serbs were thinking more about Greater Serbianism and Russian protection than about a Slavic federation.

Once more, we turn to the Slovaks and the Czechs, and their activities in the Panslav movement.  One of the leading Czech scholars of the time was Karl Havlicek-Borovsky (1821-1856).  He visited Poland and Russia.  In his assessments of the reality and idealism in the Panslavist movement of the time, he came to the conclusion that unbridgeable problems existed between the Poles and the Russians, especially in regard to the question of Ukraine.  He saw that Slavism for them was just the means for achieving their own goals.  He even openly stated that he preferred the Magyars, who were open enemies of the Slavs, than Russian Judah embrace.  He, therefore, advocated a Slavic cooperation and unity within the Austro-Hungarian empire, so that the empire might be transformed into a federation.(17)  This came to be known as Austroslavism.

Another Czech scholar, a historian, František Palacký (1798-1876) was influenced by Herder and some other fellow Panslavists.  But he did not look to Russia for leadership either.  He found strength in the Czech Reformation and in national history.  So he focused his studies on the Czechs alone.  He was the realist of his time.  Seeing a threat in the so-called Russian Panslavism, he advocated federalism but without Russia.  For him Russian Panslavists or German and Magyar fanatics were all the same.  Both groups desired to “absorb and to destroy our nationality.”(18)

L’udovit Štúr (1815-1856), a Slovak, was one of the very active Panslavists.  He stood for political union with Russia and even advocated acceptance of the Orthodox religion and the Russian language by all the Slavs.  He thought that this was the only way to save the Slavic nations from annihilation.  He did not have first hand knowledge of Russia and he viewed it as an idealist, similar to the Russian Slavophiles.  This mystical Panslavism led him to reject federalism, Austroslavism, and every other form of union but a union with Russia as the mother country and protector.(19)

Many of the Panslavistic ideas were shared by the intellectuals of different Slavic nations but there was no common plan of action, no organizational stricture, no leadership and no means to bridge the differences among the proponents of Slavic unity.  The first occasion to make some tangible moves and lay the foundations for a Panslavic movement came at the Slav Congress of Prague in 1848.

The Prague Congress

In May 1848, there was a meeting of the German Diet in Frankfurt.  Its aim was to bring about the German territories into a closer union.  That also meant that some Slavic lands would become a part of the envisioned German state.  The Hungarians were willing to cooperate with the Germans against the Slavs.  The Magyars appealed to the Diet not to allow the formation of the Slav federation.  This was an immediate reason for calling the Slav representatives to a Congress.  There was a need to discuss the existing revolutionary situation and to bring about a possible united stand. 

The Congress met in Prague at the beginning of June 1848.  There were 363 delegates, out of which 237 were Czech and Slovaks.  The Congress was more a meeting of the Austrian Slavs rather than of all Panslavs.  The only Russian among them was Michael Bakunin (1814-1876), a well-known Russian anarchist.  He took an active part in the Congress deliberations and advocated his brand of revolutionary Panslavism: “a Slav Federation led by Russia made free by the free Slavs.”  For him Moscow was to be the center of this new universal and revolutionary rule.(20)

The Polish delegation, which was very small, was dissatisfied with the Congress because they saw it as a gathering of Austro-Slavs in which their voice could not be heard.  They accused the Czechs of trying to save Austria and, thus, undermining Slavic unity and cooperation.  Furthermore, the Congress was condemned by many outsiders, including the Germans, Magyars, and Russians.  Karl Marx called it “an anti-historical movement.”  Tzar Nicholas I (reign 1825-1855) stated that an All-Slav union would bring the destruction of Russia.  For him, Panslavism carried liberal ideas and therefore it was an anathema.

The Congress ended abruptly.  On June 12, there were student demonstrations in Prague, the Austrian army intervened, and the Congress had to end.  Although the Congress delegates issued a “Manifesto to the European Nations,” a common political platform or a plan of action did not result from the meeting.  This gathering was a clear indication that Panslavism meant different things to different Slavic nations.  The Slavs from the Austro-Hungarian empire had common problems and were trying to make a united block.  The Poles were looking after their own political interests and preached the primacy of Poland among the Slavs.  And, Bakunin, although a revolutionary anarchist, looked at Panslavism through Panrussian glasses. 

Panslavism in Russia

In order to understand the Russian Panslavism one has to take a quick look into Russian history, culture, religion, and sense of messianism.  One should also keep in mind that Panslavism did not originate in Russia but in Croatia and among the Western Slavs.  That means it began in a different atmosphere, culture, and political circumstances than those in Russia. 

The Russian expansionism dates back to the early Moscovite rulers and continued through the centuries to come.  The country expanded in all directions.  The southern expansion was very important in more ways than one.  Russia inherited the Byzantine culture and religion.  But beside strong cultural links with the Greeks and some of the Balkan Slavs, there was a dream of revival of the Byzantine glory under the Russian domain. 

Already Peter the Great initiated closer relations with the Balkan Orthodox Slavs, especially the Montenegrins.  But his mission was stopped in 1711 when he was defeated by the Turks.  Catherine the Great, however, started to play the role of protector of the Orthodox in the Ottoman empire.  The treaty of Kuchuk Kainardji (1774) gave the right to Russians to be “the Mother Russia” to the Balkan Orthodox, even-tough she did not respond to their cries every time they were in need of help.  So the Russian policies in the Balkans were based on the idea of the “Greek Project,” restoring old Byzantium under the Russian scepter.  Slavism and Orthodoxy were used for this purpose.(21)

The Russian expansionist policies were also accompanied with the special feeling of their mission in Europe and in the world.  There was a school of thought in Russia, known as the Slavophiles, that preached Russian and Slav glorious mission in the struggle for a better future.  In order to understand Russian Panslavism one should take a look at Slavophilism, because their Panslavism had strong roots in this popular school of thought.

The basic ideas of the Slavophile school was that the West was in a process of decay.  Its moral, religious, political, and cultural life was rapidly deteriorating.  On the other hand, Russia was new and pure.  She preserved true Christianity, true morals, more humane principles, original culture, and even divinely ordained rulers.  So Providence assigned her the role of bringing a new and better world based on love and not on materialism and rationalism.  This kind of feeling and reasoning resembled Hegelian philosophy of history, but was not entirely based on it.  The role that Hegel assigned to the Germans, the Slavophiles attributed to the Russians and the Slavs, as the late comers to European history.(22)  It should be noted, however, that non-Orthodox Slavs were not considered as “pure” for this world-saving mission, unless they returned to Orthodoxy and to the “true Slavic culture.”  For Slavophiles there was a fundamental division between Western and Russian culture, and it was not just a matter of degree.  So one could not be a true Slav and belong to Western culture.  Moscow was the center of Slavophile activity while the so-called Westernizers in Russia were gathered more at the capital, St. Petersburg.

The Leading members of the Slavophile school were, among others: Mikhil Petrovich Pogodin (1800-1875), professor of history at the University of Moscow, Alexei Stepanovich Khomyakov (1804-1860), Ivan Vasilevich Kireyevsky (1806-1859), Yurij Fedorovich Samarin (1819-1876), Konstantin Aksakov (1817-1860), Vladimir Lamansky (1833-1914), and Ivan Aksakov (1823-1886).(23)

The Slavophiles were not many in numbers nor were they a party.  They were a group of educated men who were more concerned about the ideas and philosophy of history and culture than about the reality or practicality of their ideas.  We do not find among them a specific political plan for implementation of the Russian and Slav mission, but just a romantic vision of the future world.  They were not much concerned about the other Slavs either.  They did express their sympathies in their writings for the fate of the Slavs under the Turks and the Germans but they remained very much Russian centered.(24)

There had been some contacts between Slavophiles and Panslavists from other Slavic nations, but not as much as one would expect.  One of the basic reasons for not having a closer cooperation was the fact that Panslavists looked at Slavism as an instrument of cultural revival and eventual liberation and freedom, while the Slavophiles regarded Slavism as the means of challenging the Western thought and culture.  Another good reason for the lack of contacts between the two groups was tzar Nicholas I himself.  During his reign Slavophilism reached its peak but he looked at Panslavism as a potential carrier of revolutionary ideas, so it was not welcomed to Russia.

It is not easy to distinguish between the Russian Slavophilism and their Panslavism.  The latter grew out of the first, and a clear breaking point did not take place.  So, no wonder that the non-Slavs of Europe identified Slavophilism with Panslavism, even though the two had some essential differences.  In Russia Panslavism became a kind of modified Slavophilism.  Political dimensions were added to the prior religious and cultural feelings.  This modification of Slavophilism and the emerging of Panslavism in Russia came around the time of the Crimean War (1853-1856) and the death of tzar Nicolas I (1855).

The Crimean War started in 1853.  It caught Russia unprepared militarily and diplomatically.  Turkey, England and France were united against Russia.  Austria remained neutral and even she put pressure on Russia concerning Moldavia and Wallachia.  The Russians saved the Habsburgs in 1849 but now in return the best they got was neutrality.  Besides that, there was rivalry between the two empires concerning the future of the Balkans.  It was clear that the Ottoman empire had been declining and the question was who would fill in the future political vacuum in the region.  Both empires were eager to gain by the Ottoman decadence.

After the Crimean War, the Russians were taking a second look at their political situation and their unstable allies of the recent past.  Some influential Russians began to look to other Slavs as their natural allies.  But this was based not so much on common Slavic heritage but on the resentment of the Germans, Magyars and Turks.  This was, therefore, more of a political move on the part of Russians in order to put pressure on her enemies than a real Panslavistic orientation.  Some of them began to argue that the so-called Eastern Question could be solved only in Austria and not in Turkey – “the way to Constantinople lies through Vienna.”(25)  Furthermore, one should take into account that the new tzar, Alexander II, was not as conservative as Nicholas I and Panslavism was not considered a dangerous ideology.  

Thus, in such a political situation, Juraj Križanić and his Panslavistic ideas, with the Russians as the leaders of all the Slavs, were rediscovered and utilized.  The Slavophile overemphasis on Orthodoxy slowly eased; it started to be blended with nationalism and a wider Slavic feeling.  The needs of other Slavs were taken into consideration but only if they fitted Russia’s goals.  As an example of this concern for others, the Slavic Benevolent Committee was organized in 1857 to provide help to the Balkan Slavs.

There were two different approaches among the Russian Panslavs to the question about how to achieve a future Slavic union.  One advocated a cultural path: language, “Slavic church”, literature, and other cultural expression as the bases for unity.  After the cultural unity, they believed, the political one would come naturally.  The old Slavophiles, like Pogodin, Lamansky, Popov and some others were advocating this road to unity.  The other path, was military.  Even Pogodin, for example, sent a memorandum to the tzar during the Crimean War in which he expressed a belief that it was Russia’s role to liberate all the Slavs and unite them around herself.(26)  This approach to the unity came to the public attention in 1867 when Ivan Aksakov, one of the very active Panslavists in Russia, published an article in which he advocated political union before a long process of cultural unification.  He looked at the Germans and the gathering of their lands, and he read about Napoleon III and his dreams of Latin unity.  So he did not see any reason why Russia should not unite the Slavs.  However, the Russian government did not care for his advice and did not make any moves in that direction, although some Russian politicians did have an interest in Panslavism and its activities.

The Moscow Congress

The Society of the Friends of Natural Science, which was active at the University of Moscow, organized an ethnological exhibition in Moscow in 1867.  While preparations for the exhibition were taking place, the idea was born that at the same time a Slav Congress could be also held hoping that it would give a new impetus to Panslavism and, some hoped, that Russian role in it would be strengthened.  Invitations were sent to leading Panslavists among various nations.  The Friends of Natural Science were the official hosts of the Congress, but actually the Slavic Benevolent Committee played the leading role in organizing and running the Congress.  Men like Nil Popov, Lamansky, Pogodin, N. Katkov, editor of the “Moscow News,” and Ivan Aksakov, editor of “Moscow,” were among the leading organizers.

