Matevž Ravnikar

Matevž Ravnikar

Matevž Ravnikar, also known under the names Raunicher Matteo, Matevsh Ravnikar, Matej Ravnikar and Matthseus Raunicher, was Slovenian Roman-Catholic priest and bishop, born on 20. September 1776 in Vače. He died on 20. November 1845 in Trieste, that time Austrian empire.

Matevž Ravnikar is being place to period of France Prešeren, Illyrian provinces, Napoleon and in time of Romanticism and national awakening. He was a founder of Slovenian monastery church or cathedral for Slovenian language on Ljubljana theological academy or theologian, for which he enjoyed a good reputation. He founded it in year 1815 with help of Zois and Kopitar, and whit that organised care for Slovenian language started.

At the same time he was chancellor of Ljubljana central school, lecturer of philosophy and Holy Bible. He also was Koper-Tržič bishop, awakener of national consciousness and fighter for Slovenian language. He was bishop, priest and devout writer. In his time he wrote many books and translations, among them most famous book Stories of Holy Bible for young people. Before his death, he founded a fund in his testament, from which six scholarships were funded for schooling youth. When awarding it, with two scholarships his relatives and fellow villagers from Vače had priority.

He was named ”father” or reformer of Slovenian prose, due to his care for Slovenian language. With a help of Kopitar he tried to make primary and intermediate school fully Slovenian. Kopitar wrote for Ravnikar, that he is the man ”that Carniola literature did not have”. His books had so clean Slovenian language, as no any other.

Matevž Ravnikar was a professor, who was always present at France Prešeren’s exams, on all finished exams was also his signature. Prešeren passed all exams with excellence. But Ravnikar’s grammatical side ways provoked resistance at Prešeren, so he wrote:
»Because you denationalised the language of our highlanders, you are guilty that farmer swears, while reading the prayer. «


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