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East-Eur-msg — 2/12/04

Eastern Europe. Poles, Czechs, Bohemia.

NOTE: See also the files: Poland-msg, fd-Poland-msg, Balkans-msg, Europe-msg, Gypsies-msg, Russia-msg, fd-Russia-msg, Hungary-msg.


This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that
I  have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some
messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.

This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium.
These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org

I  have done  a limited amount  of  editing. Messages having to do  with
separate topics  were sometimes split into different files and sometimes
extraneous information was removed. For instance, the  message IDs  were
removed to save space and remove clutter.

The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I
make  no claims  as  to the accuracy  of  the information  given  by the
individual authors.

Please  respect the time  and  efforts of  those who have written  these
messages. The  copyright status  of these messages  is  unclear  at this
time. If  information  is  published  from  these  messages, please give
credit to the originator(s).

Thank you,
    Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous
                                          Stefan at florilegium.org

From: hrjones at uclink.berkeley.edu (Heather Rose Jones)
Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
Subject: Re: Documentation for Czechs in period?
Date: 27 Oct 1994 04:33:18 GMT
Organization: University of California, Berkeley

MISS PATRICIA M HEFNER (HPGV80D at prodigy.COM) wrote:
: Greetings, good gentles of the Rialto. I'm trying to find information
: concerning the Czechs in the Middle Ages. It's extremely difficult to find

I've run across one costuming book that focuses on medieval Bohemia:
"Gothic Woman's Fashion" by Olga Sronkova (hacheks on the "s" & "n",
accent on the "a"), Prague: Artia, 1954. It includes an entire chapter on
the bodacious Bohemian bath-house babes!

Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
From: nostrand at bayes.math.yorku.ca (Barbara Nostrand)
Subject: Re: Documentation for Czechs in period?
Organization: York University
Date: Fri, 28 Oct 1994 00:45:00 GMT

Noble Cousins!

To find stuff about the Chechs, you should first remember that they lived
in Bohemia and Moravia.  At one point, Prague was the capital of the Holy
Roman Empire.  It may be difficult to find a lot of stuff in English, but
there has to be tons of stuff out there in German and Chech.  Try writing
to the history department at Karl University, Prague.

Your Humble Servant
Solveig Throndardottir
<amateur Scholar>

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
From: sbloch at adl15.adelphi.edu (Stephen Bloch)
Subject: Re: Documentation for Czechs in period?
Organization: Adelphi University, Garden City, NY
Date: Tue, 8 Nov 1994 05:02:33 GMT

Barbara Nostrand <nostrand at mathstat.yorku.ca> wrote:
>To find stuff about the Chechs, you should first remember that they lived
>in Bohemia and Moravia.  At one point, Prague was the capital of the Holy
>Roman Empire.  It may be difficult to find a lot of stuff in English, but
>there has to be tons of stuff out there in German and Chech.  Try writing
>to the history department at Karl University, Prague.

Depending on what you want, you might also talk to the Jewish Historical
Museum in Prague.  I spent a number of hours there when I visited
Prague, trying to track down ancestors.  The staff (all two of them)
were very helpful and friendly.  There were language problems: their
English was better than my Czech, but on several occasions we all had
to switch into German to communicate.

I recall wanting to photocopy a number of pages from one of their old
(German) reference books, but they didn't have a copier in the building
so they handed it to me, gave me directions to a copying shop half a
mile away, and hoped I would bring it back.

Prague has a number of medieval historical sites.  The Svaty Jiri
(St. George) chapel dates to the 13th century or so (I think some of the
stonework is several hundred years older than that), and the Staronovo
Sinagogo (Old New Synagogue) dates to the late 13th century as well
(its name comes from several hundred years during which it was the "New
Synagogue").  There's also the famous "old Jewish cemetery", which seems
to have been founded around 1400; it's hard to tell how old it really
is, because due to lack of real estate they buried people on top of one
another for 300 years.  Half an hour's train ride outside Prague is the
village of Karlstejn and its beautifully restored 14th-century (?)