For the Russians this was the first important Slav gathering.  The Congress in Prague was not attended by the Russian Slavophiles and therefore that congress did not have any meaning for them.  At the Moscow Congress there were representatives from all Slavic nations except Poland.  The Poles did not come to the Congress because of the intensified Russian oppression in Poland after the Polish rebellion of 1863.

Most of the delegates from outside Russia gathered in Vienna and from there they proceeded to the Russian empire.  They crossed the boarder on May 4, 1867 and stayed in Russia till June 3 of the same year.  Most of the time they spent traveling, sightseeing, and attending official receptions.  They went to various cities, including St. Petersburg where they were received in an audience by tzar Alexander II (reign 1855-1881) himself.  After much of parading they finally came to Moscow where the show continued.

During the Congress itself there was a lot of talk about the Slavic cultural similarity, common interests, political enemies, and many other common concerns.  However, behind the celebrations and the big show, there were major divisions that could not be even papered over.  The absence of the Poles alone was an obvious sign of disunity.  Some smaller nations were talking about Slav unity on the bases of the equality and independence of their nations.  The Russians, on the other hand, were propagating their own idea of Panslavism, which embodied the old Slavophile principles.  Pogodin, for example, advocated a common faith (meaning Orthodoxy), Cyrillic script, and the Russian language for all the Slavs.(27)  The Congress did pass a few meaningless resolutions and it was a big show without any meaningful content or results.

However, the Congress did cause a reaction in Vienna, Budapest, and in German lands.  The non-Slavs of Europe exaggerated the importance of the Moscow meeting and portrayed it, and the gathering of a Slavic unity, as a real danger to European order.  On the other hand, the Russian government did not really care much about all this parading of Panslavism in their land.  That may be seen clearly from an event that took place in St. Petersburg.  The tzar granted an audience to the Czech and Slovak delegates to the Congress but the delegates were introduced to him by the Austrian ambassador at the Russian capital.  Afterwards, the tzar even apologized to the ambassador for having anything to do with the delegation.  For him and for the top Russian officials Panslavism did not have much real political weight.  The non-Russian Slavs of the West were Catholic or Protestant liberals who were disturbing good relations with the Habsburgs, with whom Russia had much in common, most of all in international relations at the time.(28)  The Russian government, however, did not condemn Panslavism as such because they saw its potential for their foreign policy purposes. 

Leading Panslavists in Russia

Among the Russian Panslavists of the second half of the 19th century there were some old Slavophiles, like Khomyakov, Samarin, Aksakov or those that came from the school of Slavic studies, like Pogodin and Popov.  They progressed from pure Slavophilism to a Russian type of Panslavism.  Among these, the most active in the movement was Ivan Aksakov.  For him, all of the Slavs were a single nationality.  Only Russia among them was independent, while others were oppressed by the Turks, Germans or Magyars.  (Naturally, he would not admit that some were under Russian occupation also!)  It was, according to him, Russia’s mission to liberate them and put them under the protection of “the mighty wings of the Russian eagle.”  Aksakov was against Austroslavism because it would lead to Germanization of the Slavs.  Some others, like Lamansky, rejected any form of Slavic union from which the Russians would be excluded.  For them the Slavs should gather around the Slav, that is the Russian tzar, any other option was not acceptable.(29)  At first, Aksakov envisioned this union to come about through the purity of the Russian Slavic culture, which would draw other Slavs to Russia.  But later on, as it has been mentioned, he advocated military means to settle the Eastern and the Slavic Question at the same time.

There were also new activists who were a little younger than the old Slavophiles, and came from a different professional background.  One of them was General Rostislav Andreyevich Fedeyev (1823-1884).  He saw Panslavism in the light of the Western powers.  He stated: “We should never destroy Europe’s fear of us.”  He believed that Europe wanted to Germanize the non-Russian Slavs and to make them all Catholic.  And he was one of those that saw the enemy in the Germans and not in the Turks.  So for him the road to Constantinople led through Vienna.  He looked at Slavic unity from a political and strategic point of view.

Another man that advocated political union first, but recognized the spiritual importance in principle, was Nikolay Yakovlevich Danilevsky (1822-1885).  He was a scientist and, at first, did not have much interest in religion or Panslavism.  After his exile to Siberia, however, he became a “true Russian.”  His book Russia and Europe, an Inquiry into the Cultural and Political Relations of the Slav to the Germano-Latin World, published in 1869, became to be regarded by some as the catechism of Russian Slavophilism.  For him history moved in cycles.  He identified ten civilizations.  The tenth one was the European, which was declining.  Signs of the decay were materialism, democracy, rationalism and Protestantism.  The Orthodox church was neither a system nor a firm doctrine, but it was based on love renunciation, and a spartan way of life.  In his view, Islam actually protected the Balkan Orthodox from the decaying Western Church.

Politically, he advocated a Panslavistic union from the Adriatic Sea to the Pacific and from the Adriatic to the Archipelago.  This would include also the non Slavic nations in the area.  The city of Constantinople, or as they called it Tzarigrad, would become the capital of the Union.  The Russian tzar would become the supreme ruler of all the Slavic lands and peoples.(30)  Poland would be admitted into the union if she renounces “Europe”.  In this union he envisioned not only the salvation of the Slavs but the beginning of a new and better future world.

The man that played one of the most important roles in Panslavism on the political level was Count Nicholay Pavlovich Ignatiev (1832-1908).  He was a diplomat and not a scholar by profession.  He served at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and later on he became Russian Ambassador in Istanbul (1864-1877).  His political program was based on three principles: the end of the Treaty of Paris (1856), Russian control of Constantinople and the Straits, and a united front of all Slavs under the Russian leadership.  While the Russian ambassador in Vienna favored the status quo in the Balkans, Ignatiev recommended that Russia alone should solve the Eastern Question.  He believed that the common cause of self-defense against the common enemies (Ottomans and Habsburgs) would help to unite the Slavs.  This meant that Russia would help to liberate the Slavs and then keep them for herself.  The first plan of action should be the defeat of the Ottomans, then the creation of the Serbo-Bulgarian state under the Russian protection.  Bosnia would be given to this newly founded Serbo-Bulgarian state and Hercegovina would go to Montenegro.(31)

Ignatiev had working relations with different revolutionary committees in the Balkans.  He also cooperated with the Slavic Benevolent Committee in Russia.  But his political proposals did not find understanding at St. Petersburg even though he had some influences on the tzar, at least from time to time.  The Russian foreign policies remained outside the Panslavistic thinking and far from their desires.  But Igantiev’s work, however, was not without any results.  His activities helped to raise revolutionary feelings and hopes among the Balkan Slavs.  The Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878 in a sense was the result of Panslavistic reasoning, Igantiev’s activism, and Russian geopolitical plans.  However, Panslavists and the entire movement remained divided and without a common understanding what Panslavism should be and what were its ultimate goals.


It is very hard, if not impossible, to define Panslavism beyond the literary meaning of the word.  The real essence of the movement was never defined or even agreed upon.  Every group of Slavs, better said their intellectuals, had their own idea of what Panslavism should be.  For Croats, Slovenes, Czechs or Slovaks it meant political liberation and a revival of their native cultures.  For the Poles it included the liberation and unification of Poland. It also implied a Polish leading role among the Slavs and their religious (Catholic) messianism in Europe.  Both Russians and Serbs were interested in expansionism and in promoting the purity of the Slavic Orthodox Church and culture.  The Bulgarians remained on the sidelines and did not show much interest in the Panslavist movement.  The non-Slavs of Europe, on the other hand, looked at Panslavism as a potential threat, or at least it was used as such for anti-Slavic propaganda at the time. 

The Slav unity as it had been envisioned by Križanić, and others after him, was an idealistic dream, far away from the existing political realities in the second half of the 19th century.  It was such a dream that even in those cases where some sort of Slavic unity was achieved it turned to be a nightmare. 


1 – Albert Mousset, The World of the Slavs. New York, 1950. p. 10.

2 – Thomas Eekman and Ante Kadić, Juraj Križanić. The Hague: 1975, 150-152.

3 – Mousset, The World, 10.

4 – Eekman, Kadić, Juraj Križanć, 154.

5 – V. Jagić, Život i rad Juraja Križanića. Zagreb, 1917, 46-109.

6 – Jagić, Život, 109.

7 – Eekman, Kadić, Juraj Križanić, 162.

8 – Hans Kohn, Pan-Slavism. New York: 1960, IX.

9 – John Erickson, Panslavism. London: 1964, 6.

10 – Thomas Capek, The Slovaks of Hungary. New York: 1906, 18.

11 – Vladimir Clementis, Panslavism. London: 1943, 37.

12 – Ibid., 36.

13 – Kohn, Pan-Slavism, 31.

14 – Ibid., 40.

15 – Milorad Živančević and Ivo Frangeš, Povijest hrvatske književonst. Zagreb: 1975, 17-19.

16 – Kohn, Pan-Slavism, 63.

17 – Clementis, Panslavism, 34.

18 – Kohn, Pan-Slavism, 22.

19 – Erickson, Panslavism, 19.

20 – Ibid., 19

21 – B. H. Sumner, A Short History of Russia. New York: 949, 227-230.

22 – Mousset, The World, 16.

23 – Kohn, Pan-Slavism, 139.

24 – Michael Boro Petrovich, The Emergence of Russian Panslavism 1856-1870. New York: 956, 38-39.

25 – Sumner, A Short History, 232.

26 – Petrovich, The Emergence, 244.

27 – Kohn, Pan-Slavism, 173

28 – Clementies, Panslavism, 50.

29 – Petrovich, The Emergence, 249.

30 – Salme Pruuden, Panslavism and Russian Communism. Richmond: 1976, 2.

31 – David MacKenzie, The Serbs and Russian Pan-Slavism. New York: 1967, 10.


Capek, Thomas. The Slovaks of Hungary – Slavs and Panslavism. New York: The Knickerbocker Press, 1906.

Clementis, Vladimir. “Panslavism” Past and Present. London: Williams, Lea and Co., 1943.

Eekman, Tomas and Ante Kadić. Juraj Križanić (1618-1683) Russophi and Ecumenic Visionary. A symposium. The Hague: Mouton and Co., 1975.

Erickson, John. Panslavism. London: Cox and Wyman, 1964.

Jagić, V. Život i rad Juraja Križanića. Zagreb: JAZU, 1917.

Kohn, Hans. Pan-Slavism – Its History and Ideology. New York: Vintage Books, Random House, 1960. 

MacKenzie, David. The Serbs and Russian Pan-Slavism 1875-1878. New York: Cornell University Press, 1967.

Mousset, Albert. The World of the Slavs. New York: Frederick A. Praeger, 1950.

Petrovich, Michael Boro. The Emergence of Russian Panslavism 1856-1870. New York: Columbia University Press, 1956.

Pruuden, Salme. Panslavism and Russian Communism. Richmond, England: Foreign Affairs Publishing Co., 1976.

Sumner, B. H. A Short History of Russia. New York: Harcourt, Bruce and World, 1943.

Zivančević, Milorad and Ivo Frangeš. Ilirizam, Realizam – Povijest hrvatske književnosti. Zagreb: Liber-Mladost, 1975. 

Ante Čuvalo

A seminar presentation – John Carroll University, 1982

Rod Čuvalo/Čuvalo Family tree

Dragi Čuvali diljem svijeta,

Ovdje je naveden u Excel formatu kratak pregled muške loze roda Čuvalo. Nadam se da ćete ga moći slijediti. Svaki stupac od lijeva na desno je jedna generacija.

