The Slovenia Times

Birthday of Slovenia's greatest poet celebrated with free events


As part of the Merry Day of Culture, numerous performances, exhibitions, concerts, lectures, guided tours and workshops, including for children, will be held across Slovenia.

President Borut Pahor will visit the National Gallery after renovation and see an exhibition of paintings and drawings by Rihard Jakopič (1869-1943), the most prominent representative of Slovenian Impressionism.

Culture Minister Julijana Bizjak Mlakar will also visit the gallery.

The open day was launched by the Culture Ministry in 2000 as part of celebrations of the 200th anniversary of Prešeren's birth. Over the years it has evolved into a national cultural project attracting masses.

Turnout at cultural venues is usually higher only on the 8 February Culture Day holiday and the summer museum night. Museums also welcome visitors free of charge on International Museum Day on 18 May.

According to head of the Association of Slovenian Museums Aleksandra Berberih Slana, these culture days unite Slovenians.

"The day is somehow adopted by the people as a day when visiting at least one institution is a must, so they come for a visit," she has told the STA.

Born on 3 December, Prešeren (1800-1849), a poet of the Romantic era, is considered Slovenia's greatest poet.

A stanza of his "Zdravljica" (Toast) which calls for the brotherhood and freedom of all peoples is the lyrics of the Slovenian national anthem.


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