Society's Message

In general, there is very little activity with respect to the promotion, encouragement, knowledge and usage of heraldry in Slovenia today. There has been some limited interest within the context of related activities such as the study of genealogy (family history) in organizations such as the Slovenian Genealogy Society or "Slovensko rodoslovje", and the inclusion of municipal (civic) arms on license plates on vehicles, however, this activity is not enough to elevate heraldry into common knowlege or to invoke regular practice of the art and science of heraldry in the public. Some projects were attempted in the past to resurrect the interest in heraldry, but they failed for a variety of reasons. It is difficult to encapsulate with clarity the principle reasons for the relative chaos and disinterest in heraldry today. In comparison to other neighbouring nations, such as Austria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Macedonia, Serbia, etc., there appears to be far more organized interest and activity in this subject in those nations than can be found in Slovenia.

In speaking with a number of people of Slovenian decent, and Slovenians resident in Slovenia, in general most, if not all have little or no knowledge of heraldry and only have vague knowledge of the history of heraldry in Slovenia. One can only deduce that the reason for this lack of knowledge on the subject of heraldry can be attributed to the various regimes which were in power over the past one hundred and fifty years, which no doubt, had suppressed or discouraged the practice of heraldry because it represented an idea that was inconsistent with the ideology of the powers in place at the time. This suppression provided the regime with a tool to easily implement its heraldic culture with little resistence and displace previous indigenous heraldric traditions and rendering the "new" heraldry traditions as the "de facto standard". However, regimes don't last forever, and the resulting gap in the Slovenian consciousness with respect to its colorful past now requires attention on many levels. Closer examination of history and the integration of history with contemporary culture is critical ensure the survivability of a consistent and viable cultural identity. Simple questions such as: Where did the Slovenian people originate? Where did many of heraldic symbols in use today originate? What were the heraldic practices of medieval region of Slovenia (Carantania, Carniola, Friuli)? Slovenian heraldry as it is today, based on evidence in the form of artifacts and manuscripts, and the visible infusion of heraldry in many historical and ancient architectures throughout Slovenia, must therefore be a significant component of Slovenian history given the indelible mark it has left on the modern symbols employed today. An obvioius example is Slovenia's coat of arms bearing armorial elements from the heraldic armorial bearings of the Count of Celje from over 500 years ago. By virtue of the evidence, clearly visible by anyone visiting historical sites anywhere in Slovenia, can see that heraldry played an important role.

It is the desire of this Society to explore Slovenian heraldry, and make available an unbiased presentation of heraldic material in order to promote, encourage and educate the public on the subject of Slovenian heraldry. The Society's intent to bring together Slovenians who share a common interest in the art and science of heraldry. The membership of the Society will be encouraged to explore heraldry, to research into their familial past leveraging organizations such as the Slovenian Genealogy Society or "Slovensko rodoslovje", and determine if they are able to assume an existing coat of arms. If the member's family history does not include a coat of arms, through the membership in the Society, it may be possible to create a new armorial bearing for the member, and have it displayed in the Society's Roll of Arms. It is hoped that through the association with the Society, the membership will not only learn more about the art and science of heraldry, but will also learn more about the history of Slovenia, and of course, to have some fun while doing it! Lastly, it is the desire that the Society will ultimately influence the Government of Slovenia to create an official heraldic registrar in order to officially recognize the importance of heraldic culture in Slovenia and implement an ordered and structured practice of the art and science of heraldry in Slovenia.

Slovenija Branch
October 2008

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Released: October 28, 2008Updated: October 28, 2008