Za početak, malo ću vam pomoći. Koliko je do sada poznato, prvi put se naše prezime spominje 1742. godine. Tada je u Tihaljini živio Grgo Čuvalo. U njegovoj obitelji je bilo 6 odraslih osoba i jedno dijete. Također, 1742. krizman je šestogodišnji Grgo Čuvalo iz Tihaljine. Ne znamo da li je to Grgin sin ili unuk. Grgo stariji bi mogao biti rođen oko c. 1700. godine.

Tek generaciju kasnije nalazimo Čuvale u Proboju. Bili su to braća Jure, Filip i Ante (stupac C). Jurin unuk se priženio na Služanj i tamo su njegovi potomci izumrli nakon 2. svjetskog rata. Jedan od Čuvala sa Služnja umro je u Americi.

Dakle, svi Čuvali u Proboju potječu od Filipa i Ante. Grane i ogranke potomaka od ove dvojice naći ćete u različitim bojama. Nadam se da ćete moći tabelu slijediti i pronaći tko vam je bio djed, pradjed, šukundjed, kao i tko su vam bliži i dalji rođaci po očevoj strani u Čuvala danas.

Danas ima Čuvala diljem svijeta pa nisam siguran da su najmlađi muški potomci ovdje navedeni.

Ante Čuvalo Stipin/Vežin
(moja loza su „Bilušini”, po mojoj baki Mari rođenoj Bilić)

English Text

Dear Čuvalo(s)/Cuvalo(s)/Chuvalo(s)/Cubalo(s) around the world:

I have prepared a spreadsheet of Čuvalo male genealogy. Why are the daughters not included? Simply said, it would have been too big an undertaking and very hard to manage in a single spreadsheet. By making this a “male only” table, I thought, you would be able to trace at least your father’s ancestry. 

Here is some basic historical information about the Čuvalo clan.  As far as we know, our surname was first mentioned in 1742.  At that time, Grgo Čuvalo lived in the village Tihaljina.  There were 6 adults and one child in his family.  Also, in 1742, a six-year-old boy, Grgo Čuvalo, from Tihaljina was confirmed.  Most likely the boy was Grgo senior’s son or possibly his grandson.  The elder Grgo must have been born around 1700 A.D.

A generation later, we find the Čuvalos in Proboj.  At the time, there were three brothers: Jure, Filip and Ante (column C). Jure’s descendants (through marriage) moved to the village of Služanj, near Čitluk also in Herzegovina, but that branch of our clan died out after World War II. One of the sons died in America.

Therefore, all the Čuvalos in Proboj descend from two brothers, Filip and Ante. If you follow the spreadsheet from left to the right, you will find that each column represents one generation. The Čuvalo family groupings are presented in different colors. For example, you will find who belongs to the clan “Jurići”, “Lukinovci”, “Cvitanovci” etc. 

I hope that you will be able to follow the table and find out who was your grandfather, great-grandfather etc., and also who are your closest relatives on your father’s side in the Čuvalo clan today.

Ante Čuvalo Stipin / Vežin 

(my lineage is “Bilušini”, named after my grandmother Mara born Bilić)

Link to SpreadsheetČUVALI-muška-loza-14.-XII-2023..ods


A note to the reader: It is often presumed that the “world” was ignorant about the national problems in the so-called First Yugoslavia, especially the fact that it was a terrorist state. The Serbian regime treated Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Vojvodina, and Montenegro as occupied lands, and open terror was implemented on non-Serbs, mostly on the Croatians. We bring here an article published in the Melbourne Advocate, Australia, dated February 22, 1934, informing clearly to all those who wanted to hear the cries of the oppressed, about the plight of the Croatians at the time.



THAT monument of Liberal ineptitude, the Treaty of Versailles, has sown a harvest of dragons’ teeth in Europe which draws nearer to its ripening. In the name of liberty and self-determination, the historic tradition of the Western world was outraged, and the elaborate economic network which had grown up in the European States was rudely torn to fragments. The resulting chaos has produced appalling misery among the population of Central Europe; and the injustices committed in the hurried carving out of the new States have resulted in the reappearance of racial conflict in a more acute form among the people „liberated“ from the rule of Russia and Austria. We intend in the present study to give a detail picture of one corner of this scene of confusion by describing the tragic enslavement of an ancient Catholic people, the Croats, whose land has become part of the kingdom of Yugo-Slavia. This name – both new and ugly – has been given to a „Nation-State“ artificially created out of heterogeneous mass of races in the region east of the Adriatic Sea. These people – Servians, Slovenes, Montenegrins, Croats, Turks, Bulgars and Albanians – differ in history, culture, religion and even language, though most belong to the racial group of „Slavs“ – as Spaniards, Italians and Romanians are „Latin“. They have been flung together against their will under the supremacy of the least civilised of the larger groups, the Servians, under whose oppression they struggle. In particular, the inclusion of Croatia, Catholic and Latin, with a long tradition of political connection with Hungary, in a union with half barbarous people professing Eastern Orthodox, and only recently delivered from the de-civilising rule of Turkey, has weakened the whole structure of this part of Europe.

The Origins of Croatia

Croatia is a land with a heroic past. Situated at the north-western gate of the Balkans, the Croats defended the Catholic frontier for centuries against the onslaught of Islam, forming the outworks of Christendom – „Antemurale Christianitates“ (sic!) from the 15th to the 19th century. The race is anciently established, having migrated into the region between the Drava and the Adriatic in the fifth century A.D. The Croats were converted to Christianity by Italian missionaries under one Abbot Martin, and seven Bishoprics were set up – a number which was later increased. The Latin origin of Croatian Christianity made a gap between these Slavs and the Serbs and Bulgars, their neighbours, who were converted from the East, and fell into Schism with the Byzantine Church. Croatia formed the south-eastern frontier region of Charlemagne’s empire. The rule of the great Frank was willingly accepted; but the misgovernment of his successor led to a revolt. Under the Pope’s protection, Croatia became an independent kingdom until its peaceful union with Hungary in 1102.

The Middle Ages

The first period of Magyar rule was a happy one. The Balkans were still Christian land, and the Turkish menace to the West remote. Feudalism – alien to Slav tradition – grew up under the Arpad kings; the Church flourished and grew rich, its Bishops wielding great political power; and the religious Orders flourished, spreading learning through the land.

In 1301 came a break with Hungary. A French dynasty was established – the House of Anjou; and the King’s power increased. Marriage brought Croatia into the orbit of Holy Roman Empire; and in the late 14th century it was disputed between German and French-Neapolitan dynasties. Dalmatia, the coast region, was sold to Venice.

The Struggle with Islam

Then, at last, came the first Turkish raids in 1414-15, opening a new age of war for the defence of the West. Mohammed II occupied Bosnia after the fall of Constantinople in 1453, and the Turkish war soon became almost continuous. Hungarian rule had been restored in Croatia, though the real Government was that of the military chiefs, or „Bans.“ But in 1526 came the great Christian disaster of Mohacs. The Hungarian King was slain and Hungary overrun. What remained of it passed, with Croatia, under the rule of the Austrian Hapsburgs.

Religious Problems

The Reformation reached Croatia after considerate success in Austria and Hungary; but though the new doctrines infected some of the powerful Zrinski family, they were refused toleration by the Ban, and made little headway.

The frontier with Turkey 1688, and a compulsory military levy established for its defence, which was maintained until 1873; so that all Croatia was an armed camp for the defence of Christendom. Turkish tyranny led to an influx of Orthodox Slavs into Croatia, and an attempt was made to secure the loyalty by persuading them to „Uniatise“ – that is, become Catholics, while retaining the Eastern rite – but without much success. The menace of Protestantism was removed by the influence of the Jesuits, who were established at Zagreb, and did much to improve education. Croat students regularly attended Italian universities in the eighteenth century, so that the Latin character of the people’s culture was fully maintained.

The National Revival

Under Austrian rule, Croatia had become increasingly Germanized; but the French Revolution, as in Italy led to changes which brought about revival of the national spirit. Napoleon in 1809 made Croatia part of his kingdom of Illyria; and French ideals made some headway during the period of his rule, which ended in 1814. In 1835 a reaction in favour of the Slav language began. The Croats demanded autonomy, but their loyalty was secured by the establishment as Ban of Josip Jellachich, who saved the Austrian throne in the 1848 revolution.

The defeat of Austria by Prussia in 1866 led to a reconstruction of the Empire as a dual monarchy by the „Ausgleich“ of 1867; and the next year Croatia concluded a compromise which secured her liberties within the Hungarian kingdom. The country was given self-government under a „Ban“ appointed by Hungary, who presided over the Legislative Assembly or „Sabor.“ This Assembly attended to local administration; but Croatia had also representation in the Hungarian Parliament and Cabinet; and it had a right to its own flag and language. There were grievances of various kinds, it is true – chiefly connected with overtaxation and maladjustment of tariffs – but it is instructive to compare the condition of Croatia in 1914 with its present state after „liberation“ by the arms of the Allies.

The Betrayal of Croatia

The Croats fought loyally for the Empire until its break-up became imminent. They then proclaimed their independence, setting up a seperate Government at Zagreb in 1918, which was recognised by Servia. The Allies, however, were determined to form a great Southern Slav State of all the groups in this region, and France – probably fearing the increase of Italian influence in Croatia – urged its union with Servia. This was attempted on a basis of equality at a series of conferences at Geneva. Croatia was to be associated in a federal bond with Servia and the other Slav States, but was not to be subject to the Servian dynasty. The Serbs, however repudiated this settlement. Their military predominance, at the close of the war, was complete, and they were able to force a Union on Croatia on their own terms. Since then, the Servian General Kalafatovich, has represented the Union as a result of the conquest and occupation of Hungarian territory; but this is entirely false. It was the freedom of a friendly Republic which was invaded after the Serbs had failed to secure their own terms by negotiation.

Croatia Enslaved

The imposed „Union“ was accompanied by a promise to call a free convention in six months; but the meeting was postponed for two years. During this time all power was concentrated in the Servian capital, Belgrade; and Serb soldiers and police occupied Croatia, setting up a reign of terrorism and corruption, whose object was the dissolution of the Croat State organisation.

At last the convention met. From the first the rule of the Servian dynasty was assumed, though the Croats had not recognised it. Their representatives, therefore, boycotted the Convention. Even so, the influence of the other combined groups was such that opposition to the new constitution – which divided Croatia into several provinces – could only be overcome by „rigging“ the electoral lists. Premier Pashitch threatened the Turkish group that if they did not serve his cause „they would never return home alive.“


The Convention of the new „Yugoslav“ State was ignored by the Croats until 1925, when their leader, Raditch, decided, on English advice, to act in the new Parliament, where it was hoped to obtain concessions by a combination of the minority groups with the Servian opposition. Vague promises of change were made by the Government itself, by the way of encouragement.

Raditch was overborne by the feeling of the „Moderates“ in his own camp; but he had prophesied that the reappearance of the Croats would lead to the union of the Servian parties in a „bloc“; and so it proved. The party of „The Strong Castle“ was formed on the initiative of King Alexander; and every effort was made to break the Croat leader’s power by compromising him in the eyes of his nation. When this failed, Raditch was simply shot dead in the House by a fellow member of Parliament, and the murderer – like the assassin of the Austrian Archduke in 1914 – was hailed as a national hero.

