Zsigmond Jakó, the Scholar of the History
Twentieth century historiography shows a powerful tendency towards specialization in more fields and branches; this can be mostly observed in the treatment of different historical periods. The antiquity, the Middle Ages, the early modern age and successive ages are duly researched by different scholars; moreover, specialization is to be found within the selfsame periods as well. Among Hungarian historians, it is only rarely that a person specialized in the history of the age of the Árpáds should also write about the high Middle Ages. In addition, it is even more unusual to find a historian who specializes in the period both before and after the battle of Mohács. A researcher interested in more periods or various thematic fields is becoming a true curiosity: small wonder, since the basic rules of the profession impose that the historian cover virtually the whole source material and basic bibliography pertaining to his field, and even this is becoming increasingly impossible in the age of the sky-rocketing expansion and multiplication of source editions and specialized material. To these rare exceptions belongs the mentor of the researchers of the Hungarian Middle Ages and early modern age, the ninety years old Zsigmond Jakó, former professor of Cluj (Kolozsvár) university. This paper is dedicated to present the life-work of professor Jakó. Even a superficial survey of his bibliography shows clearly that, since the outset of his career, professor Jakó has devoted at least as many works to medieval studies as to the early modern age and even to the eighteenth century. Thus, he can hardly be catalogued as an exclusive researcher of one period or another. Similarly, we can hardly say that he treated one specific theme exclusively. Nevertheless, it is clear that all the works of his monumental oeuvre are connected by two common denominators: he is interested almost exclusively in Transylvania, and respectively, that part of Hungary, which was annexed to Romania; also, he was most active in the publishing, editing, and interpretation of (historiographic) sources and relying on them in historical analysis.
Summing up the presentation of the great scholar's vast oeuvre we can conclude that, besides his use of historical documents aiming at completeness, his choice of topics can in effect be divided into two thematic fields. The one builds upon his doctoral thesis – a research of demographic development and of the changes in the percentage of ethnicities, drawing exclusively on historical documents. He returned to this field of study in the last years and throughout his research activity, he obviously regarded his erstwhile tutor, Professor Elemér Mályusz's work as a model. The other is the issue of the intellectuals, which gave him an opportunity for clearing some issues related to cultural history, to the history of writing, to institutional history and to social history. Here, too, the influence of his tutors, Mályusz, István Hajnal and Imre Szentpétery, can be observed.
"…my career has been a great adventure…" Interview with Zsigmond Jakó. Initiated by Mária Lupescu Makó
This interview was realized with the occasion of celebrating the ninety years old Zsigmond Jakó, former professor of Cluj (Kolozsvár) university. The mentor of the researchers of the Hungarian Middle Ages and early mo-dern age, professor Jakó had an interesting and very impressing academic career. The researcher of historiographic sources, professor Jakó graduated Péter Pázmány University (the predecessor in title of present-day ELTE University, Budapest) as a B.A. in History and Latin. He belonged to the legendary class of Professor Elemér Mályusz, notorious for his maximalism. His attachment to the study of sources was further enhanced by the fact that, at the outset of his career, he worked in the Hungarian National Archives, and after 1941 in Cluj, in the archives of the Transylvanian National Museum. In Cluj, under the guidance of Lajos Kelemen, he also learned the love of source materials. His interest in the archive materials is attested by the fact that the majority of his early scientific work treated themes connected to the archives. Thanks to his close connection to historiographic sources, Zsigmond Jakó became one of the most prolific source editors of the Hungarian language area in the second half of the twentieth century. His wide inte-rest in Transylvanian history, not limited to the Middle Ages and the early modern age, is attested by his source editions as well. His interest in source edition and criticism, and the fact that he taught the auxiliary sciences of history at Cluj University lead to his writing, first and foremost comprehensive textbook-like works in paleography. In this interview, besides his career, professor Jakó had been spoken about his family background, the most important stages of his career, his research methods, his private and professional experience towards the World War II, his opinion about the relationship between politics and history, and about his present research plans.
Radna and the Radna Valley in the Middle Ages (1241–1469/1475). A history of possession and settlement.
This study tries to present the history of a highland region of Transsylvania, its political-administrative and etno-demographical evolution till its unification with the Saxon autonomous district.
Primarily there have been aries with different juridical status in this region. The first-mentioned (and for a century, the most important one) of them was Radna/Rodna, a mining town with thousands of German (maybe Bavarian) inhabitants and their own autonomous institutions (magistrate, priest, inn, prison, market place, mills, gold and silver mines, etc.),working out a local law-book (cca 1270). The town (together with the Saxon district from Beszterce/Bistriţa) was the possession of Hungarian queens, that's why it was exempted from the authority of shires (comitatus – megye) and organized as a county (comitatus – ispánság), ruled by an earl (comes) appointed by the royal family. They should not be mistaken for the members of the Radnai family, similary wearing the title comes: these were in fact the local leaders of the German community, named gräve~gereb (which ones could be found in many Saxon settlements from Transsylvania). At the same time, the Radnais weren't the landowners of the town (there were living freeholders submitted only to the king and queen), unless they acquired more than seven surrounding non-privilaged serf-villages (between 1239 and 1291).