Gee, I'm getting nostalgic... and off the subject... sniff...
                                                 Stephen Bloch
                                           sbloch at boethius.adelphi.edu
                                        Math/CS Dept, Adelphi University

From: asamplas at indiana.edu (Vlad the Purple)
Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
Subject: Re: Russia/Black Sea/Caspian Sea area
Date: Fri, 20 Jan 1995 12:55:47
Organization: Indiana University

Vajk asks about info on Maygars, Khazars, ad inf.

I personally am not acquainted with any such info; my belief, which could
well be unfounded, is that there is little or no information on this area
in English because of the predilection to concentrate on Western European
cultures. Also, the main source materials available to Western scholars
would have little on such cultures to begin with - they'd likely be
considered barbarian pagans who had nothing worth preserving in Orthodox
monastic libraries, never mind Roman ones. (I'd love to be proven worng on
this but doubt I will...)

Norman Davies' history of Poland, _God's Playground_ (sorry, can't recall
biblio. citation), contains a first chapter on indigenous North Slavic tribes
that were around in the area now occupied by Poland, the Baltics, and Prussia,
and lists different schools of thought on their migration/culture/etc. A fair
amount of work had been done by Polish scholars trying to debunk earlier
Germanically-prejudiced views, but of course these were working within a
strict Marxist ideological framework. You might consult Davies' bibliography
as a first layer of pointers into what literature is out there, but I'm
afraid you'd better be prepared to read German, Polish, Russian, Ukranian,
Bulgarian, Georgian...

If you get other replies or info privately would you please post a summary,
and put a copy on whatever Web page is being developed for Scadian use? It
would be *very* useful if done well. (The sort of stuff this club should be
doing given our charter, says the gradual student currently taking a
bibliography course...:)


Artie Samplaski               Vlad the Purple
Indiana U. School of Music    Myrkfaelinn Midrealm Accounts Rep.
asamplas at indiana.edu

From: BHoll <bholl at cs.trinity.edu>
Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
Subject: Re: Some assistance?
Date: Wed, 12 Mar 1997 22:19:11 -0500
Organization: Trinity University

Look at the bibliography at the Slavic Interest Group web site:


There are references to books on Eastern European Middle Ages. It's largely
Russian stuff, but not exclusively. And according to my research, pre-XIII
century Russian costume was pretty much T-tunic-like with more tunics and
cloaks for cold weather. Fur lined, too. Just add an appropriate hat, and
that's it.

Predslava Vydrina
Barony of Bjornsborg
Kingdom of Ansteorra

From: BHoll <bholl at cs.trinity.edu>
Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
Subject: Re: Some assistance?
Date: Thu, 20 Mar 1997 23:23:48 -0500
Organization: Trinity University

I have missed the original post, but if you are interested in Russia and
Central/Eastern Europe, then go to the Slavic Interest Group web page:


There is a great bibliography there and other good stuff.

If you cannot get to that web page, then write to me at

MHoll at aol.com

and I'll be happy to help.

The most current and accurate name-book of Russian names can be found at
the SCA web site at


in the Heraldry section.

Again, if you need more help, feel free to write to me (do not e-mail
via this post).

Predslava Vydrina
Bjornsborg, Ansteorra

From: eduardvz at aol.com (EduardVZ)
Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
Subject: Re: Hungarian Persona
Date: 4 Apr 1997 09:00:11 GMT

There is a book put out by Osprey in their Man-at-Arms Series called
Hungary and the fall of Eastern Europe 1000-1568. It has some very
interesting historical information and some beautiful illustrations of
Garb and armour.

Good luck and a nice choice if I might add.

Eduard II, Rex, Galandor
Knight Bannerette, Knight Minister

From: "sunshinegirl" <sunshinegirl at steward-net.com>
Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
Subject: Re: Bohemian persona
Date: 15 Apr 98 22:27:18 GMT
Organization: Southwestern Bell Internet Services, Richardson, TX

Lurking Girl <tori at panix.com> wrote:
> Katherine Norris <knorris at richmond.edu> dixit:
> >I'm looking into a Bohemian persona, and I was wondering if there was
> >anyone out here who had one or could point me towards some information.
> >The time span I'm currently looking at is 1350's to 1400ish [...]
> And please, if anyone has said information, post it!  I, too, have
> been looking for this, but over some eight months of on-and-off
> the only sources I've found which look useful are in Czech, which I can't
> read. :(

