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Journal of Croatian Studies, XXIV, 1983, – Annual Review of the Croatian Academy of America, Inc. New York, N.Y., Electronic edition by Studia Croatica, by permission. All rights reserved by the Croatian Academy of America.

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A group visit led by members of the Yugoslav Academy of Arts and Sciences to historic sites in northern Croatia pertinent to the life and times of Juraj Križanić (the old fortress of Dubovac at Karlovac, Ozalj, Ribnik, Lipnik, and his birthplace at Obrh) concluded the four-day international symposium in honor of the three-hundredth anniversary of the death of this renowned seventeenth-century polyhistor whose adventurous life and manifold scholarly writings have become an inexhaustible source of information and a stimulus for both scientific research and artistic creativity.


Križanić—a poet, philosopher, historian, theologian, economist, geographer, political scientist, musicologist, linguist and Dominican priest with a doctorate from the Greek College of St. Athanasius in Rome—made the following confession in his "Will" (Smertni razred), which he wrote in 1675 near the end of the fifteen-year exile he suffered in Tobolsk after incurring the parochial wrath of the Russian Czar Alexis Romanov:


I am spent by the arduous journeys throughout Europe, by my studies and, foremost, by the long confinement in Siberia. From childhood on, abandoning all other ways, I dedicated myself with all my heart to the pursuit of knowledge ... in which I, a wretched and unhappy man, have spent all my passionate life.


This pioneering ecumenic visionary, who sought to overcome the historical and cultural asynchrony between Eastern and Western Europe, to ameliorate the national and political divisions between the many Slavic peoples, and to mend the ideological schism between the Greek Orthodox and Roman Catholic creeds, was the subject of an intensive exchange of scientific research information presented by prominent experts in many fields from Yugoslavia, the United States, the Soviet Union and several other European countries. (The list at the end of this report specifies the fields, disciplines and topics discussed in the symposium papers). Contributions were presented by a total of sixty-five official participants from twelve countries: Yugoslavia 27 (Croatia 22, Serbia 5), U.S.A. 10, Italy 10, USSR 5, Poland 3, Austria 2, United Kingdom 2, Czechoslovakia 2, Germany 1, Greece 1, Hungary 1, Netherlands 1.


Information was also reported from new research concerning Križanićs pertinence for current Slavic studies, as well as his innovative contributions to interlinguistics, lexicography, and music theory. Several of the papers paid special attention to his ideological vision of the complex cultural, religious, economic and political problems shared by all the Slavic peoples. On the third day of the conference, I read my paper entitled "Križanić's Influence on the Literary Aesthetics of Miroslav Krleža". The purpose of this contribution was to argue the effect of Križanić's powerful cultural image on he most protean and polemically persuasive Yugoslav writer of the twentieth century. This was accomplished (1) by analyzing those of Krleža's works which deal explicitly with Križanić and (2) by synthesizing the omni-present image of Križanić implicit in Krleža's fifty-volume literary opus as that image evolved over the sixty-seven years during which Krleža wrote and published (1914-1981). Another interesting paper on this subject, entitled "Juraj Križanić u djelu Miroslava Krleže", was read by Ivo Banac of Yale University. The aim of his report was to define the extent of Križanić's ideas in the entire corpus of Krleža's writing and to make a case for Krleža's ambivalent attitude toward the intellectual and artistic challenge Križanić offers as a "typical representative of all the self-denying and self-redeeming Croat follies".


In response to this observance of Križanić, officers of the National and University Library in Zagreb organized a bibliographic exhibit of works by and about his writing and his times. This was a highly informative contribution to knowledge of this subject inasmuch as it was the first time that Križanić s works have been documented comprehensively and publically de visu: the materials presented were either original editions or photocopies. Heretofore, these works have been scattered largely in manuscript form throughout the archives of the many cities in which Križanić lived and worked—from the collections held in the Vatican and in Zagreb to those in Moscow and several other European cities. As a concrete result of the current and ongoing international interest in the recovery, reconstruction and re-evaluation of Križanić's works, a program to produce a critical edition of his collected works has been designed by the Yugoslav Academy of Arts and Sciences. This will result in the publication of twenty volumes during the next ten years. This capital scholarly publishing enterprise was initiated during the symposium by the presentation of the first volume, Križanić's groundbreaking work on Slavonic grammar from 1661 (Objasn'enje vivodno o pismg slovénskom), to all the participants. This marks the first time that this work has been furnished with a rigorous scholarly commentary and a modern translation; both were accomplished by Josip Hamm.


The broad importance of this symposium as a focused international manifestation of recent research conducted by scholars in many disciplines and as a stimulus for the sharing of further scientific results related to this subject should be emphasized. The most general significance of the meeting for the humanistic disciplines is to be seen in the sense of common commitment to make Križanić's works and studies of them accessible to a broader audience of scholars. To this end, all reports read at the symposium will be printed in the special series published by the Academy entitled Studies on the Life and Work of Juraj Križanić (Radovi o životu i djelu Jurja Križanića).





Archive holdings in the USSR

Baroque literature

Belletristic word creation

Classification of sciences and natural science terminology



Economics of merchantilism

European military history

Geography of the Illyrian lands

Greek Orthodox theology

Ideology of absolutism


Italian language and culture


Linguistic theory

Literary aesthetics

Musicology and theory of octave division

Old Russian church music

Polish language

Pre-Romantic conceptions of folk literature

Reforms of Peter the Great

Roman Catholic dogma

Russian grammar

Russian Old Believers

Slavic languages and literatures

Social economics

Ukrainian history and politics

Uniate Church



Assistant Professor

Harvard University