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Neufchatel: Samuel Faulche & Co., 1765, ,,TRANSYLVANIA,,

(summary of translation; notes)

Transylvania is a European principality and one of the territories of Hungary. On the N it borders partly on Poland, partly on Moldavia, on the E on Moldavia, on the S on Wallachia and on the W on Hungary. The Hungarians in Transylvania live most densely along the Maros River, the Wallachians (Valaques) in areas contiguous to Moldavia and Russia, and the Saxons inhabit the rest. Since 1690 Transylvania has been under the government of the Austrian (Habsburg) House, and its capital is Hermannstadt. - This country comprises that part of ancient Dacia which the river Körös separates from Hungary. At one stage the Romans turned the area in question into the province of Dacia. After Emperor Aurelian had ordered its evacuation, there still remained several inscriptions, public roads, the ruins of Trajan's bridge and other ancient monuments. The emperors of Byzantium became inheritors of Dacia, but the Roman Empire decayed. The Huns broke in from all sides. St. Stephen, first king of Hungary, conquered the area in question in 1001 and spread Christianity there, too. The area's governing was always done by a voivode or viceroy.

N.B. The actual description of Transylvania is much longer, as befitted an area which in the 16th and 17th centuries was self-governing and in 1648 signed the Treaty of Westphalia (Westfalen) which ended the 30 Years War in which it had significantly participated on the Protestant side. It is of no little importance that this French encyclopedia did not mention the Daco-Roman theory even in passing, although such a theory would have been of quite some interest especially to a people steeped in classical studies as the French always have been.


Paris: (?), 1851, ,,TRANSYLVANIA,,

(summary of translation; notes)

Transylvania (Transylvania; Hungarian Erdély Ország [Erdély Country]; Wallachian Ardalu; German Siebenbürgen). The area in question is a province of the Austrian/Habsburg Empire. On the N and W it borders on Hungary, on the S on Wallachia (Valaquie), on the E on Moldavia (Moldavie). Transylvania forms a part of the region which is called ,,Roumanie" or ancient Dacia, in which it takes in the central part. Unfortunately this beautiful area lacks in good roads and trade outlets. The lack of good communications, the backward state of its civilization and the mutual antagonism of its ethnic groups stand in the way of the development of its natural riches. Its population in 1849 was as follows: Germans 250,000; Slavs 8,488; Rumanians or Wallachians 1,290,000; Magyars/Hungarians 556,500; Armenians 9,000; Jews 6,000; Bohemians 7,000.

N.B. Transylvania's government by Hungarian magnates, under Turkish suzerainty, came to an end with the expulsion of the Turks from central Hungary between 1686 and 1699. Thereafter the Habsburg kings of Hungary had almost direct government over Transylvania (with one interruption in the early 18th century), until 1848 when Transylvania again became an integral part of Hungary. After Hungary was defeated in the War of Independence (1848-49) by the combined imperial armies of Austria and tsarist Russia, the union was annulled by Vienna. In 1867 the Austro-Hungarian Compromise fully restored it.

The statement that ,,Transylvania forms a part of the region which is called 'Roumanie' or 'ancient Dacia',, has to be seen in the light of Wallachian/Rumanian claims of the day, strongly supported by Vienna. This support was due to the collusion between the Habsburgs and the Wallachians/Rumanians of Transylvania during the 1848-49 Hungarian War of Independence. In 1851 there was still no theory of Daco-Roman continuity accepted or acceptable in French encyclopedias.


Paris: (?), 1876, ,,Transylvania,,

(summary of translation; notes)

Transylvania (Transilvania; German Siebenbürgen; Hungarian Erdély Ország [Erdély Country]) is a part of the Austrian Empire. The name Transylvania comes from Hungarian and means 'beyond the forest(-line)'. The area in question was inhabited by the Dacians whom Trajan conquered; subsequently he established the Roman province Dacia Traiana. After its abandonment by Aurelian, it became the prey of the Goths, Huns and Avars. In 1004, Stephen, king of Hungary, conquered it. Between 1004 and 1526, it was a province of Hungary. From 1526 (the Battle of Mohács) until 1699 (the Treaty of Carlowitz) it was self-governing under Turkish suzerainty. From 1700 until the present day it has been under Austrian/Habsburg rule. During the 1848-49 Hungarian War of Independence against Habsburg, Vienna encouraged the Transylvanian Saxons and Wallachians against the Hungarians who fought for the Union of Transylvania with Hungary. In 1865 the Union of Transylvania with Hungary was re-established by legislation.

