Steme domneşti şi "Stihuri la Gherbul Ţării" pe vechi tipărituri din Ţara Românească şi Moldova / Lines for the Coat of Arms of the Country on Old Wallachian and Moldavian Printings
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|Excerpt||Since the 17th century and especially in the 18th century, on the first pages of the Romanian prints, most of them with a religious character, were printed the coat of arms of the Romanian Principalities together with the lines for the anus of the country. This proceeding was a general one in the Balkan area but the beneficiary of the print used this method in order to enable the circulation of some information of heraldic, genealogic and historical order. It was meant to help the spreading of some cultural or political knowledges for the profane people for strengthening the cultural unity as well as the feeling of national belonging for all the Romanians that lived separated in three principalities.
The initiative belonged to some enlightened princes: Matei Basarab, Vasile Lupu, Şerban Cantacuzino,
Constantin Brâncoveanu, the Mavrocordates or the Ghikas. They were helped by erudite scholars, monks or lays, as part of a well thought and good directed schedule.
Besides the laudative character of the verses that have a low literary value and bring only a minor contribution to the heraldic studies, the influence of some innovating inventions clearly shows up.
In the period of the 17th – 18th centuries there were traced the premises for the modernization of the Romanian Countries. The future directions of the national history were made clear too. They aimed the modernization of the social and political frameworks, the struggle for unity and for the remove of the Ottoman suzerainty.
The paper introduces six prints from the collections of the National History Museum of Romania. They all have unwonted emblems together with emblematic lines.
Five of them are in Romanian: "ANTALOGHION-ADECA FLOAREA CUVINTELOR" printed in 1700 at the
Diocese of Râmnic: "Evanghelia" ("The Gospel"), printed in 1746 at the same diocese. "TRIOD" (TRIODION), printed in 1747 at Iaşi, "PRAVOSLAVNICA ÎNVĂŢĂTURA" ("The Orthodox Lesson"), printed in 1794 at the print-house of the Metropolitan Church in Bucharest and "SCRISOAREA MOLDOVEI" ("Descriptio Moldaviae") by Dimitrie Cantemir, printed in 1825 at Iaşi. The last one is written in Greek - "NOMOTHESIA", by loan Gheorghe Caragea, printed in 1818 at Vienna.
From the lines for the coat of arms of the country, and especially from "the Prefaces", one may draw the conclusion that in the Romanian Principalities (in the capitals, besides the Metropolitan churches, dioceses or monasteries), strong cultural centres did exist. They did maintain the Romanian spirituality in a tight contact all over the three Romanian countries, spreading on the whole Balkan area, introducing ideas that were the same for all Europe.
The majority of the books printed and spread on large areas were religious works (but also historical, law and didactic ones). The Orthodoxy was the "vehicle" that helped to the spreading of some advanced ideas, either cultural or political. Their effect was magnified by the public comment made in churches before the divine service started. The original character of the Romanian civilization was maintained in this way.
The Romanian people has a Latin origin and adopted the Orthodox religion, being the continuer and keeper of the values that were inherited after the falling of the Byzantine Empire.
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