Published on March 21, 2009
B adea Cârţan 1849-1911 Famous Romanians
(roughly: Brother Cârţan) is the common nickname of Gheorghe Cârţan Badea Cârţan
Badea Cârţan (1849-1911) was a self-taught scholar and Romanian patriot. He fought for the independence of the Romanians of Transylvania.
He was born in a picturesque village called Cârţişoara, in Sibiu County, as the second child of poor peasants.
Sheepfold next to Badea Cârţan’s house Badea Cârţan spent his childhood tending sheep at the edge of his village . He became the head of his family at the age of 16 , with the death of his father.
In those times Transylvania was under Hungarian rule , inside Austria-Hungary.
Badea C â r ţ an secretly brought Romanian-language books from the Romanian Kingdom and distributed them to Transylvanian villages.
In all he smuggled some 200,000 books for pupils, priests, teachers and peasants; he used several routes to pass through the Făgăraş Mountains.
Badea Cârţan first crossed the mountains into the Romanian Old Kingdom with his sheep and a friend at the age of 18, and it was at that time that his interest in Romanian national unity became powerful.
Badea Cârţan was most interested in the Latin origin of the Romanian people and wished to see Trajan's Column in Rome with his own eyes and so… Detail of the column’s relief
… Badea Cârţan made a journey on foot to Rome, wearing a pair of peasant sandals, made of leather (“opinci”). When he arrived at the city's edge, after 45 days , he said, “ opinci” "Pleased to meet you, mother Rome!“
After pouring Romanian soil and wheat at the column's base, he wrapped himself in a peasant's coat (cojoc) and fell asleep at the column's base. Trajan’s Column in the middle of Trajan’s Forum in Rome
The next day he was awakened by a policeman who shouted in amazement, " A Dacian has fallen off the column!“, as Cârţan was dressed just like the Dacians carved into the column.
The event was reported in Rome’s newspapers and Badea Cârţan was introduced to the most important people in Rome.
Badea Cârţan made three visits to Rome; on his last, in October 1899, on the occasion of the International Congress of Orientalists, he laid a wreath at the column's base.
He was buried in Sinaia, on soil belonging to independent Romania. On the stone cross atop his grave is inscribed the phrase: "Here lies Badea Cârţan dreaming of the unity of his people".
A sculpture representing Badea Cârţan
Memorial House in Cârţişoara, where Badea Cârţan spent his childhood.
Inside the house
THE END THE END THE END Traditional Folk Music from Sibiu County
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