Controversy over linguistic and ethnic identity in Moldova

Controversy over linguistic and ethnic identity in Moldova

A controversy exists over the national identity and name of the native language of the main ethnic group in the Republic of Moldova. The issue more frequently disputed is whether Moldovans constitute a subgroup of Romanians or a separate ethnic group. While there is wide agreement about the existence of a common language, the controversy persists about the use of the term "Moldovan language" in certain political contexts.

The Declaration of Independence of 1991 calls the official language "Romanian",[1] and the first anthem adopted by the independent Moldova was "Deşteaptă-te, române" ("Awaken, Romanian!"), the same as the anthem of Romania. Mirroring political evolutions in the country, the Constitution of Moldova (1994) calls the official language "Moldovan"[2] and establishes as anthem "Limba noastră" (Our language, without any explicit reference to its name). Moreover, the 2003 "Law of Nationalities" [3] adopted by the Communist-dominated Parliament explicitly designates the Romanians as an ethnic minority in Moldova.

The officially sanctioned distinction between Moldovans and Romanians has been criticized by some members of the scientific community within Moldova.[4][5][6][7][8] and raised protests from certain segments of the population, especially intellectuals and students, at their turn inspired by several political forces.[9] [10][11] Furthermore, the problem strained Moldova's diplomatic relations with neighboring Romania.


Principality of Moldavia (1359–1812)

Hronicul vechimei a Romano-Moldo-Vlahilor (Chronicle of the durability of Romano-Moldo-Wallachians). Written by Moldavian Prince Dimitrie Cantemir.
Carte Românească de Învăţătură (Romanian Book of Learning). Written by Metropolitan of Moldavia, Varlaam Moţoc.

Moldavian identity in medieval chronicles

The chronicles of medieval Moldavia attested the names used by the inhabitants of Moldavia to refer to themselves as well as the common language and origin of Moldavians, Wallachians and Transylvanians. Stephen the Great, Prince of Moldavia (1457–1504), had ordered a chronicle to be written by a German royal courtier. The chronicle covered the years 1457–1499 and was titled Dy Cronycke Des Stephen Woywoda auss Wallachey or The Chronicle of Stephen Voivode of Wallachia.[12] The first important chronicler of Moldavia, Grigore Ureche (1590–1647), states that the Romanians of the Hungarian Kingdom and Moldavians have the same origin, since both "come from Rome".[13] Later, chronicler Miron Costin (1633–1691) wrote in one of his works that the "rightest and most authentic" name of Moldavians is Rumân (Romanian), a changed form of "Roman", and that this name was kept by them from the beginnings till to that day. He also mentioned that Moldavians never ask "do you speak Moldavian?", but rather "do you speak Romanian?".[14] His son, chronicler Nicolae Costin (1660–1712), shared his father's opinion.[15] The Wallachian chronicler Constantin Cantacuzino (1655–1716) explains that by Romanians he means Romanians from Wallachia, Transylvania, and Moldavia, as they all speak essentially the same language and have a common origin.[16] A remarkable scholar, Dimitrie Cantemir (1673–1723), Prince of Moldavia and member of the Royal Academy of Berlin, wrote a history book called Hronicul vechimei a Romano-Moldo-Vlahilor (Chronicle of the Ancientness of the Romanian-Moldavian-Vlachs). In the introductory part, he calls it "a chronicle of the entire Romanian land" (Hronicon a toată Ţara Românească) that "later was divided into Moldavia, Wallachia and Transylvania" (care apoi s-au împărţit în Moldova, Muntenească şi Ardealul) and mentions that the book was first written in Latin and then translated into Romanian (pre limba românească). He also claims that the usual name of Transylvanians, Moldavians and Wallachians is Romanian (carii cu toţii cu un nume de obşte români să chiamă).

