Научная статья на тему 'Положение русинских греко-католических верующих в Словакии во время Первой мировой войны (экономический, культурный и религиозный аспекты)'

Положение русинских греко-католических верующих в Словакии во время Первой мировой войны (экономический, культурный и религиозный аспекты) Текст научной статьи по специальности «История. Исторические науки»

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Ключевые слова
русины в Словакии / греко-католическая церковь в Словакии / Первая мировая война / экономический вопрос / культурно-религиозный вопрос

Аннотация научной статьи по истории и историческим наукам, автор научной работы — Цopaнич Ярослaв

Даннoе исследование посвящено в основном экономическoмy, культурнoмy и религиознoмy аспектам pассматриваемoгo периода. Неблагополучная экономическая ситуация привела к эмиграции значительной части населения преимущественно в США. Ситуация в одном из самых бедных районов Угорскoй Республики значительно ухудшилась после начала Первой мировой войны. Северо-восточная область Словакии, где жили русины, стала в течение нескольких месяцев 1914–1915 гг. местом тяжелых боевых действий. После окончательного отступления фронта остались лишь разореннaя земля и могилы воинов. Значительнaя часть населения деревень, находившихся под угрозой, была эвакуирована. Многие деревни были полностью или частично сожжены. Во время Первой мировой войны население испытывало давление со стороны греко-католической церкви. Государственные органы постепенно насильно ввели ряд реформ (например, реформу богослужебных церемоний, церковную реформу календаря и реформу письмa (удаление кириллицы и ее замена латиницей)). Русинскoe греко-католическoe население эти реформы отказалoсь принять. В связи с приближавшимcя концoм Первой мировой войны угорскoму правительствy не хватало достаточно времени, чтобы реализовать эти реформы. После распада Австро-Венгрии в 1918 г. pусинские верующие решили остаться со старым юлианским календарем и кириллицей (в Прешовской и Мукачевской епархии). Частичное улучшение положения русинов в Словакии наступило только после создания нового Чехословацкого государства в 1918 г., хотя многие надежды и желания народа не сбылись до сих пор.

THE STATUS OF GREEK CATHOLIC RUSYNS IN SLOVAKIA DURING WORLD WAR I (ECONOMIC, CULTURAL AND RELIGIOUS ASPECTS)

Political, economic, cultural and social development of Greek Catholic Rusyns in Slovakia was greatly influenced by the events of World War I., at the end of the AustroHungarian Empire. The present study is devoted mainly to economic, cultural and religious aspect of that period. The poor economic situation caused the emigration of high number of population to overseas, especially to the USA. This status of one of the poorest parts of Hungary has significantly worsened after the outbreak of the World War I. The north-eastern Slovakia, inhabited mainly by Rusyns, became a place of heavy combat operations for a few months at the turn of 1914–1915. After the final retreat of the front there was desolate landscape remained, marked by military graves. A large part of the population was evacuated from threatened area. Many villages have been partially or completely burned. During the duration of World War I. this population was severely tested also in cultural and religious matters. Several proposals of the Hungarian government meant the visible interference with the Eastern tradition of the Greek Catholic Church. Gradually a number of reforms was forcibly introduced by the state authorities, such as the sacral ceremony reform, the church calendar reform, the script reform (the Cyrillic alphabet removing), the reform of education of the priests in seminaries, the reform of Order of St. Basil the Great. These reforms, however, were refused to accept by the Ruthenian Greek Catholic population. Due to the approaching end of World War I. the Hungarian government did not have enough time to undertake this reforms. Ruthenian Greek Catholic faithful in Czechoslovakia (in the Diocese of Mukachevo and Presov) decided to stay with the old Julian calendar and Cyrillic script after the collapse of Austria-Hungary in 1918. The partial improvement of the status of the Rusyns in Slovakia became after the establishment of the new Czechoslovak state in 1918, although many of the hopes and aspirations of this nation were not fulfilled yet.

