Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The Myth of the “Croatian Renaissance”

Italian sculptor and architect Giorgio da Sebenico,
now renamed “Juraj Dalmatinac” by Croat revisionists

If you browse around the internet, and have searched the subjects of Croatian history, Dalmatian history, or the Adriatic in general, chances are you may have heard of an event called the “Croatian Renaissance”. Most people have never heard of such an event, but for those who have, here is something that may come as a surprise to you: there was no “Croatian Renaissance”.

The “Croatian Renaissance” is a modern term – a neologism – applied to the advanced artistic and intellectual currents which took place between the 15th and 16th centuries in the lands which today are part of Croatia. The so-called “Croatian Renaissance” is, in fact, an example of modern Croatian revisionism. There was only one Renaissance which transpired in what is today Croatia, and that was the Italian Renaissance, which took place in the Italian region of Dalmatia, and to a lesser extent Istria. Just because Istria and Dalmatia are today part of Croatia, this does not mean that its history, heritage and achievements belong to Croatia or the Croatian people.

The Croatian revisionists pretend that what transpired in Dalmatia in the 15th and 16th centuries was a “Croatian Renaissance” filled with Croatian artists, Croatian architects, Croatian writers, and overall Croatian genius. But in reality it was nothing of the sort. All the major artists, architects, sculptors, poets, philosophers, writers, musicians, scientists, statesmen and polymaths of the Renaissance in Dalmatia were of Latin heritage, background and culture.

The ex-Yugoslavs are so desperate to prove the worth and value of their new countries, so desperate to demonstrate their right to exist, so desperate to increase their national prestige and create for themselves a glorious history, so desperate to gain worldwide recognition and universal importance, so desperate to attract tourists and stimulate their economies, and so desperate to justify their ongoing occupation of non-Slavic lands (and their previous expulsions and ethnic cleansing against non-Slavs during and after the World War), that they have shamelessly usurped an entire history which is not theirs, and have gone so far as to slavicize all historical Latin and Italian names, and re-write history, making use of the internet and websites such as Wikipedia, using (or rather exploiting) them as political tools and platforms for their nationalistic propaganda, presenting to the unsuspecting English-speaking world the artificial, unhistorical and falsified image of a “Croatian Renaissance” and a “Croatian civilization” in the region of Dalmatia, which in fact never existed.

Even if it were true that the men of Istria and Dalmatia in this time period were all ethnically Slavs (which is not true), to refer to this as the “Croatian Renaissance” is a gross error and exaggeration. The term ‘Renaissance’ is a French word meaning rebirth – a reference to the revival of arts and letters. How can the Slavs, who never had an ancient culture, art, literature or civilization of their own, possibly have a rebirth or revival of culture, art, literature and civilization? In order for something to be reborn or revived, it must exist in the first place. Unfortunately for the Croats, whose ancestors only arrived in Europe between the 6th and 8th centuries, and did not have an alphabet until one was provided to them by Catholic missionaries in the 9th century (known as Glagolitic script), no ancient Croatian civilization existed to be revived, which is one of the many reasons they are now attempting to re-write history and steal for themselves the heritage and accomplishments of other people.

If you truly believe that those Renaissance figures brought forth by Croatian revisionists (such as Giorgio Orsini da Sebenico, Niccolò di Giovanni Fiorentino and Andrea Meldolla) were actually Croats, and not Latins, then ask yourself this: why did this Renaissance take place in Dalmatia, and to a lesser extent in Istria, but not in the other parts of Croatia? Why did the areas around Zagreb, Osijek, Velika Gorica, and Slavonski Brod (indisputably Croatian areas) not produce the same – or even anything remotely resembling – the spirit, ideas, culture, progress and civilization of the Renaissance in Zara, Spalato, Sebenico, Traù and Ragusa (all well-known Latin and Italian cities)? The fact is that the Renaissance in Dalmatia was an extension of the Renaissance in mainland Italy; it was part of the Italian Renaissance within the Italian-speaking cities of Dalmatia, and was a product of Italian culture, Italian people, Italian spirit and Italian civilization. It had nothing whatsoever to do with Croats or Yugoslavs, despite their shameful and pathetic revisionist fantasies.

To give just two examples of how far and ridiculous this lying and deceptive re-writing of history has gone (which, unfortunately, is very typical of “scholarship” and “education” in the Balkans), Croatia today claims that the Italian explorer Marco Polo and the legendary King Arthur of England were in fact both “Croats”. Franjo Tudjman, the first president of Croatia, on several occasions claimed that Marco Polo was “Croatian”. Stjepan Mesić, the second president of Croatia, even inaugurated a museum dedicated to Marco Polo in China in 2011. Emil Talijancic, the Croatian mayor of Igrane (a small village along the Dalmatian coast), openly asserted that King Arthur's mother belonged to this small village, and therefore was “Croatian”. Does anything more really need to be said?

See also:
Italian Literature in Dalmatia: A Falsified History
Quotes on the Italianity of Dalmatia
Quotes on the Italianity of Fiume
Quotes on the Italianity of Istria
Quotes on the Italianity of the Quarnaro
Quotes on the Italianity of Ragusa