Selected foreign travelers about Moldavians

Several foreign travelers through Moldavia since the 16th century noted that locals called themselves "Romanians"[17] and their language "Romanian".[18] They also mention the awareness of a common Roman origin among the inhabitants of Moldavia and neighbouring Wallachia and Transylvania .[19] Georg Reicherstorffer (1495–1554), a Transylvanian Saxon, was the emissary of Ferdinand I of Habsburg in Wallachia and Moldavia. Reicherstorffer had traveled in 1527 and 1535 in the Principality of Moldavia and wrote his travel memoirs - Moldaviae quae olim Daciae pars, Chorographia (1541) and also Chorographia Transylvaniae(1550). Describing the geography of Moldavia he finds that "besides this name it is also called Wallachia" and then speaking about the Moldavian people he says that "the Roman [Italian] language still endures in this the Wallachians [from Moldavia] are an Italian nation, as they claim, from the old Romans".[20] A chronicler and mercenary from Verona, Alessandro Guagnini (1538–1614), traveled twice in Moldavia and helped Despot Vodă (Ioan Iacob Heraclid) gain the throne in 1563. In his biography of the prince, "Vita despothi Principis Moldaviae", he described to the people of Moldavia:"This nation of Wallachians refer to themselves as Romana and say that they originate from exiled Romans of Italy. Their language is a mixture of Latin and Italian languages, so that an Italian can easily understand a Wallachian".[21] After a visit to Moldavia an anonymous traveler, probably an Italian Jesuit, wrote in 1587 a description of the people and found that "these people [Moldavians] belong to the Greek faith, they take kindly to everything that is Roman, maybe because of their corrupted language from Latin, or for the belief they have about their descent from the Romans, as they call themselves Romans".[22] Also, according to these sources, the Slav neighbours called Moldovans "Vlachs" or "Volokhs", a term equally used to refer to all the Romance speakers from Wallachia, Transylvania, and the Balkan peninsula.[23] Nicolaus Olahus (1493–1568), proeminent humanist, writes in Hungaria et Attila that the Moldavians have the same language, rituals and religion as the Wallachians and that the only way to distinguish them is by their clothes. He also mentions that the language of Moldavians and other Vlach peoples was once Roman (Latin), as they all were colonies of the Roman Empire.[24]

Thomas Thornton (1762–1814) wrote a book in 1807 about his numerous travels inside the Ottoman Empire and says that the Wallachian and Moldavian peasants call themselves "Rumun, or Roman", to distinguish themselves from boyars (local nobles), and that their language is a corrupt Latin.[25]

Early works in the local language of Moldavia

Similarly, in 1643, The Moldavian Prince Vasile Lupu sponsored a book of homilies translated by Metropolitan Varlaam of Moldavia from Slavonic into Romanian (pre limba Romeniască) and titled Carte Românească de Învăţătură (Romanian Book of Learning) .[26] The foreword by Prince Lupu says that it is addressed to the entire Romanian nation everywhere (la toată semenția românească de pretutindeni). The book, also known as "Cazania of Varlaam" (Varlaam's Homiliary), was the very first printed in Moldavia and large numbers of copies spread in the neighboring provinces inhabited by Romanian speakers.[27] Furthermore, as a reaction to the translation in Transylvania of the Calvinist catechism into Romanian, Metropolitan Varlaam wrote in 1645 a "Response to the Calvinist Catechism" (Răspuns la Catehismul calvinesc) addressed to "the beloved Christians and with us one Romanian nation" from Transylvania [28] Moldavian PrinceVasile Lupu sponsored the printing in 1646 of the first code of laws in Moldavia titled Romanian Book of Learning (Carte românească de învăţătură de la pravilele împărăteşti şi de la alte giudeţe). The book was inspired by Byzantine tradition and in 1652 a virtually identical code of laws appeared in Wallachia, sponsored by Prince Matei Basarab.[29]

Moldavian Metropolitan Dosoftei printed Dumnezaiasca Liturghie (Divine Liturgy) in Romanian (tiparita româneste). In his "Foreword to the Romanian nation" (Cuvânt depreuna catra semintia rumaneasca), Dosoftei calls the book a gift to the Romanian language (acest dar limbii rumânesti) translated from Greek (de pre elineasca) into Romanian (pre limba rumâneasca).[30]

Later, after the annexation of Bessarabia by the Russian empire, religious books written in the region commonly called the language "Moldavian". Thus a menologium printed in Chişinău in 1819 states it was translated from Slavonic into Moldavian (тълмъчиндуль де пре лимба Словенѣскъ пре чѣ Молдовенѣскъ), as does a typicon from 1821 (Сау тълмъчить Молдовенеще де пре чель Словенескь).[31][32]

Diplomats' opinion

Joseph II, Ruler of the Austrian Empire and Catherine II, Empress of Russia between 1762–1796, were willing to unite Moldavia and Wallachia, then under Ottoman sovereignty, in order to create an independent buffer state between Russia and Austria. The proposed independent state, named Dacia, would have been contained Moldavia, Bessarabia and Wallachia, but Catherine wished it under Russian influence as it was presented in the so-called "Greek Project".[33] During the British Parliament debates of 1793, Mr. Whitebread, speaking about the initiative of France to erect an independent Belgium from Austro-Hungaria, mentions Edmund Burke's initiative to form an independent state from the Ottoman Empire, named Circle of the Danube comprising Wallachia, Moldavia and Bessarabia.[34] Also, the memoirs of Sir James Porter (1720–1786), British diplomat, ambassador to the Sublime Porte in Istanbul from 1747 to 1762, mentions that, inside the Ottoman Empire, next in number to the Slavonians are the Rumelians or Romani, to whom the Moldavians and Wallachians belong, who call themselves Rumuryi.[35]

Bessarabia in the Russian Empire (1812–1918)

In 1812, the eastern part of the Principality of Moldavia, called Bessarabia, which includes the current territory of Republic of Moldova (except for Transnistria) was ceded by the Ottomans to the Russian empire.

