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Central European History 50 (2017), 633.

Central European History Society of the American Historical


Association, 2017
doi:10.1017/S0008938917000012

Competitive Civilizing Missions: Hungarian Germans,


Modernization, and Ethnographic Descriptions of the
Zigeuner before World War I
Sacha E. Davis

ABSTRACT. This article examines writings on the Zigeuner (Gypsies) by three prominent
Hungarian-German scholarsJohann Schwicker, Anton Herrmann, and Heinrich von
Wlislockias responses to Magyarization pressures, which divided Hungarian-Germans by
threatening the traditional privileges of some while offering others opportunities for social
advancement. Hungarian and German elites alike cast Zigeuner as primitive Naturvlker in an
effort to legitimize reform efforts. By writing about the Zigeuner, scholars asserted competing
Magyar and German models for modernization and reform. Passionate German nationalist
Johann Schwicker called for the Zigeuner to assimilate into Hungarian and Romanian culture,
arguing that Germanization was beyond their reach, thereby asserting German cultures suppos-
edly superior status as an elite culture. By contrast, Hungarian nationalist Anton Herrmann urged
the Magyarization of the Zigeuner to strengthen the Hungarian nation-state, denigrating the role
of German and Romanian culture. Finally, Heinrich Wlislocki rejected all nationalist modern-
izing efforts, presenting the Zigeuner as a romantic symbol of the premodern age. In all three cases,
Schwickers, Herrmanns, and Wlislockis Zigeuner bore very limited resemblance to Romani
lived experience. Collectively, the writings of these three scholars illustrate both the range of
Hungarian-German responses to nationalist modernization, as well as the role of national disputes
in shaping Zigeunerkunde (Gypsy Studies).

In diesem Aufsatz werden Texte der drei bedeutenden ungarisch-deutschen Gelehrten, Johann
Schwicker, Anton Herrmann und Heinrich von Wlislocki, ber Zigeuner untersucht, die von
diesen als Antwort auf den Magyarisierungsdruck verfasst wurden. Die Magyarisierung entzweite
die Ungarndeutschen, indem sie die traditionellen Privilegien einiger bedrohte, whrend sie
anderen Mglichkeiten zum sozialen Aufstieg bot. Um ihre Reformbemhungen zu legitimie-
ren, stellten sowohl die ungarischen als auch die deutschen Eliten Zigeuner als primitive
Naturvlker dar. In Texten ber Zigeuner machten Gelehrte miteinander konkurrierende mag-
yarische und deutsche Modelle zur Modernisierung und Reform geltend. So rief der leiden-
schaftliche deutsche Nationalist Johann Schwicker die Zigeuner dazu auf, sich in die
ungarische und rumnische Kultur zu assimilieren, und hob dabei gleichzeitig hervor, dass
eine Germanisierung fr sie aufgrund der berlegenen deutschen Elitekultur nicht in Frage
kam. Im Gegensatz dazu drngte der ungarische Nationalist Anton Herrmann auf eine
Magyarisierung der Zigeuner, um den ungarischen Nationalstaat zu strken, und setzte dabei
die Rolle der deutschen und rumnischen Kultur herab. Heinrich Wlislocki schlielich wies
jegliche Modernisierungsbemhungen zurck und prsentierte die Zigeuner als ein romantisches
Symbol eines vormodernen Zeitalters. In allen drei Fllen wiesen die Zigeuner, wie Schwincker,

This article was first presented as a paper at the conference Savage Worlds? German Understandings of
Non-European Peoples, 18151918, Adelaide, June 29July 1, 2015. My thanks to Matt Fitzpatrick and
Peter Monteath for that initial impetus. I am also grateful to Johanna Perheentupa, Shannon Woodcock,
Alexander Maxwell, and the two anonymous reviewers for their generous feedback. All errors remain
solely my own.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 7
Herrmann und Wlislocki sie darstellten, nur wenig hnlichkeit mit der gelebten Realitt der
Romani auf. Zusammen zeigen die Texte dieser drei Gelehrten sowohl die Bandbreite ungar-
isch-deutscher Reaktionen auf die nationalistische Modernisierung als auch die Rolle, die natio-
nale Auseinandersetzungen im Hinblick auf die Ausprgung der Zigeunerkunde spielten.

the late nineteenth century, a new generation of scholars, many from Hungarys

I
N
German minorities in Transylvania and the Banat, focused on what they identified as
Zigeuner culture.1 This interest coincided with strong Magyarization pressures on minor-
ities. Following the 1867 Ausgleich, in which Hungary absorbed Transylvania and became
autonomous within the Habsburg Empire, Magyar nationalists elided Hungarian citizenship
with Magyar ethnicity in their pursuit of a modern, unitary nation-state. Liberal reform
threatened Transylvanian Saxon corporate privileges, while Magyarization offered histori-
cally unprivileged Banat Schwabs opportunities for social advancement. Consequently,
German responses to Magyarization were divided. Whereas some Germans embraced
Magyarization, others competed with the Hungarian modernizing project by asserting
their own German nationalist civilizing mission in East Europe. Still other individuals, indif-
ferent to nationalism, identified with prenational collectives such as estate, religion, and local-
ity. Hungarian and German elites alike placed themselves at the apex of an ethnic hierarchy
ordered by level of civilization, thereby legitimizing participation in public life.
Simultaneously, they castigated Zigeuner and other subaltern cultures as primitive
Naturvlker, denying those interpolated the right of reply.2 Both Magyar and German
elites perceived Zigeuner as threatening public order and the general good, thus legitimizing
reform efforts. By writing about the Zigeuner, scholars therefore either asserted competing
Magyar and German models for modernization and reform, or rejected modernization by
embracing the romantic image of the Wanderzigeuner (nomadic Gypsy).
This article examines three prominent Hungarian-German scholars: the historian Johann
Schwicker (18391902), the ethnographer Anton Herrmann (18511926), and the folklorist
Heinrich von Wlislocki (18561907). Whereas Schwicker, a passionate German nationalist,
asserted a German mission to civilize Hungary itself, Herrmann willingly embraced
Hungarian nationalism. Wlislocki, for his part, rejected all nationalist modernizing efforts

1
Martin Ruch, Zur Wissenschaftsgeschichte der deutschsprachigen Zigeunerforschung von den
Anfngen bis 1900 (Doctoral thesis, Albert-Ludwigs-Universitt zu Freiburg i. Br., 1986), 29697.
Racial identities do not resemble some underlying objective reality, of course, but are constructed
through the process of enactment. Schwicker, Herrmann, and Wlislockis Zigeuner bore limited resemblance
to Romani lived experience. For that reason, this article uses the term Zigeuner to refer to the objects con-
structed in the stereotypical discourses of non-Romani writers, and refers to the individuals these stereotypes
claimed to portray as Roma. See Patrick Wolfe, Traces of History: Elementary Structures of Race (London: Verso,
2016), 5; Shannon Woodcock, The T igan Is Not a Man: The T igan Other as Catalyst for Romanian
Ethnonational Identity (PhD thesis, Dept. of History, Faculty of Arts, University of Sydney, 2005),
418; Lee, Orientalism, 132; c.f. Shannon Woodcock, Gender, Sexuality and Ethnicity in the
Stereotypical Construction of T . Slaves in the Romanian Lands, 13851848, in Antiziganism: Whats in
a Word?, ed. Jan Selling, Markus End, Hristo Kyuchukov, Pia Laskar, and Bill Templer (Newcastle:
Cambridge Scholars, 2015), 176.
2
Andrs Vri, The Functions of Ethnic Stereotypes in Austria and Hungary in the Early Nineteenth
Century, in Creating the Other: Ethnic Conflict and Nationalism in Habsburg Central Europe, ed. Nancy
M. Wingfield (New York: Berghahn, 2005), 3955.

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8 SACHA E. DAVIS

as a threat to his romantic visions of Transylvanias vanishing past. These three scholars col-
lectively illustrate the range of Hungarian-German responses to nationalist modernization.
All three also played leading roles in the study of Transylvanian and Hungarian Zigeuner.
Historians have explored how Hungarian-German scholars reinforced the European
image of the Zigeuner as an uncultured, Oriental Naturvolk, alternately symbolizing romantic
freedom or desperately needing reform.3 Few consider these descriptions as responses to the
demands of the Hungarian state, however. The exception, Marian Zaloagas examination of
how Hungarian-German nationalists used the Zigeuner to assert their cultures alleged supe-
riority over Hungarian nationalism, has been of great assistance in writing this article.4
Certainly, Schwicker called for the Zigeuner to assimilate into Hungarian and Romanian
culture, arguing that Germanization was beyond their reach, thereby asserting German cul-
tures alleged superior status as the culture of the educated elite. Conversely, however,
Herrmann urged the Magyarization of the Zigeuner to strengthen the Hungarian nation-
state and denigrate the role of German and Romanian culture. Finally, Wlislocki presented
the Zigeuner as the romantic symbol of the premodern age, and as a critique of the modern-
izing projects he opposed. Whatever their differences, Schwicker, Herrmann, and Wlislocki
all underline the role of national disputes in shaping Zigeunerkunde (Gypsy Studies).
The first part of this article examines German responses to Magyarization, outlining the
Hungarian modernizing project and the demands it made of Hungarian Germans. It then
considers the responses made by Transylvanian Saxons and Banat Schwabs at the communal
level, before examining Schwickers, Herrmanns, and Wlislockis individual responses.
Communal attitudes did not dictate individual responses but did determine what institutions
scholars could draw upon to support their views. The second part of this article focuses on the
impact of nationalist modernizing projects in Zigeunerkunde, outlining first the Romani pop-
ulation of Hungary, then their social marginalization, and, finally, increasing state efforts at
surveillance and control, which, in turn, motivated growing scholarly interest in the
Zigeuner. Schwicker, Herrmann, and Wlislocki were inconsistent regarding which
Zigeuner they described, but tended to focus on Transylvania and the Banat, where
Zigeuner culture was considered most pure (and therefore most problematic for
Hungarys continuing development). The following analysis of the Roma therefore also
focuses on the regions of eastern Hungary. It then examines, in turn, Schwickers,
Herrmanns, and Wlislockis discursive deployment of the term Zigeuner in support of
their views on modernization, which shaped Zigeunerkunde in Hungary. Collectively, their
representations discredited attempts by Roma to integrate into mainstream society,
marking them as insufficiently civilized, while simultaneously denying authenticity to
all but a vanishingly small fraction who supposedly met an impossible ideal.