The Royal Tyranny

The Croats succeeded to Zagreb and the Parliament at Belgrade continued to legislate for the whole country without their consent. But it was necessary to take stronger measures in order to maintain the Servian predominance against the rising tide of opposition. In autumn 1928, therefore, on his return from Paris, the King tore up the former Constitution and declared a Royal Dictatorship, composing a new constitution of a highly autocratic character, in which all the provincial liberties were abolished and the country unified. While many of the Serb politicians took office under the regime, the new Croat leader, Dr. Matchek, was imprisoned. The King played the part of Richard II., and took over the „leadership“ of the Croat people. The commemoration of Raditch and visits to his grave were forbidden. The Croat flag might no longer be displayed; this prohibition also applied nominally to the old Servian colours; but the latter could be flown freely as the standard of the Orthodox Church. Young men, however, who bore the Croat flag as a banner, with religious emblems upon it, at the Eucharistic Congress of Dalmatia Croatia were attacked and some of them killed by the Servian police.

Croatia is at present under the rule of Servian police and soldiers, who exercise complete power. The law courts are merely police institutions; the torture of prisoners is freely practised. The education in Croatian schools is Servianised in its historical section, and an effort is being made to impose changes in the language and writing of the people. The banks and financial institutions at Zagreb are subjected to every kind of pressure in order that the savings of the people may be transferred to Belgrade. Meanwhile, the existence of a Croatian question is officially denied since Croatia has been absorbed in Yugo-Slavia, how―it is asked―can there be a Croatian question?

The Outlook

The attempt to destroy this brave and unhappy Catholic nation will, no doubt, meet with the failure which has always attended such brutalities. Meanwhile, the State of Croatia is a danger to Yugo-Slavia since it places her in a weak situation in face of the possible aggression of Italy, the neighbour whom she fears. There can be little doubt of what attitude the Croats would assume in such a case.

It is obvious that the regime of stupid violence in Yugo-Slavia cannot last. The problem is not touched by it. There are several possible solutions of this minority question. The idea of a federation of autonomous States under the Servian Crown has much to recommend it: but in the case of Croatia, the persecution has led to a growing demand for nothing less than complete separation. Indeed, historic, religious and cultural affinities are stronger here than those of race; and a revival of the older political ties with Austria and Hungary might be the most satisfactory solution. Croatia would thus become a member of the new Danube federation, which seems likely to be formed eventually, in order to solve the problem of the former territories of the Austrian Empire.

Transcribed by Nikola Dedić, Student of History at the University of Mostar

The article can be found here:


Prigodom treće godišnjice smrti ovog uzor-Hrvata Katolika iz sela Grohote na otoku Šolti.

Ubila ga partizanska “pravda”.

Partizansko-komunistička rušilačka banda, sastavljena od samih Šoltana, pošalje Cvjetku Bezić pk. Filicija pismo, u kojemsu od njega tražili, da mora dati partizanima navodno sakriveno “ustaško oružje” i to u vrlo velikim količinama. Kako toon nije nikada imao, to naravno nije mogao ni da ga nadje, i da im ga dade. Zato mu oni zaprijetiše smrću. On vidjevši sebe u smrtnoj opasnosti, odluči sa familijom, da napusti otok, kuću i posjed ida ode u Zagreb. Što smislio to i učinio, ali došavši u Split na 6. rujna zateče ga tamo pad Italije i on morade ostati u Splitu. Partizani zauzeše Split. Započeše sa ubistvima. Videći pk. Cvjetko, da dalje ići ne može, odlučio je, da se sa obitelji povrati na Šoltu i u tu svrhu zatraži dozvolu od partizana za povratak na otok i oni mu je dadoše, uz svečano obećanje, da ga neće ubiti. Dok je on čekao, da ga prevedu s familijom na Šoltu, dotle je u Grohotama na 19. rujna 1943. održan zbor tj. masovni sastanak, po naredjenju tadašnjeg komandanta otoka Šolte, Vidana Kažimira, uz asistenciju Nikole Buktenića pk. [sic!] i Ivana Buktenića Marinova, studenta prava. Uz ostalo Vidan Kažimir je ovo saopćio sakupljenom narodu: “Narode, Cvjetko Bezić pk. Filicija, zatražio je u Splitu, da mu dademo dozvolu dolaska na otok k svojoj kući.Mi smo mu dozvolili i zagarantirali, da mu se neće ništa dogoditi. Po dolasku na otok vi ćete mu suditi ovdje na ovom mjestu, gdje ja sada govorim, pa ako je kriv bit će kažnjen, a ako je prevedan bit će slobodan kao i vi.”


Iste noći 19. septembra 1943. došao je iz Splita pok. Cvjetko sa svojom obitelji. Poslije pola noći od 20. septembra, dodjoše partizanski razbojnici i odvukoše jadnog Cvjetka na mučilište “Rudina,” tu se nalazi jama duboka kojih 200 metara. Započelo je mučenje. Koliko je trajalo? Bog sam znade. Kosu mu sa kožom od glave otkinuše, na koncu ga poliše benzinom, zapališe i živa baciše u jamu. Tko ga je bacio? Zar stranci? Ne! Nego Šoltani sa Vidan Kažimirom “Pucetovim” na čelu i tako umre pravedan. Zašto je umro Cvjetko Bezić? On nije bio nikada na vlasti, nije ni težio za njom. Umro je zato, jer je bio dobar, pošten Hrvat-Katolik.


Njegov nestanka iz kuće i obiteljske sredine najavila mi je rano jutrom njegova kći nada, došavši k meni sva zaplakana. Poslije kratkih upita i odgovora odmah sam sve razumio, da je već sigurno sve svršeno. Od mene Nada je išla do strašnih “Rudina,” da traži svog oca, ali već je bilo sve gotovo. Našla je komade još svježe krvi, jednu cipelu i nekoliko čuperaka kose. Htjela je skočiti u ponor jame, da traži svog nikada nezaboravnog oca, ali je u tome bila spriječena po onima koji su je pratili. Po njezin dolasku u selo nastao je medju pučanstvom strah i trepet.


Budući samja bio župnik tada u svojem rodnom mjestu Grohotama na Otoku Šolti, to sam, doznavši i uvjerivši se o istinitosti smrti Cvjetka Bezića naredio, da se u četvrtak zvoni za upokoj duše pok. Cvjetka a istodobno sam naredio svečani sprovod i sv. misu za petak 24. septembra 1943. Kako je bilo to komunistima tj. razbojnicima krivo, to su pokušali sa svojim depešama, da zabrane sprovod i sv. misu za upokoj duše pok. Cvjetka. Tako dobih prvu depešu u 12 sati u noći, drugu u 3 s. U noći, treću pak mi donesoše četiri oružana partizana u društvu mog upravitelja Bratovštine Nikole Mladinova. Tek na poziv Mladinova sam se digao i morao sam ići sa oružanim ljudima na poštu, gdje me je zvala vrhovna komanda komunistička za Brač-Hvar-Šoltu i Vis. Preko telefona su me uvjeravali, da je Cvjetko živ i da će doći doma, ali ja tomu nisam vjerovao. Onda sam morao potpisati pismo, poslano navodno iz Hvara od glavne komande komunista, a isto je bilo napisano na Šolti i od Šoltana. Pismo je tj. nalog glasio ovako: Velč. Don Anti Ceciću, župniku u Grohotama na O. Šolti. “Najstrože Vam se zabranjuje, da održite zadušnice za Cvjetka Bezić, narodnog neprijatelja i izdajicu.”

Iz Vrhovne komande za otoke Brač-Hvar-Šolta i Vis. Komandant. Pečat. Potpis nečitljiv.


Dok sam ja sjedio u pošti već je zvono počelo da svoni i pozivlje narod k zadušnicama. Začudo, crkva je bila dupkom puna. Došli su čak i zadrti komunisti, ne da se Bogu mole za dušu kojega su umorli neć da gledaju i motre, hoće li tkošto govoriti. Narod je sve shvatio te po svršenoj službi Božjoj svatko je otišao svojoj kući.


U devet sati ja sam opet dobio službeni poziv na Općinski N.O.O. i to u svrhu preslušavanja. bio sam preveden pred Buktenića Nikolu. Postavio se je u pozu izpitivača i počeo:

U. “Recite mi, kako se Vi zovete?”

O. “Ja se zovem Cecić Ante.”

U. “Tko je upravitelj Bratovštine sv. Stjepana u Grohotama?”

O. “Ja.”

U. “Tko je naredio sprovod za Cvjetka Bezića?”

O. “Ja.”

U. “Zašto ste to učinili, kad Vam je bilo izričito zabranjeno?”

O. “Učinio sam to zato, jer, kako Vi kažete, ljudska pravda se je zadovoljila i oduzela mu život, a ja sam bio njegov župnik i bila je moja sveta dužnost ono, što sam učinio, jer pokojnik je bio katolik, a nije heretik, nije se sam ubio, nije poginuo u dvoboju itd. Dakle, mislim, da ste me razumjeli, ja sam učinio samo svoju dužnost.”

U. “Hoćete li i za druge činiti istu stvar?”

O. “Hoću, jer je to moja dužnost.”

U. “Znadete li Vi, da time postajete neprijatelj narodnoj vlasti?”

O. “Znadem, ali znadem i to, da sam u službi Bogu i u ovakvim stvarima se ne moram ničega bojati, pa ako treba i život svoj dati za Boga.”

U. “Dovro, razumio sam, a sada idite i dobićete u vezi ovoga raporta pismeno saopštenje.” Kako onda tako i danas. P.S. Podatke o smrti pok. Cvjetka ispričao mi je pok. Jakovčević Mirko.


Danas o trećoj godišnjici smrti pok. Cvjetka njegov stariji sin prikazuje Svevišnjemu svagdanju žrtvu sv. Misu u svijetlu ovih od njega napisanih riječi prigodom njegove mlade mise: “U svijetlu pobjede Križa Gospodnjega, pod okriljem Majke Boli, na vječnu utjehu milom otcu, prikazuje Kralju, kojemu sve živi, prvi plod svoga svećeništva. U Splitu 10. travnja 1945. Srećko Bezić, mladomisnik.

Nada pak napojena mučeničkom krvlju svog oca, stupila je u časne sestre sv. Franje Asiškoga u Splitu na Lovretu, da moli trpi i radi za nesretnu našu Hrvatsku domovinu.

Danas nakon tri godine od mučeničke smrti Cvjetka Bezića, njegov brat Prečasni Don Marin Bezić, kanonik i župnik Makarske, kao i sin  pok. Cvjetka, Don Srećko Bezić i sama obitelj uzalud traže sudbeni postupak, da se dokaže pred sudom krivnju narodnog mučenika. Svi pošteni Šoltani, napose Grohočani traže, da im partizanska vlast razbojnička imena koljača, ali uzalud, jer su oni, tj. svi pošteni i ispravni u bespravnom položaju, dok su razbojnici, lupeži, farabuti i šetebandijere potpuni gospodari situacije. Tako je danas u Titovoj Jugoslaviji!

Rev. Cecić Ante

Chicago – Hrvatski list i Danica hrvatska, 11. rujna 1946


Stigao sam u grad Chicago na 23.augusta, 1946. Nastanio sam se kod majčine sestre, tete Katine Novakovich, 10002 Torrence Ave., So. Chicago, Ill.

Dana 25. augusta rekao sam sv.misu u ovdašnjoj irskoj crkvi i otišao iza toga k svome barbi Toni u posjete na farmu. Na putu sam sreo svog rođaka Antu Prvinića i njegovu obitelj. Pozdravismo se i on obeća, da će i on doći na farmu sa svojom obitelji. Što je obećao, to je učinio. Došavši na farmu započesmo razgovor, a o čemu, ako ne o Titovoj Jugoslaviji i novom poretku u njoj. Kako me je baš ovaj moj rođak javno napadao na sjednicama “Obiteljskog kluba Šolta,” kao izdajicu, bratoubojicu, kolaboratora s okupatorom itd., to sam mu pred svima mojim dokazao neistinost njegovih tvrdnja i laži. U toku razgovora kao da mu je bila pomućena pamet i izreče ovo: “Znaj, rodjače don Toni, ja sam pisao na moju nećakinju Mariju Prvinić pok. Ivana pismo i u pismu list za komunistički sadašnji Općinski N.O.O. u Grohotama na otoku Šolti, da taj potvrdi nama sa svojim pečetom i potpisom, da si Ti bio u Šolti izdajica, špijun, pronevjeritelj, bratoubojica, ustaša doušnik Italijana i Nijemaca itd., i ako to dobijemo, onda ćemo biti zaštićeni za napadaje izvedene sa strane “Obiteljskog Kluba Šolta” protiv tebe.”

