CROATIA (2021)-Famous Croats- Mathematician, Opera Singer, etc. (4v)

Frequently bought together:


William Feller

William Feller is a prominent Croatian-American mathematician born on 7 July 1906 in Zagreb to the famous pharmacy family Feller. He studied mathematics for the first two years at the University of Zagreb, and continued it in Göttingen, where he received his doctorate as early as in 1926, from the famous mathematician Richard Courant. With the advent of Nazism on European soil, he emigrated from Europe in 1939 to the United States. He initially worked at Brown and Cornell Universities, and from 1950 at Princeton University. For the journal Zentralblatt für Mathematik 1934, Feller wrote a review of A. N. Kolmogorov's famous book Grundbegriffe der Wahrscheinlichkeitsrechnung. He was one of the initiators and first editors-in-chief of the journal Mathematical Reviews 1939. Feller was also listed among the founders of probability theory as a scientific discipline. He is best known for his monograph An Introduction to Probability Theory and Its Applications translated into Russian, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, Polish and Hungarian. It should be mentioned that approximately 150 mathematical terms bear his name.

He was entrusted with a plenary lecture at the International Mathematical Congress in Edinburgh in 1958. In 1953 in Zagreb he gave a lecture in Croatian entitled Mathematical Theory of Diffusion. According to professor Vladimir Vranic, Feller’s friend, “...not only did Vilim Feller not hide his Croatian descent, but was also proud of it.”

W. Feller was a member of several national academies: the former Yugoslav Academy of Sciences and Arts in Zagreb, the Royal Danish Academy, the US National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in Boston and the Royal Statistical Society in London, and also an honorary member of the London Mathematical Society. Feller won the prestigious National Medal of Science in 1969, also called Presidential Award, an honour bestowed by the President of the United States, and his widow Clara received it posthumously in 1970. To this day, Feller remains the only Croatian scientist with such recognition. William Feller died on 14 January 1970 in New York, where he is buried, and his name is engraved on the family tomb in Zagreb's Mirogoj cemetery. Professor Darko Žubrinić, PhD

Tonko Maroević

A writer and art historian, artist and scientist, academician Tonko Maroević was the personification of the best in contemporary Croatian culture. Present at the highest academic levels and in the media, the custodian of criteria, he connected professions, environments and times. Art historian Radovan Ivančević said that "painters paint and writers write for Tonko Maroević", and he indebted this country and people with his poetic, essayistic, critical, translation, editorial, encyclopedic, lecturing, mentoring work, and incomparable erudition and tolerance.

He was born in Split on 22 October 1941. His paternal home town Stari Grad, Roman Ager Pharensis and Petar Hektorović's Tvrdalj were his homeland and point of origin, but early on, he chose the library as his true as his true geographical domicile. When he first came to Zagreb with his father as a little boy and saw the old University Library, he decided on where he would live.

He completed the Classical Grammar School in Split, and in 1963 he graduated in comparative literature and art history in Zagreb. He was an assistant to Professor Milan Prelog, and until his retirement - in fact, for the rest of his life - he was employed at the Institute of Art History. He received his doctorate in 1976 ("Croatian Literature and Fine Arts from Modern to the Present"). He has lectured at many universities in the country and abroad, held many public positions (Vice President of Matica hrvatska, Croatian P.E.N. Centre, etc.). In 2002 he became a full member of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts. He was also a member of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts and the Montenegrin Academy of Sciences and Arts.

He published his first, notable book of poems, Primjeri (Examples) in 1965, followed by eight more collections. From "modeling" syntax to classical expression, he is characterized by an abundance of associations and references, a lively dialogue with the literature and culture of the world. He loved the form of sonnets and especially loved applying it his occasional poems. He compiled two anthologies of contemporary Croatian poetry and two anthologies of Catalan poetry. He was the greatest connoisseur of old Croatian literature. He also dealt with the connections between Croatian and Italian literature. He has published six books of literary criticism and essays, as well as a huge number of translations from Italian, Catalan, Spanish, French and Slovenian. The translation of Borges resulted in the book Borgesov čitatelj (Borges' Reader). His famous translation of Dante's Vita nova with Mirko Tomasović, and their Plavca nova, an anthological selection from Marulić's poetry (1971), was, during the Croatian Spring, one of the reference points of the self-consciousness of the Croatian people. Maroević was the co-author of several theater plays (the most famous being Stilske vježbe (Stylistic Exercises) with Tomislav Radić). He edited a dozen selected and collected works of modern Croatian writers, especially for Matica's Stoljeća hrvatske književnosti (Centuries of Croatian literature).