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Текст научной работы на тему «Положение русинских греко-католических верующих в Словакии во время Первой мировой войны (экономический, культурный и религиозный аспекты)»

УДК 94(437.6)"1914/1919" UDC

DOI: 10.17223/18572685/44/11

ПОЛОЖЕНИЕ РУСИНСКИХ ГРЕКО-КАТОЛИЧЕСКИХ ВЕРУЮЩИХ В СЛОВАКИИ ВО ВРЕМЯ ПЕРВОЙ МИРОВОЙ ВОЙНЫ (ЭКОНОМИЧЕСКИЙ, КУЛЬТУРНЫЙ И РЕЛИГИОЗНЫЙ АСПЕКТЫ)

Я. Цоранич

Прешевский университет 08001, Словацкая республика, г. Прешев, ул. епископа Гойдича, 2 E-mail: jaroslav.coranic@unipo.sk

Авторское резюме

Данное исследование посвящено в основном экономическому, культурному и религиозному аспектам рассматриваемого периода. Неблагополучная экономическая ситуация привела к эмиграции значительной части населения преимущественно в США. Ситуация в одном из самых бедных районов Угорской Республики значительно ухудшилась после начала Первой мировой войны. Северо-восточная область Словакии, где жили русины, стала в течение нескольких месяцев 1914-1915 гг. местом тяжелых боевых действий. После окончательного отступления фронта остались лишь разоренная земля и могилы воинов. Значительная часть населения деревень, находившихся под угрозой, была эвакуирована. Многие деревни были полностью или частично сожжены. Во время Первой мировой войны население испытывало давление со стороны греко-католической церкви. Государственные органы постепенно насильно ввели ряд реформ (например, реформу богослужебных церемоний, церковную реформу календаря и реформу письма (удаление кириллицы и ее замена латиницей)). Русинское греко-католическое население эти реформы отказалось принять. В связи с приближавшимся концом Первой мировой войны угорскому правительству не хватало достаточно времени, чтобы реализовать эти реформы. После распада Австро-Венгрии в 1918 г. русинские верующие решили остаться со старым юлианским календарем и кириллицей (в Прешовской и Мукачевской епархии). Частичное улучшение положения русинов в Словакии наступило только после созда-

ния нового Чехословацкого государства в 1918 г., хотя многие надежды и желания народа не сбылись до сих пор.

Ключевые слова: русины в Словакии, греко-католическая церковь в Словакии, Первая мировая война, экономический вопрос, культурно-религиозный вопрос.

THE STATUS OF GREEK CATHOLIC RUSYNS IN SLOVAKIA DURING WORLD WAR I (ECONOMIC, CULTURAL AND RELIGIOUS ASPECTS)

Ja. Coranic

University of Presov Street of bishop Gojdic 2, 08001 Presov, Slovak Republic E-mail: jaroslav.coranic@unipo.sk

Abstract

Political, economic, cultural and social development of Greek Catholic Rusyns in Slovakia was greatly influenced by the events of World War I., at the end of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The present study is devoted mainly to economic, cultural and religious aspect of that period. The poor economic situation caused the emigration of high number of population to overseas, especially to the USA. This status of one of the poorest parts of Hungary has significantly worsened after the outbreak of the World War I. The north-eastern Slovakia, inhabited mainly by Rusyns, became a place of heavy combat operations for a few months at the turn of 1914-1915. After the final retreat of the front there was desolate landscape remained, marked by military graves. A large part of the population was evacuated from threatened area. Many villages have been partially or completely burned. During the duration of World War I. this population was severely tested also in cultural and religious matters. Several proposals of the Hungarian government meant the visible interference with the Eastern tradition of the Greek Catholic Church. Gradually a number of reforms was forcibly introduced by the state authorities, such as the sacral ceremony reform, the church calendar reform, the script reform (the Cyrillic alphabet removing), the reform of education of the priests in seminaries, the reform of Order of St. Basil the Great. These reforms, however, were refused to accept by the Ruthenian Greek Catholic population. Due to the approaching end of World War I. the Hungarian government did not have enough time to undertake this reforms. Ruthenian Greek Catholic faithful in Czechoslovakia (in the Diocese of Mukachevo and Presov) decided to stay with the old Julian calendar and Cyrillic script

after the collapse of Austria-Hungary in 1918. The partial improvement of the status of the Rusyns in Slovakia became after the establishment of the new Czechoslovak state in 1918, although many of the hopes and aspirations of this nation were not fulfilled yet.

Keywords: Rusyns in Slovakia, Greek Catholic church on Slovakia, WWI, economic question, cultural-religious question.

