January 31, 2010

Dancing in Sunshine

Dancing in Sunshine?

Not too Transylvania based, more something else.. not Transylvania, based... ever seen a traditional dance with the traditional costumes?

They look so bright and the whirling of the dancers almost almost looks like rays of sunshine... according to a legend, some people danced their way to Transylvania.

January 30, 2010

Another Peom About Transylvania

My little cousin was so happy I put his poem up on my blog he wanted me to do another one of his: (Here it is below)

Transylvania: Many People!

It's in Romania
But it has many people
Hungarians, there are many
Romanians there are many too.

Many Many people
but not me and you!
We came came from there
A long long time ago.

Transylvania had Saxon,
but that was ages ago.
Still there are many many people.
Come and see Transylvania Let's go!

Okay not entirely factually correct, but what can you expect from a budding six year old writer? SO let's give him a big hand and a few comments as to his wonderful writing abilities.

January 29, 2010


There was a province in Romania can you name it?
It was full of history and legend and still is.

January 28, 2010

The Blood Countess of Transylvania

What is the fascination with Dracula, or more specifically Count Dracula?

I don't think most people really know Transylvania when they talk or write about Count Dracula. What amazes me, is that Stoker, when he wrote Dracula based it not upon Bran Castle but rather another castle, and another city far from the castle we associate with Dracula. Transylvania has a lot of castles, so one which is linked to the Romanian Royal Family is generally a good tourist booster. That being said, there is someone else who might just fit the "vampire" persona much better.

She was known to history-- local history, Romania or Hungarian History-- as the Blood Countess.  Elizabeth Bathory became notorious for her fears, and he sadistic streak to conquer them.  She feared death or at least the loss of her beauty. To keep her fears at bay and her beauty intact it is said she killed (according to some reports) nearly 600 girls to keep her youth.

Why do we not mention her, after all these young women lost their lives because of her. Why do we not know of her?

I write about this because Dacre Stoker (great grand nephew of Bram Stoker) wrote the new Dracula book Dracula: Undead... I don't think he knows much about Transylvania- as it is once again based on the first book- Dracula.  Even in this book, much of the action takes place in London.  Then the twist to it, was the ending.  

 He does however know a lot about marketing...

Stoker, the younger, seems to want the ending to be similar, yet more hopeless than the original.

January 27, 2010

Things about Transylvania

The Ruins of Elizabeth Bathory's Castle as night, Known as the Blood Countess

I was asked why this title "Things about Transylvania" as the title to this blog.

My Answer: if there is a news report about Transylvania, or a historical fact or something new about Transylvania, that's a thing about Transylvania right?

So, royalty in Transylvania to people of Transylvania to just about anything to do with Transylvania.

That's my goal for this blog.

January 26, 2010

What's Important About Transylvania?

I was asked last night this question, now normally I wouldn't take much into this question but they were actually interested in the answer. So here is the question and my answer:

If Transylvania wasn't ever really a "country" of its own and over the course of hundreds of years was a part of Romania or Hungary or some other country, why is it important.

My Answer:

It's important since it never became a hotbed for violence, there were many great people who came out of that area, changing the course of history. It is a legendary place, both in history and in fiction. The center of the land was fertile and was a pathway to Europe. Everyone-- the Romans onwards wanted this land.

That's why it's important.

January 24, 2010

The Many Names of Transylvania.. Links and All

I was searching for a good place to find all the names Transylvania has been referred to as in history and by different peoples.
It was really quite neat to find them there, but I do have to ask your help, the Romanian and Hungarian look the same, is it because of the tone of the word?

January 22, 2010

10 Places I love in Transylvania

So, Ten Places I love in Transylvania:

Bistritsa: This would be the city closet to where my family used to live

Cluj: Another lovely city I want to see someday

Bran Castle: Queen Marie of Romania, need i say more?

Brasov: The Black Church fascinates me.

The Province Itself: It would be great to travel the area.

Sighisoara: well okay Dracula anyone?

Alba Iluia: Queen Maria and the History there.

Sibiu: For a Saxon this is a must visit.

Medias: The sights and sounds of this city are something to see.

Sebes: Because friends of mine say it's a must go and see place.

January 21, 2010

Transylvania and Learning the Language

I finally bought a CD on the Romanian language.

Romanian is not as hard as I imagined, so my hope is that my Romanian will improve very soon, and that I might be able to understand the language much better.

January 20, 2010

The Black Church in Brasov, Transylvania, Romania

Below are some picture of Brasov, and two of them are of the Black Church, located in the city it looks wonderful in the summer and according to some who have been there, even better in the winter.

I love the tower above, but it also has a statue of John of Kronstadt, as the Saxons called the city, in front of it. A contemporary of Martin Luther, he is credited with bringing Lutheranism to Transylvania.  of course this was during the reformation, and this was a critical time in the lives of the many Saxons in Transylvania.

Entire villages became Lutheran, and this would add to the huge list of religions in Transylvania:  Lutheran, Jewish, Catholic, and Romanian Orthodox.  This would add to the many traditions of Transylvania.

