July 31, 2009

Two Photos.

Welcome to all who are new, and feel free to jump into the comments. Here are two photos, can you guess where the city is? One is a newer view and the other and older photo. i hope you can guess

Now where do you think this city is?

July 30, 2009

Quick Name Three : My Answer

Welcome to all who are new, and to all who comment, feel free to jump in. Here are my answers to yesterday's question and some city pictures of the area.

Brasov, Bistritsa and Alba Iluia.

Alba Iluia



July 29, 2009

Quick Name Three

Welcome to all who are new, great to have you here.

Quick name three places and why you'd want to visit them in Transylvania.

July 28, 2009

Transylvania and the Past.

Welcome to all who are new, feel free to comment and enjoy. Great to have you here and enjoying your comments!

One of the many shields in Transylvania. I'm looking for others.

Old War Photo. The man served in the Hungarian Army, as he was from Northern Transylvania.

Old Church in Transylvania. The Church is the Church were my father attended.

July 27, 2009

Word Games

Welcome to all who are new, a bit of a game today:

Transylvania is to me: (Add your word here)

I see this picture and I think of three words:

Transylvania has these people as my heroes:

Transylvania is great because:

July 26, 2009

Transylvania on The Map.

A map of Transylvania, in Romania and in Hungary... through its long history. These are some of the maps I've found over the years, and that I thought are really interesting. It gives a bit of history to Transylvania.  Before it was a part of Romania, it was a part of another land- an Empire to be exact.

Transylvania in the Kingdom of Hungary, which itself was a part of the Austrian Empire. This is a neat map since it shows the name in both German and the name we know it as.  This is of course important to historians since it shows that there is a different culture of people who live there.  These include: Hungarian, Romanians, Germans and many others.

Another map this time showing the outline of the main principalities of Romania- those of Wallachia and Moldavia.  Wallachian was the principality which would bring the most infamous warlord to Transylvania- Vlad Tepes- would would be immortalized as Count Dracula in the novel by Bram Stoker.  This map is an older map but it has some great details.  It shows the kingdom of Hungary and part of the Balkans in great detail.

This would be an ever changing area, and up to 1919, Transylvania would be a part of of the Kingdom of Hungary, and the Austrian Empire.

After the end of World War, One this is how Romania looked, (see the map on the right) on the left of this map you can see Transylvania. 

Surrounding it are the smaller areas of the Banat, and Crisana.  Some people will say they are a part of Transylvania, but they aren't they are as unique and interesting culturally as Transylvania, although in many places, they are considered a part of the "larger" Transylvania.

Both of these places are culturally different from Transylvania, but are as important to the area as Transylvania.  it is important to note that Transylvania would not have been a part of Romania except for one Queen of Romania.  Marie would transform her country.

July 25, 2009

A Picture is A Thousand Words.

Hello and welcome to all who are new, below I've listed several pictures on Transylvania, take some time, and at the bottom I have a question for you.

A Transylvanian Stream


Although refereed to as Dracula's Castle, this was in fact a Castle of Queen Maria, and previous to her, the Teutonic Knights

My Question: when you look at these three images, what sort of feelings towards Transylvania do they give you?

July 24, 2009

Peoples of the Past, Or a Brush with History

Welcome to all who are new, and who are regular visitors to this site. This isn't a Gothic site, though the images of Transylvania do invoke that sort of feeling. Many have made the comment, but this blog is about the real Transylvania, the people, the places, the royalty.

The above photo is of Queen Maria of Romania and her husband King Ferdinand and their son, the future king Carol II. Carol was named after his great-uncle, who didn't rule in Transylvania but was king of a much smaller Romania.

This photo above is of two women who lived during the reigns of both King Ferdinand and Carol, as well as King Michael. They are Saxons and they heard many an announcement made about the Kings, and longed to see them. They got their chance later in life, when King Michael visited their new country, as they left Transylvania, never to return in 1944.

Now they still talk about their brush with royalty...
And they wish they could go back to see Transylvania once more.

July 23, 2009

Which City is Not a Part of Transylvania?

Below is a series of photos they all have one main thing in common they are cities in Romania.  However Brasov, Bistritsa, Sibiu and Timisoara do not have something very much in common.  Although they were all a part of the Austrian Empire, there is this one question which of them is not a part of Transylvania?

Did you find it?  If you guessed that Timisoara, in Timis county was  a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and is not a part of Transylvania you will be correct.  Since then it has had its moment of glory and that was in 1989 and the Romanian Revolution.