The idea of a unified state including all Romanian speakers from Transylvania, Moldavia and Wallachia did not emerge before the 18th century, as it was "foreign to the spirit of the age" [36] Starting with the 18th century, a pan-Romanian national idea appeared, inspired by the German and French romantic nationalism. The young boyars from Moldavia and Wallachia educated in western universities returned home with ambitious political goals to modernize their countries, and sought to accomplish the ideal of a unified Romanian nation state. One important step was achieved in 1859, in a favorable international context, with the election of Alexander John Cuza as a common ruler of the autonomous principalities of Wallachia and (western) Moldavia. The newly formed Romanian state set among its primary tasks to inculcate the sentiment of belonging to a common Romanian nation to the illiterate rural majority through state-funded universal elementary school. The Romantic historical discourse reinterpreted history as a march towards the unified state. The creation of a standardized Romanian language and orthography, the adoption of the Roman alphabet to replace the older Cyrillic were also important elements of the national project.[36][37] Although still under foreign rule, the masses of Romanians in the multiethnic Transylvania developed a Romanian national consciousness, owing to their interaction with the ethnic groups, and as a reaction to the status of political inferiority and the aggressive nationalist politicies of the later Hungarian national state.[38][39]

Such developments were not reflected in the Russian controlled Bessarabia. The Russification policy of the regime, more successful among the higher strata of the society, did not have an important effect on the majority of rural Moldavians. As Romanian politician Take Ionescu noted at the time, "the Romanian landlords were Russified through a policy of cooptation, the government allowing them to maintain leading positions in the administration of the province, whereas the peasantry was indifferent to the national problem: there were no schools for de-nationalization, and, although the church service was held in Russian, this was actually of little significance" [40][41] Furthermore, as University of Bucharest lecturer Cristina Petrescu noted, Bessarabia missed "the reforms aimed at transforming the two united principalities [Wallachia and Moldavia] into a modern state"[40][42] Irina Livezeanu claims that, moreover, at the beginning of the 20th century, peasants in all regions of the former principality of Moldavia were more likely to identify as Moldavians than the inhabitants of the cities.[43]

In 1849, George Long writes that Wallachia and Moldavia are separated only by a political boundary and that their history is closely connected. About the latter he says that it is inhabited mainly by Wallachians who call themselves Roomoon (Romanian).[44] Ethnologist Robert Gordon Latham, writes in 1854, that the name by which a Wallachian, Moldavian or a Bessarabian designates himself is Roman or Rumanyo (Romanian), a name the author also applies to the Romance speakers of Macedonia.[45] Similary, in 1845, German brothers Arthur Schott and Albert Schott (historian) write in the beginning of their book - Walachische Mährchen (Wallachian Fairy Tales) - that Wallachians live in Wallachia, Moldavia, Transylvania, Hungary, Macedonia and Thessaly.[46] The authors also mentions that Wallachians respond Eo sum Romanu (I am Romanian) when asked what they are.[47]

Bessarabia within Greater Romania (1918–1940)

In 1918, Sfatul Ţării voted for the union of Bessarabia with the Kingdom of Romania. At the time, the Romanian army was already present in Bessarabia. US historian Charles Upson Clark notes that several Bessarabian ministers, Codreanu, Pelivan and Secara, and the Russian commander-in-chief Shcherbachev had asked for its intervention to maintain order.[48] He also mentions that after the arrival of Romanian army "all classes in Bessarabia, except the Russian revolutionaries, breathed a sigh of relief".[49] However, he adds that, at the beginning, the intervention had "roused great resentment among those who still clung to the hope of a Bessarabian state within the Russian Federated Republic" such as Ion Inculet, president of Sfatul Tarii and prime-minister Pantelimon Erhan who initially demanded the prompt withdrawal of the Romanian troops to avoid a civil war.[50] However, Inculet later welcomed Romanian general Brosteanu, who was in charge with the intervention, to a formal reception at Sfatul Tarii.[49]

Given the complex circumstances, some scholars such as Cristina Petrescu and US historian Charles King considered controversial the Bessarabian vote in favor of the union with Romania.[51][52] On the contrary, historian Sorin Alexandrescu thinks that the presence of the Romanian army "did not cause the unification, [...] but only consolidated it". .[53] Similarly, Bernard Newman, who traveled by bike in the whole of Greater Romania, claimed there is little doubt that the vote represented the prevailing wish in Bessarabia and that the events leading to the unification indicate there was no question of a "seizure", but a voluntary act on the part of its people.[54]