Try looking in some religious reform history books.  You might find sources
under the topic "Moravians", "John Hus of Bohemia" (burned at the stake in
1415), "Bohemian Brethren", "Hussite"  The Bohemian Brethren, despite the
great persecution that they went through, brought out the first collection
of hymns published on the European continent in 1501.  A biography of John
Hus might point you toward some more general knowledge about the Bohemians.
Melandra of the Woods

From: sppksp at aol.com (SPPKSP)
Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
Subject: Re: Bohemian persona
Date: 17 Apr 1998 00:35:55 GMT

Funny you should mention that.  I have been reading a high-school level history
textbook on Czech history written after 1989.  When I participated in the
school system of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic in the 70's, "they" never
mentioned that the Hussites were honest to god nuts, and that later on in the
movement their famous army was altogether mercenary and the hussite king had to
invent little wars and plunder the fields to keep the army in pay.  The
international debt  incurred as a result of these practice was largely
responsible for the Hapsburg takeover of 1621 (including the events preceding
that), when the impoverished Czech nobles decided to sell out their unique
right to elect their king in favor of internal stabililty.  Etc, etc.

I have seen the history of the land of my birth so revised in earlier years
that reading this book is like learning everything from scratch again.  The
authors were probably political dissidents under the old regime, or they knew
how to keep their mouths shut.


From: davesg at netaxs.com (David J. Szent-Gyorgyi)
Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
Subject: Re: Bohemian persona
Date: 17 Apr 1998 05:53:39 GMT

On 15 Apr 1998 06:11:05 GMT, Katherine Norris <knorris at richmond.edu> wrote:
>I'm looking into a Bohemian persona, and I was wondering if
>there was anyone out here who had one or could point me towards
>some information.   The time span I'm currently looking at is
>1350's to 1400ish, although I'm open to other suggestions.  Any
>information on culture, names, history, clothing would be
>greatly appreciated.

Hi, Kai.

Two suggestions:

The specific one.  Go through Wagner, Eduard. _Medieval Costume,
Armour, and Weapons (1350-1450)._ London: Paul Hamlyn, 1962.  

The title is misleading.  This book was produced in
Czechoslovakia, and focuses on Hussite Bohemia--though it
includes material on gear and garb of other areas that were of
importance at the time.  It begins with many pages of essays,
and finishes with many pages of illustrations drawn from primary
and Period secondary sources.  It's coffee-table sized, and
exists in translations into German and English as well as the

I blundered into it while looking up something quite unrelated,
and hunted down a copy because it included more illustrations of
Hungarian garb and gear than I'd seen collected anywhere else.
The drawings of costume are not made for reenactors and
recreationists, so they don't necessarily serve as patterns--but
they do give a good visual sense of the piece, and citations are
made for almost every one (the one source for the Hungarian
stuff is given by author's name only, alas--I'm hunting for it).

Trust after you verify, as with any source.  My garb-historian
friends tell me that the gorgeous illustration of a Hungarian
archer, which is made after a Duerer etching, Just Isn't Typical
Hungarian.  Nonetheless, I trust Duerer's eye and hand, and want
a look at the original.  Anyone know where I can find a full
reproduction of his "Nurnberger Feldschlange?"

I don't know whether this book is available via Inter-Library
Loan.  Swarthmore College's library has a copy.

The general suggestion: Join the Slavic Interest Group, and
start with their bibliography. Their home page is at URL
http://vms.www.uwplatt.edu/~goldschmidt/slavic.html .  They're
happy to serve as a clearing-place for information on Central
and Eastern Europe, Slav or not.

Good luck in your search!
,  ,
---                                                      ,   ,  ,
Dave Szent-Gyorgyi                                Kolozsvari Arpad
davesg at netaxs.com                Hartshorn-dale, East Kingdom, SCA

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca
From: bq676 at torfree.net (Kristine E. Maitland)
Subject: Sources on Bohemia...
Organization: Toronto Free-Net
Date: Sat, 18 Apr 1998 16:42:18 GMT

I love a research challenge -- what a way to spend a Friday afternoon.