N.B. The description closes with a list of names of voivodes/princes who ruled Transylvania from 1526 until 1699. They were all Hungarian magnates (no mention is made of the Wallachian voivode Michael the Brave who, for ten months, ruled Transylvania with a Székely-Hungarian army by the authority of emperor-king Rudolf in 1599-1600). The long article on Transylvania is fair, although somewhat out of date for 1876. - It is significant that the Daco-Roman continuity theory was not mentioned by this encyclopedia.


Paris: Société Anonyme de la Grande Encyclopédie, 1901

This work contains no separate article ,,Transylvania,,, but reference is made to Hungary and Rumania.


Paris: Libraire Larousse, 1907, ,,Transylvania,,

(summary of translation; notes)

Transylvania (Transylvanie or Transilvanie) is a region of the Austrian Empire. It is surrounded by the Carpathians and the Transylvanian Alps. The number of its inhabitants is 2,251,000, and they are called Transylvanians.

N.B. Fully reintegrated into the Kingdom of Hungary in 1867, Transylvania was by no means merely ,,a region of the Austrian Empire" in 1907, but that of the Kingdom of Hungary, and within it that of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. The information provided by this encyclopedia/lexicon about Transylvania was not up-to-date.


Paris: Libraire Larousse, 1908

Although a good description is given of a breed of bare-necked fowl, which is thought to have originated in Transylvania, no word is lost on the land which was a signatory of the Treaty of Westphalia (Westfalen) in 1648, ending the Thirty Years War in which it had taken a significant part on the Protestant side.


Paris: Libraire Larousse, 1914, ,,Transylvania,,

(summary of translation; notes)

Transylvania (Transylvanie; German Siebenbürgen; Hungarian Erdély; Rumanian Ardealu) is a region of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Its area is 58,900km2; its population is 2,231,000, composed of Hungarians, Saxons, Wallachians, Bulgars, Poles, Moravians, Ruthenians, Bohemians, Greeks and Armenians. This land is very rich by nature, especially in minerals. It is divided into 15 counties (comitats), and its main towns are: Kolozsvár, Hermannstadt, Kronstadt, Besztercze, Dés, Karlsburg, Szász-Régen, Nagy-Enyed. In the distant past the area in question was a part of the Dacian realm which in 105 A.D. was conquered by Trajan. About the middle of the 12th century Géza II called German colonists into Transylvania who, under the general name ,,Saxons,, founded the main towns which still exist. In 1526 Transylvania became an independent principality. In 1867 the Austrians reunited it with their possessions, and since then it has formed a part of Austria-Hungary.

N.B. This encyclopedia gave the then correct size of the area and its correct population number. As regards Transylvania's history, the article is quite scanty and not very useful, having jumped from the early 2nd century to the mid-12th, without saying anything about events and peoples in the meantime. Again, it was not the Austrians, but the Hungarians who reunited Transylvania with Hungary after some 260 years of Austrian rule during which the Hungarians of Transylvania had some, but not relevant, say, while Vienna favoured the Saxons and Wallachians/Rumanians to the real detriment of the Hungarians. For instance in 1784 and 1848-49, when thousands upon thousands of unarmed Hungarians were butchered by unrestrained Wallachian/Rumanian marauders while Austrian troops remained inactive and secretly supportive of the marauders.

Although no mention is made of the Daco-Roman theory, the encyclopedia does not say a word about the creation of the Hungarian state, including Erdély/Transylvania, from 895 on, nor does it say that Géza II, who called in German colonists from 1143 onward, was not perchance a voivode of Transylvania, but ruled the whole of Hungary from 1141 until 1162. On the basis of such insufficient information and even errors, how could Frenchmen and others using this encyclopedia have formed a true picture of Transylvania during WW I, at the end of which French, British, Italian, American, Japanese, Canadian etc. politicians gave Transylvania - which in terms of the Treaty of Trianon comprised not 58,900km2 , but 102,787km2 - to Rumania without a plebiscite?

It is significant that the article in question does not speak of a Daco-Rumanian continuity in Transylvania.


Paris: Libraire Larousse, 1920, ,,TRANSYLVANIA,,

(summary of translation; notes)

Transylvania (Transylvanie or Transilvanie) is a region of the kingdom of Rumania. It is surrounded by the Carpathian Mountains and the Transylvanian Alps. The number of its inhabitants is 2,251,000 who are called Transylvanians.

N.B. The area designated as Transylvania in the terms of the 1920 Treaty of Trianon (at Versailles, outside of Paris) had at that time not 2,251,000 inhabitants, but - according to the 1910 Hungarian census - 5,265,444, of whom 2,800,073 were Rumanians, 1,704,851 Hungarians, 559,824 Germans, the rest of other ethnic backgrounds.

