Dialect A

Traditional music of Slovenians from Raba River region. Recordings made by Béla Vikár.

Comments to the recordings are written by Dr Marija Klobčar.

Recordings of the songs made by the Hungarian researcher Béla Vikár in 1898 in Csendlak (Tišina) in Prekmurje reveal part of the song heritage of the easternmost area inhabited by Slovenes. When theses recordings were created this area was part of the Hungarian Kingdom, its official name was Vend Region. After the First World War, the area was divided into Prekmurje, which is now part of Slovenia, and the Rába Valley, which belongs to Hungary. Knowledge of the Csendlak recordings got lost, due to the formation of these new national frameworks so Vujičić’s discovery of these recordings therefore has exceptional documentary and cultural value for the Slovenes: they are the oldest sound recordings of folk songs in the Slovene language, and by their language and content these sound recordings simultaneously reveal the social situation of the Hungarian Slovenes at the turn of the century.

The area between the Mura and Rába Rivers to which the Csendlak recordings belong is marked by the Prekmurje dialect, which had already had a centuries-old tradition as the literary language at the time of the recordings. The recorded songs thus show, on the vocabulary and lexical level, the effects of neighbouring dialects and languages which the Prekmurje Slovenes encountered during their seasonal work, and the modest influences of the standard Slovene language, which they came across through Slovene literature during the process of increasing Hungarization.

Assessment of the linguistic accuracy of the transcriptions of the Csendlak records is therefore very relative: in individual songs, we encounter different reflexes for certain voices, and in some cases the differences exist even within individual songs. This may reflect different recognitions of voices during transcription, but certainly also a different degree of dialectal character in the singing of selected songs or even within them. Transcriptions therefore mostly preserve the authenticity of Vujičić’s records: the linguistic unification of the records would eliminate traces of intercultural contacts expressed by the recordings or alter the perception of the language captured on wax cylinders in 1998 by Béla Vikár for the Hungarian-speaking world and the descendants of a place unknown to the world – Csendlak (Tišina), Prekmurje.

NM-MH 1224a

NM-MH 1225a

NM-MH 1225b

NM-MH 1224c

NM-MH 1223a