Here's a list of books etc.(in English), on Bohemia:

a) Recommended (i.e. I actually got to look at these)

Betts, Reginald Robert. _Essays in Czech History_. London: Athlone P., 1969.

Tapie, Victor L. _The Rise and Fall of the Habsburg Monarchy_. trans.
        Stephan Hardman. New York: Praeger Publishers, 197?

b) Other Books (i.e. books that were listed as being at the main
University of Toronto Library... that I did not get a chance to look at)

Kavka, Frantiwek. _An outline of Czechoslovak History_. Prague: Orbis, 1960.

Klassen, John Martin. _The nobility and making of the Hussite revolution_
        New York: distributed by Columbia University Press, 1978.

Pludek, Alexej. _Carolus Quartus, Romanorum imperator et Boemie Rex_.
        Prague: Orbis Press Agency, 1978. [notes in English, French and

Rican, Rudolf. _The History of the Unity of Brethren: A Protestant
        Hussite Church in Bohemia and Moravia_. trans. C. Daniels Crews.
        Bethleham, Pennsylvania: The Moravian Church in America, 1992.

Seton-Watson, Robert William. _A History of the Czech and Slovaks_.
        Hamden, Conn.: Archon Books, 1965.

c) Websites

        [brief history, 12-13th century]

d) Research recommendations

1.  Try to find books by Kamil Krofta:  major Bohemian historian

2.  Garb, food etc will depend heavily on who is ruling Bohemia at the time.

3.  Post interesting things that you find:  Lord Stephan li Rous will be
        able to archive it for future use.

bona fortuna
Inez Rosanera

Date: Mon, 24 May 1999 14:18:02 -0500
From: "Decker, Terry D." <TerryD at Health.State.OK.US>
Subject: RE: SC - turkish food in the North

> I don't think the Magyars are a turkic people--at least, the language is
> finno-ugric, not Turkic. And I don't think the Finns are descended from
> Magyars, given how different the languages are--just that they have some
> common origin much farther back. If we are talking about migrations that
> occurred prior to the invention of agriculture, I doubt we can expect much
> culinary connection--anyone know what the conjectural dates are?
> David Friedman

The Magyars migrated out of western Siberia in the vicinity of the Urals to
the northern Caucasus around 460 CE.  Finland was settled around the 1st
Century.  The Finns and the Magyars are probably related, but are not
necessarily the same people.

In the 9th Century, the Pecheneg migration out of Central Asia forced the
Magyars west into Romania.  The Magyars moved into Hungary and Bulgaria and
were pushing into the Germanic states when they were defeated by the Holy
Roman Emperor Otto.  The Magyars became Hungarians and the Pecheneg and some
of the other Central Asian tribes which migrated west became Turks.

Because of the geography of the region, the Magyars traded with the Turks
and, in the 16th Century were overrun by the Ottoman Empire.  So while the
Turks definitely influence Hungarian cooking, tracing the migration of this
influence to far side of the Baltic is more tenuous.  Adamantius' historical
connection looks to be the best answer for a connection in cusines.

As to the languages, Finnish and Magyar share a number of linguistic
simularities and are classed a Finno-Ugric languages, a subset of the
broader class Uralic.  Turkic is a subset of Altaic.  In geographic terms,
the Uralic languages share a root language used in the vicinity of the Ural
Mountains in western Siberia.  Altaic languages derive from a root language
in use in Central Asia and named for the Altai Mountains which form part of
the western border between Mongolia and China.

There is a debate as to whether Uralic and Altaic are unrelated or are
branches of an earlier root language.


Subject: Re: SC - Re: Meats/spices in MA

If you do have some sort of records of incidental purchases by peasants, I
would like to see a citation, because that sort of agricultural economic
history I enjoy.

(For information about Tenant farm economy in Central Europe, try, Land,
Liberties and Lordship in a Late Medieval Countryside: Agrarian Structures
and Change in the Duchy of Wroclaw. Richard C. Hoffman.
(Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1989) .)
Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, mka Jennifer Heise       jenne at tulgey.browser.net

Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2003 16:57:37 -0400 (EDT)
From: <jenne at fiedlerfamily.net>
Subject: [Sca-cooks] Long Journey of Gracia Mendes (fwd)
To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

This is the BIP record.