The writer of the article in question simply copied the aggregate population number from the 1907 edition of Petit Larousse Illustré. How simple! And the data of French encyclopedias were thought to be reliable. Besides the main architect of the Versailles Treaties was Mr. George Benjamin Clémenceau, Prime Minister of France during WW I.


Paris: Libraire Larousse, 1941, ,,TRANSYLVANIA,,

(summary of translation; notes)

Transylvania (Transylvanie; Rumanian Ardeal; German Siebenbürgen; Hungarian Erdély) is a region of the Kingdom of Rumania and Hungary, separated from the Sub-Carpathian Basin of the Danube by the Transylvanian Alps and the central range of the Carpathians; on the N it borders on Sub-Carpathian Ruthenia. Its size is 57,800km2, the number of its inhabitants is 3,217,150, who are called Transylvanians. Its capital is Cluj. - This region served as a refuge to populations which the barbarian invasions chased away from the surrounding plains. One finds there Slavs, Hungarians, Germans, Greeks, but above all Rumanians. - This region was inhabited by a population comprised in its great majority of Rumanians, among whom were introduced, in the 12th century, significant German (Saxon) colonies. - In the course of time Transylvania formed a part of the Dacian Kingdom, the Roman Empire (from 107 onward), and the Hungarian Kingdom from the 11th century. In 1526 it became an independent principality; in 1686 it had to recognize Habsburg rule. Transylvania's entire political life was taken up with efforts in defending its nationality against attempts of Magyarization on the part of the Hungarian governments to which it was directly subordinated after 1867. The Great War permitted Transylvania to split away from Hungary and to vote for reunion with Rumania. This vote was confirmed by the Treaty of Trianon (4th of June, 1920). As a result of an arbitration (in August, 1940), Rumania ceded a part (45,000km2) of Transylvania (North Transylvania) to Hungary, together with the town of Cluj.

N.B. The writer of the above article must have had some strange ideas about Transylvania. He/she asserts that into Transylvania's population, which was in its large majority Rumanian, significant German colonists were introduced. Introduced by whom? Doesn't the good name of a grand encyclopedia like Larousse du XXe Siécle require that the authority which called or brought in those ,,significant German colonies" be named? Or was the above article inspired by deceitful Bucharest propagandists who wanted to persuade everybody, with the help of famous encyclopedias, that as early as the 12th century the Wallachians/Rumanians inhabited Transylvania in a large majority?

In fact at that time there were no Wallachians in Transylvania yet, and Géza II, king of Hungary, who called in German colonists from 1143 on may never have seen a single Wallachian in his entire life. - While the article admits that from the 11th century Transylvania formed a part of the Kingdom of Hungary, it says nothing about Transylvania's Christianization, organization, defence by Hungarians and Germans against many onslaughts, nor does it mention the fact that eastern Hungary, including Transylvania, needed especially strong defence because of its exposed nature to the east.

The writer of the article simply jumps to 1526 when, as a result of the Turkish occupation of central Hungary, Transylvania became a semi-independent principality under Turkish suzerainty. Nothing is said of the fact that it was exactly in Transylvania where practically all the institutions and the main strength of the former Kingdom of Hungary survived, while the principality was governed by Hungarians until the end of the Turkish occupation of Hungary at the turn of the 17th and 18th centuries. Why this omission? One can extrapolate the likely answer from the assertion that ,,Transylvania's entire political life was taken up with efforts in defending its nationality against attempts of Magyarization on the part of the Hungarian governments". What nationality? Did the Hungarians of Transylvania, who for centuries formed a decisive majority there, need to fear Magyarization? Was the writer of the article so ignorant as to believe that, or was he/she taken in by the Bucharest propagandists according to whom Transylvania has always been inhabited by a large majority of Wallachians/Rumanians?

On 1st of December 1918 it was not maltreated Transylvania which voted for ,,reunion" with Rumania, but exclusively Rumanian activists and onlookers who had travelled to Gyulafehérvár (in Rumanian translation Alba Iulia) free of charge on trains placed at their disposal by the Hungarian government which had invited them for discussion. In fact, that voting was no plebiscite at all, thus it was invalid even as far as it concerned the Rumanians of Transylvania.

The Vienna Arbitration Decision of August 1940 restituted not 45,000km2, but 43,104km2 to Hungary, against the total area of 102,787km2 given to Rumania in 1920. Against these figures the beginning of the article speaks of a total area of 57,800km2. How come? Was the writer of the article both ignorant and biased?

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