Quoting Emmanuel de Martonne, historian Irina Livezeanu mentions that, around the time of the union, Bessarabian peasants "still called thesemlves Moldovans". She adds Ion Nistor's explanation from 1915 of a similar earlier phenomenon in the Austrian-ruled Bukovina, where peasants had called themselves Moldovans but "under the influence of the [Romanian] literary language, the term 'Moldovan' was then replaced by 'Romanian'", while "in Bessarabia this influence has not penetrated yet"[55]

After the unification, a few French and Romanian military reports from the period mentioned the reticence or hostility of the Bessarabian ethnic minorities, at times together with Moldovans, towards the new Romanian administration.[56] Livezeanu also notes that, at the beginning, the Moldovan urban elite educated under Russian rule spoke predominantly Russian, and despised Romania as "uncivilized" and the culture of its elite, of which it knew very little.[57]

Owing partly to its relative underdevelopment compared to other regions of Greater Romania, as well as to the low competence and corruption of some of the new Romanian administration in this province, the process of "turning Bessarabian peasants into Romanians" was less successful than in other regions and was soon to be disrupted by the Soviet occupation.[58][59] Cristina Petrescu thinks that the transition between the Tsarist-type of local administration to the centralized Romanian administration alienated many Moldovans, and many of them felt they were rather occupied than united with "their alleged brothers".[60] Based on the stories told by a group of Bessarabians from the villages of the Balti county, who, notably, chose to move to Romania rather than live under the Soviet regime, Cristina Petrescu suggests that Bessarabia seems to be only region of the Greater Romania where the central authorities did not succeed "in integrating their own coethnics", most of whom "did not even begin to consider themselves part of the Romanian nation, going beyond their allegiance to regional and local ties" .[59]

Bessarabia within the Soviet Union (1940–1992)

In 1940, Bessarabia, along with northern Bukovina, was incorporated into the USSR following an ultimatum sent to the Romanian government. The Soviet authorities took several steps to emphasize the distinction between the Moldovans and the Romanians, at times using the physical elimination of pan-Romanian supporters, deemed as "enemies of the people".[61] They were repressed by the NKVD and KGB for their "bourgeois nationalism".[62] The Soviet propaganda also sought to secure a separate status for the varieties of the Romanian language spoken in the USSR. Thus, it imposed the use of a Cyrillic script derived from the Russian alphabet, and promoted the exclusive use of the name "Moldovan language", forbidding the use of the name "Romanian language". The harsh anti-Romanian Soviet policy left a trace on the identity of Moldovans.[58]

Linguistic dispute

A Limba noastră social ad in Chişinău, Moldova with the word "Română" sprayed onto it.

There is essentially no disagreement that the standard form of the official language in Moldova (called Moldovan by the Constitution of 1994, also called Romanian or "the official language"/"limba de stat") is identical to standard Romanian. The spoken language of Moldova, in spite of small regional differences, is completely understandable to speakers from Romania and viceversa.[citation needed] The slight differences are in pronunciation and the choice of vocabulary. For example, cabbage, drill and water melon are respectively "curechi", "sfredel" and "harbuz" in Moldova and Moldavia (Romania), but their synonyms "varză", "burghiu" and "pepene" are preferred in Transylvania and Wallachia. However, Daco-Romanian speakers might know and understand both forms of each term.

Moldovan is widely considered merely the political name used in the Republic of Moldova for the Romanian language.[63]

Popular perception

A poll conducted in Moldova by IMAS-Inc Chişinău in October 2009 presented a somewhat detailed picture of the perception of identity inside the country. The participants were asked to rate the relationship between the identity of Moldovans and that of Romanians on a scale between 1 (entirely the same) to 5 (completely different). The poll shows that 26% of the entire sample, which includes all ethnic groups, claim the two identities are the same or very similar, whereas 47% claim they are different or entirely different. The results vary significantly among different categories of subjects. For instance, 33% of the young respondents (ages 18–29) chose the same or very similar, and 44% different or very different. Among the senior respondents (aged over 60), the corresponding figures were 18.5% and 53%. One of the largest deviation from the country average was among the residents of capital Chişinău, for whom the figures were 42% and 44%. The poll also shows that, compared to the national average (25%), people are more likely to perceive the two identities as the same or very similar if they are young (33%), are native speakers of Romanian (30%), have higher education (36%) or reside in urban areas (30%), especially in the capital city (42%).[64]

Until 2007, some 120 000 Moldovan citizens received Romanian citizenship. In 2009, Romania granted 36 000 more citizenships and expects to increase the number up to 10 000 per month. [65][66] Romanian president Traian Băsescu claimed that over 1 million more have made requests for it, and this high number is seen by some as a result of this identity controversy. The Communist government (2001–2009), a vocal advocate of a distinct Moldovan ethnic group, deemed multiple citizenship a threat to Moldovan statehood.[67][68]

Political positions

The major Moldovan political forces have diverging opinions regarding the identity of Moldovans. This contradiction is reflected in their stance toward the national history that should be taught in Moldovans schools. Forces such as the Liberal Party (PL), Liberal Democratic Party (PLDM) and Our Moldova Alliance (AMN) support the teaching of the history of Romanians. Others, such as the Democratic Party (PD) and the Party of Communists (PCRM) support the history of Republic of Moldova.[69][70] [71] [72]

Moldovan presidents on the language and identity of Moldovans

Mircea Snegur, the first Moldovan President (1992–1996), a somewhat versatile supporter of the common Romanian-Moldovan ethnic and linguistic identity

"În suflet eram (şi sunt) mai român decât mulţi dintre învinuitori." [73]

"In my soul I was (and am) more Romanian than most of my accusers."