3
Key works include Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte; Wim Willems, In Search of the True Gypsy: From
Enlightenment to Final Solution (London: Frank Cass, 1997); Ken Lee, Orientalism and Gypsylorism,
Social Analysis 44, no. 2 (November 2000): 12956; Nicholas Saul, Gypsies and Orientalism in German
Literature and Anthropology of the Long Nineteenth Century (London: Legenda, 2007); Iulia-Karin Patrut,
Wlislockis Transylvanian Gypsies and the Discourses on Aryanism around 1900, Romani Studies
Series 5, 17, no. 2 (2007): 181204; Marian Zaloaga, Professing Domestic Orientalism: Representing
the Gypsy as Musikant in the Transylvanian Saxons Writings of the Long 19th Century, Studia
Universitas Babes-Bolyai Historia 2 (2012): 128.
4
See, e.g., Zaloaga, Professing, as well as her Germans, Hungarians and the Zigeunerkapelle:
Performing National Enmity in Late Nineteenth-Century Transylvania, Patterns of Prejudice 47, nos. 45
(2013): 38184, 39093.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 9
Consequently, by the outbreak of World War I, Hungarian-German scholars increasingly
viewed the Zigeuner as irredeemable and dying out. The article concludes with an analysis
of how the function of the Zigeuner stereotype changed after World War I, when
Romanianization replaced Magyarization in former eastern Hungary. Considered incorrigi-
bly Oriental, Zigeuner no longer stood as a discursive subject of reform, but rather as one of
the last symbols of an increasingly fragile German social mastery.

Magyar Nationalism and the Hungarian Modernizing Project


Under the 1867 Ausgleich, those in Hungary who spoke Hungarian as a first language con-
stituted less than half of the population of Hungary: 46.6 percent in 1880, which rose to 51.4
percent in 1900 and 54.5 percent in 1910. (Even this narrow majority was achieved only by
excluding semiautonomous Croatia-Slavonia from the census figures.5) Other widely spoken
mother tongues were Romanian (17.5 percent in 1880, falling to 16.1 percent in 1910),
Slovak (13.5 percent in 1880, 10.7 percent in 1910), and German (13.6 percent in 1880,
10.4 percent in 1910).6 Conversely, Roma (classed ethnically rather than linguistically)
constituted approximately 1.6 percent of the population in 1893.7 These demographics
provoked considerable anxiety for Magyar nationalists.
Late eighteenth-century Hungarian nationalists had hoped to transform the estate-based
natio Hungarica of the nobility into a modernized Hungarian nation unified by shared institu-
tions, rather than shared language. In the first half of the nineteenth century, however, nation-
alists increasingly embraced a specifically Magyarist conception of Hungarian nationalism,
linking the Hungarian nation with the Hungarian language and advocating the assimilation
of non-Magyars. Simultaneously, Magyar nationalists laid claim to the non-Hungarian speakers
in Hungary. Unlike German, which draws (inconsistent) distinctions between Ungar
(Hungarian; an inhabitant of Hungary) and Magyar (Magyar; a speaker of Hungarian), the
Hungarian language uses Magyar for both.8 This lack of distinction aided Magyar nationalists
in arguing that all citizens of the country were members of the Magyar politikai nemzet
(Hungarian political nation). As such, however, all citizens were to consider themselves
Hungarians (Magyarok) and speak Hungarian. The nation thus simultaneously included all
inhabitants and was specifically Magyar. For Magyar nationalists, this contradictory position
legitimized Magyarizationa necessity if the state was to be based on an ethnolinguistic nation.9
Magyarization was closely bound up with modernization. Most national activists in the
Habsburg Empire considered their movement to be the agent of progressive reform.10

5
Paul Lendvai, The Hungarians: A Thousand Years of Victory in Defeat (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University
Press, 2014), 286.
6
Gyrgy Szab, Die Roma in Ungarn. Ein Beitrag zur Socialgeschichte einer Minderheit in Ost- und Mitteleuropa
(Frankfurt/Main: Peter Lang, 1991), 44; Lszlo Zentai, A Trtnelmi Magyarorszg atlasza s Adattra 1914
(Pcs: Talma, 2001), 67.
7
Anton Herrmann, Ergebnisse der in Ungarn am 31. Januar 1893 durchgefhrten Zigeuner-Conscription
(Budapest: Actiongesellschaft Athenaeum, 1895), 19.
8
Andrew C. Janos, The Politics of Backwardness in Hungary, 18251945 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton
University Press, 2012), xxv.
9
Tomasz Kamusella, The Politics of Language and Nationalism in Modern Central Europe (Basingstoke:
Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), 43637; Alexander Maxwell, Choosing Slovakia: Slavic Hungary, the
Czechoslovak Language and Accidental Nationalism (London: Tauris Academic Studies, 2009), 1317.
10
Pieter M. Judson, Guardians of the Nation: Activists on the Language Frontiers of Imperial Austria (Cambridge,
MA: Harvard University Press, 2006), 68.

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10 SACHA E. DAVIS

Magyar nationalists believed the Ausgleich had finally freed Hungary from Austrian coloniza-
tion, enabling it to fulfill its destiny as a modern European state. Magyar nationalist parlia-
mentarians sought to create a French-style, monolingual, liberal nation-state by
introducing universal laws and a common state language. Liberal nationalist politician Bel
Grnwald (18391891) claimed, for example, that Hungarian non-Magyars were incapable
of independent advancement; it was the destiny of Magyardom to assimilate them, thereby
elevating them to a civilized status.11
During the 1848 Revolution, some German speakers in the Danube basin had asserted a
dual Hungaro-German identity, distinguishing between Hungarian and Magyar.12 Yet,
Magyarization pressures hindered cooperation with Magyar nationalists, especially after the
Ausgleich. Before the 1870s, liberal Magyar nationalist leaders softened their demands in
order to avoid alienating non-Magyar nationalists. The 1868 Nationalities Law granted
extensive minority language rights in education, religious worship, local administration,
and the courts. The law nonetheless recognized minorities only with regard to linguistic
matters: the nationalities were given no recognition as political nations. Furthermore,
the Nationalities Law was increasingly breeched from the 1870s. The Liberal Party govern-
ment of Prime Minister Klmn Tisza, who governed from 1875 to1890, pursued the full
Magyarization of public life, simultaneously limiting non-Magyar political and cultural
development. Tisza considered Magyarization necessary for Hungarian national survival.
Magyar nationalists increasingly emphasized the importance of Hungarian as a mother
tongue, thus excluding non-Magyars from membership of the nation; they considered
minorities demands for continued linguistic rights as latent separatism at best, and, at
worst, outright treason. Education laws imposed increasing Hungarian language education
from kindergarten to secondary school, and the number of minority language schools
declined sharply as a result.13

German Responses to Magyarization


Responses to Magyarization of the two principal German communities in eastern Hungary,
the Banat Schwabs and the Transylvanian Saxons, differed greatly, which reflected the differ-
ent origins and structures of their communities. The Transylvanian Saxons originated in
twelfth-century migration from the Holy Roman Empire at the invitation of Hungarian
monarchs, who offered them land and various privileges. They formed a compact settlement
of merchants, artisans, and landowning yeomanry constituting a privileged estate, the natio
Saxones, and dominated the Lutheran Church of Transylvania following the Reformation.
Estate and faith reinforced linguistic divisions in Transylvania: whereas German speakers
dominated the Saxon estate and Lutheran Church, Hungarian speakers predominated
among the nobility and other Protestant and Catholic sects; most peasants, by contrast,
were Romanian speakers belonging to Eastern Rite sects. Socioeconomic stratification

11
Ferenc Glatz, ed., Hungarians and Their Neighbours in Mordern Times, 18671950 (New York: Columbia
University Press, 1995), 5; Lendvai, Hungarians, 3001, 315; Maxwell, Choosing Slovakia, 15; Jonathan
Kwan, Transylvanian Saxon Politics, Hungarian State Building and the Case of the Allgemeiner Deutscher
Schulverein (188182), English Historical Review 127, no. 526 (2012): 609.
12
Alexander Maxwell, Hungaro-German Dual Nationality: Germans, Slavs and Magyars during the
1848 Revolution, German Studies Review 39, no. 1 (2016): 1722.
13
Lendvai, Hungarians, 294300; Maxwell, Choosing Slovakia, 1928.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 11
survived the abolition of the estate in 1874. Banat Schwabs originated in eighteenth- and
nineteenth-century settlement following the gradual Habsburg reconquest of Hungary
from Ottoman rule in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. Scattered among
Romanian and Magyar settlers in mostly agrarian communities, Schwabs held few privileges.
Furthermore, they belonged to the predominantly Hungarian-speaking Catholic Church
and had no independent religious structures.14
For the emerging Schwab middle class, whose members did not have corporate or reli-
gious bodies that they could dominate, the Hungarian state and private institutions provided
the best means of social advancement. Despite German nationalists angry protestations,
Magyarization was mostly voluntary. Economic growth provided material incentives to
potential middle-class converts to Magyarization. Although Hungarys economy grew
rapidly after 1867, it lagged behind that of the Western industrial powers, making
Hungarys bureaucracy a disproportionately important means of social mobility. Many
members of the German educated middle class (Bildungsbrgertum) were welcomed into
state employmenton condition of their Magyarization. Spreading market economics,
with its interrelated processes of migration, social mobility, industrialization, and urbaniza-
tion, reinforced assimilation.15 Middle-class German-speakers in the Banat enthusiastically
embraced Hungarian nationalism.16
By comparison, even after the abolition of the estates, the Lutheran Church in
Transylvania and its extensive German-language school network provided the main
vehicle for Saxon nationalism and middle-class advancement. The Church increasingly iden-
tified as a specifically Saxon/German Volkskirche, with a national as well as a religious
mission.17 Pastor and teacher Georg Daniel Teutsch (18171893) synthesized the first
Saxon nationalist history, arguing that Saxons had brought civilization and culture to the
East, that they were defenders of Christianity, and that they were an educated, democratic
people in a barbarous land.18 Teutschs views reflected broader Austrian-German claims to
cultural superiority and a civilizing mission in Eastern Europe, as well as the myth of

