On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of Hungarian-Slovenian diplomatic relations, the National Széchényi Library, the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia and the Department of Slavic Philology of Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest, in close professional partnership, opened the exhibition Vivat Slovenija!/Vivat Slovenia! in the Hungarian National Library. The opening – which was immediately preceded by the signing of a cooperation agreement between Viljem Leban, Director General of the National and University Library of Ljubljana, and Dávid Rózsa, Director General of the National Széchényi Library at the presidential palace of the republic – marks the further strengthening of the excellent diplomatic relations between the two countries.
The event was graced by the presence of the President of the Republic of Hungary, Katalin Novák, the President of the Republic of Slovenia, Nataša Pirc Musar, and representatives of forty-six countries, including twenty-nine ambassadors.
In his welcome speech, Dávid Rózsa emphasised that the opening of the chamber exhibition was a chance for people who understand each other’s history to share their time and thoughts. Katalin Novák stressed that our common cultural treasures together enrich Europe’s cultural heritage and recalled that both Hungary and the Republic of Slovenia pay special attention to the Slovenian and Hungarian communities living on their territory. Nataša Pirc Musar drew parallels between Sándor Petőfi and France Prešeren, and stressed the importance of reading. She stressed that books are an important tool for the survival of generations and that reading is not only a skill and a discipline, but also an indispensable means of deepening our knowledge and broadening our horizons.
The backbone of the exhibition is the history of the reception of Slovenian literature in Hungary, with a special focus on the translations (poetry books, novels, storybooks, anthologies) of the last thirty years, which number nearly eighty volumes.