January 19, 2010

Transylvania and Music and Writing

Do you recall the old VHS tapes? Well I found a few in German on Transylvania. It's really quite next these old box searches.

I've also found some old books from Transylvania that the family took with them and some diaries in the old Saxon "Writing" (given it's a dialect of German...)

Still it's interesting to read, as it is also is written in Romanian and Latin, and it seems to me, Russian, since it look Cyrillic.

I am wondering why Russian? this was written before the Second World War. Although it could be Greek.

The VHS tapes are awesome, not great quality but really nice singing and dancing. Boy can these people dance. it is dances from the Northern part of Transylvania so I wonder if each area had a unique dance. My guess is they probably did.

January 18, 2010

My Search For Transylvania

I was cleaning out an old box of my parents you know the kind, dusty probably never been opened in years and I found a treasure.

Old Photos.
The colour photo is my parents in Saxon Dress. The photo above was taken of my aunt and uncle just before he went to the Eastern Front, and she left for Transylvania.
i think it's time for some frames and hanging up on the wall. The dress my mom is wearing is in fact the Sunday dress of the aunt in the above photo.
I found by asking some cute and sweet stories of them I never knew.

January 16, 2010

Transylvania and Websites: Helpful or Not?

Can you name at least five good websites on Transylvania?

Not counting wikipedia that is...because these days there is incorrect information on this website.  This is something which you will need to think about when dealing with websites and information which is about Transylvania and its history and people.

It is hard to find good sites with some good information that mentions all of the people of Transyvlania in a good light.

Some will argue it's always has been a part of Romania, some will argue Hungary other suggest it should be broken up....  some will qutoe a website which proves their views whereas others will point to wesbites which are factually incoreect.  This is not a good thing.  Ne warned, nothing is good enough since you will need to refer to books and other hisotrical documents.  These are a msut

Why? I suppose people don't know their history and don't understand what it is to be from Transylvania.  Transylvania is a part of Romania but it is a part of Europe as well.

But back to Transylvania websites, can you give me a few whic you beleive will be helpful to read for people?

January 15, 2010

Transylvania, Romania and Traditions

I love writing about Transylvania and Traditions, and for me the biggest hit in the last while was this hub one Christmas Traditions in Transylvania. Okay in Romania is the title, but...

I also took a walk down memory lane when my mom told the same stories about pigs in the village she grew up. Now, remember this is in the 1950s so it was a group thing, a party and everything afterwards.

One pig-- about 100 people.  everyone ate, but were still hungry.  At the same time, someone commented that it used to be that people would have one pig-- about 200 people and the village would still go hungry.  They had simply not added anything else to the feast.

This was because in the 1950s most of the land was collectivised and people would share what they had.  Yet at the same time, there wasn't much to go around since many people didn't have much to begin with after the war. 

January 14, 2010

Which City ISN'T a Part of Transylvania?

This map shows Transylvania and the Banat and several other smaller provinces... but upon reading several websites....

I think I'll have a few of you on this one: which city is "considered" by some to be a part of Transylvania, but really isn't?




Satu Mare

Baia Mare

Can you tell me?

January 13, 2010

Dracula and Transylvania all over again.

I went to the bookstore today and the manager, who I know well, pointed to the fiction section and there it was, another book, but not by the famous Bram Stoker.. but by his great-grandnephew (got that?) Dacre Stoker...

Dracula: Undead. I haven't read the book yet, but I certainly hope it will put some new light, positive of course, about Transylvania.
Either way, it does give, I hope some publicity to Transylvania, since I suspect that most will then buy the original book.

Should We Forget Transylvania?

When I look at this picture below I think of many things, but the most compelling thought is the fight of these men, I don't think they believe their battle would last so far in time, and that a person such as myself would look at it. It is Transylvania before Transylvania.

But it is a part of Transylvania and a part of me, I don't think that we should forget Transylvania, there is too much past in its present and future, and its time will return.

January 12, 2010

Should We Forget Transylvania?

There was a debate at my house last night, one which I was pleased happened, but sad in a way that it did.

the question was asked, should we forget Transylvania?

this coming from a friend who has visited the area, found it different than what she was told, and now believes we should let the memories die a peaceful death.

Well, to this I ask why?

it seems people want to recall the best and not the worst, and when faced with the reality which isn't the best, get mad. I suppose we are all like that. Be it past present or future.

I don't believe Transylvania should be forgotten anymore than another part of the world, but I think we need to recall the real Transylvania a bit more.

January 11, 2010

Why Transylvania?

Why do I write about Transylvania?

Why do I write a book about people from Transylvania?

Because I think that it is important, but then again so is the country that it is a part of Romania.

January 10, 2010

A Things or Two about Transylvania

A thing or two about Transylvania:

It borders on are near Hungary and it is in Romania. ( the Banat and other smaller provinces border Hungary.) For the most part most people will say it borders Hungary.

It has a population which is mixed between: Romanian, Hungarian, German and other groups. The largest in the last census was Romanian.