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Economic and financial situation in regions inhabited by Rusyns significantly worsened in the last three decades of 19th century and at the beginning of 20th century. This region had been one of the poorest in the Hungarian Kingdom and it remained basically unchanged. The situation was further complicated by growing population, lack of farmland, and primarily by poorly developed industry unable to provide enough job opportunities. As a result, the end of the 19th century witnessed the emigration boom. Agricultural labourers, servants and small farmers, that is, all those hardly employable in their home country, predominated among the emigrants. Women, children and elderly people generally stayed home. In the beginning, Rusyns migrated to work only within the country, settling mostly in southern parts of the Hungarian Kingdom, in the region of Bacska /Vojvodina/ (Magocsi 2007: 61). In the late eighteen seventies the first Rusyn families started to migrate to the USA. It is estimated that roughly 150 000 Rusyns left the Hungarian Kingdom by the year 1914, and about half of them came from the Presov region. (Magocsi 1994: 149).

Rusyn population in the north-east of Slovakia was confronted with very bleak reality in the years 1914-1918, and that was a very difficult social and economic situation. At the turn of the years 1914-1915, the North-east Slovakia, inhabited mainly by Rusyns, became for a few months a scene of heavy battles that broke out on 20 November 1914. Part of the Russian army crossed the Carpathian Pass Ruske sedlo and in a hasty attack seized the four villages Ruske, Vel'ka Pol'ana, Smolnik, and Zvala. In the following days, the Russian army succeeded in taking other villages in the Cirocha river valley. Snina was seized on 23 November and Humenne on 24 November.

Only after regrouping of the Austro-Hungarian army, was this Russian offensive halted. In the end, the Russian army withdrew back to the ridges of the Carpathian Mountains after heavy fightings on 2628 November 1914. (Bural 2010: 11-12). At the same time, however, the Russian army launched an attack in the area of Dukla Pass. On 30 November they took Zborov and on 1 December Bardejov, too. By the 3 December 1914 the Russian army seized one third of all villages

in Saris county, 58 villages in Bardejov district, 60 villages in Svidnik district and 7 villages in Giraltovce district (Slepcov 2005: 20).

On 8 December, before the approach of the Austro-Hungarian army, the Russian troops started the unexpected retreat from Bardejov. Even here the front line was moved to the ridges of the Carpathian Mountains. In January 1915 the Russian army fought their way back to Slovak territory for the second time in the pursuit of the Austro-Hungarian army which made a failed counter-offensive attempt. German and Austro-Hungarian armies launched a counter-offensive on 22 January 1915. The Russian troops, however, fended off the attack towards the end of January and then they seized Medzilaborce in a counter-attack through Certizne a Habura (Kovac 2008: 57). While at the turn of the months November and December 1914 the clashes were rather light, battles in 1915 were mostly heavy artillery and trench fightings.

The turning point came with the break-through the Russian defence line, near the Polish village of Gorlice in early May. The attack of German and Austro-Hungarian troops began on 2 May. The Russian armies were forced to retreat from the Slovak territory fearing the siege. And so on 7 May 1915 the Russian troops left a few last villages in the area of the tupkov Pass. (Kovac: 58).

After the full retreat of the Russian army, the country was left ravaged and strewn with soldiers graves. A large part of the population was evacuated from the threatened villages. Yet many villages were partially or completely burnt down. Multiple damage was caused to the property of inhabitants not only by fighting alone, but also by retreat and movement of all the front line armies, and tactical strategies of the military command. It was mainly the Austro-Hungarian army which was forced to ravage those villages in the front line that could possibly serve as a shelter for enemy troops.

This way around twenty villages "disappeared" from the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains, which were reduced to rubble as they were almost entirely made up of wooden houses (Kovac: 176). After the Russian troops had left, the Rusyn population returned back to their devastated and burnt out villages. Because men in the most productive age were conscripted into the army, it was mostly women, children and elderly men who came back. Military mobilization of the most productive workforce showed poverty and a tragic nature of this region even more.

The forced requisitions carried out either by official local authorities or Russian forces sparked an outrage during the war.

People were forced to hand in every horse and supply the army with foodstuff. 192 bells were requisitioned from many Greek Catholic churches. The most valuable bells dated back to the 17th century

((Dubová - year 1623 a 1654, Jedlová - 1642, Jastreb - 1645, Sobos -1649, Borov 1651, Cicava - 1654). The heaviest requisitioned bell was a bell from the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Presov and weighed

I 500 kg (other large requisitioned bells: Sumiac - 830 kg, Hostovice -765 kg, Osadné - 587 kg, Presov - 575 kg, Cierne - 560 kg, Torysky -475 kg, Olsavica - 469 kg, Cernina - 450 kg, Slanské Nové Mesto -424 kg, etc.).