14
Balzs A. Szelnyi, From Minority to bermensch: The Social Roots of Ethnic Conflict in the
German Diaspora of Hungary, Romania and Slovakia, Past and Present 196, no. 1 (2007): 21551;
Leslie. S. Domonkos, The Multiethnic Character of the Hungarian Kingdom in the Later Middle
Ages, in Transylvania: The Roots of Ethnic Conflict, ed. John F. Cadzow, Andrew Ludanyi, and Louis
J. Elteto (Kent, OH: Kent State University, 1983), 4546; Pter Hank, Ungarn in der Donaumonarchie.
Probleme der brgerlichen Umgestaltung eines Vielvlkerstaates (Munich: R. Oldenbourg, 1984), 28485;
Lszl Kontler, Millennium in Central Europe: A History of Hungary (Budapest: Atlantisz, 1999), 192.
15
R. W. Seton-Watson, History of the Roumanians: From Roman Times to the Completion of Unity (Hamden,
CT: Archon, 1963), 396407; Kontler, Millennium, 28198; Janos, Politics, 10928; Hank, Ungarn,
279319; Emil Niederhauser, People and Nations in the Habsburg Monarchy, in Glatz, Hungarians, 9;
Lendvai, Hungarians, 31517; Kwan, Schulverein, 595.
16
Hildrun Glass, Zerbrochene Nachbarschaft. Das deutsch-jdische Verhltnis in Rumnien (19181938)
(Munich: R. Oldenbourg, 1996), 3235.
17
In Transylvania the term Volkskirche had an expressly ethnic meaning. See Paul Philippi, Die sozialpo-
litische Bedeutung der siebenbrgisch-schsischen Kirchengemeinde whrend 800 Jahren, Zeitschrift fr
siebenbrgische Landeskunde 24, no. 2 (2001): 18082.
18
G. D. Teutsch, Geschichte der Siebenbrger Sachsen fr das schsische Volk, vol. 1, 2nd ed. (Leipzig: G. Hirzel,
1874), 123; Harald Roth, Autostereotype als Identifikationmuster: Zum Selbstbild der Siebenbrger
Sachsen, in Das Bild des Anderen in Siebenbrgen. Stereotype in einer multiethnischen Region, ed. Konrad
Gndisch, Wolfgang Hpken, and Michael Markel (Cologne: Bhlau, 1998), 18586; Andreas Mckel,
Geschichtsschreibung und Geschichtsbewusstsein bei den Siebenbrger Sachsen, in Studien zur
Geschichtsschreibung im 19. und 20. Jahrhundert, ed. Paul Philippi (Cologne: Bhlau, 1967), 611.

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12 SACHA E. DAVIS

the German East popular in the German Kaiserreich.19 This civilizing role directly challenged
Magyar nationalist claims to be the principal drivers of modernization in Hungary. As bishop
of Transylvania from 1867 to his death, Teutsch influenced the school curriculum and the
contents of parish sermons.20 The Lutheran schools produced near universal literacy, allow-
ing the German language press to disseminate nationalist ideas widely.21 Whereas Teutsch
framed Saxon history as a specifically Transylvanian civilizing mission, other Saxon nation-
alists emphasized their peoples cultural and economic contribution to Hungary following
the abolition of Transylvanian autonomy in 1867.22
Not all German speakers embraced either Magyar or German nationalism, however.
Nationalist activists competed fiercely for the loyalties of Habsburg subjects, but the national
indifference of the population frequently stymied their efforts. Individuals frequently iden-
tified with prenational collectives such as estate, faith, and locality (which cut across ethno-
linguistic lines), actively pursued strategies of multilingualism, and resisted attempts to impose
national boundaries. German speakers in Hungary were no different in this regard.23
Community attitudes did not predetermine individual responses to Magyarization, but
they did influence the institutional structures from which German scholars could draw
support.24 Johann Schwicker, born in Beschenowa (jbesenyo/Dudes tii Noi) in the Banat,
advocated a German civilizing mission in Hungary and passionately defended German-
language education. A respected pedagogue and historian, he was dismissed from his position
as director of the Buda Teachers Seminary after clashing with the Minister of Education over
Magyarization. He subsequently had a successful career in the private German-language edu-
cation system, and served for fifteen years in the Hungarian parliament, mostly representing the
(Transylvanian) electorate of Schburg (Segesvr/Sighis oara), while favoring German
nationalism, conservatism, and loyalty to the House of Habsburg.25
Among many other works, Schwicker contributed to Austrian publisher Karl Prochaskas
series Die Vlker sterreich-Ungarns. Ethnographische und culturhistorische Schilderungen, which
was published from 1881 to 1883. The series, which catalogued the principal peoples
under Habsburg rule, reflected a modernizing and categorizing tradition dating back to
the Enlightenment.26 Each volume described a different national community in the

19
Judson, Guardians, 1516; Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius, The German Myth of the East: 1800 to the Present
(Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009).
20
Gustav Gndisch, Bedeutende Siebenbrger Sachsen im 19. Jahrhundert, Anzeiger der stereichischen
Akademie der Wissenschaften. Philosophisch-historische Klasse 121, nos. 19 (1984): 3031.
21
Walter Roth, Der Ausbau des deutsch-evangelischen Schulwesens durch Georg Daniel Teutsch, in
Beitrge zur siebenbrgischen Schulgeschichte, ed. Walter Knig (Cologne: Bhlau, 1996), 26566.
22
Kwan, Schulverein, 60521.
23
Rogers Brubaker, Ethnicity Without Groups (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University, 2004), 910; Jeremy
King, The Nationalization of East Central Europe: Ethnicism, Ethnicity and Beyond, in Staging the Past:
The Politics of Commemoration in Habsburg Central Europe, 1848 to the Present, ed. Maria Bucur and Nancy
M. Wingfield (West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 2001), 11252; Judson, Guardians, 26; Tara
Zahra, Reclaiming Children for the Nation: Germanization, National Ascription, and Democracy in
the Bohemian Lands, 19001945, Central European History 37, no.4 (2004): 5013.
24
Kwan, Schulverein, 624.
25
Johann Heinrich Schwicker, in sterreichisches Biographisches Lexikon und biographische Dokumentation
18151950, vol. 12, no. 55 (Vienna: sterreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 2001), 55.
26
Karl Prohaska, Prospect, in Johann Heinrich Schwicker, Die Zigeuner in Ungarn und Siebenbrgen
(Vienna: K. Prochaska, 1883), iiv; Marius Turda, Race, Politics and Nationalist Darwinism in
Hungary, 18801918, Ab Imperio 1, no. 1 (2007): 142.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 13
empire, and Prochaska commissioned members of the different nationalities to express their
own views.27 Schwicker, to whom he gave a free hand, wrote Die Deutschen in Ungarn und
Siebenbrgen (1881), in which he claimed to have synthesized the first successful history of the
German settlements in Hungary and Transylvania as a whole, using the unifying theme of the
German civilizing mission extolled by Teutsch and others.28 Like other nineteenth-century
nationalists, Schwicker identified heroic deeds demonstrating his nations alleged contri-
butions to human civilization, as well as the ills allegedly perpetrated against them by
others.29 The Germans contribution, Schwicker claimed, was their modernizing influence
on the Hungarian state: These Germans have delivered through their work and energy great
service to industry, trade, and commerce, to culture and civilization, as well as to the defense
of the country with blood and property, and always proved true citizens.30 Schwicker
emphasized in particular the influence of German culture on Hungarys elites: One
would have to look at the non-German nationalities of the country to identify nearly half
the reading public of German periodicals. But that only testifies yet again to the great signifi-
cance of the German language and its important role as a political and cultural factor in the
country.31 Furthermore, he argued, Every educated person in the country, regardless of
the nationality to which he belongs, speaks and reads German.32 Schwicker thus saw
German culture as improving Hungarys educated elite: it was not intended for the unedu-
cated masses. Conversely, Schwicker identified Magyarization as the primary ill perpetrated
against Hungarys Germans, arguing that it ignored their loyalty to the state and ran counter
to Hungarys interests.33 To Schwicker, the civilizing mission thus legitimized German
nationalism within Hungary.
By comparison, Anton Herrmann, born and educated in Kronstadt (Brass/Bras ov) in
Transylvania, identified strongly with Magyar nationalism. As a reporter for the (Banat
Schwab) Banater Post, he actively campaigned to prevent German schools in Hungary from
accepting funding from Germany. After studying linguistics and philology in Vienna,
Klausenburg (Kolozsvr/Cluj-Napoca), and Budapest, he taught at Catholic and state
schools, simultaneously working in journalism. From 1883, Herrmann taught German language
and literature at the Pedagogium teaching seminary in Budapest; in 1898 he was concurrently
appointed Privatdocent at the University of Klausenburg, where he lectured in folklore.34
Herrmann considered Magyar nationalism the best means of uniting Hungarys ethnic
communities. In an essay on Hungarian ethnography, he asserted the Hungarian political

27
Britta Rupp-Eisenreich, Nation, Nationalitt und verwandte Begriffe bei Friedrich Hertz und seinen
Vorgngern, in Nation und Nationalismus in wissenschaftlichen Standardwerken sterreich-Ungarns, ca.
18671918, ed. Endre Kiss, Csaba Kiss, and Justin Stagl (Vienna: Bhlau, 1997), 109110.
28
Johan Heinrich Schwicker, Die Deutschen in Ungarn und Siebenbrgen (Vienna: Karl Prochaska, 1881),
iiv.
29
Endre Kiss and Justin Stagl, Einleitung, in Kiss, Nation, 78.
30
Schwicker, Die Deutschen, 489.
31
Ibid., 499.
32
Ibid., 503.
33
Ibid., 49092.
34
Anton Herrmann, in sterreichisches biographisches Lexikon und biographische Dokumentation 18151950,
vol. 2, no. 9 (Vienna: sterreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1959), 29091; Attila Paldi-Kovcs,
Antal Herrmanns Efforts to Institutionalize Hungarian Ethnography, in Studies in Memory of Antal
Herrmann, ed. Zsuzsanna Bdi (Budapest: Magyar Nprajzi Trsasg, 1999), 52; Vilmos Voigt, A
Classic, an Unknown Master and Many Unsettled Tasks, in Bdi, Studies, 67.