-- Pani Jadwiga Zajaczkowa, Knowledge Pika   jenne at fiedlerfamily.net

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2003 16:54:39 -0400
From: globalbooksinprint at bowker.com
To: jenne at fiedlerfamily.net
Subject: Long Journey of Gracia Mendes

Record 1
Title:                     The Long Journey of Gracia Mendes
Author:                    Marianna Birnbaum
Publication Date:          2003
Publisher:                 Central European University Press
ISBN:                      963-9241-67-9
Item Status:               Active Record
Binding Format:            Trade Cloth
Edition:                   illustrated
Pages:                     180
Price:                     $ 43.95 Retail Books International,
Data Source:               Bowker-U.S.
Audience:                  College Audience
Bowker Subjects:           RELIGION
                           WORLD HISTORY
General Subjects (BISAC):  HISTORY / World
                           RELIGION / General
LCCN:                      2003-009770
LC Call#:                  DS135.P8N373 2003
Dewey #:                   946.9/004924/0092
Physical Dimensions:       6 x 9 in.
Copyright © 2003 R.R. Bowker LLC. All rights reserved. Bowker® and Books
In Print® are registered trademarks and The Bowker logo, Global Books In
Print™, globalbooksinprint.com™, and The Global Books In Print logo are
trademarks of R.R. Bowker LLC.  Book Data In Print portions © 2003 Book
Data.  View our privacy policy or terms of use.

Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2003 17:41:26 -0700 (PDT)
From: Huette von Ahrens <ahrenshav at yahoo.com>
Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] FW: paprika and spikenard
To: Solwerlad <fitzlancelot at seznam.cz>, Cooks within the SCA
<sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

--- Solwerlad <fitzlancelot at seznam.cz> wrote:
DTD> There is a new book, that I am looking forward to reading, from the
DTD>  Central  European University Press, The Long Journey of Gracia Mendes,
DTD>  which ties to all of these subjects during 1510 to 1569.
DTD>   The author is Marianna D.  Birnbaum, Professor Emeritus from,
DTD>  wonder of wonders, UCLA.

Do you mean it is a fiction work?  I'm really curious, just returned
from the Medieval Studies gathering at CEU, but heard nothing of this
new book of Marianna Birnbaum.


No.  It is a biography.  Here is the Library of
Congress citation.


100 1   Birnbaum, Marianna D.                    
245 14  The long journey of Gracia Mendes / by
Marianna D. Birnbaum.        
260     Budapest ; New York : Central European
University Press, 2003.    
263     0308                                    
300     p. cm.                                  
504     Includes bibliographical references and
505 0   chap. 1. Introducing the family -- chap.
2. A short history of the conversos -- chap. 3.
Life in sixteenth-century Antwerp -- chap. 4.
Gracia in Venice -- chap. 5. Gracia and Jewish
patronage in sixteenth-century Ferrara -- chap.
6. In business with Ragusa -- chap. 7. The
Ottoman Empire and the Jews.                    
        600 10  Nasi, Gracia, ca. 1510-1569.    
        650  0  Marranos--Portugal--Biography.  
        650  0  Jews--Portugal--Biography.      
        650  0  Sephardim--Portugal--Biography.  

    1. 0  Jewish women--Portugal–Biography
    2. 650  0 Jews--Europe--Social conditions--16th century.  
              650  0  Jews--Europe--Economic conditions--16th century.                      

    3. 0  Europe--Ethnic relations.

Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2003 21:36:37 -0500
From: "Terry Decker" <t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net>
Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] FW: paprika and spikenard
To: "Solwerlad" <fitzlancelot at seznam.cz>, "Cooks within the SCA"
<sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

The Long Journey of Gracia Mendes is the biography of a Portuguese girl who
married a Jewish Ragusan spice trader.  The fact that the author is from
UCLA and that there is a thesis on Ragusan spice traders at UCLA, suggests a
link between Birnbaum and the thesis, providing additional cachet for the


<the end>

Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
All other copyrights are property of the original article and message authors.

Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org