Ja sam mu na to samo stavio ovu primjedbu: “Rodjače Toni, zašto nisi postavio ovo pitanje komunistima Šolti u pogledu mene: Šta vas je, drugovi, rukovodilo, da niste likvidirali mog rođaka don Antu Cecića, svećenika, a imali ste vi jedini svu vlast nad svim životima u Šolti, već ste ga spasili i omogućili mu na taj način, da nam dođe smetati u Americi?” Na ovo mi moj crveni rodjak nije ništa odgovorio!


Prije nego se rastasmo, oš sam mu postavio ovopitanje: “Možeš li ti, rode, povjerovati, da su komunisti u Jugoslaviji mogli biti toliko plemeniti prema jednom izdajici, bratoubojici itd. i da su mu poštedili život, dok su,  znadeš i sam, nevine ljude baciti žive u jamu na našem otoku?” Ni na movaj upit nije odgovorio!


Što se dogodilo pak sada. Cecić “Levantov” priča: “Sreo sam Prvinić Tona “Lukena” i upitao ga za Vas, a on mi je rekao, da on uopće nije s Vama govorio, ni bio, a niti da Vas je vidio.” Sram te budi, rođače Toni, lagati ovoliko i ovako,a nas je na farmi bilo više od dvadeset osoba i svi te poznaju kao kameleona. Toliko do snaja mojim dobrim i poštenim Šoltanima u Chicagu.

Rev. Ante Cecić

Chicago – Hrvatski list i Danica hrvatska, 18. rujna 1946.

Msgr. Fulton J. Sheen o Stepincu

“Stepinac, koji je išao na sud kao duhovni pastir Hrvata, izišao je iz sudnice kao opći vođa svog naroda i kao uzor svijetu.”

Hrvatima je dobro poznato da u Americi (White Plains, država New York) postoji srednja škola koja nosi ime Nadbiskupa Stepinca. Ali mnogima nisu poznate riječi koje su o Stepincu izrečene prigodom svečanog blagoslova te škole pa ćemo ovdje donijeti uvodne riječi kardinala Spellmana i cijeli govor svjetski-poznatog Msgr. Fultona Sheena.

Svečani blagoslov Archbishop Stepinac High School-a bio je 12. rujna 1948. godine. Bijaše to najmodernija katolička srednja škola u svijetu. Svečanosti je prisustvovalo preko 5.000 naroda, među kojima je bio i lijep broj Hrvata, a predvodio ju je utemeljitelj škole, kardinal Francis J. Spellman, s trojicom pomoćnih biskupa i većim brojem crkvenih i civilnih dostojanstvenika.

Na početku svog govora, kardinal Spelman je rekao:

“Danas smo s radošću i molitvom otvorili ovu školu Nadbiskupa Stepinca, koja će, kako sam uvjeren i molim Boga, biti zauvijek očitovanje velikog i širokogrudnog duha, koji je Amerika. Najprije, samim svojim imenom ta škola zastupa sve ono, što je dobro i pravedno i junačko, jer Nadbiskup Stepinac znači mnogo više nego jedan čovjek, koji stenje u ćeliji jugoslavenskog zatvora kao žrtva bezbožnog komunizma i mučenik za ideale, koje Amerikanci cijene i njeguju. On je simbol Petra i Pavla i svih Apostola i mučenika, koji su za istinu i pravdu, za ljubav prema Bogu i spas svoje braće pretrpjeli izdaju i progonstvo kroz vjekove Kršćanstva. On utjelovljuje također simbol amerčkih očeva i majki, kojih su misli, snaga, žrtve i uspjesi u izgradnji ove moćne nacije bili vođeni i inspirirani dvjema nerazdruživim krepostima: ljubavlju prema Bogu i domovini. Pače, i u samoj svojoj građevini Škola Nadbiskupa Stepinca predstavlja cvijet i plod američkoga duha, jer bez sposobnog i voljenog upotpunjavanja znanja i nastojanja kod graditelja, poduzetnika, zidara i radnika ta škola, tek pred kratko vrijeme zamišljena, ne bi sutra mogla biti otvorena mladeži iz Westchester County”.

Tom prigodom Msgr. Fulton J. Sheen je rekao slijedeće:

“U svijetu postoji jedan novi zločin: Zločin vjerovati u Boga. Ovaj spomenik podignut je u počast takvom jednom ‘zločincu’, koji poput Krista trpi pod Poncijem Pilatom. Te riječi ne nalaze se u Vjerovanju samo kao spomen na historijski događaj nego također kao znak Kristove Crkve, koja baš danas kao i nekada nastavlja Njegovo trpljenje pod Poncijem Pilatom, pod silom ‘svemožne države’.

Samo ljudi koji ne poznaju događaje u svijetu, mogu tvrditi, da je država u opasnosti od Crkve; istina je naprotiv, da je vjera ugrožena od države.

‘On će brzo biti zaboravljen’, rekao je Tito. Pilat je isto mislio, kad je zatražio posudu s vodom da opere Krista sa svojih ruku. Dok su kaplje poput blistavih dragulja na jutarnjem suncu padale s njegovih ruku, on je bio uvjeren u svom srcu, da sve vode iz sedam mora ne bi bile dovoljne da operu krv s njegove duše. ‘Što ću raditi s Kristom’, odzvanjalo je kroz stoljeća, kao što i novi Pilat pita: ‘Što ću raditi sa Stepincem’: Stepinac, koji je išao na sud kao duhovni pastir Hrvata, izišao je iz sudnice kao opći vođa svog naroda i kao uzor svijetu.

Jedan brat Nadbiskup, Kardinal Spellman, dao je odgovor jasan za čitav svijet. On je strgao njegovo ime s vrata tamnice i ispunio riječi Našega Gospodina protiv onih, koji bi htjeli ušutkati spominjanje njegova imena: ‘Kažem vam, kad bi oni šutjeli, kamenje bi vikalo’ (Lk. 19, 40). Kardinal je učinio, da tisuće kamena tisuće puta odzvanjaju: Stepinac mu je ime! Kamen odbačen po jugoslavenskim graditeljima postao je temeljni kamen jedne zgrade u Americi. Dok će generacije za generacijama mladeži prolaziti ispod tog portala i imena, proročanstvo Pisma će se ispuniti: ‘Ex ore infantium’ — iz usta mladeži bit će spominjano njegovo ime — ime Stepinac. Ova škola ne nosi to ime iz mržnje protiv njegovih lažnih sudaca niti želi unaprijed odrediti, kako će Crkva ocijeniti njegovu svetost, već hoće biti dokaz i svjedok, da mi živimo u doba živih primjera.

Imade nešto vrlo zanimljivo u tom imenu, koje resi jednu školu za mladež. On je naime tada bio najmlađi Nadbiskup na svijetu, kad je bio imenovan na Stolicu Nikopske, bio je jedva četiri godine svećenik, kad mu je pastirski štap bio predan u ruke. Crkva time, što uzvisuje mladost jednim imenom i jednom školom, ohrabruje one, koji su razočarani nad mladeži i koji poput George Bernard Shaw-a govori, da je mladost propala po mladima, ili koji su poput Clemenceau-a na svršetku Prvog svjetskog rata i španjolskog pjesnika Unamuno za vrijeme komunističke revolucije u Španjolskoj kazali: ‘Ne, ja ne vjerujem u mladež. Mladež je opterećena kugom. Europa je zaražena. I jedna i druga će izginuti u bjesnoći’.

Crkva ne dijeli takvo mišljenje. Ona može razjasniti, zašto je moderena mladež revolucionarna, ali je može također sačuvati, da ne postane revolucionarna. Besmislenost života je ona sila, koja mladež tjera u revoluciju. Ako se s kotla skine poklopac postavljen od inženjera, on eksplodira. Ako mladež izgubi svrhu života danu od Boga, ona se buni. Kadgod je na mjesto apsolutne vrijednosti ljubavi prema Bogu i domovini došlo opadanje vjere i svjetovni odgoj, mladež je tražila drugdje apsolutnu vrijednost — živjela je bez nje.

Na mjesto apsolutne ljubavi prema Bogu i bližnjemu takva mladež je stavila silu i putenost. Svako razdoblje u povijesti, koje je bilo bez smisla, dovelo je također s jedne strane do političke anarhije a s druge do putene raspuštenosti. Mržnja mladih protiv starih, koji su im ostavili baštinu kaosa, pokazuje se u ustanku protiv političkog uređenja i mržnji protiv sebe samih, što nemaju svrhe života, pokazuje se u vulgarnosti, oponašanju drugih, živčanoj rastrojesnoti i tjelesnosti. Stariji su im rekli, da ne trebaju u išta vjerovati. Mladež se pobunila, jer nije imala u što vjerovati. Njihovi stariji su im zanijekali potrebu vjere; mladi su se pobunili, jer nisu imali potrebnu vjeru — oni su si pronašli sami svoju.

Katolička Crkva nalazi riječi obrane i za tu revolucionarnu mladež i zabacuje pesimističko tumačenje njezinih čina kao jedino i isključivo znak propadanja civilizacije.

Crkva evo podiže ovu školu s time da mladima pokaže svrhu života, da tako spasi mladež od političke anarhije i putenosti za koje smo rekli, da su dva zla ploda mišljenja, da je život na zemlji besmislen! Ako bi tko pitao: U čemu je nazor Crkve o odgoju tako različit, da jamči toliku korist za mladež? Jest, različit je u više pravaca:

1) Odgoj unutar ovih zidina ne će se temeljiti na predpostavci, da je mladež pokvarena zato, što ne zna stvari, već na načelu, da je mladež pokvarena zato, što je zavedena. Naš odgoj razlikuje između razuma i volje, između spoznavanja i htijenja, između istine i ljubavi. Spoznaja je u razumu; karakter je u volji. Prva treba rasvijetljenja, a ovaj discipline. Stoga će mladić u ovoj školi učiti ne samo, kako će susresti sumnje u životu, već i to, kako će svojom voljom urediti svoj način života, i to sudjeljujući s Božjom milošću, koja ga uspsobljuje, da može svladati sklonosti na zlo i da postane dijete nebeskog Oca.

2) Naš odgoj ne uči mladića, da je jedini izbor za njega ili na desno ili na lijevo radi granica čovječije naravi, koja ga stavlja na istu razinu s materijalom i životinjama; već ga naprotiv uči, da postoji najveći izbor, da li će čovjek ići prema gore ili dolje — gore prema Duhu ili dolje prema životinji. Gledajući život i s tih drugih dviju dimenzija, mladež će vidjeti, da je skret na desno ili lijevo krivi pravac, jer odvodi od sredine; a ne biti u sredini znači biti ekscentričan; a ekscentričan biti znači biti bijesan.

3) Naš odgoj ne uči mladež vladati se prema vjeri tako, kao da si sama može stvoriti svoju vjeru i svoj pojam o Bogu po svom vlastitom nahođenju, jednako kao što joj ne će dopustiti da si stvori svoju vlastitu astronomiju, matematiku ili pravopis. Naprotiv, mladež će biti ovdje podučavana, da vjera mora ravnati njom, jednako kao što na području raznih znanosti, gdje priroda određuje teorije, kao što život određuje njihovu biologiju, i površina zemlje njihovu geografiju. Jednom utemeljeni u apsolutno Božje Biće i priznajući najvišu ovisnost o Bogu, mladi će se smatrati poput njihala na uri, koje se slobodno miče, jer je ukorjenjeno u zakonu.