Good, now of all these images what does it mean to you?

Each of these are in Romania and are some of the Cities in Transylvania that I'd love to see once or once more.  It would be great to tour Transylvania for an extended period of time, as there is so much history in Transylvania.

I love the beauty of each city in particular the business of Brasov and the serenity of Sibiu.

OF the many cities in Transylvania which one do you love the best?

July 22, 2009

A Deceptive Question.

Welcome to all who are new, feel free to comment. It's great to have a person coming along for the ride. Comments are welcomed and wanted.

If you were either a Romanian or German or Hungarian in Transylvania what are your thoughts on the others?

Think about this one for a minute or two, because I could write it for many of the countries in Europe with many different cultures coexisting in one country. They may not want to live in that said country, but they will not resort to violence,

July 21, 2009

Once a Upon A time

In land far away there was a castle that stood in contrast to all others.

It became famous for the people who lived there and for one who did not. Queen Maria lived there, as did Teutonic Knights who built it. They made a profound impact in the lives of many citizens of Transylvania.

Nearby lies another beautiful city....

This city lies to the North, and is forever linked to this castle, and yet, people in Transylvania don't link it in that light. There is a famous person from that place, a composer and a revolutionary who lived through the 1848 Hungarian Uprising.

This man wrote the Romanian national anthem, which is still played today. It is a beautiful piece of music. His poem was made into the national anthem in 1989. This mobilize many people and is still a strong piece after so many years.

July 20, 2009

Transylvania and the Austrian Empire

This is an old map of when Transylvania was a part of the Austrian Empire. I would argue to yesterday's email that this is not something that Austria would want as a part of their country if it was small or insignificant. By the way the grey part is the Austrian Empire, and the part with Transylvania is situated inside that, on the right.

Why would Transylvania be so important to Romania otherwise? 

It borders what was Romania and had many people of Romanian origin who lived there.  Some like the Saxons, had history dating back to the 11th Century. ( I would suggest longer, but the numbers, in written form are not there.  the earliest census was in 1241.)
This is the land that holds so much beauty and life... it is important.  it is a part of many people's lives, they grew up there or have roots in the land.  They know how powerful this land is to them, and to others.

My Question for today is this: Can you find Transylvania using this map?

July 19, 2009

What is the Most Important Thing About Transylvania?

Welcome to all who are new, and would like to comment, please do. I have but one question today. Comes from an email to me about Transylvania. It is one I am hesitant to post, but one that I think has points that need to be addressed. Here it comes

"I don't think that Transylvania is as important or vital as you say it is. It is akin to Scotland, a part of another larger country group, the United Kingdom. It had its moment of glory but is a part of another country, that of Romania. While it is alright to speak of the past, I doubt that anything important will ever come to Transylvania, it is a small part of a tiny country, and it will never be important. It would be the same as suggesting that Belgium or Luxembourg have the same power as, perhaps, Germany or France. These places are all to insignificant."

Let me be the first to say I do not agree with this email, except for one point, it had its moment of glory. I think that in time it will again, it is to wonderful a place to be forgotten.

July 18, 2009

Photo Shoot in Transylvania

Welcome to all who are new, I'll be showing a few photos of Transylvania, feel free to comment about them. Great have you here. I love the picture on the top, it is the epitome of Transylvania, the old and the new.

This is one of the many Churches that can be found in Transylvania. It is beautiful. It is the Serbian Orthodox church, interestingly enough Queen Maria of Romania daughter Maria, became Queen of Serbia.

Imagine it's 1918 and you needed to sign to become a part of Romania, to tell the Romanian government that you were willing to join their country.  This image is of some of the men who did this and voted to have Romania and Transylvania merge. I think that they must have known the occasion they had that day, changing the course of history.

This is one of the many fortified churches or towns that Transylvania has. Ancient and yet still awe inspiring.

July 17, 2009

Happy and Joy in a land They Left.

To all who are new welcome, this post is vastly different from others, so bear with me, for a long time I've beaten around the bush, so to speak and not written about the land that my family lived in. If it's long winded sorry, but I'll try to keep it to the point.

Dear people of Transylvania,

I must say, you've kept up a wonderful job of keeping the trust in the land, it is truly beautiful, and someday I shall return. This being said I still feel longings for a present I lost, and the past people forgot.