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14 SACHA E. DAVIS

nation to be a single, indivisible whole, ethnically diverse, but constructed around an ethnic
Magyar core. He argued that the extension of modern civilization in Hungary would cause
other ethnic communities to lose their primitive cultural peculiarities and grow closer to
the core Magyar element. Herrmann characterized Magyarization as a gift to the other eth-
nicities, arguing that the Magyar people were now sharing their last remaining historical priv-
ilege: ownership of the Hungarian language. He praised ethnic German loyalty to the
Magyar cause, highlighting their role in counterbalancing separatist movements on the
fringes of the kingdom, e.g., Romanian nationalism in Transylvania and the Banat.35
Herrmann claimed that familiarity with each others culture was a precondition for peace-
ful interethnic relations in Hungary.36 In 1889 he founded the Ethnographical Society of
Hungary (Magyarorszgi Nprajzi Trsasg), which, under his leadership, included many
non-Magyar folklorists, and cofounded the journal Ethnologische Mitteilungen aus Ungarn
(18891911), which published studies on all cultures in Hungary. He wrote comparative eth-
nography himself, and actively encouraged the establishment of Saxon and Romanian folk-
lore museums. Herrmann nonetheless urged the continuing study of other cultures to
prevent non-Magyar scholars in neighboring states from distorting their findings to encour-
age separatism. Rather, he argued, ethnography should reinforce non-Magyar connections to
Hungary, undermine separatist movements, and encourage minorities to conform to the
Hungarian specific genius.37 Herrmann may have felt the need to take this stance in
order to defend his own position as a loyal Magyar nationalist; he felt obliged to resign
from his own Ethnographical Society of Hungary in 1892 when it was renamed the
Magyar Ethnographical Society (Magyar Nprajzi Trsasg) and adopted a specifically
Magyar focus.38 Herrmann nonetheless utilized ethnography in the service of Magyarization.
For his part, Heinrich von Wlislocki, who was of mixed Transylvanian Saxon and
Galician Polish parentage, highlighted in his work indifference to nationalism, as well as
the danger of assuming exclusionary national identities. Schwicker called him the Pole
Dr. Wlislocki, and Wlislocki himself emphasized his Saxon ancestry when writing on
Saxon folklore.39 His obituarist Hans Helmolt (18651929), by contrast, proclaimed him
a German by choice: It is a comforting fact that the losses we sustain when German families
become Slavonic are counterbalanced [by those who become German]. The German
nation as such loses a few members of little value, whereas it gains some of the great men
of foreign races. Wlislocki may be considered one of these peaceful conquests.40
Wlislocki studied philology in Klausenburg, where he became a close friend of
Herrmanns. He never established a secure career, however, and blamed his failed applica-
tions for positions in the civil service and state schools on the preferential employment of
Magyars. In desperation, Wlislocki briefly converted from Lutheranism to Catholicism,

35
Antony Herrmann, The Ethnography of the Population, in The Millennium of Hungary and Its People,
ed. Joseph de Jekelfalussy (Budapest: Pesti Knyvnyomda-Rszvnytrsasg, 1897), 390404.
36
Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 28586; Zsuzsanna Bdi, Antal Herrmann and Gypsy Research in
Hungary, in Bdi, Studies, 82.
37
Herrmann, Ethnography, 39698.
38
Kroly Ks, Antal Herrmanns Significance in the Ethnographic Movement around the Turn of the
Century, in Bdi, Studies, 3738.
39
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 171; Heinrich von Wlislocki, Volksglaube und Volksbrauch der Siebenbrger Sachsen
(Berlin: Emil Felber, 1893), ixx.
40
Hans F. Helmolt, A Friend of the Gypsies, Journal of the Gypsy Lore Society (JGLS), Series II, vol. 1, no.
3 (1908): 193.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 15
hoping to secure employment in the Catholic education system. This brief apostasy appar-
ently barred him from the Transylvanian Lutheran Churchs German-language school
network. Disciplinary problems (Historian Martin Ruch suggests alcoholism) also contrib-
uted to his difficulties. Wlislocki lived in poverty, often begging for loans from friends and
acquaintances, including Herrmann. He found some relief in scholarship, however, and
wrote to support himself and his family. For that reason, he was extremely prolific, frequently
recycled material, and reissued a number of works in later anthologies.41
Like many Habsburg writers, Wlislocki took advantage of the larger publication oppor-
tunities the German Kaiserreich offered, which meant that most of his longer works were
published in Germany.42 He nevertheless rejected both the German civilizing mission and
the Hungarian modernization project: a romantic, Wlislocki believed modernity endangered
authentic culture.43 As he argued in his work on Saxon folk culture: The time seems to
approach with giant strides, when German custom and German tradition in
Transylvania will have disappeared. In hasty pursuit of money and pleasure, strangers inun-
date the quiet isle of medieval romance, and where once rang out the hunting calls of
German knights and the Hallelujahs of pious pilgrims, now roars the steam horse
[Dampfross]; this little island of German folk life will soon be submerged in a flooding
tumult of peoples.44 He similarly regretted the rapid Magyarization of Transylvanian
Armenians.45 Wlislocki considered the task of ethnography to record these vanishing cultures
before they were lost entirely to modernity.46
As the foregoing suggests, Hungarian-German academics took very different positions
with regard to German and Hungarian nationalism. Their views of modernization and
nationalism also shaped their approaches to Zigeunerkunde, which provided fuel for their
debates. The following section examines the position of Roma in Habsburg Hungary and
especially Transylvania, then turns to German-language representations of the Zigeuner.

The Roma in Habsburg Hungary


Germans and Roma in Habsburg Hungary shared many similarities. Both first arrived in
successive waves of migration. Neither population was internally homogenous. Members
of each population had a different legal status, confessed to different faiths, and spoke
divergent dialects and/or languages. Neither population constituted a single imagined
community.47 Both groups played important economic roles, especially as artisans.
Nonetheless, while many Germans occupied privileged positions, Roma constituted the
most socially marginalized population in Hungary.

41
Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 20833; Patrut, Wlislocki, 197.
42
Jan Vermeiren, Germany, Austria, and the Idea of the German Nation, 18711914, History Compass
9, no. 3 (2011): 203.
43
Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 24547.
44
Wlislocki, Sachsen, x.
45
Heinrich von Wlislocki, Mrchen und Sagen der Bukowinaer und Siebenbrger Armenier (Hamburg: Actien-
Gesellschaft, 1891), v.
46
Heinrich von Wlislocki, Vom wandernden Zigeunervolke. Bilder aus dem Leben der siebenbrger Zigeuner
(Hamburg: Actien-Gesellschaft, 1890), 4951; Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 21819.
47
Benedict Anderson, Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism (London:
Verso, 1991); Brubaker, Ethnicity, 710; Judson, Guardians, 67.

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16 SACHA E. DAVIS

The latter performed a range of professions: construction, for example, as well as smithing
and tinkering, woodworking, cobbling, basket weaving, gold panning, horse breeding, agri-
cultural and industrial labor, petty trade, and folk medicine. The tenfold increase in length of
the Hungarian rail network between 1867 and 1910 brought small-scale Romani artisans
into increasing competition with mass manufacturers from Western Europe. Domestic man-
ufacturing also grew rapidly in the same period, yet poverty and discrimination, both signifi-
cant barriers to formal education, largely excluded Romani manufacturers from
industrializing, which contributed to their increasing economic marginalization. Much of
the economic growth remained centered on Budapest, however; by comparison,
Transylvania and the Banat remained relatively underdeveloped, thus affording Romani arti-
sans greater opportunities to continue their traditional crafts in rural areas. Roma also
remained popular entertainers, especially as musicians.48
Many traditional Romani professions required seasonal mobility, according to the 1893
census, yet the vast majority of Roma lived sedentary lives. A substantial minority (38
percent) lived in poorer quality housing than that of their non-Romani neighbors; this included
tents as well as partially subterranean earthen huts. In around half of all settlements in which
they were found, Roma were spatially segregated into satellite suburbs. They also owned far
less land than the non-Romani population. The most striking markers of Romani disadvantage
lay in education, however: only 31 percent of school-age Roma children (six to fourteen)
attended school, as opposed to 81 percent of the non-Romani population. Similarly, fewer
than ten percent of Romani men and six percent of Romani women were literate, as
opposed to 62 percent of men and 53 percent of women in the overall population.49
Racialization legitimized the exploitation of poorly paid Romani labor. Until the mid-
nineteenth century, most Roma were enserfed and their communities were sedentary or
only seasonally mobile. Local knowledge of who was a Zigeuner was sufficient to legitimize
his or her marginal position in society without recourse to detailed ethnographical studies or
racial theories. Traditional folk representations of the Zigeuner, such as those captured in Josef
Haltrichs Deutsche Volksmrchen aus dem Sachsenlande in Siebenbrgen (1856/1882), legiti-
mized their marginal status. The tales characterized Roma as shiftless Wanderzigeuner, consti-
tutionally unable to farm or retain possession of land. They were cunning yet foolish, lazy,
dishonest, irreligious, and prone to alcoholism and petty theft. Zigeuner were frequently the
only human character in Saxon animal fables, paradoxically denying their basic humanity.50
Both Germans and Hungarians asserted their social mastery over the Roma through such
stereotypes. Simultaneously, Zaloaga notes, the Zigeuner served as a boundary marker that
contrasted with the traditional Hungarian-German self-image as diligent, thrifty, honest,
canny, and skilled workers.51

