Historical View of the Languages and Literature of the Slavic eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 454 pages of information about Historical View of the Languages and Literature of the Slavic.

In the dearth of all philological helps in respect to the Bulgarian language, it is matter of grateful acknowledgment to Slavic scholars, that an American missionary, the Kev.  E. Biggs, stationed at Smyrna, should recently have taken up the subject, and furnished us with a brief sketch of the principal features of the Bulgarian grammar.  It seems that the Bulgarians have availed themselves of the printing establishment founded by the American missionaries at Smyrna; and some books in this language have been there printed.  Mr. Kiggs says of the language, that “its literature is very slender, consisting almost entirely of a few elementary books, printed in Bucharest, Belgrad, Buda, Cracow, Constantinople, and Smyrna.”  A Bulgarian translation of Gallaudet’s “Child’s Book on the Soul,” was sent by the same gentleman to New York.  From the same source we learn that a Bulgarian version of the New Testament was printed at Smyrna in 1840, for the British and Foreign Bible Society; and that in 1844 the first number of a monthly magazine, entitled “Philology,” was issued from the same press.


[Footnote 1:  See above, pp. 27, 28.]

[Footnote 2:  Wiener Jahrbucher der Literatur, 1822, Vol.  XVII.]

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Of all the Slavic languages, the Bohemian dialect with its literature is the only one, which, in the mind of the protestant reader, can escite a more than general interest.  Not so much indeed by its own nature, in which it differs little from the other Slavic languages; but from those remarkable circumstances, which, in the night of a degenerate Romanism, made the Bohemian tongue, with the exception of the voice of Wickliffe, the first organ of truth.  Wickliffe’s influence, however great and decided it may have been, was nevertheless limited to the theologians and literati of the age; his voice did not find that responding echo among the common people, which alone is able to give life to abstract doctrines.  It was in Bohemia, that the spark first blazed up into a lively flame, which a century later spread an enlightening fire over all Europe.  The names of Huss and Jerome of Prague can never perish; although less success has made them less current than those of Luther and Melancthon.  In no language of the world has the Bible been studied with more zeal and devotion; no nation has ever been more willing to seal their claims upon the Word of God with their blood.  The long contests of the Bohemians for liberty of conscience, and their final destruction, present one of the most heart-rending

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Historical View of the Languages and Literature of the Slavic from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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