We were Germans after the war, criminals in many eyes, yet we lied there for centuries. We spoke both Hungarian and Romanian, yet kept our culture. We farmed the land, and yet, kept a different religion. For a time we held more land, but lost it.

We claimed seven major fortresses yet, were the largest segment of the population in only one. We wanted into Romania, yet complained when it did happen. I suspect this caused more pain than what it accomplished, and for this I am sorry.

We were not superior yet, we acted like it, and for this our culture is all but extinct. We claim to love the land we came form yet few go back. Fewer still went back.

We were the Saxon people and yet, we wanted to something we were not. We wanted to be bigger than a small group that we were.

I wish I had more time to learn about all the cultures you have to offer, I wish that I could learn about you. Not just from the Internet or from old stories but to touch the land once more, to see the land once more. To make it a part of my life, once more.

I hope I get this chance. It will give me happiness and joy and friendship I'd never think possible otherwise.

Shaky Ground.. the Land of Transylvania

When the blog was first created, I like a writer I am, focused on one thing, what I know, as in the people of Transylvania known as the Saxons. They are am interesting people, and by the way, my family are Saxons so people found ti amazing as I did that I would look upon the land in a different light.

Transylvania isn't really about the Saxons, although they are also strongly view Transylvania as "their" land. Okay, Hermannstadt was their city, but they weren't the people whose land it was, the Romanians were. The Hungarians also lived there as well and formed a large segment of the population.

Yet.... I wonder.

Who is right? I think in a way everyone is. Not because I want to play peacemaker, but because each group lived there or are still living there for hundreds of years. To my delight one of my friends who is Romanian and from Alba Iluia told me about the city. I heard of it in so far that King Ferdinand and Queen Maria of Greater Romania were crowned there. ( For those who don't know I am a great admirer of Queen Maria) For which I am grateful, I learned so much more about it.

Transylvania isn't on shaky ground, but we all have a lot to learn about one another.

My question for today is this: What is most precious to you about Transylvania?

July 14, 2009

Photos of Transylvania and Maps

There are many photos of Transylvania as there are just as many maps of the area around.  Transylvania itself is ones of the most photographed area.  This is true because of the many castles it has in its territory.  Most of the cities in Transylvania are old- some of them are centuries old fortresses. This is because it was in an area where there was constant war.

This is Transylvania, a map that gives an idea of the area, and the rivers and mountains.
This is Queen Maria of Romania, who was influential in gaining double the territory Romania had before the war ended, part of which was Transylvania.

This is one of the many princes of Transylvania, George II Rakoczi. He longed for more territory to add to Transylvania, in particular Poland.

This is Bran Castle, one I'm sure you've seen many times, this is the fictional home of Transylvania's Dracula, but was built by Teutonic Knights. Later it was the home of Queen Maria. Now it is owned by the descendants of her daughter Ileana, archduchess of Austria.

The Teutonic knights are no longer in Transylvania, but went to Prussia when their power became to great and the King of Hungary ordered them to leave.

July 13, 2009

My own Little Version of Transylvania

today I'll give my answers to the often fun, sometimes cute questions I get about Transylvania. I'll wait until next week for the more serious ones. Welcome to all who are new, great to have you here. Feel free to add you comment and voice to this blog. I'm thankful to you who come and comment as often as you do. Never fear I'll be seeing your blogs as well, just haven't had much time recently.

okay, I've read Dracula, but no There Are NO vampires in Transylvania, none, zero, Nada, none. I've read the book, it's excellent and detailed and comes very close to describing Bistrista well. Not great, but well. Stoker was a romance fiction writer from England, and took much of his views from there. Vlad Tepes was the person he based his writing on. Based not actual.

Yes, Transylvania is a part of Romania, and most people there speak Romanian or Hungarian, depending on which city you are in. Many of the cities are hundreds of years old. Many of the cities were Romanian majority, except for many notable few, that had German or Hungarian or Jewish majority.

Romania is in Europe, not Africa. Transylvania therefore is in Europe as well. Got that?

My Question for today is this: where would you like to go in Transylvania?

July 12, 2009

A question of Transylvania

What do you know about Transylvania? To all who are new, welcome, and think about this rather simple little innocent like question and you'll be amazed. some of the answers I got are as follows:

Dracula, like from Bram Stoker.

Some where in Europe? I think.

Isn't that the place you always talk about... in you blog? (Okay this is a blog about Transylvania... so of course I write about it)

Was it a part of The European Union? ( Sort of but, within another country...I do believe. Help on this one)

What is your point of view?