Vladimir Voronin, President of Moldova (2001–2009), an adversary of the common Romanian-Moldovan ethnic identity, acknowledged at times the existence of a common language.

«Limba moldovenească este de fapt mama limbii române. S-o numeşti română înseamnă să înşeli istoria şi să-ţi nedreptăţeşti propria mamă.»[74]

"Moldovan is in fact the mother of the Romanian language. To call it Romanian is to betray history and to commit injustice to your own mother."

"Vorbim aceeaşi limba, chiar dacă o numim diferit."[75]

"We speak the same language [in Romania and Moldova], even though we call it differently."

Mihai Ghimpu, speaker of the Moldovan Parliament and interim president (2009–2010), a staunch supporter of the common Romanian-Moldovan ethnic identity:

"Dar ce am câştigat având la conducere oameni care ştiau că limba e română şi că noi suntem români, dar au recunoscut acest adevăr doar după ce au plecat de la guvernare? Eu nu am venit să manipulez cetăţenii, ci să le spun adevărul." [76]

"What have we gained having as leaders people who knew that the language is Romanian and that we are Romanians, but acknowledged this truth only after they left office? I have not come to manipulate the citizens, but to tell them the truth."


The Soviet attempts, which started after 1924 and were fully implemented after 1940, to strongly emphasize the local Moldovan identity and transform it into a separate ethnicity, as well as its reiteration in the post-independence Moldovan politics, especially during the Communist government (2001–2009), is often referred to as Moldovanism. The Moldovanist position refutes the purported Romanian-Moldovan ethnic identity, and also at times the existence of a common language.[77] US historian James Stuart Olson, in his book - An Ethnohistorical dictionary of the Russian and Soviet empires - considers that Moldavians and Romanians are so closely related to the Romanian language, ethnicity and historical development that they can be considered one and the same people.[78]

Since "Moldovan" is widely considered merely a political term used to designate the Romanian language,[79] the supporters of a distinct language are often regarded as anti-scientific or politicianist. A typical example is the Moldovan-Romanian dictionary.