At least as extensive was his work in the field of art, where the bibliography of his scientific and professional papers exceeds the four-digit number. He contributed countless forewords and afterwords to both classics and young authors, and more than twenty capital monographs, from Nives Kavurić-Kurtović, Marina Tartaglia, Kosta Angeli Radovani, Vojin Bakić, Zlatko Bourek to Miroslav Šutej and Ivan Lesiak.

He received numerous awards, including the Vladimir Nazor Award for his life's work, and the coveted Goranov vijenac (Goran's Wreath) for his poetry. Italy awarded him the medal "Commendatore della Repubblica Italiana". He died on 11 August 2020 in Stari Grad and Croatia has seldom been so united in tribute and grief. This text has barely scratched the surface relating to the volume of Maroević's work, but it shows, at least to some extent, why Croatian Post included Tonko Maroević in the list of famous Croats.

Academician Željka Čorak

Antun Mihanović

Antun Mihanović, a Croatian writer and politician, was born on 10 June 1796 in Zagreb, where he completed grammar school and graduated in philosophy and law, and in 1813 began working as a court notary. From 1815 he served as a military judge and resided mainly in Italy (Venice and Padua), then as an administrative clerk in Rijeka, and from 1836 to 1858 he was the Austrian consul in Belgrade, Thessaloniki, Smyrna, Constantinople and Bucharest. For some time, he travelled America trading in wines. He died in Novi Dvori near Klanjec on 14 November 1861.

In a Kajkavian dialect he wrote the Enlightenment and Renaissance treatise Reč domovini od hasnovitosti pisanja vu domorodnom jeziku (A Word to the Homeland about the Benefits from Writing in Mother Tongue) (Vienna, 1815), in which he advocated the introduction of a single national language, following the example of the great European nations. In 1818 in Venice, he discovered a transcript of Gundulić's Osman and published a to proclamation on the need for publishing it, but no avail. He wrote love and patriotic poems and discovered several monuments of early Slavic literacy (the Zograf Gospel, Mihanović's apostle).

As a supporter of the Illyrian movement, in Gaj’s newspaper Danica in 1835 he published a romantic reveille Horvatska domovina (Croatian Homeland), in which Croatia is a beautiful and famous country, and Croats are a historically old, brave and freedom-loving people. The first and second, and the last and penultimate stanzas became the text of the Croatian anthem named after the first verse - Lěpa naša domovino (Our Beautiful Homeland). The tune was composed in 1846 by border officer Josif Runjanin. It gained general popularity at the end of the century, and was officially considered the Croatian national anthem after it was performed in 1891. It was first performed in the Parliament on 29 October 1918, during the cessation of state relations between Croatia and Austria-Hungary. By the decision of the Parliament, Lijepa naša (Our Beautiful) became the anthem of the Socialist Republic of Croatia in 1972. The verse Kud li šumiš, svijetu reci (Wherever you go, tell the world) was changed in 1990 to the verse Sinje more, svijetu reci. (Blue sea, tell the world) and that version was confirmed by the Constitution of the Republic of Croatia as the national anthem.

Professor Vinko Brešić, PhD

Ljiljana Molnar-Talajić

She was one of the greatest Croatian and international opera and concert artists. She pursued careers in the New York Metropolitan Opera, the Vienna State Opera, the Scala in Milan, the Covent Garden Royal Opera in London, the Arena in Verona and many other world music centres. They called her "La Molnar."

Ljiljana Molnar Talajić was born in 1938 in Bosanski Brod, and died in 2007 in Zagreb. She received her education in Sarajevo and spent 15 years at the opera. As a student she won a medal at the Madame Butterfly International Competition in Tokyo, and she was revealed to the world by Zubin Mehta inviting her to interpret Aida and Verdi’s Requiem at the Maggio musicale Fiorentino festival. She soon became the most famous Aida in the world, "the last true Verdi soprano of the 20th century." Amelia in Crab Dance, both Leonoras in Troubadour and The Power of Destiny, Elizabeth in Don Carlo, Desdemona in Othello, as well as Puccini's Butterfly and Bellini's Norma, with Verdi's Requiem are part of the repertoire of her magically beautiful soprano of soft lines, dazzling heights, delicate pianos and natural emotional interpretation.

She often returned to Croatia from world tours and performed in Rijeka, Osijek, Split, Dubrovnik, gave concerts in smaller communities. For several years she worked as an opera champion at the Croatian National Theater and as a professor at the Music Academy in Zagreb. Among many recognitions, she received the Vladimir Nazor Lifetime Achievement Award.

Musicologist Jagoda Martinčević

View AllClose