48
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 96; Angus Frazer, The Gypsies, 2nd ed. (Oxford: Blackwell, 2001), 1079; Zoltan
Barany, The East European Gypsies in the Imperial Age, Ethnic and Racial Studies 24, no. 1 (January 2001):
5063; Woodcock, Tigan, 6067; Szab, Roma, 81, 10315; Lendvai, Hungarians, 31618.
49
Szab, Roma, 10312.
50
Josef Haltrich, ed., Deutsche Volksmrchen aus dem Sachsenlande in Siebenbrgen. 3. vermehrte Auflage
(Vienna: Graeser, 1882).
51
Adolf Armbruster, Auf den Spuren der eigenen Identitt. Ausgewhlte Beitrge zur Geschichte und Kultur
Rumniens (Bucharest: Editura Enciclopedica, 1991), 42, 18182; Zaloaga, Professing, 17; Marian
Zaloaga, Ethnic Defaming and the Historical Research: On the Case of Gypsies Designation in
Transylvanian Saxons Culture of the 19th to the 20th Centuries, Studia Universitas Babes-Bolyai

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 17
After the Ausgleich, however, the breakdown of traditional social controls on Zigeuner,
because of increasing social mobility, provoked considerable anxiety about the threat pre-
sented by so-called Wanderzigeuner, even though the vast majority of Roma were seden-
tary.52 Several factors, including the abolition of serfdom in Hungary and Transylvania in
1848, the dissolution of the guilds, the expansion of the railway beginning in the 1850s,
rapid liberalization of the economy in the decade following 1867, increased inward migration
of Roma from the Danube Principalities, and the introduction of universal liberal rights in
1867, all undermined local knowledge of who exactly was a Zigeuner.53
These anxieties also reflected broader concerns following the Ausgleich about vagabond-
age (Hung. Csavargs, German Vagabondage). The state introduced new social welfare mea-
sures informed by economic liberalization, industrial development, wage labor, and an
acceptance of (productive) population mobility. Simultaneously, however, authorities
deployed policies of exclusion and suppression to minimize the welfare burden on state insti-
tutions, and to enforce conformity with dominant social and economic expectations. The
state resolved the contradiction between the illusion of extensive welfare support and con-
tinuing poverty by criminalizing public displays of poverty such as vagabondage and unli-
censed begging. The illusion that any individual could maintain a respectable occupation
should he wish to do so discursively maintained this criminalization.54
In 18671868, parliament criminalized begging in marketplaces and denied travel docu-
ments to unemployed or habitually mobile Zigeuner, triggering increased police action
against Roma. The state also targeted Wanderzigeuner for failing to perform military service
or pay taxes. In 1879, further laws were introduced that imposed fines for vagabondage.
District sheriffs (Richter, szolgabr, literally judge), who exercised wide-ranging jurisdiction
over civil and criminal matters, oversaw local Roma. Punishments remained light, however,
and were inconsistently enforced.55 Transylvanian Saxon author Erwin Wittstock
(18991962), reflecting in the 1920s, portrayed the sheriff as a good-natured figure who had
attempted to improve the Zigeuner.56 The sheriffs authority nevertheless depended on the
coercive force of the gendarmerie, and sometimes led to sexual exploitation.57 Furthermore,
there were growing arguments in the late 1880s that punishments were too lenient. Local
authorities surveyed in 1893 expressed great anxieties about Wanderzigeuner behavior in partic-
ular, compared to more positive views of settled Zigeuner. Municipal bylaws singled out
Wanderzigeuner as key elements to be controlled. Such regulations frequently affected Roma
who were not vagabonds, but who travelled seasonally to pursue a trade.58

Europaea 56, no. 1 (2011): 4142; Woodcock, Tigan, 7374; Woodcock, Gender, 18083; Roth,
Autostereotype, 18890.
52
Wolfe, Traces of History, 914.
53
Janos, Politics, 128.
54
Susan Zimmermann, Divide, Provide and Rule: An Integrative History of Poverty Policy, Social Policy and
Social Reform in Hungary under the Habsburg Monarchy (Budapest: Central European University Press,
2011), 340.
55
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 65.
56
Erwin Wittstock, Von den Zigeunern, Klingsor 4, no. 2 (1927): 4154.
57
Victor Tissot, Unknown Hungary, vol. II (London: Richard Bentley and Son, 1881), 3033.
58
Szab, Roma, 7680, 106; Zimmermann, Divide, 1218, 3943. On related policies in Austria during an
earlier period, see Hermann Rebel, Between Heimat and Schubsystem: Walking the Homeless to Death in
Early Modern Austria, Central European History 48, no. 4 (2015): 46179.

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18 SACHA E. DAVIS

The changing relationship between state and citizen also increased pressure on Roma.
Jennifer Illuzzi argues that in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, European
bureaucratic information states perceived Zigeuner mobility as a threat to public order.
They sought to make them legible through statistics.59 The weakness of civil society in
Hungary ensured that the authority of the substantial bureaucratic structure established fol-
lowing the Ausgleich was subject to few checks.60 The Ministry of the Interior, concerned
that censuses assigning nationality by mother tongue underreported the Zigeuner population
(95,500 in 1867, 97,000 in 1880, and 91,603 in 1890), organized special Zigeuner censuses in
1873, 1893, and 1907. These censuses especially strove to produce a complete accounting of
the Zigeuner population by labeling sedentary, self-identifying Hungarians or Romanians of
Romani origin as Zigeuner.61 These censuses consequently identified much larger Zigeuner
populations: 214,000 in 1873 and 274,940 in 1893.62
Concerns about Magyarization also shaped the states interest in the Roma. In
Transylvania and the Banat, Hungarian speakers declined relative to the local Romanian
majority population, which, of course, alarmed Magyar nationalists.63 Furthermore, only
12 percent of those who spoke Romanian as their mother tongue also spoke
Hungarianan indication that Magyarization was failing.64 The Magyarization of Roma
offered a partial counterweight to Romanian influence, however. Hungarian was the
mother tongue most commonly spoken by Roma (38 percent across all categories); fewer
than half (47.84 percent) could speak Romani as either a first or second language.65 The
most common mother tongue of Transylvanian Roma was Romani (42 percent),
however, followed by Romanian (39 percent); Hungarian came a distant third
(19 percent). The large-scale migration of Romani- and Romanian-speaking Roma from
the Danube Principalities, following the abolition there of Tigani (Gypsy) slavery between
1848 and 1856, further diluted Hungarian-speaking Roma. In 1893, one-third of Roma
were either migrants or the children of migrants.66 Mobility also affected language use:
whereas 54 percent of sedentary Roma spoke Hungarian (39 percent spoke it as their
mother tongue), only 41 percent of Wanderzigeuner spoke Hungarian (the corresponding
figure was 23 percent).67

59
Jennifer Illuzzi, Gypsies in Germany and Italy, 18611914: Lives Outside the Law (Basingstoke: Palgrave
Macmillan, 2014), 45.
60
Janos, Politics, 9297.
61
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 81.
62
David Crowe, The Gypsies in Hungary, in The Gypsies of Eastern Europe, ed. David Crowe and John
Kolsti (Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 1991), 118.
63
Lzl Katus, Hungarians and National Minorities: A Demographic Survey (18501918), in Glatz,
Hungarians, 13.
64
Lszl Marcz, Multilingual and Cosmopolitan Encounters in the Transleithanian Part of the
Habsburg Empire (18671918), Vestnik Tomskogo Gosudarstvennogo Universiteta. Kulturologi i
Iskusstvovedenie 1, no. 9 (2013): 6667.
65
Szab, Roma, 11011.
66
Ian Hancock, The Pariah Syndrome: An Account of Gypsy Slavery and Persecution (Ann Arbor, MI: Karoma,
1987), 37; Frazer, Gypsies, 22637; Istvn Kemny, Linguistic Groups and Usage among the Hungarian
Gypsies/Roma, in The Gypsies/The Roma in Hungarian Society, ed. Erno Kllai (Budapest: Teleki Lszl
Foundation, 2002), 28; Kemny, The Roma/Gypsies of Hungary and the Economy, in Kllai,
Gypsies, 51.
67
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 5257.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 19
State interest in regulation and reform drew increasing scholarly attention to the Zigeuner.
Race reconciled the Rights of Man with the taxonomies of natural science, allowing for the
differential allocation of rights.68 In 1783 the Jenan scholar Heinrich Grellmann (17551804)
popularized the theory that the Zigeuner had originated in India, marking them discursively as
an Eastern, Oriental Naturvolk, racially other and living the antithesis of respectable, bour-
geois life.69 Grellmann exercised a powerful influence on Hungarian-German scholars,
who often cited him in lieu of conducting fieldwork.70 The increasing adoption of detailed
ethnographic descriptions, underpinned by racialized definitions of Zigeunertum, allowed the
state to single out Zigeuner for special restrictions and controls. Perceived to require policing,
reform, and assimilation, the Zigeuner presented a context in which to assert competing
models of modernization.
Ethnographers had a particularly free hand because Zigeuner, discursively constructed as
non-Europeans, were subject to Orientalist discourses that denied Roma the right of
reply. Lorey French, addressing the paucity of published Romani sources in the German-
speaking world before the late twentieth century, notes that Roma were truly subaltern:
Subaltern peoples have their voices cut out of the narrative; they do not achieve a dialogic
level of utterance. They might speak, but no one in the dominant group listens.71 Prejudice
and widespread illiteracy acted as barriers to Romani publications. Ethnographers certainly
relied on Romani informants; beginning in 18901892, for example, Herrmann gathered
much of his music from Berci Etvos, the leader of a Romani band that played at the spa
at Tannendorf (Jegenye/Leghia). Etvos may also have provided material for Wlislocki,
who worked closely with Herrmann at the time.72 Scholars rarely acknowledged their infor-
mants, however.
The alleged non-European exoticism of the Zigeuner reinforced scholarly interest. In the
late nineteenth century, German anthropology was divided between the study of Europeans
(Volkskunde) and the study of exotic, primitive peoples from other parts of the world
(Vlkerkunde).73 As non-Europeans, the Zigeuner were a subject that allowed scholars to
engage in Vlkerkunde without leaving Hungary. With the formation in 1888 of the
Gypsy Lore Society in Britain, the institutionalization of Gypsylorism or Gypsiology
as a subdiscipline of ethnography reinforced this interest.74 Furthermore, Grellmann,
drawing heavily on descriptions of Zigeuner customs and traditions made by Pastor Samuel
Ab Hortis (17291792) of Leutschau (Locse/Levoca), elevated Hungarian Roma to the
dubious status of the most authentic of Zigeuner for allegedly preserving customs lost
elsewhere.75 Gypsy Lore Society founding president Charles Leland (18241903) described
Hungary as Gypsy-Land, par minence, the land of the Gypsies, and home to several

68
Wolfe, Traces of History, 914.
69
H. M. G. Grellmann, Die Zigeuner. Ein Historischer Versuch ber die Lebensart und Verfassung, Sitten dieses
Volks in Europe, nebst ihrem Ursprunge (Dessau and Leipzig: 1783); Lee, Orientalism, 13435; Willems,
Search, 1224; Saul, Gypsies, 18.
70
Zaloaga, Professing, 14.
71
Lorey French, Roma Voices in the German-Speaking World (New York: Bloomsbury, 2015), 23.
72
Bdi, Herrmann, 84.
73
Hans Vermeulen, Origins and Institutionalization of Ethnography and Ethnology in Europe and the
USA, 17711845, in Fieldwork and Footnotes: Studies in the History of European Anthropology, ed. Hans
F. Vermeulen and Arturo Alvarez Roldn (London: Routledge, 1995), 4748.
74
Lee, Orientalism, 13738.
75
Willems, Search, 6164.