From the beginning of the war, prices of all goods and foods started to rise. With every day of bloody battles on the front, the numbers of widows, orphans, mutilated and dependent people increased (Lipták 1998: 55-56). Even the Greek Catholic Eparchy of Presov was forced to take out a war loan from the state in order to cope with the difficult situation. The Eparchy, or the consecutive parishes received support from the state «project» intended for restoration of villages destroyed in war. More and more individuals applied for the state support, too.

Greek Catholic clergymen and teachers from the most affected areas of the districts of Medzilaborce, Stropkov, Humenné and Snina turned to a Zemplín county office for financial aid. The county office granted the request and 42 priests and 66 teachers were paid the compensation for the damages caused by the Russian invasion in a total sum of 40 000 krone. The most affected were the districts of Medzilaborce, where the financial aid was distributed to 19 priests (in a total sum of

II 350 K) and 31 teachers (9 050 K), and the district of Snina, where 12 priests (5 550 K) and 19 teachers (4 550 K) received the aid. 9 priests (4 350 K) and 11 teachers (3 400 K) received the compensation in the district of Stropkov and 2 priests (800 K) and 5 teachers (1 000 K) in the district of Humenné (AGAP Bezná agenda 1917: 4240).

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Greek Catholic priests and teachers from other districts addressed similar requests to their consecutive county offices too, and not only in 1915 but also in the following years. The most requests came in the second half of the year 1917 and then in 1918, the last year of the war (AGAP Bezná agenda 1917: 4240).

Many Greek Catholic churches and parish buildings were damaged, or more or less destroyed during the military operations. As the individual parishes did not have sufficient financial resources to repair these church buildings, they turned with their requests directly to the Bishop's office in Presov (AGAP Bezná agenda 1917: 1953) or to Saris and Zemplín county offices (Státny archív v Presove 1917: 5226) because the eparchy did not have the necessary funds at their disposal either.

In 1915, two independent reports were compiled including date about the damaged church buildings (mainly churches and parish houses), amount of damages, and estimate of the funds needed for their repair.

Both reports were considerably undervalued, most likely to minimise possible future claims from the villages, or parishes to the state. A report compiled by the State Building Authority of Saris county divided the sacral objects into four main categories. The first three categories included only Greek Catholic churches and parish houses, objects of other Churches were included in the fourth group.

In the first group, we can find the objects that were destroyed completely (no distinction was made into whether they were destroyed by own or the Russian army; such as churches in the following parishes: Nizna Pisana /Alsohimes/, Nizna Polianka /Alsopagony/, Vysna Polianka /Felso Pagony/, Nizny Komarnik /Alsokomarnok/, Vysny Komarnik / Felsokomarnok/, Kurimka /Kiskurima/, Nizny Mirosov /Alsomerse/ alebo Hutka /Hutas/). The second group included all the buildings that were extensively damaged and had to be demolished either for safety reasons or because they could not be repaired. Third, and the biggest group was made up of churches damaged only partially. Every entry of this report (every church, parish house and farm building) also contained estimated total repair costs (Statny archiv v Presove 1915: 112).

№ Village Sum for a church repair (K) Sum for a parish house repair (K) № village Sum for a church repair (K) Sum for parish house repair (K)

1 Andrejova 170 2 090 20 Nizny Svidnfk 180 -

2 Becherov 160 11 480 21 Ondavka 190 -

3 Bodruzal 460 5 960 22 Pstrina 830 -

4 Cernina 670 2 690 23 Regetovka 300 -

5 CigL'a 400 - 24 Roztoky 40 -

6 Circ 700 2 920 25 Stebnfk 11 000 -

7 Hrabovcfk 17 3 470 26 Strocfn 7 600 9 500

8 ChmeL'ova 1 010 4 380 27 Sarissky Stiavnik 90 2 620

9 Jurkova VoL'a 7 900 - 28 Semetkovce - 1 600

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10 Keckovce 550 4 320 29 Vapenfk 370 9 200