What interest me of course is that people have come and gone over time, but the majority of the population is Romanian.

Some consider Transylvania to include the Banat and other regions, but that is hard to argue since each is cultural diverse and unique.

January 9, 2010

Queen Maria Must Be Rolling in Her Grave

So yes according to some sources Bran Castle, will become a tourist site based on Bram Stoker's Dracula.

Queen Maria of Romania must be rolling in her grave. She lived in that castle and her heart is currently buried in the castle. Her Transylvanian hideaway, she left it to her daughter ( Princess Ileana) and her descendants.

It is these descendants that are remodeling it for more money. They couldn't sell it but they do want to make money.

I suppose Queen Maria wouldn't like that too much.

January 8, 2010

Vlad and Dracula and Transylvania.

These three pictures all link together, two are more reality based, and one isn't based on a horror novel, but can you tell me which one?

So, if you found it hard to guess, you've probably never been to Transylvania, but it might be confusing since right now one of these pictures is being remodelled for tourists... can you guess which one?

January 7, 2010

Transylvania and Now

I can almost agree with Petra's comment about the eye of Romania.

I only wish to find more about the current situation on Transylvania, and for me I found it in one blog. Csikszereda Musing.

Excellent in keeping me up to date.

January 6, 2010

Transylvania, Transylvania

Transylvania Transylvania: A Poem

(NB: this is done by a my cousin's son, and he is six... bear this is mind)

Transylvania, Transylvania,

A Place in Romania.

It's really old,

It's really cold.

That isn't where Dracula is from

I am told.

My Grandfather lived in Transylvania

and so did their Grandparents, also.

I don't, but maybe when I am old.

I love the name Transylvania.

It's in Romania.

January 5, 2010

Transylvania and the Past Map.

this is one cool old map, I like it since you can in fact see the place of Transylvania within the Europe, the Ottoman Empire is on the bottom right.
I can even see the Princedom of Wallachia and Moldovia.
Things really haven't changed much.

January 4, 2010

The Unchanging Transylvania?

This is a recent picture of Bistritsa, and the more i look at it the more I find that in Transylvania there is little change, outwardly at least, people live in the same cities that were built centuries ago, and these haven't changed much, which can give the impression of an unchanging Transylvania.

Yet, it is the people who have changed, they still have the old ways, but when I read out the lives of the people the striking thing about Transylvania is the young and old, the old of Transylvania with the past and the children of their children staying with them while their parents leave Transylvania for something better, often in Germany or other European countries.

The Unchanging Transylvania? Not really.

January 2, 2010

Things about Transylvania's First Guest Blogger Petra Vlah.

I have the pleasure of introducing Things about Transylvania's First Guest Blog Writer Petra Vlah. A former Romanian, with great links to transylvania now living in America, she is a writer of considerable talent. She writes on hubpages and from here on in here is her post:


I often wondered “What is it that makes Transylvania so special, so unique and so controversial” in the context of the Romanian culture and history.

Before deciding what Transylvania is (for me and many other Romanians) I had to eliminate most of what Transylvania is not.

Transylvania is not the heart of Romania although it is the cradle of the first settlement and the beginning of more than 2000 years of history that started with Decebal at Sarmisegetuza, way before the Romanization of the Carpatinian land.

The reason this ancient and beloved region is not the heart of the country is mostly because its people are overly realistic, disciplined, hard working, and not sentimental enough to let feelings rule their lives.

Transylvania is not the soul of Romania either; its people are too practical and too straightforward to be “bothered” by transcendental questions and philosophical uncertainties. Their comfort zone is grounded in the palpable reality of everyday life.

Is Transylvania the brain of Romania? Again, the answer is no. Transylvanians are known to take their sweet time before making any decision whether big or small. Those solid people are analytical and well known for thinking everything through; events and history is moving way too fast for Transylvanians and keeping up with new realities proved to be hard for them.

So what is Transylvania?

The way I see it, Transylvania is the Magic Eye of a nation; that scrutinizing eye that keeps things in prospective, the eye that sees the obvious, but also the unseen. It is the objective eye that keeps in check the overly enthusiastic optimism the rest of Romanians suffer from.

Transylvania will forever be the unforgiving Eye that analyses and sorts out the details of a meaningful past as well as the only Eye that has an almost 20/20 vision for the future of an entire nation.

Thanks so much Petra, a very valuable and insightful post.

January 1, 2010

A Romanian Transylvanian. and The present dream

This is a picture of Avram Iancu, someone who lived, and who did much during the Austrian Revolutions of 1848-1849, and was given the moniker of Prince of the Mountains, but in the end died with so much hate from the Austrian government later.

He was a Transylvanian Romanian, which doesn't shed to much light on the person he was, but he was of a family who were formerly serfs in Romania, and then rose to become a lawyer.

He is an important person to remember since his fame came at a price.

But today this is changing, according to some reports there is co-operation between Hungary and Romania, which might mean more people like Avram Iancu might see their place in history restored.

Who else do you think changed history which allowed the focus of other nations on to Transylvania?