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ Constitution of the Republic of Moldova. Article 13, Chapter 1. 1994-06-29. "The official language of the Republic of Moldova is Moldovan, written in Latin script." 
  3. ^ "L E G E privind aprobarea Conceptiei politicii nationale de stat a Republicii Moldova". 
  4. ^ Raisa Lozinschi. "SRL "Moldovanul"" (in Romanian). Jurnal de Chișinău. Archived from the original on 2008-08-22. Retrieved 2008-11-20. "Conf. Univ. Dr. Gheorghe Paladi, preşedintele Asociației Istoricilor din R. Moldova: «Noi întotdeauna am susţinut comunitatea de neam şi ne-am considerat români ca origine, etnie, limbă.»" 
  5. ^ "Primul manifest științific împotriva conceptului de limbă moldovenească" (in Romanian). Observator de Bacău. 2008-03-05. Retrieved 2008-11-20. 
  6. ^ Alina Olteanu (2007-11-22). "Academia Română combate "limba moldovenească"" (in Romanian). Ziua. Retrieved 2008-11-20. 
  7. ^ Eugenia Bojoga (2006). "Limbă "moldovenească" și integrare europeană?" (in Romanian). Chișinău: Contrafort. Archived from the original on 2008-07-10. Retrieved 2008-11-20. 
  8. ^ "Rezoluţie a lingviştilor privind folosirea inadecvată a sintagmei: "limba moldovenească"" (in Romanian). Gândul. 2007-11-01.;1020488. Retrieved 2008-11-20. 
  9. ^ Michael Wines (2002-02-25). "History Course Ignites a Volatile Tug of War in Moldova". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-11-19. 
  10. ^ "A country-by-country update on constitutional politics in Eastern Europe and the ex-USSR". East European Constitutional review. NYU Law. 2002. 
  11. ^ About the controversy over Moldovan identity and language, in French : N. Trifon, "Guerre et paix des langues sur fond de malaise identitaire" in République de Moldavie : un État en quête de nation, Paris, Non Lieu, 2010, P. 169-258.
  12. ^ [Vladimir Beşleagă, Ştefan cel Mare într-o cronică germană din secolul XVI]
  13. ^ Rumânii, câţi să află lăcuitori la Ţara Ungurească şi la Ardeal şi la Maramoroşu, de la un loc suntu cu moldovénii şi toţi de la Râm să trag.
  14. ^ Despre diferitele numiri ale poporului moldovean şi muntean. Numele cel mai adevărat, autentic de la primul descălecat prin Traian este rumân sau romanus, care nume acest popor l-a păstrat întotdeauna între dânşii ... până astăzi; acelaşi nume este dat îndeobşte şi muntenilor şi moldovenilor şi celor care locuiesc în ţara Transilvania. Rumân este un nume schimbat în curgerea anilor din roman şi astăzi când întreb pe cineva dacă ştie moldoveneşte spune: ştiu româneşte...
  15. ^ Aşea toate neamurile sunt cu multe numere, după vreme toate suntu... Aşea şi neamul acesta, ce scriem ţărilor acestora (Moldova, Ţara Muntenească şi Ardeal), nume dreptu şi mai vechiu este român, adică râmlean de la Roma…
  16. ^ Însă rumânii înţeleg nu numai ceştia de aici, ce şi den Ardeal, care încă şi mai neaoşi sunt, şi moldovenii şi toţi câţi şi într-altă parte să află şi au această limbă, măcară să fie şi ceva şi mai osebită în nişte cuvinte den amestecarea altor limbi, cum s-au zis şi mai sus, tot romani îi ţinem, că toţi aceştia dintr-o fântână au izvorât şi cură.
  17. ^ After a journey through Wallachia, Moldavia and Transylvania Ferrante Capecci reports in 1575 that the inhabitants of these provinces call themselves "româneşti" ("romanesci") : "Anzi essi si chiamano romanesci[= indeed they call themselves romanesci], e vogliono molti che erano mandati quì quei che erano dannati a cavar metalli..." in: Maria Holban, Călători străini despre Ţările Române, Bucharest, Editura Stiinţifică, 1970, vol. II, p.158 – 161.
  18. ^ Frenchman Pierre Lescalopier writes in 1574 that those who live in Moldavia, Wallachia and most of Transylvania, "think they are true heirs of the Romans and call their language "româneşte", that is Roman: "Tout ce pays: la Wallachie, la Moldavie et la plus part de la Transylvanie, a esté peuplé des colonies romaines du temps de Trajan l'empereur… Ceux du pays se disent vrais successeurs des Romains et nomment leur parler romanechte, c'est-à-dire romain … " in Voyage fait par moy, Pierre Lescalopier l'an 1574 de Venise a Constantinople, in: Paul Cernovodeanu, Studii şi materiale de istorie medievală, IV, 1960, p. 444.
  19. ^ The Croat Ante Verančić states in 1570 that "« Vlachs » from Transylvania, Moldavia and Wallachia say that they are « romani »" : "...Valacchi, qui se Romanos nominant..." "Gens quae ear terras (Transsylvaniam, Moldaviam et Transalpinam) nostra aetate incolit, Valacchi sunt, eaque a Romania ducit originem, tametsi nomine longe alieno..." De situ Transsylvaniae, Moldaviae et Transaplinae, in Monumenta Hungariae Historica, Scriptores; II, Pesta, 1857, p. 120.
  20. ^ " lângă aceasta se mai cheamă şi Valahia, de la Flacci o gintă romană, căci romanii după ce au înfrânt şi nimicit pe geţi, au adus aci colonişti sub conducerea unui oarecare Flaccus, de unde s-a numit mai întâi Flaccia, apoi, prin stricarea cuvântului, Valahia. Această părere este întărită de faptul că vorbirea romană mai dăinuieşte încă la acest neam, dar atât de alterată întru toate, încât abia ar mai putea fi înţeleasă de un roman. Aşadar, românii sunt o seminţie italică ce se trage, după cum zic ei, din vechii romani..." Adina Berciu-Drăghicescu, Liliana Trofin. Culegere de documente privind istoria Romanilor din secolele IV – XVI, Partea I, Editura Universitatii, Bucureşti, 2006
  21. ^ Adolf Armbruster, Romanitatea românilor: istoria unei idei, Editia a II-a, Editura Enciclopedică, București, 1993, pg. 47
  22. ^ S.J. Magyarody, The Tsangos of Romania: The Hungarian minorities in Romanian Moldavia, Matthias Corvinus Publishing, pg. 45
  23. ^ Roger-William Seton Watson, A history of the Romanians, Cambridge University Press, 1934
  24. ^ Hungaria et Attila, pg. 59
  25. ^ Thomas Thornton, The present state of Turkey, London, 1807
  26. ^ CARTE ROMÂNEASCĂ // DE ÎNVĂŢĂTURĂ // DUMENECELE // preste an şi la praznice împărăte- // şti şi la sfinţi Mari. // Cu zisa şi cu toată cheltuiala // LUI VASILIE VOIVODUL // şi domnul ţării Moldovei din multe // scripturi tălmăcită. din limba // slovenească pre limba Romeniască. // DE VARLAAM MITROPOLITUL // De Ţara Moldovei. // În Tipariul Domnesc. În Mănăstirea // a trei S(feti)teli în Iaşi de la Hs. 1643, The Book description on Biblioteca Judeţeană „Petre Dulfu”, Baia Mare
  27. ^
  28. ^ iubiţilor creştini şi cu noi de un neam români, pretutindeni tuturor ce se află în părţile Ardealului şi în alte părţi pretutindeni ce sunteţi cu noi într-o credinţă [1]