11 Krajna Bystra 460 6 440 30 Varadka 5 600 14 100

12 Krajna Porubka 290 - 31 Vyskovce 280 490

13 Kruzlova 30 3 430 32 Vysna JedL'ova 140 5 670

14 Ladomfrova - 19 490 33 Vysna Pfsana 3 000 -

15 Medvedzie 480 2 600 34 Vysna Polianka 9 000 -

16 Mlynarovce 1 350 3 900 35 Vysny Mirosov 520 4 210

17 Niklova 770 1 830 36 Vysny Orlfk 4 300 13 410

18 Nizna Pfsana 860 20 500 37 Vysny Svidnfk 1 400 13 100

19 Nizny Mirosov 1 200 -

Total 62 317 169 400

***

By the end of the 19th century there were hardly any Rusyn cultural organizations and there were no publications or newspapers printed in the Presov region. Only two educational institutions were founded here - the Greek Catholic Theological Seminary (1880) and the Teacher's Seminary (1895), although from the beginning the language of instruction used in both of the institutions was Hungarian (Sturák 1999: 32-33). The established educational system promoting the one and only, Hungarian language prevented development of new leading figures of Rusyn national revival. It also prevented building and development of national consciousness in the masses of Rusyn nationality (Magocsi 1994: 146). Rusyns started to publish their first magazine in the Presov region Nase otecsesztvo in 1916. This cultural weekly (published in Presov in the years 1916-1918) was written in Rusyn, but in the Latin alphabet with Hungarian transcription. Apart from fostering the Greek Catholic faith, the purpose of the weekly was mostly to encourage the faithful in their love for the Hungarian Kingdom (Magocsi 1994: 150).

In keeping with the official magyarization policy, the Hungarian government directly interfered in a management of Greek Catholic eparchies. In 1915, the "Central Committee for Byzantine Catholic Eparchies" was established in order to help maintain, monitor and coordinate their official policy in all Greek Catholic eparchies in Hungarian Kingdom. The founding meeting took place on 27 May 1915. On that day, all Hungarian Greek Catholic bishops were invited by the Ministry of Culture and Public Education in Budapest "to discuss the defence of Greek Catholic faith and nationhood" (AGAP Prezidiálne spisy 1915: 4; AGAP Bezná agenda 1915: 704).

Primate of Hungary and Archbishop of Esztergom János Csernoch was appointed a chairman of the Committee and he also presided its meetings. A representative of the Hungarian government - the Secretary of the Ministry of Culture and Public Education, became a vice-chairman, and the Presov, Mukachevo a Hajdúdorog eparchies had their representatives in respective subcommittees (four members for each eparchy approved by the primate).

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The Central Committee eventually agreed to adopt these principal reforms:

- reform of liturgical ceremonies;

- adoption of the Gregorian calendar;

- abolition of Cyrillic alphabet;

- education reform of young priests in seminaries;

- reformation of the Order of Saint Basil the Great (Lacko 1982: 15).

One of the reforms that was met with great disapproval by the Rusyn faithful was the reform of script, that is the change of Cyrillic alphabet (azbuka) to Latin. Bishop Stefan Novak of Presov Eparchy contributed significantly to the elimination of Cyrillic from practice, especially from schools and its replacement by Latin with Hungarian phonetics.

The Hungarian government made sure that this process was under a constant supervision, especially from the Ministry of Culture and Public Education (extensive correspondence between the two institutions). The Hungarian prime minister sent several official letters to the Presov bishop concerning the Greek Catholic population, their education and a new concept in educating them, as early as the end of 1914. In these official letters, the prime minister wanted to specify the language education and cultural development of the Greek Catholics. The main objective was to eliminate the Cyrillic alphabet from the practice which would "prevent any possible propaganda from the hostile Russia which could result in Rusyns seceding from their home country - Hungary"(AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 2). Bishop Stefan Novak went along with this proposal and in order for the process to be put into practice, he proposed to publish new Catechism and the Holy Scripture in shortest time possible, because "it would not be possible to eliminate the Cyrillic without publishing these books printed in Latin script and without religious education in mother tongue" (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 2).

On 9 August 1915, the Central Committee for Byzatine Catholic eparchies issued an order for the Greek Catholic bishops to implement Latin script into all church elementary schools from the school year of 1915-1916. The Ministry of Culture and Public Education took this matter even further and ordered bishop Stefan Novak to arrange that the Cyrillic would be "eliminated" not only from textbooks, but also from prayer books (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 5). Bishop of Esztergom and the primate of Hungary established a special committee for that purpose. The committee was to prepare publishing of liturgical books for the Greek Catholic Church in Latin script (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 10). The bishop was to follow the guidelines that the Ministry had already sent to him on 1 July 1915 - the guidelines concerned a character and phonetic transcription of Cyrillic into Hungarian alphabet, previously approved by members of the committee (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 12). Bishop Stefan Novak took this order into account and ordered to print it out (Slovensky dennik 1915: 4; Slovenske ludove noviny 1915: 3).