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20 SACHA E. DAVIS

branches of the best type of Romany.76 Travel writers also referred to Hungary as Gypsy
Land.77 Whereas Schwicker resented the association, Herrmann described the Kingdom of
Hungary as the classical land of Zigeunertum [Gypsydom], and Wlislocki declared the lands
of the Danube (Hungary, Transylvania, Romania) to be the only place where one would find
authentic Zigeuner.78 Herrmann, Wlislocki, and respected Romani-language philologist
Archduke Joseph Habsburg (18331905) were all prominent members of the Gypsy Lore
Society.79
This new scholarship on the Hungarian Zigeuner was published primarily in German.
Although national vernaculars played a growing role in the sciences in the late nineteenth
century, German remained, as Schwicker claimed, the shared language of the Austro-
Hungarian educated elite.80 Furthermore, Wlislocki noted, by publishing in a global
language (Weltsprache), scholars accessed an international readership unavailable to those
writing in Hungarian, a little read language.81 In addition to the three authors discussed
here, scholars in the Habsburg Empire publishing in German on the Zigeuner included indi-
viduals identifying as Slovene, Serbian, Czech, Italian, and Hungarian, as well as other
Germans from Cisleithania, Transylvania, and the Banat.82
Despite growing international institutionalization, there was no formal school of
Zigeunerkunde in the Habsburg Empire. The Gesellschaft fr Zigeunerforschung, founded
in 1903 after a decade-long effort by Anton Herrmann, was short-lived; his journal,
Ethnologische Mitteilungen aus Ungarn, published Zigeunerkunde scholarship but lacked the
institutional structures to establish a clear program for the discipline.83 Zigeunerkunde in
Hungary conformed to two broad trends in international representations of the Zigeuner:

76
Charles G. Leland, A Letter from Hungary, JGLS Series I, vol. 1, no. 3 (1889): 121; Charles
G. Leland, Review of the Archduke Josefs Czigny Nyelvatan, JGLS Series I, vol. 1, no. 1 (1888):
48; Charles G. Leland, Review of Ethnologische Mitteilungen aus Ungarn, JGLS Series I, vol. 1, no. 2
(1888): 105.
77
See, e.g., Victor Tissot, Voyage au pays des Tziganes (la Hongrie inconnue) (Paris: . Dentu, 1880);
Elizabeth Robins Pennell, To Gipsyland (New York: Century Co., 1893).
78
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 159; Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 28788; Heinrich von Wlislocki, Volksglaube
und religiser Brauch der Zigeuner (Mnster: Aschendorffschen Buchhandlung, 1891), xi.
79
Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 29697.
80
Mitchell G. Ash and Jan Surman, The Nationalization of Scientific Knowledge in Nineteenth-
Century Central Europe: An Introduction, in The Nationalization of Scientific Knowledge in the Habsburg
Empire, 18481918, ed. Ash and Surman (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012), 1; Schwicker, Die
Deutschen, 503.
81
Heinrich von Wlislocki, Aus dem Volksleben der Magyaren. Ethologische Mitteilungen (Munich: Literar
Instituts Dr M. Huttler, Konrad Fischer, 1893), vii.
82
Franz Miklosich, ber die Mundarten und die Wanderungen der Zigeuner Europas, vols. 112 (Vienna:
K. Gerolds Sohn, 187280); Tihomir Gjorgjevic, Die Zigeuner in Serbien (Budapest: Thalia, 1903); Josef
Jeina, Romnci cib, oder Die Zigeuner-sprache (Leipzig: List & Francke, 1886); G. J. Ascoli, Zigeunerisches
(Halle: Eduard Heynemann, 1865); Franz Liszt, Die Zigeuner und ihre Musik in Ungarn (Leipzig: Breitkopf
& Hartel, 1910); Alexander von Czeke, Vorwort, in August von Adelburg, Entgegnung auf die von Dr.
Franz Liszt in seinem Werke, Des Bohemiens et de leur Musique en Hongrie (die Zigeuner und ihre Musik in
Ungarn) (Pest: Robert Lampel, 1859); Alexander Czeke, ber ungarische Musik und Zigeuner, Bltter
fr Geist, Gemth und Vaterlandeskunde 16 (1858): 17879, 18183, 18586, 18990, 19394, 197;
Adelburg, Entgegnung; Augustin Weisbach, Die Zigeuner (Vienna: Anthropologische Gesellschaft, 1889).
Hugo Meltzl von Lomnitz (18461908) published many small articles in his journal sszehasonlt
Irodalomtrtneti Lapokat/Acta Comparationis Litt. et Fontes Compar. Litt. Universarum; also see Moriz
Rosenfeld, Lieder der Zigeuner, Ungarische Revue 10 (1882): 82332.
83
Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 191.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 21
Enlightenment scholarship that, following Grellmann, urged the reform and assimilation of
Zigeuner; and romantic scholarship, following British author George Borrow (18031881)
and Hungarian composer Franz Liszt (18111886), who transformed Grellmanns
Orientalist stereotypes into a romantic embodiment of freedom and connection to
nature.84 Schwicker and Herrmann committed firmly to Enlightened reform, whereas
Wlislocki was a passionate romantic. Yet, all three deployed Zigeunerkunde to support or
undermine well-defined nationalist arguments asserting competing models of
modernization.
Schwicker, Herrmann, and Wlislocki reinforced both traditional local representations
and broader European stereotypes. They consistently imagined Zigeuner as a primitive
vagrant people: In their wanderings they often show a certain instinctive periodic recur-
rence, a natural regularity, like the migrations of wandering animals or the orbits of
comets.85 They sometimes conceived of Zigeuner as a romantic symbol of freedom and art-
istry: a world-forsaking, genuinely romantic folk, a wandering people rich in poetry,
whose artistic merit they struggled to reconcile with their lowly social stage and intellectual
inertia, mental laziness as well as often stupid, bestial indifference and insensitivity.86 The
three authors ultimately judged this lowly status to be chiefly the product of the abandon-
ment and neglect in which this people (though mainly of their own will) has so far lived and,
in great measure, still lives.87 All three thus treated the Zigeuner as the antithesis of civiliza-
tion. They nevertheless each used Zigeuner in different ways to express competing views of
nationalist modernization.

Johann Heinrich Schwicker


In addition to Die Deutschen in Ungarn, Schwicker authored Die Zigeuner in Ungarn und
Siebenbrgen (1883), the final volume in Prochaskas series Die Vlker sterreich-Ungarns,
which presented Zigeuner as the antithesis to German modernity and civilization. Die
Zigeuner in Ungarn was the only volume in the series not written by a member of the com-
munity under discussion: Schwicker had not previously published on the Zigeuner and
undertook no fieldwork, relying for evidence on Grellmann, Wlislocki, and various travel
writers. He perpetuated older stereotypes of the Wanderzigeuner, a group that, to him,
included individuals who had lived in the same location for years before moving.88 He con-
trasted Zigeuner customs to bourgeois life.89 He also drew on the racial profiling of the
German criminologist Richard Liebich, who had described Zigeuner in 1863 as an unchange-
able people consisting of morally inferior thieves and frauds.90 Schwicker compared Zigeuner
to African Hottentots, the most primitive of people in the European imagination.91 He

84
Saul, Gypsies, 915; Willems, Search, 93152.
85
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 3.
86
Wlislocki, Zigeunervolke, 34; Schwicker, Zigeuner, 169.
87
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 186.
88
Ibid., 6165.
89
Ibid., 7374.
90
Ibid., 1045; Peter Widmann, The Campaign Against the Restless: Criminal Biology and the
Stigmatization of the Gypsies, 18901960, in The Roma: A Minority in Europe, ed. Roni Stauber and
Raphael Vago (Budapest: Central European University Press, 2007), 20.
91
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 60; Stephen Jay Gould, The Flamingos Smile: Reflections in Natural History
(New York: Norton & Co., 1985), 294.

