PREEMINENT SOUTH-DANUBIAN ROMANIANS: ANDREI ŞAGUNA AND EFTIMIE MURGU
AbstractAt the end of the First World War in 1918, after the break-up of the Habsburg Empire, several national states were constituted, reconstituted or completed. Among them, Romania realized the Great Union on December 1, 1918 by unification with Transylvania and Bessarabia. This was the realization of an ideal pursued for centuries by the Romanian people despite historical vicissitudes. The purpose of the paper is to highlight the special contributions of two personalities, South-Danubian Romanians that stand out in the social, religious, political and economic life in Transylvania and in the rest of the Habsburg Empire in the 19th century, thus creating the prerequisites for the Great Union. The method we used in our research was the direct analysis of various materials such as studies, basic documents, and historical texts concerning the South-Danubian Romanians. Andrei Şaguna, one of the greatest Romanian Orthodox hierarchs, re-established the old Orthodox Metropolitan Church of Transylvania in Alba Iulia. He also activated in the political field especially during the revolutionary year 1848, promoting the rights of Romanians in the Habsburg Empire and strengthening their national identity. Andrei Şaguna also developed the Romanian education system. Eftimie Murgu, emblematic fighter for the rights and the liberties of Romanians in Transylvania, professor and lawyer, revived the flame of national consciousness in the Romanian historical provinces. He has a great contribution in the affirmation of the Latin origin of the Romanian people, and of its national identity. Andrei Şaguna and Eftimie Murgu had an decisive contribution to the preparation of the unification of the country, one as a priest and the other as a civilian.
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