Although the majority of Church hierarchy and Greek Catholic priests had already been strongly magyarized, there were still some priests and schoolmasters who did not follow this order. That was the reason why the head of Saris county sent a letter to bishop Stefan Novak in which

he urged him to push for the change of script among his clergymen. In his letter the head of county states that the elimination of Cyrillic followed by proper patriotic education will help to increase patriotic consciousness. Elimination of "Russian alphabet" will then protect the faithful from harmful Slavic ideas (e.g. in schools various commemorations of Saints Cyril and Methodius, Saint Basil the Great or other Eastern saints were forbidden, among other things). He concludes that this goal will not be achieved unless the Greek Catholic Church cooperates with the state authorities (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1916: 33).

In his letter to a minister of trade, baron Janos Harkanyi, concerning the usage of Rusyn language of instruction in church schools, bishop Stefan Novak reminds the minister a known fact that: "in schools of my eparchy I have ordered teaching in Rusyn language based on written Hungarian phonetics. For that reason it is necessary to rewrite the currently used textbooks or to have the new books printed" (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1916: 2). The following books in Rusyn language, but written in Latin script were to be gradually published: Slabikar s citankou pre III rocnik (Primer with a reading-book for Year III), Obraz-kovy katechizmus pre III-V rocnik (s pripadnym liturgickym doplnkom) (The Catechism in Pictures for Year III-V (with possible liturgical supplement)), Obrazkova biblia pre III-V rocnik (The Bible in Pictures for Year III-V), Maly modlitebnik pre IV-VI rocnik (Little prayer book for Year IV-VI), Citanka pre IV-V rocnik (Reading-book for Year IV-V), Zbornik pre dospelych (spevnik a modlitebnik zozbieranych a aj litur-gickych modlitieb) (Anthology for Adults (hymnbook and prayer book of collected and liturgical prayers)), Dennik a I'udovy kalendar (Daily and calendar) (Szekely 2004: 35-36).

From the above mentioned textbooks only "Slabikar s citankou pre III. rocnik" (Primer with a reading-book for Year III) and "Citanka pre IV-V rocnik" (Reading-book for Year IV-V) were published in the end. Both books followed the characters of Hungarian phonetics. The former was composed of two-thirds of various readings and one-third of alphabet recognition. The latter contained sections selected from Rusyn books and sections from Hungarian translations. Minister of Culture and Public Education Dr Bela Jankovich showed a personal interest in these books and prior to their publications he sent a letter to bishop Stefan Novak informing him about his position.

Particularly interesting is the closing part of the letter which reads: "Readings with religious connotation can naturally be acceptable, especially if it meant breaking away from the idea of Pan-Slavism. Poetical works of foreign Slavs are absolutely undesirable, works of local Slavic poets are acceptable provided that they are flawless from the national

standpoint or irreplaceable for their artistic value. Acceptable are also simple works of Rusyn poetry" (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 13).

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There were also other textbooks considered for publication but their final publishing and distribution was halted by several circumstances related to the war events of the First World War.

To endorse the policy of magyarization, the Hungarian government decided to print a newspaper and calendar for the Greek Catholic faithful but in Latin script. Presov bishop Stefan Novak endorsed this initiative. He sent a letter to the prime minister Istvan Tisza in which he notes that «omission of commonly used Cyrillic would weaken and exclude the Russian influence on our faithful and thus prevent our people from abandoning the union with Rome. It can also boost Hungarian patriotism from the religious and moral point of view» (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 1). In January 1916 a new Greek Catholic cultural weekly Nase otecsesztvo was founded (published in Presov in the years 1916-1918). It was written in Rusyn, but in the Latin alphabet with Hungarian transcription. Apart from fostering the Greek Catholic faith, the purpose of the weekly was mostly to encourage the faithful in their love for the Hungarian state.

Proposals put forward by the Hungarian government (through Archbishop of Esztergom and the Central Committee for Byzantine Catholic Eparchies) concerning the publication of new liturgical books were perceived as an interference in Eastern tradition of Greek Catholic Church. Janos Csernoch, Archbishop of Esztergom and primate of Hungary, notified Stefan Novak in an official letter that the Central Committee was going to republish texts of liturgical books in Church Slavonic. It concerned five books: "Liturgikon" (book of divine services), "Evanje-lium" (the Gospel), "Apostol" (Apostle (Acts of the Apostles and letters of St. Peter, Paul and Jacob)), "Euchologion" (Trebnik - service book) and "Oktoich" (osmohlasnik - contains changeable portions of canonical hours for a day of a week cycle) (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 26).