4) Demokracija: ovdje će oni učiti ne samo ljubiti demokraciju već i to, zašto moraju živjeti demokratski; jer ona naglašava vrijednosti ljudske osobe nad državom, kao i činjenicu, da nam naša prava ne dolaze od neke većine, ili od prdstavnika vlasti, već od samoga Boga. Tako i naša Deklaracija nezavisnosti kaže; po sebi je jasno načelo, da nas je Stvoritelj obdario izvjesnim neotuđivim pravima. Jer kao što smo uvjereni da nema šume bez stabala niti miomirisa bez cvijeća, i kao što nem je za šume potrebno sunce, tako nam je potrebno držati se svoga Boga, ako hoćemo zadržati svoja prava.

5) Naš odgoj ne će ići za tim, da mladića potpuno i posve prilagodi ovom svijetu, i to s razloga, što on nije posve od ovog svijeta i što bi on, kad bi se prilagodio zlom svijetu, postao bolestan. Naglašujući, da je sastavljen od duše i tijela, da je besmrtan, iako mora umrijeti, mladiću će se pokazati, da mora biti u stalnoj zabrinutosti da ne izgubi ono prvo i da ne bude progutan od ovog drugog. Mjesto posvemašnjeg prilagođavanja svijetu dati će mu se sakramentalni izgled u neizmjernosti, iz koje će promatrati svaku materijalnu stvar, novac, tijelo, vlast, znanost i trgovinu kao neke ljestve, kojima će se uspeti u Kraljestvo Nebesko. I kad će se zadnja duša uspeti tim ljestvama, tada će one biti skinute i spaljene jakom vatrom, ne zato, što bi bile bezvrijedne, već, što su izvršile svoje djelo — jer su nas donijele natrag Bogu.

Kad će se vrata ove škole otvoriti, moći ćemo čuti gdjekoje stare, kako zdvajaju nad mladima, kao što su nekad stari revnovali, kad su htjeli mlade, kao one koji smetaju, odbiti natrag, ali kojih je glas ipak bio nadjača pozivom Spasitelja: ‘Pustite malenu djecu da dođu k Meni i ne branite im; jer takovih je Kraljevstvo Nebesko’ (Mk. 10, 14).

Mi tražimo mladež ne samo zato, što ona pripada Bogu, nego i zato, što je ona nada budućnosti.

Mi znademo, kako zaustavit revolt mladih, budući im dajemo nešto, za što se bore, a ne samo volju za borbu.

Mi znademo, kako umiriti njihov nemir, jer im dajemo radije razumijevanje, zašto se stvari događaju, nego nemirnu želju, da se nešto dogodi.

Mi znademo, kako ukrotiti njihove lutajuće strasti, jer im pokazujemo, da se ljubav ne sastoji u posjedovanju nego u biti posjedovan, ne u primanju već u davanju, ne u sebično okruženom krugu već u Križu s raširenim upravo do beskrajnosti rukama, da svojim zagrljajem obuhvate čitavo čovječanstvo.

Mi znademo, kako zaustaviti njihovu anarhiju, kad im dokazujemo, da je jedan cilj u životu važniji od nasrtljivosti života, i kad njihovu žestinu prema bližnjemu svraćamo na žestinu protiv mržnje, neprijateljstva i grijeha u njihovoj vlastitoj duši, jer Kraljevstvo se Nebesko silom dobiva, i samo ga silovit postizava!

Ova škola je posvećena na dan, kad čitava Crkva slavi Sveto Ime Marijino: Majke Prvorođenoga na svijet, Zaštitnice mladeži, koja je prva gldala jedno Dijete na svojim rukama i vidjela Nebo na zemlji! I dok jedan pastir Kristova stada u jugoslavenskom zatvoru moli svoju krunicu i tiho izgovara i opetuje Ime Marijino, mi blagosivljamo školu na Njezin dan i govorimo toj školi, budućnosti, svijetu: STEPINAC je njezino ime!”

Prijevod s engleskog je preuzet iz chicaškog hrvatskog tjednika “Danica”, god XXVII, br. 40, 6. X. 1948.


Hrvatski list i Danica Hrvatska

Vol. (god.) XXVI., No. (br.) 126, Chicago, IL., srijeda (Wed.) 19. lipnja (June) 1946., 4-5.

Kakav su raj donijeli partizani ― Za Pavelićeva “pakla” nitko u selu nije poginuo, a kada dođoše Titovi “Osloboditelji” padoše mnoge glave za kratko vrijeme.

Velečasni oče,

Od nekih prijatelja saznao sam, da se nalazite u Chicagu u uredništvu novine: “Hrvatska Danica.” To me je ponukalo, a k tome i poznavanje Vašega predanog rada za naš narod da Vam se sa potpunim povjerenjem obratim.

Još dok sam bio u domovini saznao sam pojedinosti o postupku i zlodjelima partizana nakon ulaska u vrgorsko-makarski kotar budući, da se tamo [u svijetu] nalaze braća i bliža rodbina ubijenih, a isti radi velike komunističke cenzure neće moći biti informirani, te sam odlučio, da Vam to prikažem u nekoliko redaka koliko se sjećam i budm slobodan, da Vas zamolim, da to objavite u našim novinama, da bi naša braća mogla saznati pravu istinu. Srbo-komunisti i izdajice neka pak vide što radi onaj komu slahu novac i pomagaše ga.

Streljanje u Vrgorcu

Koncem oktobra 1944. unišli su partizani u Vrgoarac, mjesto na cesti Metković-Split (Sjeverna Dalmacija), te su predvođeni po Anti Šutiću iz Gradca (Makarsko Primorje) aktivnog člana komunističke partije od 1929. god., a na čelu sa političkim komesarom Srbinom Drljevićem završili započeto klanje izvedeno prvi put 1943. god. kada su prolazno upali u Vrgorac. Tada su (1943) bez suda i suđenja skinuvši do gola i bose otpratili na groblje 33 (trideset i tri) Vrgorčana i streljali ih. U tom pokolju također su sudjelovali Šutić, Srbin Drljević i Drinko Tolić krojač, inače partizanski pukovnik. Zapalili su “Vagu” zgradu duhanske tvornice, jednino mjesto zaposlenja seljaka iz okoline. Čitavo mjesto opljačkali i po običaju preostale dobrim dijelom nasilu otjerali sa sobom. Nešto južnije od Vrgorca, (6 km. daleko od njega) također na cesti Split-Metković, leži Dusina – župa koja u sebe uklapa mjesta: Veliki Prolog, Rakušiće, Vukosavljevo selo, Milošiće i Dodige. Ta župa ili bolje reći blok sela, broji oko 2.000 duša. Nastankom Hrvatske Držae 1941. god. seljaci ovog kraja samo su pošli dalje i još predanije, otvoreno ispovijedati odanost svojoj mladoj državi. Svi do jednoga odazvali su se na poziv u novu hrvatsku vojsku, dok su stariji i nesposobniji tražili da budu postrojeni u seosku miliciju, jer je u to vrijeme u vezi četničkih haračenja oko Mostara postojala bojazan njihova prodora prema Ljubuškom, a onda prema Dusini. Njihovoj želji je udovoljeno, iako su to Talijani ometali.

Na straži dan i noć

1943. god. Srbin Drljević o snovao je u Biokovu t. zv. Biokovsku brigadu, koju je pojačao pridošlim četničkim odredima te je ugrožavao biokovsko područje, pod čijom se podnožjem nalazi i župa Dusina. Na traženje mobiliziranih mladića iz ovoga kraja, da se puste u svoj kraj, da ga brane od Srbo-komunističkih banda hrvatske su vlasti, kao i uvijek pokazale apsolutno razumijevanje i uputili ih kućama, dgje su brinući se sami za hranu i odijelo sve do 1945. junački i časno branili svoj prag. Radi toga Srbo-komunisti, koda su prvi put upali u bliže veće mjesto: Vrgorac, makar i sa dvostruko jačim snagama nijesu se osudili, ni pokušati napasti Dusinu. Oko 300 mladića punih mladosti i odanosti svom narodu, 300 života bilo je dan i noć po okolnim brdima spremno da svakoga časa svojom krvlju zapečete vjernost domu i Hrvatskoj. Starci i žene  bile su spremne da pune ispucane naboje i u spaljene bacače stavljaju nove granate. Neprijatelj nije mogao ništa, jer gdje je sloge sve se može, a najlakše ukloniti kukavice, kao što su srbo-komunisti bili. I zato iskališe bijes u Vrgorcu, gdje kako rekoh pobiše 33 osobe.

Lažna optužba

Pred kraj 1943. vodstvo seoske milicije, preuzeo je na sveopće traženje boraca, iako je to odbijao: svećenik dusinske župe Don Ivan Sumić. Čitao sam u nekom: “Srpskom Vesniku,” koji izlazi u Kanadi članak pod naslovom: “Fratri, organizatori klanja u Hercegovini,” gdje među ostalim piše o svećeniku Ivanu Sumiću slijedeće: “Svećenik i koljač Ivan Sumić, vođa zloglasne, dusinjske milicije organizator pokolja Srba, rekao je jednom zgodom: Braćo, došao je čas obračuna sa Srbima, za mnom svi, ja ću prvi Vama pokazati, a Vi me slijedite.” Ja se neću upuštati u dulja obrazloženja, jer me upravo gade ove komunističke, sve po istom kalupu sastavljene bljuvotine. To oni mogu pričati sebi sličnima, da bi im priuštili časak iživljavanja, ali nama i narodu, koji ih dobro pozna mogu dati samo pokoji podatak više o svojoj podloj i smišljenoj laži. Ja ću Vam, velečasni, reći samo to, da bi našoj poštenoj braći olakšali potpuniji sud o tim zlikovcima i lažljivcima, da u župi Dusina NEMA NI JEDNOGA SRBINA (a istina je da su ti banditi doveli u čisto hrvatski kraj bivše četnike, da se pod komandom Srbina Drljevića kolje naš živalj.) Nešto Srbo-četnika bilo je Ljubuškom, mjestu 12 km odaljenom, gdje nikada nije noga nijednog milicionera Dusine stupila. Čak ni u Vrgorcu, Gradcu i sve do Makarske t. j.u prostoru, koga ograničuje daljina od 50 km. nema nijednoga Srbina, te prema tome iz jednostavnog razloga, jer ih nema, da ne govorim o vrijednosti čovjeka i svećenika I. Sumića, on nije imao koga “klati” niti to klanje organizirati. Eto toliko ovaj put. Ja ću se drugi put na taj članak osvrnuti. Slično pripisuju i fra Boni Jelaviću, svećeniku u Vitini, a također Srbi-komunisti zaboravljaju, da u Vitini nije nikada bilo ni jednog Srbina.

Sada ću se opet vratiti na ono gdje sam stao, t. j. na ulaz partizana u Vrgorac po drugi put, a po prvi put u Dusinu u oktobru 1944. god.

U ime… čega i koga?

Uslijed sveopćeg povlačenja hrvatske vojske, radi skraćivanja obrambene crte, jedinice iz Ljubuškog, Čapljine i Metkovića povukle su se u oktobru te godine pred Mostar. Pripadnici dusinjske milicije odlučili su, da ostanu braniti kućni prag. Srbo-komunisti, potpomognuti avijacijom, mornaricom i teškim oružjem uz pripomoć odreda Crnogorca Koče Popovića, partizanskog generala-leutnanta, zauzeli su nakon duge borbe taj sektor pa i Dusinu. Nakon toga blokirali su župu, da ni miš nije mogao izići i odmah na licu mjesta ubili 23 mladića, 110 odveli u logor u Makarsku, a 15 ih poslali na najopasnija mjesta na borbene prostore u prve redove – u sigurnu smrt.