Apart from Radna, the settlements from Radna Valley (being serf-villages, too) lay on the territory of Inner Szol-nok-shire. In 1334 we can find here only eight villages (Mákod/Mocod, Naszód/Năsăud, Telcs/Telciu, Nyírme-ző/Feldra, Szentgyörgy/Sângeorz-Băi, Cybles, Korowgh, Hydmezeu, the last there have dissapeared till 1440). Their names suggest us the presence of a very sparse Slavic and Hungarian population. We can find out too, that the landowners of this estate was the up-mentioned Radnai family, but in the middle of the 14th century they lost all their domains (forced by other nobles or by economical needs) and the family has disappeared.
The Radna Valley in cca 1378 (after the extinction of its last owners, the Pogány family) fell to the king and have been joined with the royal domain of Radna. This domain was governed (as a service-estate, called honor) by the Szekler earls, their castellanes and officiales. It seems to me, that because of the despotic local governement of one of the castellanes, Prokop (cca 1400), most of the settlements from the valley became depopulated, and the repeated attempts of the later Szekler earls to bring colonists here, failed. In 1440 both Radna with the royal castle and the villages from valley (now, beside of those from 1334, there are four new settlements: Zágra/Zagra, Szálva/Salva, Rebra, Kisrebra/Rebrişoara) are "in maiori parte ... vacuas et inhabitatoribus destitutas". Probably the decline of the town is caused by the exhaustion of mines – an economical problem, which couldn't be balanced by the presence of the tax office, placed at the commercial route to Poland and Moldavia.
In 1440 the domain was donated by queen Elisabeth to the Jakcs de Kusaly family, with the aim of insuring their aid in the starting civil war (this purpose failed because of the former conflicts of the family with the royal power). The short period of landowning of the Jakcss (till 1451?) is important because of the topographical and demographial informations given by a charter from 1450, relating the division of the estate among the members of the family. According to this, on the domain there were 144 houses (sessio), which means cca 900 souls. Their names shows, that most of these serfs were Rumanian ethnics – we shall meet their leeders (kenez, woyuoda) in the second part of the century. It seems, that the Jakcss succeeded to recolonize the region and to estabilish a new village (Major/Maieru), too. However, the colonization has been continued in the following decades too (in 1495 there are already 444 houses and in 1523 appeared a new village: Hordó/Coşbuc).
The Jakcs family lost this domain in the 1450's because of their conflict with the governor John Hunyadi. That's why in 1467 it is mentioned as a royal estate again. Not for a long time, because in 1469 king Mathias Hunyadi – trying to unite the anti-Turkish defence-sistem from Transsylvania – gave it to the Saxons from Beszterce/Bistriţa district. However, the new status of the territory has been unclear for most of the contemporary people (mainly for collectors of taxes): they considered that it had changed only the landowner, but the region remained part of the shires and the noble-right, while the Saxon people said, that it had become part of their autunomous district and that's why it is duty-free. In his renewed donation (1475), king Mathias accepted the Saxon point of view and offered to Radna the Saxon privileges.
The Experience of Understanding
This paper provides a comprehensive and systematic inquiry on the central problem of contemporary philosophical hermeneutics, the question of understanding. The strain of thoughts starts by the critique of the methodological concept of understanding, as it was worked out in romantic hermeneutics and in social sciences. This is proceeded by a touch upon the approach of fundamental ontology, the Heideggerian concept of existential understanding. The study continues with a detailed exposition of the hermeneutical understanding-concept. This incorporates the scaling of hermeneutical experience as the nexus of negativity, openness, finitude and historicity, the connections of the hermeneutical situation and horizon, the development of the anticipatory- and question-structure of this experience. The study concludes with the presentation of understanding as a process of the tradition of questioning.
The Horses Coaches and His Drivers or the Regulation of the Transylvanian School System Between the Two World Wars
The constrains of the native language instruction was arranged by same discriminative legislation in Roumania between the two WW. This lows eliminated the use of native language in the state instructions system, that resulted in the amplification of the role of religious school system. The effects haven't been neutralized yet. The contemporary generation who grew up in the era of the information inhibitional communist regime don't know or superficially knowthe school history of that time. In this synthesis I vould like to adjust this hiatus.
Erdélyi Múzeum • digitális változat. Készült az Erdélyi Múzeum Egyesület megbízásából az Országos Széchényi Könyvtárban © 2008
Szkennelés és szövegfelismerés: OSZK Dokumentumforgalmazási és reprográfiai szolgálat
Tartalomjegyzék feldolgozás, publikálás: OSZK Elektronikus Dokumentum Központ