The Central Committee raised also numerous objections concerning primarily the Byzantine-Slavic Church tradition. Namely they were various terminological objections (to replace words such as Carja, so-bornaja, pravoslavnyj, russkaja vira, etc. with other words), or objections to paying respect to some of the Eastern Saints who were venerated by the Orthodox Church, too (e.g. St. Anton, St. Paraskiev, St. Boris and Gleb, St. Vladimir, St. Ol'ga or St. Gregory Palamas). Feast of the Protection of the Most Holy Mother of God was also unacceptable because it was considered far to pro-Russian by the Hungarian authorities. That is why the government requested to change the lyrics of songs which were sung during this holiday. They apparently insulted the national

consciousness of Magyars in Hungary. Celebration of Saints Cyril and Methodius was also deemed unacceptable because "it could grow into Slavic national holiday, which in fact is not necessary within the Hungarian territory"(AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 14-15).

Such "unsuitable" holidays were to be soon replaced by different holidays commemorating adherents of the Arpad family or some other prominent Hungarian saints (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 30).

Adoption of the liturgical calendar reform, that is a change from the Julian to Gregorian calendar brought mostly negative feelings in the Greek Catholic Church (mainly in the Eparchy of Mukachevo and largely in the Eparchy of Presov, too).

This proposal was approved on 9 August 1915 by the Central Committee of Byzantine Catholic Eparchies. The chairman of the Committee, Archbishop of Esztergom Janos Csernoch informed Greek Catholic bishops, Stefan Novak of Presov (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1915: 25), Anton Papp of Mukachevo and Stefan Miklosy of Hajdudorog and asked them to take a stand on this issue. Bishops of Presov and Hajdudorog replied in favour for the calendar reform. In Hajdudorog, the clergy took a positive stand too, whereas in the Eparchy of Presov neither clergy nor the faithful followed the example of their bishop and majority opposed the change. In the Eparchy of Mukachevo, bishop, clergy and the faithful collectively rejected the reform. On 22 June 1915, the officials of the Eparchy of Mukachevo prepared a memorandum in which they protested against the proposed change of the calendar even before it was approved. Then they delivered the memorandum to the apostolic nuncio in Vienna. After reviewing all facts, the nuncio agreed with the claims of memorandum and exercising his rights, he vetoed the government's decision. The reform had to be abandoned for some time (Lacko 1982: 15).

Although the reaction of the Eparchy of Presov to the calendar reform was largely rejecting (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1916: 33), priests in some of the deaneries supported it. For instance, priests of Cserhat deanery, demanded the implementation of the reform. On 14 November 1915 they sent a letter to bishop Novak requesting him to follow an example of the Eparchy of Hajdudorog (where the calendar reform was already implemented in autumn 1915) and make an agreement with the bishop of Mukachevo and adopt the reform.

On 4 May 1916 the Central Committee of Byzantine Catholic Eparchies held another round of talks in Nyiregyhaza where the definite calendar reform was decided. The Committee informed the Apostolic nunciature in Vienna as well as the imperial court about the results (AGAP Prezidialne spisy 1916: 34). Greek Catholic bishops also notified the prime minis-

ter. In the joint letter they expressed hope for the influential support from legislative bodies, should they need some. Since the unification of calendars had not been previously consulted with either the Holy See or the faithful, the bishops pleaded with the prime minister to support their intention through diplomatic channels, should the Holy See take an opposing stance (AGAP Varia 1910-1924: 949).

The most appropriate time for the change of the calendar came in 1916 when the Easter, the determining "date" of liturgical calendar, was celebrated on the same day according to the "old" and the "new" calendar. The Hungarian government, though, did not wait for the opinion of Rome and ordered the bishops of Mukachevo, Hajdudorog and Presov to implement the Gregorian calendar in their eparchies on 24 June 1916 (Nativity of Saint John the Baptist) (AGAP Bezna agenda 1916: 730). The official proclamation of the new calendar came after the release of a joint pastoral letter of the three bishops (letter was published in the newspaper Magyar Kurir on 23 May 1916). In the newspaper the bishops explained the scientifically verified inaccuracy of the Julian calendar and stated that its usage is "untenable on cultural level" which could result in Greek Catholics lagging behind in social area. The main drawback was asynchronism in celebration of holidays in comparison to the faithful of Latin rite. There was some degree of isolation that showed mainly in social and economic sphere of the Greek Catholics. The everyday reality, bishops claimed, for more and more Greek Catholics was loss of faith in their rite due to inconvenience of the Julian calendar. Therefore they decided to express their mutual opinion that "the Julian calendar does not represent an organic creative part that is in any way uplifting for the Greek Catholic rite and therefore any further usage of this calendar is unjustified. It is then advised to abandon the calendar for the sake of preserving loyalty to the Greek Catholic rite and for the better understanding of good and progress" (AGAP Varia 1910-1924; Magyar Kurir 1916: 1-2).

