Territorial and National Identity in Nineteenth-Century Slovakia

Scholarly descriptions of nineteenth-century Slovak national discourses generally focus on three main themes: Pan-Slavism, Czechoslovakism, and Slovak particularism.  The goal of this paper is to draw attention to a fourth orientation: self-identification with Hungary. This affiliation existed in clear distinction to ethnic Hungarian identity, and must not be confused with assimilation or Magyarization.  Such loyalty to Hungary coexisted with self-identification as a Slav: Slavic patriots rejected assimilation to Magyarism, emphasized inter-ethnic "brotherhood," and declared their commitment to both the Hungarian Kingdom and their native language.  Such "Hungaro-Slavism" penetrated the thought of such illustrious members of the Slovak national pantheon as Anton Bernolak, Jiri Palkovic, Miroslav Hurban and Ludovit Stur. The purpose of this discussion is to document this tendency, and suggest some of its more salient implications for the history of nationalism in general, and Slovak national awakening in particular.