July 11, 2009

A Question of Land

I'm going to ask this question right now, do you think that there is a case for Hungary to claim Transylvania? welcome to all who are new, feel free to comment and ask any questions. Always good to have people here.

I mus say I have received more than my share of emails since I began this blog, many of them helpful but a few who will suggest that Transylvania is a part of Hungary. I can see their point in so far that Transylvania was a part of Hungary for hundreds of years, until 1919. It also had a strong Hungarian population and Romanian population.

I'll show it on a map of Europe about 1867...

Do you think that they might have a point?


Do you think that since Transylvania has such a strong majority of Romanians it should be a moot point?

Romania, Hungary and Transylvania

The Romanians didn't need Queen Maria, although she would have helped, but they needed these three men to get back the Northern half of Transylvania. It was returned to them because it was deemed a cultural piece of Romania.
They didn't get Besserabia, or other territory, but they were given back Transylvania, thanks to Churchill and Roosevelt. Neither man saw a problem with returning territory back. They didn't think much of the consequences. the angered many people. The Hungarians of Transylvania feel that they are a minority that is pushed to the side.
Stalin didn't care provided that Romania and Hungary were part of the Soviet sphere of influence
My question for today is this: who do you think made the choice and though about the people?

July 7, 2009

A Land Touched by War

Welcome to all who are new, add a comment and enjoy. I'm busy trying to figure out a tough question so perhaps I'll leave it with you and you can decide the value of it.

If there was always war in the land why are these older women happy?
I know that in the past hundred years Transylvania is a place where all seems peaceful, but the land is coveted by many. In the last hundred years the land was a part of Austria, Hungary, Romania. Yet, many wanted it. It was the passageway to the West and the way to the East.
It has so much natural development, and people. Yet, for many this is the reason that there is tension. This isn't a land of civil war. That is why I would suggest that the people are happy, they are touched by war, but not consumed by it.
Why do you think the people are happy?

July 6, 2009

An Answer

To all who are new, welcome, great to have you here. Yesterday I asked a question, and today I'll give you an answer.

The man who I showed in the picture, is a pastor from a small village, as with many of these men he worked with the farmers and the people of each village often for many years. It was oftentimes a thankless job and the people who looked on him with fear, and a heavy dose of respect. The children were taught that this man was to be respected and not talked to.

It must have been a solitary life, and yet hundreds of these men did it with grace and wit. They would care fir their members and help them through difficult times. The people for their part took care that the pastor had his needs met. This would all change, as in 1947 the communist government took power.

Still, the people respected these men for all the work they continued to do. They did so in the face if danger and possible jail.

When the communist government fell, the pastors took to rebuilding and caring for the people of Transylvania as they had always done. To me, this makes them the reason people cared about these pastors and this in turn allowed them the most influence

July 5, 2009

A Question...

Who do you believe had and has the most profound influence on Transylvania?

Joesph Stalin

Vlad Tepes

Queen Maria of Romania

John Hundayi

Nicolae Ceausescu

Why do you think I'd mention these people?

Some barely lived there if at all... and some died there.

What about this man?

July 4, 2009

Transylvania and the Ghosts.

Welcome to all who are new, I'll be writing on two people who affected Transylvania today, one who arguably didn't do much than be born there, and one who profoundly affected the way of life of people in Transylvania.

The man on the far left in this picture, Joesph Stalin, had a profound impact on Transylvania, which after the Second World War, became a part of Romania. From there much of the unique history of Transylvania was lost, as the German and Hungarian population were reduced due to evacuations or emigration. Many Romanians, from the provinces of Moldavia and Wallachia, who never lived in Transylvania before immigrated there. This changed the dynamic of Transylvania, although none will argue that people do not love the land.

This is Vlad Tepes, who was born in Transylvania. Do I need to say more?

My Question for today is this: Who do you think affected Transylvania more?

July 1, 2009

Other World... in Transylvania

This is the famous clock tower my friends rave above when they visited Sibiu. It is also known to many as Hermannstadt, and on many signs both the Romanian and German names are posted.

The most interesting aspect to the coat of arms of Sibiu is that there is the castle on the top. It is representative of the fortifications of this city.

If you ever have a chance to go to this city, do so, the fortifications are amazing, and stunning. It is a testament to the people who built it and the people who lived there that they kept the city is such wonderful repair.