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22 SACHA E. DAVIS

attributed Zigeuner mobility to a desire to evade police controls (as opposed to avoiding
police oppression): where the authorities were more severe, the sly Zigeuner removed them-
selves by emigrating to a neighboring or more distant county in which the authorities were
less zealous.92 To Schwicker, Zigeuner were thus not only uncivilized but willfully so.93
He dismissed a close analysis of Zigeuner culture as pointless: members of a Naturvolk did
not think that deeply about their own traditions.94 He only made a concession for Zigeuner
musical talent, but nonetheless firmly asserted that Zigeuner musical skills were the product of
rote learning, not real education.95 Schwicker also believed that Zigeuner had no history: If
history constitutes above all the continual evolution and development of humanity, or a
part thereof, in its cultural achievements, and is acquainted with those achievements, then the
Zigeuner indeed have no history; they are an ahistorical, because they have performed no great
deeds, and homeless people.96 For Schwicker, Zigeuner history was primarily the history of
state control. He praised efforts by eighteenth-century monarchs Maria Theresia
(r. 17401780) and Joseph II (r. 17651790) to resettle and assimilate the Zigeuner forcibly.
Measures included forbidding Zigeuner from traveling, dressing differently from their neigh-
bors, speaking Romani, or marrying other Zigeuner, as well as mandating the forced removal
and adoption of Zigeuner children. The term Zigeuner was banned, to be replaced with the
terms New Citizen (Neubrger/Ujpolgr), New Peasant (Neubauer/Ujparasztok), New
Magyar (Ujmagyar), or New Settler (Neusiedler/Ujlakosok)instantly identifiable terms
that continued to single out and stigmatize Roma.97 These decrees collectively strove for
the complete biocultural elimination of the Zigeuner.98 Schwicker considered the measures
harsh, but nonetheless regretted their failure.99
At the same time, Schwicker expressed aspirations for the civilizing of the Zigeuner:
May the future be more favorable to him, and [may] the fast bonds of spiritual and moral
culture raise the despised, shunned, and banished Zigeuner to peer and equal citizen of the
country; may the fleeting and homeless son of plains acquire a beloved home and a
beloved Fatherland!100 He was not concerned about the culture into which Zigeuner assim-
ilated, but simply urged their civilizing. Schwicker viewed Zigeuner as Romanianizing and
Slavizing most rapidly, Magyarizing more slowly, and failing to assimilate into the
German population at all: He does worst of all with the Germans. He remains ethnically
and linguistically quite alien from this nationality.101 Conversely, Schwicker considered
the association of Germans with Zigeuner as a sign of cultural failurechastising Schwab
peasant women, for example, for consulting with Zigeuner women on magic when their hus-
bands were away.102 Transylvanian Saxon pastor Friedrich Mller (18841969) leveled

92
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 65.
93
Ibid., 5260.
94
Ibid., 133.
95
Ibid., 159, 169; Zaloaga, Professing, 19.
96
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 12.
97
Claudia Mayerhofer, Dorfzigeuner. Kultur und Geschichte der Burgenland-Roma von der Ersten Republik bis
zur Gegenwart (Vienna: Picus, 1987), 2433; Woodcock, Tigan, 6567.
98
Wolfe, Traces of History, 45.
99
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 5260.
100
Ibid., 187.
101
Ibid., 156.
102
Ibid., 157.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 23
similar accusations at Saxon peasants in the 1920s, arguing that the practice demonstrated the
limits of Enlightenment influence.103
Schwickers lack of concern about which culture the Zigeuner adopted contradicted the
position of Transylvanian Saxon nationalists, who had long criticized Hungarian cultural
influences on the Zigeuner. As Marian Zaloaga has demonstrated, kaisertreue Saxon newspa-
pers condemned Zigeuner performances of Magyar nationalist music during the 1848
Revolution, arguing that Magyar nationalists were thereby leading the Zigeuner astray.
Saxon nationalist newspapers continued to make similar accusations about Zigeuner perfor-
mances of Magyar nationalist music throughout the nineteenth century.104 Schwicker
addressed a fundamental weakness in Teutschs (and in his own) claims about German civ-
ilizing influence, however: why were Germans neighbors not already civilized after centu-
ries of contact? The answer for Schwicker was twofold: first, German civilization was the
culture of the most educated classes, and educating the lower classes was the task of lesser cul-
tures, including Magyar culture. Second, some groups, like the Zigeuner, were too primitive
to be elevated intellectually regardless of their culture: they would never achieve the status of
a German.
Many Roma had nevertheless embraced German culture. Those in the Banat capital
Temeswar (Temesvr/Timis oara) originally came from Cisleithania and thus spoke
Viennese German.105 Many worked in Nationalkapellen (national bands or choirs), whose
German-language repertoire was popular entertainment in Temeswar coffeehouses through-
out the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.106 Other Roma in Northern Transylvania
were Lutheran and spoke the Saxon dialect.107 Because such examples threatened
Schwickers assertions of German cultures lofty status and its alleged unsuitability for the
lower classes, he dismissed this evidence, asserting that the Zigeuner of Temesvar remained
eternally alien despite adopting German. He noted approvingly that German-speaking
Zigeuner remained excluded from German society, as the relative rates of population increase
indicated: Among the settled Zigeuner, just these Germans multiply extraordinarily. The
Romanians decrease rapidly, the Hungarians more slowly, i.e., they lose their ancestral
national essence in favor of the dominant Romanian or Magyar nationality in their place
of residence.108 Hungarian- and Romanian-speaking Zigeuner thus declined numerically
as they acculturated, thereby ceasing to be Zigeuner. By comparison, German-speaking
Zigeuner remained inherently alien, i.e., they remained Zigeuner and their numbers increased
because of natural population growth.109 Schwickers views of the Temesvar Roma derived
from local informant Moriz Rosenfeld, who used folk music to assert a fundamental distinc-
tion between Germans and Zigeuner.110 Zigeuner music lacked the deep striving for self-
improvement revealed in German (and indeed Magyar) folk music. Their folk songs had

103
Friedrich Mller, Werden und Wesen des sieb.-schs. Bauertums, Klingsor 4 (1927): 910, 6566.
104
Zaloaga, Germans, Hungarians and the Zigeunerkapelle, 38193.
105
Hans Gehl, Deutsche Stadtsprachen in Provinzstdten Sdosteuropas (Stuttgart: Franz Steiner, 1997), 1618.
106
Franz Metz, In der Himmelsmusik auf ewig zu loben. Von der Musik der Temeswarer deutschen
Zigeuner, Edition Music Sdost (2007), http://www.edition-musik-suedost.de/html/rekasch.html
(accessed April 12, 2016).
107
Harald Roth, Ethnikum und Konfession als mentalittsprgende Merkmale: Zur Frage konfessionel-
ler Minderheiten in Siebenbrgen, Zeitschrift fr siebenbrgische Landeskunde 24, no. 1 (2001): 8182.
108
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 156.
109
Ibid.
110
Ibid., 6162, 170.

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24 SACHA E. DAVIS

nothing to contribute to German culture, and they possessed cultural and historical value
only as the emblem of a people facing extinction.111
For Schwicker, the speed with which Zigeuner successfully acculturated into other cul-
tures revealed a civilizational hierarchy: The Romanian traffics with him gladly, the
Magyar loves Zigeuner music but despises or ridicules the Zigeuner; the German keeps him
at a distance.112 The failure of Zigeuner to Germanize, and the distance Germans kept
from the Zigeuner, thus validated, in his view, the superiority of the German civilizing
mission over Magyarization.

Anton Herrmann
Unlike Schwicker, Anton Herrmann actively researched Zigeuner ethnography. Herrmanns
friend Wlislocki first inspired him to examine Zigeuner folklore, and together they collected
Transylvanian Wanderzigeuner folk music and poetry in 18861887.113 Yet, Magyar nation-
alism shaped Herrmanns interest from the start. His goal was to dismiss Liszts thesis, which
was first published in French in 1859, that Hungarian folk music was, in fact, of Romani
origin.114 Liszts assertion, designed to give Hungarian folk music a romantic pedigree,
resembled Magyar nationalist attempts to posit a Hunnish or Turkish origin for the
Magyar, thereby laying claim to a more prestigious martial history than the (now widely
accepted) alternative thesis of a Finno-Ugric origin.115 For example, Herrmann conceded
Hungarian to be an Ugric language, but considered other aspects of Magyar ethnography
to be Turkic. Simultaneously, like other Magyar nationalists, Herrmann considered
Hungarians to be European in character and civilization.116 Unlike Turkish ancestry,
Zigeuner influences linked Hungarian culture to an ignoble past. Worse still, from
Herrmanns perspective, Liszts profile as a composer quickly led to the international dissemina-
tion of his ideas. Horrified rebuttals of Liszts thesis, asserting a fundamental distinction between
Hungarian and Zigeuner music, appeared in German even before Liszts work was translated into
Hungarian and German in 1861.117 Magyar music critic Sndor Czeke (18281891), for
instance, published his work in German in order to reach the largest possible audience for his
dismissal of Liszts claims.118 Similarly, Herrmann presented his thesisthat Gypsy musicians
have especially corrupted, and partly falsified, the genuine, original Hungarian folk
musicto the Folklore Congress held in London in 1891.119 Government-sponsored publi-
cations for international audiences regularly condemned Liszts views.120

111
Rosenfeld, Lieder, 825. Rosenfelds thesis reflected the debate (discussed later) that Liszt had trig-
gered about the relationship between Hungarian and Zigeuner music.
112
Schwicker, Zigeuner, 157.
113
Voigt, Master, 67; Bdi, Herrmann, 83.
114
Franz Liszt, Des Bohmiens et de leur Musique en Hongrie (Paris: Librairie Nouvelle, 1859).
115
Kamusella, Politics, 47576.
116
Herrmann, Ethnography, 399401.
117
Liszt, Zigeuner; Lynn M. Hooker, Redefining Hungarian Music from Liszt to Bartk (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 2013); Anna G. Piotrowska, Gypsy Music in European Culture: From the Late Eighteenth to
the Early Twentieth Centuries (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 2013), 3738.
118
Czeke, Vorwort, iiiiv; Czeke, Musik.
119
Anton Herrmann, Gypsy Music, JGLS Series I, vol. 3, no. 3 (1892): 151.
120
See, e.g., Herrmann, Ethnography, 409; Erzherzog Josef, Die Zigeuner, in Die sterreich-
Ungarische Monarchie in Wort und Bild, vol. 23, ed. Erzherzog Rudolf (Wein: k.k. Hof- und
Staatsdruckerei, 1902), 57374.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 25
Herrmanns most substantial work on the Zigeuner was a report on the 1893 Zigeuner
census conducted for the Hungarian Ministry of the Interior. The premise of the report
reflected the states view that vagabondage threatened law, order, and modernization in
Hungary, and that almost all vagabonds in Hungary were Zigeuner: In any civilized state
there are mobile elements. These elements hinder uniform and common progress in intel-
lectual and material areas, hamper administration, endanger public safety, and corrupt public
morality. The vagrants here are mostly wandering Zigeuner. As the interests of a modern
civilized state required the Ministry of the Interior to take up the abolition of vagrancy as part
of its public policy agenda, the matter of perpetually or mostly wandering Zigeuner had to
come to the fore.121 This conflation of the categories vagrant and Zigeuner across
Central Europe has led Illuzzi to question whether individuals labeled Zigeuner/Zingari in
Germany and Italy were actually Romani.122 Similarly, Matthew Fitzpatrick argues that
Zigeuner was not primarily an ethnic term for authorities in Wilhelmine Germany, but
rather a sociological term capturing alleged economic and criminal practices (vagabond-
age). Many of the individuals expelled as Zigeuner were thus not Romani.123
The discrepancies between the Zigeuner population identified in the general census
(91,603 in 1890) and the Zigeuner-Conscription (Gypsy Census) (274,940 in 1893) suggest
that many individuals labeled Zigeuner may not have wished to be identified as such.
Those labeled Zigeuner frequently resisted participating in the census.124 Herrmann
doubted the veracity of their testimony, relying instead on data from local officials, who
were not always well informed about their subjects.125 The results of the Zigeuner-
Conscription do not suggest that Herrmann applied the category of Zigeuner to large
numbers of non-Romani vagrants, however: of the 274,940 individuals the census identified
as Zigeuner, almost 90 percent were permanently settled, and only 3.25 percent of individuals
were classified as nomadic or Wanderzigeuner.126 Furthermore, Herrmann excluded as vag-
abonds the many Habsburg peasants (including Germans) who annually sought seasonal
work in mining and manufacturing centers in the Habsburg Empire and in Germany.127
Between 1901 and 1910, for example, half a million Habsburg citizens (more than twice
the total Zigeuner population) migrated seasonally each year, mostly across the German
border.128 Nor did the Zigeuner-Conscription reveal an economically unproductive popula-
tion: Herrmanns own data revealed that many Roma were economically integrated, if
socially marginalized.129