  29. ^
  30. ^ Nicolae Fustei, 330 de ani a celei de a doua editii a Liturghierului lui Dosoftei
  31. ^ Mineiu de obşte. Chişinău, Exarhiceasca Tipografie a Bassarabiei. 1819. preface
  32. ^ Tipic biserices, adunat în scurt. Chişinău, Duhovniceasca Tipografie a Bessarabiei. 1821. preface
  33. ^ Keith Hitchins, The Romanians: 1774-1866, Clarendon Press Oxford, 1996, pg44, pg.47
  34. ^ The parliamentary register, Vol. 34, London, Burlington House, 1793, pg. 405
  35. ^ Sir James Porter, Turkey: its history and progress, Hurst and Blackett, London, 1854, pg 25
  36. ^ a b Lucian Boia, History and Myth in the Romanian consciousness, p 129
  37. ^ Goina, Călin. How the State Shaped the Nation: an Essay on the Making of the Romanian Nation in Regio - Minorities, Politics, Society. Néprajzi Múzeum. No 1/2005. pp. 158-160, 161-163
  38. ^ Sorin Mitu, National identity of Romanians in Transylvania
  39. ^ Goina, Călin. How the State Shaped the Nation: an Essay on the Making of the Romanian Nation in Regio - Minorities, Politics, Society. Néprajzi Múzeum. No 1/2005. pp. 165-167
  40. ^ a b Petrescu, Cristina. Contrasting/Conflicting Identities: Bessarabians, Romanians, Moldovans in Nation-Building and Contested identities: Romanian & Hungarian Case Studies. Editura Polirom. 2001. pp. 154-155
  41. ^ Livezeanu, Irina. Cultural Politics in Greater Romania: Regionalism, Nation Building, and Ethnic Struggle, 1918-1930. Cornell University Press, 2000. p.94
  42. ^ Goina, Călin. How the State Shaped the Nation: an Essay on the Making of the Romanian Nation in Regio - Minorities, Politics, Society. Néprajzi Múzeum. No 1/2005. p. 165
  43. ^ Livezeanu, Irina. Cultural Politics in Greater Romania: Regionalism, Nation Building, and Ethnic Struggle, 1918-1930. Cornell University Press, 2000. p.92
  44. ^ George Long, Penny Cyclopaedia, volume XV, London, 1849, published by Charles Knight, pg. 304
  45. ^ Robert Gordon Latham, The native races of the Russian Empire, London, 1854, pg.268
  46. ^ Arthur Schott, Albert Schott, Walachische Mährchen, Cotta, Stuttgart and Tübingen, 1845, pg. 3
  47. ^ Arthur Schott, Albert Schott, Walachische Mährchen, Cotta, Stuttgart and Tübingen, 1845, pg. 44
  48. ^
  49. ^ a b
  50. ^ Charles Upson Clark, Anarchy in Bessarabia in Bessarabia: Russia and Roumania on the Black Sea. Dodd, Mead & Co., N.Y., 1927
  51. ^ Petrescu, Cristina. Contrasting/Conflicting Identities: Bessarabians, Romanians, Moldovans in Nation-Building and Contested identities: Romanian & Hungarian Case Studies. Editura Polirom. 2001. p. 156
  52. ^ King, Charles. The Moldovans: Romania, Russia, and the politics of culture. Hoover Press. 2000. p. 34
  53. ^ Sorin Alexandrescu, Paradoxul roman, page 48. "Prezenta militara romaneasca in Basarabia nu a cauzat deci unirea - vointa politica pentru aceasta exista oricum - ci doar a consolidat-o
  54. ^ Bernard Newman, "The new Europe", p. 245
  55. ^ Livezeanu, Irina. Cultura si Nationalism in Romania Mare 1918-1930. 1998 p.115
  56. ^ Livezeanu, Irina. Cultural Politics in Greater Romania: Regionalism, Nation Building, and Ethnic Struggle, 1918-1930. Cornell University Press, 2000. pp. 98-99
  57. ^ Livezeanu, Irina. Cultura si Nationalism in Romania Mare. Humanitas 1998, p.123 "rusa era considerata adevarata limba publica a elitei urbane si a birocratiei. Moldovenii ce devenisera parte a acestei elite sub carmuirea ruseasca, desi nu-si uitasera neaparat limba materna, n-o mai foloseau in afara relatiilor de familie. Faptul ca moldovenii aveau un precar al identitatii culturale romanesti se reflecta in dispretul lor fata de Romania, tara pe care multi dintre ei o priveau ca <necivilizata>. De asemenea dispretuiau cultura elitelor din Romania, desi o cunosteau foarte putin, sau poate tocmai de aceea"
  58. ^ a b Charles King, The Moldovans: Romania, Russia, and the politics of culture, Hoover Institution Press, Stanford University, 2000
  59. ^ a b Petrescu, Cristina. Contrasting/Conflicting Identities: Bessarabians, Romanians, Moldovans in Nation-Building and Contested identities: Romanian & Hungarian Case Studies. Editura Polirom. 2001. p. 154
  60. ^ Petrescu, Cristina. Contrasting/Conflicting Identities: Bessarabians, Romanians, Moldovans in Nation-Building and Contested identities: Romanian & Hungarian Case Studies. Editura Polirom. 2001. p. 157
  61. ^ Bugai, Nikolai F.: Deportatsiya narodov iz Ukainyi, Belorussii i Moldavii - Deportation of the peoples from Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova. Druzhba Narodov, Moscow 1998, Dittmar Dahlmann & Gerhard Hirschfeld. - Essen 1999, pp. 567-581
  62. ^ John Barron, The KGB, Reader's Digest inc., 1974, ISBN 0-88349-009-9
  63. ^
  64. ^
  65. ^
  66. ^
  67. ^ "Voronin acuză România că pune în pericol statalitatea Republicii Moldova" (in Romanian). Bucharest: Realitatea TV. 2007-11-06. Retrieved 2008-11-19. 
  68. ^ Constantin Codreanu (2007-03-08). "Chișinăul spune că Bucureștiul subminează statalitatea Moldovei" (in Romanian). Bucharest: Ziarul Financiar. Retrieved 2008-11-19. 
  69. ^ Vlad Filat, president of PLDM "Vom învăţa istoria noastră - cea a românilor, aşa cum este şi firesc"/"We will teach our history - that of Romanians, as it is natural" Marian Lupu, president PD: "După părerea noastră, cea mai bună variantă [...] ar fi istoria statului nostru – istoria Republicii Moldova. Fără a pune accente pe momente sensibile, care ar putea duce la o scindare în societate.", a zis liderul Partidului Democrat, Marian Lupu/"In our opinion, the best option [...] would be the history of our state - the history of the Republic of Moldova. Without focussing on the sensitive moments, which would bring division in our society"
  70. ^
  71. ^
  72. ^
  73. ^ Mircea Snegur - Labirintul destinului. Memorii, Volumul 1-2, Chişinău, 2007-2008
  74. ^
  75. ^
  76. ^ (Romanian)
  77. ^ Gheorghe E. Cojocaru, The Comintern and the Origins of Moldovanism (Chişinău: Civitas, 2009)
  78. ^ James Stuart Olson, An Ethnohistorical dictionary of the Russian and Soviet empires, Greenwood Publishing Group, 1994, pg. 477
  79. ^ [2]: "It is widely accepted among linguists that Moldovan is the same language as Romanian"
  80. ^ About the controversy over linguistic identity in Montenegro : Pavle Ivić in Standard Language as an Instrument of Culture and the Product of National History