Kako se trijebilo

Takoi su: Čalinovića Matu Ivanova, mladića od 25 god. uputili na prostor, koji je bio obasipan topništvom, da izviđa, te je nađen sutradan u besvjesnom stanju, kada je došao do svijesti vidjelo se je, da nije mogao govoriti ni čuti. Postao je gluhonijem. Da tragedija bude veća brata mu Lovru, mladića od 23 godine ubili su među onih 23 mladića. Istu sudbinu doživjeli su i drugi, dok su petorica uspjela da pobjegnu našoj vojsci. Oni su uglavnom i dali podatke o sudbini župe Dusina i njenih ljudi.

Tko [je] sve poginuo?

Među ubijenima od onih 23 što su ovi prebjezi na svoje oči vidjeli nalaze se, a za njihovu rodbinu, koja se nalazi tamo [u svijetu] važno je slijedeće:

1) Dr. Tomo Vukosav-pravnik oko 36 god. Ima brata Andriju u Kanadi.

2) Stipe Vukosav pk. Franje 34 god. Ima brata Andriju u Kanadi.

3) Ante Vukosav pk. Franje oko 27 god. Ima brata Andriju u Kanadi.

4) Dane Vukosav pk. Franje oko 26 god. Ima brata Andriju u Kanadi.

Otac im Frane, bio je živ sve do časa dok nije vidio sudbinu djece, te je kako narod veli formalno crkao od žalosti. Majka mu je poludila.

5) Šalinović Mate Jozin “Joketin” oko 18 god. Ima oca Joketu u Americi.

6) Šalinović Metod pk. Petra “Meto” oko 23 god. Ima strica Nikolu u Australiji.

7) Šalinović Stipe “Stipica” pk. Lovre oko 45 god. Ima brata Petra u Australiji.

8) Šalinović Lovre Petrov (ne zna se za njega) oko 26 godina. Ima oca Petra u Australiji.

9) Šalinović, Ivan Jozinov oko 27 godina. Zet mu je negdje tamo.

10) Šalinović Jure pk. Mate oko 30 god. Brat mu je tamo.

11) Dr. Radonić, Drago-pravnik oko 30 god. Zet mu je negdej tamo.

12) Kalajdžić Đikan oko 36 god. Brat mu je negdje tamo.

13) Barbir Stanko (seloBarbiri) oko 36 god. Šura mu je tamo, gdje?

14) Erceg Stipan-Šćević oko 28 god. Rođak mu je negdje tamo.

Drugi nemaju tamo nikoga, pa ih neću nabrajati. Godine su neke točne, a neke po prilici, da bi olakšao o kome se radi.

Što i zašto sve to?

Dusinjani su oduvijek bili čelik Hrvati; uvjereni katolici i najradiniji obrađivači zemlje u makarskom kotaru. Za razliku od defektnih pojava u trokutu Vrgorac-Imotski-Makarska, kao na pr. prosijačenja (profesionalnog), vunarenja i. t. d., seljaci župe Dusina u vječnoj su borbi sa prirodom, sa kršom i škrtom zemljom, a osobito sa “vrgorskim jezerom” (kraško polje) koje bi im znalo često puta oteti trud žulja i znoja, očeličili su se i međusobno čvrsto povezali. Takve ih je zatekla i zora Hrvatske države. Stupali su vedra čela ne pitajući kuda, sretni su bili, jer su izgarali od želje za državnom, koju dočekaše.

Prljava talijanska politika nije ih smela, jer su bili složni. Iako su Talijani pokušavali, da ih razjedine, to im nije uspjelo. Sve do ulaska komunista u njihovo mjesto rezutat 4-godišnje borbe bio je ovaj:

a) Jedan poginuli u borbi.

b)Jedan ranjen u borbi.

c) Nijedana kuća oštrćena, polja obrađena i nigdje traga od banditskih stopa.

A što su učinili srbo-komunisti, što su donijeli “oslobodioci?”

1) Otvorili su nova 23 groba.

2) Župu, koja je brojila oko 2.000 duša doveli na broj od 1.550.

3) Župa, koja je ječila pjesmom mladosti danas je mrtva i nijema, samo majke u crnini oplakuju neznane grobove svojih sinova.

Sve je to zato, jer Dusina je smetala planovima Srbo-komunista. Znali su oni , da uspjeha nema dok se srce ne razori i uništi.

To je hvala i nagrada dusinjskim majkama, što su 1944. u septembru otele iz njemačkih ruku 50 djece, koju su našli progoneći partizane. Bili su oni sinovi i kćerke onih, što su pod vodstvom i u službi Srbina Drljevića izvršili pokolj u ovoj župi. To je valjda nagrada zato, što su im Dusinjani spasili žene, kada su ih Talijani htjeli poubijati. 50-tero djece obučeni i nahranjeni, brižno čuvani od dusinjskih majka dočekalo očeve, koji na njihove oči poklaše njihove zaštitnike.

“Živio Krist”…

Danas nad gorbovima dusinjskih žrtava diže se glas osvete, opomena krvnicima, uz poklik: Čas odmazde nije daleko. Pali su, jer nijsu htjeli zatajiti Boga i izdati Hrvatsku. S njima je živio, borio se i zajedno umro, prvi junački njihov svećenik, Ivan Sumić, uz poklik: “Živio Krist Kralj, Živjela Hrvatska!”

Putovi Božji su nedostižni…. Izabrao je zvanje i Bog mu je povjerio dužnost, da vodi brigu za spas duša svojih župljana. A on vodio ih je muški kroz borbu i vatru za Boga i Hrvatsku, da zajedno s njim, na čelu te junačke legije nevino ubijenih izvede ih pred lice Božije, koji će mu sigurno u carstvu hrvatskh junaka dati mjesto među prvima.

Za ovaj put tek to, a drugi put ako mislite, da bi bilo poželjno da nastavim sa postupcima i zlodjelima partizana, pišite mi, a ja ću to veoma rado učiniti.

Što narod misli o ovdašnjim izdajicama?

Skrećem Vam pažnju da poštenu braću Hrvate točno informirate o događajima u zemlji, da naglasite razliku između onih koji su zavedeni i onih koji su svjesno podpomagali moskovskog slugu Tita. Narod Hrvatski sa gnjušanjem govori o imenima raznih Balakovića, Vukelića i drugih koji su u najtežim danima i iskušenjima hrvatske povijesti davali novac i kupovali oružje Srbo-komunistima, da ubijaju nas Hrvate. I Vi ćete snositi dio odgovornosti, ako hrvatsku javnost u Americi ne upozorite o jednodušnom sudu hrvatskog naroda, koga je izrekao ovakovim izdajicama. Mi se sjećamo dobro municijskih sanduka, koje su nabavljali ti zlikovci, a na kojima je pisalo: “Pucaj, ne štedi.” U te tri riječi sažet je program i želja tih izdajica. To znači ubijajte, mi ćemo Vam streljivo pribaviti. A koga su ubijali?

Drugi put javit ću se opširnije, uz hrvatski bratski pozdrav.


N. D. Dusinjanin


May 2020

A friendly appraisal

The Fall of the Berlin Wall (November 1989), the first free multi-party elections in Croatia (April-May 1990), the Declaration of Croatia’s independence (June 1991), and the liberation of the Serb-occupied territories (August 1995) apparently the end of Communism, Yugoslavism and/or greater-Serbianism in Croatia. It seemed like the dawn of a new era had arrived. Such a happy memory!

As the specter of neo-Marxism is menacing the West generally, in Croatia the old Bolshevism, Titoism, Yugoslavism, and even greater-Serbianism are alive and well. The old nomenklatura has changed its appearance but not its modus operandi. In the current neo-Marxist atmosphere of the West, the revived totalitarian forces in Croatia conceal themselves under a new cloak, as the torchbearers of liberty. In realty, however, they are modern inquisitors, attacking individuals, associations, and institutions that do not fit their ideological purity tests. While demanding tolerance, they themselves are extremely intolerant.  In the name of democracy, they use totalitarian methods to suppress all opposing views. Unfortunately, they are financed not only by wealthy international sympathizers but also by unwilling taxpayers in the country.

For example, a few months ago the city of Rijeka reconstructed a large Communist red star on top of a high-rise and decorated its streets with Yugo-Communist flags. Instead of moving forward towards the future, the city’s political leaders look back to the “good old days” of Communism as the road to a “brighter future.” Croatian culture, religion, and traditional values are frequently ridiculed by ideologues claiming they are only expressing “artistic freedom.” The government and foreign sponsored mass media are especially vigilant when pursuing those who oppose fascist “antifa,” in their endeavor to curtail freedom of expression.

For example, the proclaimed mission of the portal is to evaluate (especially for Facebook) the accuracy of published facts in Croatian mass media. In actuality, however, the portal and those who stand behind it are blatant modern inquisitors. While defining the truth and determining the rules of behavior for others, in reality they are constraining freedom of speech and are at the forefront of creeping censorship in the country. The law that regulates the electronic media does not apply to, nor to its publisher GONG (an NGO founded in 1997 to monitor elections). They are above the law and are self-proclaimed censors of electronic media in Croatia. Similar portals and NGOs are strangling liberty and democracy so much that they are fading away into a new form of totalitarianism.

In summary, in Croatia today, there are social segments that look backward hoping to strengthen the old Bolshevik/Titoist ideology. They have retained the old network of mutual interests. But such groupings are not hard to recognize nor is it difficult to uncover their illegally acquired wealth. The globalist neo-Marxist forces, in Croatia and elsewhere, on the other hand, are much more fluid. They are not organized in political parties because they do not believe in democracy. They do not fight for their ideals and goals in the open parliamentary arena. They work under the guise of NGOs and various minorities. By imposing an atmosphere of fear and political correctness, they make sure that the existing political parties and institutions do their biddings. They are professional parasites living off the society they desire to destroy. The ultimate goal of their revolutionary ideology is a world without countries, nations, citizenships, political parties, religion, family structure, without links to the past ― a world of individuals who will be totally free, to the point that they will be free from their own liberty, as well!

It would be logical here to appeal to the Government of Croatia and to the Croatian political “elite”, in order to protect freedom of speech and all other freedoms in the country. But that would be useless, because, unfortunately, the government and the “elites,” for the most part, have already become victims themselves. And thus, the “elites” have become a major obstacle for a better future of the Croatian nation. In view of this situation, we can only say: Croatians, wake up before it is too late! “Get out the vote” on July 5, 2020!

Ante Čuvalo, Ph. D.

End of May 2020


Rev. Ljubo Čuvalo, O. F. M. — Portland, Oreg. U. S. A.

Dok se mnogi narodi Evrope, a među njima i mi Hrvati, ponose i s pravom svagdje ističu, da su odgojeni u krilu zapadne kulture i da je njihova duševna izgrađenost potpuno zapadnoga tipa, u Americi je u tome pogledu potpuno obratno. U nedavnoj prošlosti, dok su po istočnim krajevima Amerike nicala mnogobrojna naselja i osnivali se današnji moderni velegradovi, u kojima se je širila evropska kultura, naravno, nešto preudešena prema karakteru i potrebama novoga naroda i zemlje, dotle je sav prostor na delekom zapadu bio pokriven ne samo gustim i neprohodnim šumama i naseljen divljom zvjeradi i poludivljim indijanskim plemenima, nego stvarno nije bio niti izražen, a kamo li da se je poznavala njegova prava vrijednost i prirodne krasote. Tek otkrićem zlata u Kaliforniji pedesetih godina prošlog stoljeća, svraćena je naročita pažnja ovim krajevima. Ne samo iz raznih krajeva Amerike, nego sa svih strana svijeta, kopnom i morem, nagrnuo je narod gladan zlata i željan bogatstva— u Kaliforniju. Za mnoge je Kalifornija postala neka obećana zemlja, zlatna zemlja.

