Thursday, October 06, 2005

Lithuanian Tidings

Crop from a Supreme Court Tribunal decree about a building sale in 1590. (details) [very large jpeg of complete parchment document - 2Mb]


Crop from letter by the King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania 1649 (details) [very large jpeg]

Martynas Mažvydas published the first Lithuanian book in 1547 - Catechismus, which included hymns in addition to the religious text. It was likely that the 450th anniversary of the publication in 1997 prompted digitizing of some samples of Lithuanian works.



The cover of Catechismus, published 3 years
after Mažvydas's death in 1563

For 40 years up to 1904, the publication of any work in Lithuanian was outlawed by the Russian government. This press prohibition or knygnesiai resulted in large numbers of people engaging in book smuggling from nearby countries.
{After quite a few hours of mostly interesting perusing but with a blogger downtime induced loss of a previous draft (grr) I'll just post in a bunch of links that are worth examining. Lithuania has a proud heritage and some wonderful biblio-material. (for Ondine - you better be happy.)}


2 comments :

Ondine said...

Thanks, Peacay. "This press prohibition or knygnesiai resulted in large numbers of people engaging in book smuggling from nearby countries."

Knygnesiai means "book carriers". These people carried illegal books until the final occupation of the Soviet Union. I have distant distant relatives that were "knygnesiai". Pronunciation: kneeg.nesh.ay. As usual, you always offer a rocking post, your talent and imagination are impeccable!

pk said...

Oh I see now - I at least had knygnesiai correct once! I blame blogger for eating my words.

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