  • John Barron, The KGB, Reader's Digest inc., 1974, ISBN 0-88349-009-9
  • Bugai, Nikolai F.: Deportatsiya narodov iz Ukainyi, Belorussii i Moldavii - Deportation of the peoples from Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova. Druzhba Narodov, Moscow 1998, Dittmar Dahlmann & Gerhard Hirschfeld. - Essen 1999, pp. 567–581
  • Charles Upson-Clark, Bessarabia, Dodd, Mead & Co., N.Y., 1927
  • Frederick Kellogg, A history of Romanian historical writing, Bakersfield, Ca., 1990
  • Charles King, The Moldovans: Romania, Russia, and the politics of culture, Hoover Institution Press, Stanford University, 2000. ISBN 0-8179-9792-X
  • S. Orifici, The Republic of Moldova in the 1990s : from the declaration of independence to a democratic state, Geneve 1994
  • A. Pop, The Soviet-Romanian controversy & Moldova's independence policy, Romanian review of international studies, 26, 1992
  • Hugh Seton-Watson, New nations & states, London 1997
  • Roger-William Seton-Watson, A history of the Romanians, Cambridge Univ. Press 1934
  • G. Simon, Nationalism & Policy toward nationalities in the Soviet Union, Boulder, S.F., Ca, & Oxford, 1991

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