Među prvim pionirima odmah 1850. bilo je i Hrvata, koji su stizali raznim putima na obalu Pacifika. Već 1857. bilo ih je toliko, da su osnovali svoje samostalno i potporno društvo, koje i danas još postoji i radi, ali u mnogo višem opsegu nego tada. Ovi prvi naši doseljenici bili su većinom iz južne Dalmacije i dalmatinskih otoka. Za čudo, dok je 70% doseljenika radilo po zlatnim rudnicima, ipak je velika većina naših doseljnike prihvatila se drugih poslova, koji su više odgovarali njihovim prirodnim sklonostima. Dok ih se je lijepi broj dao u razne trgovine vina, likera i živežnih namirnica, jedni su ostavili grad, dali se na sađenje voćaka i vinograda, u čemu su potpuno i uspjeli i stekli ne samo priznanje nego i slavu — daleko preko granica Kalifornije radi svoje sposobnosti, zanimanja i ljubavi u ovoj grani privrede. Današnje mjesto Watsonville na jugu od San Francisca poznato je radi svojih osobitih jabuka i izvan Amerike, a ta sva slava ide Hrvatima, koji su prvi počeli obrađivati voćnjake u Kaliforniji i posebnim kalemljenjem došli do plemenitijih vrsta smokava i nekih drugih voćaka. Kalifornija je danas prva zemlja na svijetu, koja proizvodi kvantitativno i valitativno najviše voća (na svijetu), a Hrvati su zapravo udarili temelj njezinim modernim voćnjacima i vinogradarstvu.

I uza sve to, što je zlata počelo pomalo nestajati, broj se naših doseljenika nije umanjivao, nego je naprotiv rastao. Počeli su se naseljavati u svim većim mjestima uz obalu Pacifika, a neki su stigli čak do na vrh Aljaške, koju je Amerika malo prije kupila od Rusije. I dok su neki našli namještenja po raznim tvornicama, rudokopima ili na pravljenju cesta i željezničkih pruga, jedni su se dali za samostalne radnje u ranznim granama gospodarstva. Ali veliki broj naroda sa dalmatinskih otoka dao se je na posao, koji im je već od rane mladosti bio veoma dobro poznat i za kojim ih je vukao prirodni nagon, a to je ribarstvo, koje je u Americi obećavalo mnogo udobniji život. Tako je nastala u predgrađu Los Angelesa — San Pedro — velika naša ribarska kolonija. U ovoj koloniji ima danas oko 8000 naših ribara, koji posjeduju moderne ribarske mreže, motorne ribarske lađe, najmodernije opskrbljene, sa vlastitim tvornicama za konzerviranje ribe — u vrijednosti od nekoliko milijuna dolara. Većinom se bave lovom srdela i tuna. Sezona lova na srdele traje od mjesea studenoga do ožujka, a tuna cijelu godinu, pošto ljeti love uz američku obalu, a zimi idu sve do ekvatora i države Peru.

Sjedište vlade i glavni grad za Kaliforniju je Sakramento. U gradu i okolici živi oko 6000 Hrvata, od kojih se veliki dio bavi gospodarstvom ili radi u tvornicama za konzerviranje povrća i voća. Tu ima u okolici grada znatan broj naših ljudi, koji se bave vinogradarstvom, gojenjem maslina i sličnim granama gospodarskog života…. Druga naša znatnija naselja nalaze se u Los Angelesu, San diegu i Oaklandu. Mnogi rade za razne željezničke i parabrodne kompanije, a dosta ih je namješteno po raznim salonima i restoranima.

Kalifornija je jedna od najbogatijih i najljepših zemalja na svijetu. Njezina blaga klima sa svim vrstama južnoga i tropskoga bilja, privlači mnoge, osobito ljude iz naših toplijih i primorskih krajeva. K tome je lakše u njoj naći zarade, jer je u zemlji razvijena raznovrsna industrija. Vađenje ruda i petroleuma iz zemlje, šumska industrija, ribarstvo, agrikultura i vrtlarstvo, glavni su dijelovi industrije u toj zemlji. Samoga zlata dala je ova država preko dvije milijarde dolara zlatne vrijednosti. K tome se kopa mnogo bakra, olova i cinka. Od cijele svjetske proizvodnje Kalifornija sama proizvede dvije trećine žive. Petroleuma proizvodi jednu petinu od sveukupnog američkog proizvoda. Iza Washingtona i Oregona proizvodi najviše građevinskog drveta. Vina godišnje daje preko milijun i osam stotina tisuća tona. Osim prvenstva u industriji ribe, ne smije se zaboraviti, da Kalifornija stoji među prvim državama Amerike i u poljodjelskim proizvodima, što joj mnogo olakoćuje dobro iskorištena vodena snaga, s kojom se natapa preko 60% cijeloga obradiva zemljišta.

Sjeverni susjed i nastavak duge Kalifornije jest četverokutasta država Opregon. I dok je Kalifornija po površini druga država u Americi sa 158.297 četvornih milja, Oregon sa svojih 95.607 četvornih milja dolazi tek na deveto mjesto. Omjer je pučanstva između ove dvije države je još nepravilniji, pošto je Oregon poput Švicarske, većinom gorovita i planinska zemlja. Uslijed svoga smještaja uz more i velikih planina u unutrašnjosti zemlje i klima je raznovrsna. Gradovi su većinom smješteni uz dolinu rijeke Kolumbije, koja je do Portlanda plovna i za oceanske brodove. U prirodnom bogatstvu Oregon mnogo zaostaje za Kalifornijom. Uz neke, manje spomena vrijedne proizvode, Oregon stoji na trećem mjestu u šumskoj industriji cijele Amerike. Sa svojih 364 pilana godišnje proizvodi građevinskog drveta u vrijednosti od 121,000.000 dolara. K tome je Oregon jako podesna zemlja za gospodarstvo, što je također jedna od glavnih grana zanimanja u državi. I ako u zemlji ima velika količina zlata, srebra, bakra i ugljena, ipak rudarstrvu nije posvećena nužna pažnja, nego još čeka bolje dane. Inače je Oregon daleko poznat radi svoga odličnog voća, osobito jabuka, krušaka, šljiva i kajsija. Ribarstvo je također vrlo dobro razvijeno i morsko i riječno. Lososa, haringa i srdela, ulovi su u oregonskim vodama preko 30,000.000 kg godišnje. Mlinska industrija, klaonice i mljekarstvo, uz proizvodnju cementa, također su od znatne vrijednosti u životu pučanstva.

I ako Oregon ima istu smjesu naroda kao i susjedne deržave — Washington i Kalifornija, ipak je u njemu razmjerno manje Kineza, Japanaca, Crnaca i Indijanaca, nego li u spomenute dvije države. Skoro deset desetina je pučanstvo bijele rase, većinom doseljenici iz Amerike ili Evrope. U prošlom se je stoljeću samo mali broj Hrvata doselio u Oregon. Većina ih je došla prederatnih godina od 1904. do 1914. godine. Najviše ih je radilo, a još i danas radi na šumskoj industriji, na željeznicama, u talionicama, te neki dio bavi se ribarstvom i gospodarstvom. U Portalandu ima nešto oko dvadesetak Hrvata uposlenih u trgovini, poglavito gostioničari. Portalandski ribari redovito idu svi u Aljašku na ribolov u svibnju, a vraćaju se u listopadu. Osim Portlanda i okolice vrijedna je spomena Astoria na oceanu, u kojoj se također nalazi mala hrvatska ribarska kolonija. U cijelom Oregonu nema niti 8000 Hrvata, a od toga ih je velika većina u raznim dijelovima prostranoga Portlanda i nekoliko u okolici, koji se bave gospodarstvom.

Običajem i klimom Oregonu najsličnija država je njegov sjeverni susjed — država Washington, koja je površinom manja, a pučanstvom znatno viša od Oregona. Washington ima svoj nadimak “Vječno zelena država”, radi velikih crnogoričnih šuma, osobito jelovine, koja pokriva skoro cijelu zemlju. Stoga nije nikakvo čudo, da ova država proizvodi jednu sedminu sveukupnog proizvoda drvata u svoj Americi. Radi umjerene klime i velikog šumskog bogatstva — rudarstvo, stočarstvo, velike klaonice i mljekare — od velike su važnosti u gospodarskom životu zemlje. Uza svu veliku proizvodnju drveta i ugljena, Washington je ipak bitno agrikulturna zemlja. Iza Kalifornije — Washington stoji na prvom mjestu u industriji ribe sa 71 tvornicom za konzerviranje i 38 legla za razmnožavanje ribe. Prihod na samoj ribi penje se godišnje do 30 miliuna dolara. Trgovina s Japanom, Kinom i susjednom Kanadom osobito je živa, i Seattle je danas druga trgovačka luka na Pacifiku. U Washingtonu se nalazi veliki broj Japanaca, Crnaca, Indijanaca i Kineza.

Uzduž cijele obale washingtonske nalazi se dosta viših gradova, u kojima ima priličan broj i Hrvata. Dosta je veliko naše naselje u Aberdeenu, gdje su isključivo svi uposleni u šumskoj industriji. Zatim dolazi Tacoma, Seattle, Everet i Bellingham, gdje su većinom svi ribari, i Roslyn, gdje su rudničari. Dok u Kaliforniji ima oko 30.000 Hrvata, u Washingtonu ih tek ima nešto preko 10.000.

Ogromna većina od 90% cijele iseljene Hrvatske u Americi nalazi se po istočnim i srednjim državama Amerike. Dok je zapad prirodno mnogo ljepši i za življenje pogodniji, ipak je ostao potpuo nepoznat većini naših iseljenika, jer kako su god dolazili iz domovine, i čim je koji uhvatio kakvu rabotu na ulasku u Ameriku, kod nje je i ostao, dok je dulje mogao. I sami Amerikanci ne poznaju dovoljno zapada. Uza svu nenadmašivu ljepotu, zapad je dobio ukrasni pridjev “Wild west” — divlji zapad. Što se našeg naroda tiče, mora se priznati, da su ovi na zapadu u narodnom i vjerskom pogledu još daleko iza onih na istoku Amerike. Sa svoje samo dvije vlastite crkve — u Los Angelesu naime i u San Franciscu, i bez ijedne naše škole, svakako očituju veliko duhovno siromaštvo. K tome, što je još žalosnije, dok na istoku svako dijete zna, da je hrvatsko, na zapadu ih je veliki broj, naravno doseljenika, koji još s time nisu na čistu. Ostavljeni sami sebi kroz duge godine i izloženi raznim propagandama lažnih apostola, koji su na njih kalemili sve što nije naše, tako su plovili mutnim vodama. Nije ovdje mjesta da se piše čijom krivnjom, ali ono malo inteligencije po Kaliforniji svakako nije ispunilo svoju ni narodnu ni vjersku misiju. Ipak je vrijedno spomenuti utješnu činjenicu, da su u manjoj mjeri zaraženi komunizmom, nego po drugim krajevima. Stoga se nadamo, da će se s vremenom sve pomalo izliječiti i da će i svi iseljeni Hrvati biti živi udovi domovine Hrvatske.

Godišnjak “Hrvatski radiša” za prostu godinu 1939.

Izdala Središnja uprava “Hrvatskog radiše” u Zagrebu.

Godina XVIII. Zagreb: 1938., st. 142 – 145.

Odbor grane Hrvatskog Radiše broj 41 u Portland, Oreg. za godinu 1938.
S lijeva desno: Anton Karlić, Grgo Protrka, Rev. Ljubo Čuvalo, Ivan Brkić i Lovre Baričević