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Slovak Studies Program

Martin Votruba

Slovak program

Current information

Slovak studies topics

Queries on history

SK map CL Pribis 1612 Orava Castle


Terminology: As a shorthand, the comments often use the word Slovakia to refer to the present country's territory throughout history in the same way that we use shorthand to say, e.g., "the Indian paths of Pennsylvania" about a time long before the state was established, or even the first Europeans arrived.
Origin and use of the words Slovak, Slavic — Q: Why are there so many similar words, Slovak, Slavic, Slavonic, Slovakian, and how are they different? Click here. Bears — Q: Is it true that the Slovak word for “bear” has something to do with honey? Click here.
Slovak pronunciation guide — Q: How can I learn how to pronounce Slovak place-names? Click here. The world's oldest emoticon — Q: Was the oldest smiley drawn in Slovakia? Click here.
Former country names — Q: What is the correct spelling, Czecho-Slovakia or Czechoslovakia? Click here. Genes and nations in Europe — Q: Has anyone ever estimated the amount of Asian blood in Slovak people? Click here.
Slovak Christmas dish — Q: How did carp become a common dish in Slovakia at Christmas? Click here. Central European purchasing power — Q: How does income in Slovakia compare to its neighbors? Click here.
The first Slovaks in America — Q: Were Parmenius, Andreas Jelky (Andrej Jelík), Jean Polereczky (Ján Polerecký) the first Slovak immigrants? Click here. Pittsburgh Agreement — Q: I've seen two dates, on what date was the Pittsburgh Agreement signed? Click here.
Where can I find online discussions concerning Slovak-American and other Slovak topics? Click here. Slovak last names — Q: What Slovak last names mean, for instance, "a son of Peter"? Click here.
Per-capita purchasing power — Q: What is the regional distribution of income in Slovakia? Click here. Slovak last names — Q: Why are the most frequent surnamens in Slovakia and Hungary similar, what do they mean? Click here.
Names of Bratislava — Q: Why is it the Peace of Pressburg (1805) when it was signed in Bratislava? Click here. Slovak last names — Q: Were Slovak last names chosen as "under the protection of a saint"? Click here.
Historical place names in Slovakia, Hungary — Q: Which ones to use in my genealogies? Click here. Nationality, citizenship — Q: I'm supposed to fill in both boxes, what is the difference? Click here.
The Slovak on the Titanic — Q: Is it true that a Slovak drowned when the Titanic sank? Click here. Maria Theresa's Urbarium — Q: What did the 18th-century census record? Click here.
Bryndza history and manufacture — Q: My Mother would crumble it over homemade noodles. Can you get the same taste of sheep cheese (bryndza) using... ? Click here. History of the greeting ahoj — Q: Why is ahoj the standard greeting? Click here.
Villagers and nobles — Q: Did the nobleman live on his estate or hang around in Vienna? Did his wife sally forth to visit the poor and sick in the village? Click here. Lower nobility — Q: In records of my ancestral village in the mid-1800s I find the terms zeman and nobilis. Are they connected, what do they mean? Click here.
Making slivovitz — Q: What is the recipe for slivovica? Click here. Historical coins — Q: Was Slovak currency once called something like "zlatka"? Click here.
Cyril and Methodius, date of feast day — Q: I thought their feast day was in February? Am I confusing them with two other guys? Click here. Church construction — Q: What are those East Slovak wooden churches made of? What is the smaller building of the same design “behind” the church? Click here.
Old Church Slavic, Popes, Great Moravia — Q: What was Old Church Slavic, exactly? Click here. Slovak national anthem, lyrics — Q: What is the translation and when was it written? Click here.
● Locations: Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens — Q: Where in Slovakia was the 1922 German silent horror film classic, Nosferatu, filmed? Click here. Communist elections — Q: My second cousin says she was a mayor. The office (during communism) of the mayor, was it elected or appointed? Click here.
English books on Slovak immigration — Q: The only book on the subject that I know of about Slovak Americans is... Are there other books? Click here. The Slovaks' written standards — Q: Was there an early attempt at standardizing Slovak? Click here.
Slovak immigrant literacy — Q: Did Austria-Hungary employ the presumed pacification tactic of keeping men illiterate? Click here. Pre-World War I immigration — Q: I thought the only places for Slovaks to go in America was Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Youngstown... Click here.
Religions, distribution, Lutheran history and name — Q: How did Slovaks become Lutheran? Click here. Pre-World War I immigration — Q: How did the Slovak immigrants get from their homes to the European departure ports? Click here.
Slovak literature in English — Q: Is there a "reading list" of Slovak writers translated to English? Click here. Classicist and Romantic poetry — Q: Does the meter in Slovak poetry depend on stress as in English? Click here.
● Upper Liptov farm seasons — Q: I'm writing a novel about my ancestor from Liptovská Kokava. What were the seasons, when did farm work, frost begin; a typical fall flower? Click here. Trdelník — Q: What are "stove pipe cookies," they might be from Central Europe? Click here.
● Signs of spring — Q: Are there any birds that are traditional signs of spring? Click here. Dialects — Q: Are Goral and Rusyn Slovak dialects? Click here.
House numbers — Q: Why are there two numbers on many buildings? Click here. Weather in Slovakia — Q: How does the weather compare to Pittsburgh? Click here.
Thanksgiving — Q: Where does the Slovak name for a turkey come from? Click here. Slovak Spot — Q: Where can I discuss Slovak topics and ask questions? Click here.
Were they Slovak? — Queries about immigrants' roots, click on each name:  
Béla Bartók, Tony Curtis, Audrey Hepburn, John D. Hertz, Andreas Jelky - Andrej Jelík - Jelky András, Angelina Jolie, Michal Navrátil - Michel Navratil - Louis Hoffman, Estée Lauder, Pola Negri, Paul Newman, Stephen Parmenius, Jean Polereczky - Ján Polerecký, Isaacus Sharoshi - Izák Šarišský - Isaac Saroschi - Sárosi Izsák, Mike Strank, Jesse Ventura, Jon Voight. — Search SSP below: