Kopitar and Vuk

naslovnica razstave Vuk

Vuk Karadžić is considered to be the father of the modern Serbian language. Although he was self-educated, he made a big impression on Kopitar already at their first encounter that over the years had grown into a genuine interpersonal relationship of mutual trust and a sincere friendship. Because of Karadžić’s intellectual abilities and social intelligence, Kopitar considered him a suitable expert who would be willing and able to implement the reform of the Serbian literary language. As an already established expert on Slavic languages in the Central European environment, Kopitar supported Karadžić in his studies and cultural endeavours in a number of ways; he encouraged him to collect documents of folk treasure and the nation history, and to study the language. Kopitar also published positive assessments about Karadžić’s work in eminent journals. With his influence and as a recognised expert on Slavic languages, Kopitar also defended Karadžić from many hateful accusations and criticisms from Serbia and elsewhere. With his scientific reputation, Kopitar stood by Karadžić in disputes over spelling and other linguistic issues. He enabled him to establish contacts with famous Slavicits throughout Europe and helped him financially, since Karadžić couldn’t find a suitable job in Vienna; as a refugee, he was in poor material situation. In the Kopitar’s library, many Karadžić’s works have been preserved. Karadžić also gave him many old manuscripts that represent the most important material of the Kopitar rare book collection.

Their cooperation may be used as a good example of cultural synergy between the southern Slavs from the time before the Spring of the Nations.

Vuk's Assembly is a yearly traditional and the most important Serbian linguistic and cultural manifestation set up to honour the memory of the reformer of the Serbian literary language. NUK will host the exhibition by Miroslav Terzić that was held last year in Tršić (Serbia), Vuk’s birth place.

The exhibition of posters, as part of the international exchange, will be accompanied by valuable original material from Kopitar’s personal archive and library held in NUK.


Miroslav Terzić and Marijan Rupert (NUK)
Exhibition Hall NUK
Monday - Friday 8am to 8pm, Saturday 9am to 2pm.


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