Government Public Relations and Media Office
Government Public Relations and Media Office

Slovenia - 10 Years of Independence
Path to Independence
Slovene Contribution to World Civilisation
The Celebration


Slovene contribution to world civilization on the average has been no less than that of any other nation

800-1000 First independent state - State of Carinthia (Karantanija), established in the 7th century and lasted almost two hundred years. The enthronement ceremony of our princes on the "Duke's Stone" (at the Gosposvetsko Field, today in Carinthia, Austria) inspired Thomas Jefferson when he was writing the Declaration of Independence in 1776.
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1000 The Freising Manuscript form the 10th century is the first record of a Slovene text. Three liturgies comprise the oldest texts written in any of the Slavic languages.
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12th century Herman of Carinthia - mathematician, astronomer, philosopher, translator of the Koran and astrological writings, the first Slovene scientist to acquire a European reputation. His philosophical treatise, De essentiis (On Essences), written in 1143 was reprinted by the Germans in 1982.
1490 Discovered in 1492, the mercury mine in Idrija was the second largest mercury mine in the world for centuries and stimulated the development of science, medicine, and technology in Slovenia and in Europe. Its continuous 500 year production was a powerful stimulus to the development of science, medicine and technology not only in Slovenia, but also in the greater European continent.
1550 Half a century of Protestant Reformation gave Slovenes a systematic orthography, alphabet and standardized language and the first book appeared in 1550 by Primoz Trubar (1508-1586) a protestant reformist. Only a few years later Slovenes could read the Old and New Testaments in their mother tongue.
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1586 Slovenes received their first complete translation of the bible in 1586. With its publication, Slovenes ranked among the only twelve nations of the world that had such translation in the 16th century.
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17th century J.V. Valvasor (1641-1693) the first really well known Slovene scientist, reveals in his famous work "The Glory of the Duchy of Carniola" (1689) the fact that skis were already familiar to the Slovene people in his day.
Among Slovenia's many historical legacies, its original skis arouse special respect. One of the oldest means of transportation on the high Bloke plateau in central Slovenia, they were first documented in the 17th century. Their autochthonous character and originality prove the assertion that Slovenes are among the oldest skiers in Central Europe. While the people of the Bloke plateau spent the winter days on them using them to transport goods, overcome distances, and go about their work, at the same time they also used them for various games and pure pleasure.
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1689 Janez Vajkard Valvasor - historian and member of the British Royal Society. His book "The Glory of the Duchy of Carniola", published in 1689 provided a vivid description of the Slovene lands of the time. In four thick and richly illustrated books he described nature and life in the greater part of Slovenia and neighbouring countries. Through his study of the complex mechanism of the intermittent Cerknica lake, Valvasor becama a member of the Royal Society in London.
1793 Jurij Vega (1754-1802)
Slovene mathematician Jurij Vega was the first in the world to calculate the mathematical constant π (Ludolf's number) to an accuracy of 140 decimal places. In 1794 in Leipzig he published a manual Thesaurus logarithmorum completus which has been used for accurate calculations in astronomy, geodesy and other pure sciences for almost two centuries, i.e., until the recent introduction of electronic calculators. Even more famous is his German-Latin Small Book of Logarithms (1793), accurate up to seven decimal digits, and is one of the most widely used mathematical books in the world. In 1966, its 102nd German edition was printed and its English and Russian translations have gone through over 50 editions. After Baron Jurij Vega one of the craters at Mare australis on the Moon was named.
1827 The first boat tests in the world using a propeller were very probably made around 1820 on Krka River near Kostanjevica in Dolenjska region by a Slovenian of Czech extraction. The inventor Josef Ressel (1793-1857) obtained a permit for use in Trieste, where 13 models of his propeller are on display. His invention changed maritime navigation considerably.
1846 (1847) At the end of 1846, a collection of poems was published in Ljubljana such as Slovenes had never seen before and have not seen since, Poezije, the work of Slovenia's greatest poet France Preseren (1800-1848).
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1879 Jozef Stefan (1835-1893) one of the most prominent physicists of the 19th century, was the only Slovene scientist who discovered any of the fundamental natural laws - the law of heat radiation (1879), named for him the Stefan law.
1929 Herman Potocnik
A Slovene contributed the first mathematically supported concept for a space station of satellite circling the earth at the same speed as a point below it on the Equator. He published his findings under the pseudonym "Herman Noordung" in his book Das Problem der Befährung des Weltraum (Berlin, 1929).
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Slovene words that have entered the world's scientific vocabulary:
The Slovene language has provided a range of international Karst terminology such as polje, dolina (for sinkholes), ponor ...

Sources:Slovenia Quarterly, MM
Sandi Sitar: 100 slovenskih znanstvenikov