The European Heritage Label has been awarded to ten new sites that have played a significant role in the history and culture of Europe or the building of the European Union, among them “Zdravljica”, a poem written in 1844 by the Slovenian poet France Prešeren. The awards were announced on 31 March 2020.
“Zdravljica” is representative of 1848 – the Spring of Nations or Year of Revolution, an important movement in European history. The role of literature, written in national or minority languages, in kindling nationalist feelings, and shaping demands for the removal of censorship and the right of freedom of expression, was reflected across Europe. Whilst the literary achievements of the poem’s author, France Prešeren, are of central importance to the creation of a Slovenian nation via language and literature, the poem simultaneously promoted the message of peaceful coexistence of nations.
The positive reception of the poem and its transmission across Europe through German and Scandinavian translations since the 1860s/ 1880s, and English and other languages since the mid-20th century, made the poem widely known. In addition, it promotes an international inclusive spirit rarely found in a national anthem.
Further information at the European Commission website:
– Ten new sites awarded with European Heritage Label
– Zdravljica – the Message of the European Spring of Nations (Slovenia)
See also National and University Library website.