When introducing the calendar change, bishop Stefan Novak collaborated with the heads of respective counties who often used the state apparatus to repress any protests. Resistance of the faithful in the eparchies of Presov and Mukachevo to the state order manifested itself in 1917. People had to be forced to celebrate Easter holiday according to the new calendar (the Easter Sunday fell on 8 April in 1917) by he police (Bircak 1938: 154-155). Similar situation repeated the following year (31 March 1918). The situation gave rise to several movements of Greek Catholics who were protesting against the transition to the Gregorian calendar. Many organisers of these movements were then subjected to criminal prosecution and some of the members were arrested (AGAP Bezna agenda 1918: 1095).

To calm the situation in his eparchy in early November 1918, bishop Stefan Novak ordered to use the Gregorian calendar as an option. According to this order, some kinds of plebiscites were held in the parishes in November and December 1918. The faithful were to decide either for the new calendar or the old one. The absolute majority of parishes in the Eparchy of Presov rejected the new calendar and requested return to the Julian calendar.

Another interesting thing is worthy of notice in relation to these reports. The huge majority of them were recorded in Hungarian language despite the fact that the independence of the Czechoslovak republic had been proclaimed a month before (AGAP Varia 1910-1924; AGAP Bezna agenda 1918: 4122).

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Return to the old calendar was carried out in the heart of the eparchy, in Presov on 7 December 1918. Vicar General Mikulas Russnak ordered to serve Vesper (vecieren) from 24 November and from the previous VII. ordinary tone on 8 December (AGAP Varia; Szekely 2004: 55).

The end of the First World War meant that the Hungarian government did not have enough time to implement the reforms so that they became established. After the dissolution of Austro-Hungary in 1918, the faithful in a successor state of Czechoslovakia (Eparchies of Presov and Mukachevo) decided to keep the old Julian calendar and Cyrillic script. In Hungary (the Eparchy of Hajdudorog and since 1923 also in the newly established Apostolic Exarchate in Miskolc) the faithful opted for the Gregorian calendar and Latin script. Moreover, besides Church Slavonic, Hungarian language became another official liturgical language there.

***

Following the end of the First World War in November 1918 and subsequent fall of the Habsburg empire, the Slavic nationalities of the former Austro-Hungarian empire began to form their own national councils that were to decide their future. Rusyn politicians, represented mainly by emigrants residing in the USA and by Rusyns living in the Carpathian region supported either the idea of independent Rusyn state, or fully autonomous Rusyn state within larger unspecified state. Newly established government of the post-war Hungarian republic was informed about these Rusyn claims. In an effort to maintain the Rusyn territory within the borders of their state, Hungary established autonomous region Ruska Krajina with an administrative seat in Mukachevo in December 1918 (Magocsi 1999). At the same time (November 1918 - January 1919) Rusyn political leaders kept meeting in their councils endorsing union either with Hungary, Russia, Ukraine

or Czechoslovakia. In May 1919, the Central Rusyn National Council "Centralna rus'ka narodna rada" in Uzhhorod decided that Rusyns, inhabiting territories south of the Carpathian Mountains, would join with Czechs and Slovaks. New Czechoslovak state brought a slight improvement for Rusyns and their status in Slovakia. On the other hand, certain hopes of this nation were dashed again. Despite the original plans for federal system of government, the state adopted a centralist model with the main political and cultural centre in Prague. The question of Rusyn autonomy, which Czechoslovakia embedded in the Constitution from 29 February 1920 but never brought into effect, has become a priority in all political activities of Rusyn politicians.

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Цоранич Ярослав - кандидат философских наук, доцент, заведующий кафедрой исторических наук греко-католического теологического факультета Прешовского университета, заместитель декана греко-католического теологического факультета по образованию и аккредитации.

Coranic Jaroslav - University of Presov (Slovak Republic).

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E-mail: jaros1av.coranic@unipo.sk