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History-before-1900

The History of Lithuania ’ s National Anthem

by Zigmas Tamakauskas. The word himnas, which is what Lithuanians call their national anthem, comes from the Greek word hymnos, a holy and solemn song used to worship the gods in ancient times. Here we will focus on Lithuania’s current anthem, while mentioning songs that at one time or another were ...

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Lithuanians and the Vikings

by Algis Rukšėnas. The recent television series The Vikings has reawakened interest in the historical period in which they reigned, the accuracy of descriptions about them and their ways, and their relationship to groups with which they came into contact during their ascendancy from about 793 to 1066; the period ...

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REMEMBERING ROMAS KALANTA

By ALGIRDAS PATACKAS.   Liberty, a flame and oxygen Romas Kalantas’ sacrifice recalled – an eyewitness account May 14, 1972.Word spreads through Kaunas that a young man set himself on fire in a city park. Why? No one knows. But soon we connect the dots. His motives appear to be similar ...

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Jonas Buračas

by Simona Makselienė.   Jonas Buračas was born on August 8, 1898 in the village of Sidariai, Šiauliai county. The Buračas family apparently transmitted a creativity gene to all three brothers: Jonas, Balys, and Bronius. Jonas was the painter, Balys a famous photographer (the history of Lithuanian photography is closely ...

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THE RETURN OF CHARLES PANSIRNA – A LEGACY UNCOVERED

By GEDIMINAS INDREIKA. The exhibit at Purdue University’s Robert L. Ringel GalleryWhat Will You Remember When I’m Gone (October 27 to December 6, 2014) offers a rare glimpse into the work of Charles Pansirna, a distinguished Lithuanian-American photographer. The exhibit also displays contemporary photographs by Owen Mundy, though primarily military portraits ...

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A Summer that Offers No Respite

Kristijonas Donelaitis describes how the 18th Century Lithuanian spent his summer By VILIUS RUDRA DUNDZILA. Kristijonas Donelaitis’ epic poem, The Seasons is divided into four parts, each focusing on a different season of the year. Each part describes the joys, toils and foibles of Lithuanian peasant life at that time ...

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The Samogitian Steam-Flyer of Aleksandras Griskevicius

Before the advent of modern aeronautics, men first attempted flight by wearing wings and jumping off towers, then tried hang-gliders, ornithopters, hot-air balloons, and steam-powered, heavier-than-air flying machines—aerodynes. Aleksandras Griškevičius (1809- 1863), a Lithuanian philosopher and inventor, experimented with such early modes of flying and combined their most promising features ...

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The Father of Lithuanian literature Kristijonas Donelaitis

By VILIUS DUNDZILA. Donelaitis was born January 1, 1714, near Gumbinė (German: Gumbinen, Russian: Gusev). At the time, it was part of East Prussia, also known as Lithuania Minor; it is now under Russian administration, which renamed it Kaliningrad Oblast. These lands, beyond the Nemunas River, were for many years Lithuanian ...

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The Tatars and Karaim of Lithuania

The first Lithuanian State, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (GDL), which existed from the thirteenth to the eighteenth century, was basically an emanation of the Lithuanian people, but also a multinational and multicultural state. The Lithuanians concentrated at the core were about one third of its population; the rest were ...

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Seeking Lithuania’s Past in Belarus

On each of our trips to Vilnius, my husband Paul and I make it a point to leave Old Town, where we always base ourselves and spend most of our time, to stroll along Gediminas Prospect in New Town. It’s a one-mile walk along a route lined with cafes and ...

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