121
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 1.
122
Illuzzi, Gypsies, 124.
123
Matthew P. Fitzpatrick, Purging the Empire: Mass Expulsions in Germany, 18711914 (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 2015), 45, 17778.
124
Marian Zaloaga, Consensus and Disparities in Reception of Archduke Josephs Involvement with the
Gypsy Studies/Question. Voices from Academic Literature and Daily Press, in Discourse and Counter-
discourse in Cultural and Intellectual History, ed. Carmen Andras and Cornel Sigmirean (Sibiu: ASTRA
Museum, 2014), 140.
125
Szab, Roma, 1078.
126
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 1419.
127
Vermeiren, Germany, 203.
128
Tara Zahra, Travel Agents on Trial: Policing Mobility in East Central Europe, 18891989, Past and
Present 223, no. 1 (2014): 168.
129
Willems, Search, 18182.

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26 SACHA E. DAVIS

Regardless, Herrmanns report perpetuated the Wanderzigeuner stereotype by reporting


the number of Wanderzigeuner as a raw figure (8,938), rather than as a percentage, to
create the impression of a larger proportion. In addition, he created a separate category
labeled seminomadic (7.5 percent), defined broadly to include those Zigeuner living in a
fixed abode yet traveling seasonally for work, those who lived in a single place for some
years before relocating to another community, and those living permanently in one location
but in tents rather than houses.130 Unlike in Germany, then, where the term Zigeuner
ascribed ethnic qualities to socioeconomic functions (e.g., vagabondage, criminality), in
Hungary, the term ascribed the same socioeconomic functions to an essentially ethnic cate-
gory, namely, individuals of Romani heritage.
The stated aims of the census were to collect the necessary data to transform Zigeuner into
decent, civilized, happy members of society, useful citizens of the state, faithful sons of the
nation and the Fatherland.131 Ironically, Herrmanns efforts to identify Zigeuner hindered
the integration of Roma into mainstream Hungarian society; the label Zigeuner, like
Neubauer in the eighteenth century, bore the assumption of criminality and of being
outside the state, thus diminishing an individuals chances for integration.132 Herrmann
proposed sedentarization and assimilation to solve the alleged Zigeuner problem. As most
Roma were neither nomadic nor unproductive, however, the primary goal of the study
was assimilation rather than sedentarization.
Furthermore, for Herrmann, civilizing the Zigeuner was a competitive process. Had sed-
entarization alone been the goal, he might have praised the widespread influence of
Romanian culture on the Roma. Instead, he asserted the importance of Magyarization:
The Zigeuner can, in the bosom of the Hungarian nation and the Hungarian, reach such
a level of prosperity, education, and self-awareness, of importance and human dignity, as
nowhere else and in no other ethnic configuration.133 Herrmann denigrated
Romanianization, arguing that Romanians were effective assimilators only because their
own culture was primitive, because Romanian women did not practice national endogamy,
and because Romanians themselves had only recently become sedentary, having previously
practiced transhumance.134 He claimed that Romanianization disadvantaged Zigeuner by
integrating them into a primitive culture, exclud[ing] them from the community of the
nation without offering them social, moral, or economic advantages.135
Furthermore, Herrmann claimed, Romanianization caused degeneration by spreading
the worst Zigeuner qualities among the Romanian population.136 Conversely, he posited a
special ability of the Magyar race to absorb other races without losing its essential character-
istics, which protected Magyars from the same degenerative impact, and made Zigeuners
healthy bodies, quick minds, and skillful fingers a potential credit to the Hungarian
nation.137 Herrmann thus reconciled the tension between a desire to breed out

130
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 1719; Willems, Search, 182.
131
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 4.
132
Illuzzi, Gypsies, 5, 14.
133
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 6364.
134
Ibid., 6162.
135
Ibid., 62.
136
Ibid., 62.
137
Turda, Race, 144149; Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 64.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 27
Naturvlker to extinguish them, on the one hand, and fears of racial degeneration through
miscegenation, on the other.138
Demographic anxieties drove Herrmanns view of Romanianization, then: For the
Hungarian nation, however, it is obviously a loss if just that local ethnicity
[Volkselemente] that seems to be the most opposed to unity with this nation, multiplies
through absorbing tens of thousands of Zigeuner. Alternatively, the Magyarization of a
quarter of a million Zigeuner would strengthen Hungarian territorial unity. Herrmann also
ascribed Romanian nationalism to egoistical agitation and regretted that Romanians
were not themselves embracing Hungarian nationalism.139 These comments suggested a
sense of desperation: population statistics revealed that Magyar nationalists were losing this
struggle in Transylvania and the Banat.
Like Schwicker, Herrmann also dismissed the Germanization of Zigeuner, claiming that
the gap between the two peoples characters was too great: The German nature and
Zigeuner nature are such opposites that they do not have any interactions except in
extreme circumstances The Germans sympathize the least with the Zigeuner and do not
even have much opportunity to influence them. The Zigeuner do not feel attracted to the
Germans and, in communities mixed with Germans, do not live among them.140 They
were thus too civilized to assimilate the Zigeuner effectively. Rather, Magyar culture
advanced in comparison to Romanian culture, accessible unlike German culture, and grant-
ing access to the resources and opportunities of the Hungarian stateprovided the best
means of civilizing the Zigeuner.141 Herrmanns emphasis on assimilation in the report seem-
ingly contradicted his ethnographic approach: he had published approximately two hundred
Romani songs in various small articles and served as general secretary of the (British) Gypsy
Lore Society, and was principle instigator of the Hungarian Gesellschaft fr Zigeunerforschung.
Herrmanns Ethnologische Mitteilungen carried the programmatic title Mitteilungen der
Zigeunerkunde (Gypsy Studies Announcements) from 1893 to 1907.142
There was a similar contradiction in the writings of Archduke Joseph Habsburg, who, fol-
lowing in the footsteps of Maria Theresia and Joseph II, initiated a project in 1891 for the
forced settlement, under the careful watch of armed guards, of thirty-six Wanderzigeuner fam-
ilies on his estates at Alcsth. First and foremost a linguist, Archduke Joseph nevertheless
encouraged the use of Romani at Alcsth, even as he sought to force Zigeuner to become
a sedentary, industrious population.143 These values were not apparent in the archdukes
contribution on the Transylvanian Zigeuner to the Kronprinzenwerk, a comprehensive
survey of the lands and peoples of the Habsburg Monarchy initiated by Crown Prince
Rudolf (18581889). Issued in German and Hungarian, the Kronprinzenwerk had two edito-
rial boards, one responsible for each half of the Dual Monarchy. Those volumes, dedicated to
Hungary as a whole, presented a narrative of Magyar achievement in which non-Magyars
were largely absent. Sections devoted to Hungarys principal minorities appeared only in

138
Wolfe, Traces of History, 15.
139
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 62.
140
Ibid., 66.
141
Ibid., 59, 66.
142
Bdi, Herrmann, 84; Zaloaga, Consensus, 104, n. 16; Voigt, Master, 69.
143
Jzsef Foherczeg, Czigny nyelvtan; Romno csibkero sziklaribe (Budapest: Magyar Tudomanyos
Akademia, 1888); Erzherzog Josef, Zigeunergrammatik (Budapest: Viktor Hornynszky, 1902); Ruch,
Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 298301; Zaloaga, Consensus, 13539.

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28 SACHA E. DAVIS

volumes dedicated to specific regions within Hungary. The volumes on Hungary thus
reflected Magyar nationalist views.144 In the Kronprinzenwerk, Archduke Joseph argued
that the settlement of nomadic Zeltzigeuner (tent Gypsies) was especially important for
Hungarys overall cultural standing. The direction of this assimilation was clear: Joseph spe-
cifically described the Zigeuner as new Magyar (neu-magyarische, uj-magyar).145 Like the
Zigeuner-Conscription, the Kronprinzenwerk reflected the Hungarian state policy of
Magyarization rather than Archduke Josephs interest in sedentarization without assimilation.
Herrmanns Ethnologische Mitteilungen nevertheless contained relatively little Zigeuner eth-
nography in its early years.146 Instead, Herrmann reprinted in 1893 and 1894 Maria
Theresias and Joseph IIs decrees for the forced sedentarization and assimilation of the
Zigeuner, thereby underlining his focus on assimilation.147 He considered himself to be the
curator of cultural relics that should be preserved with reverence as petrified witnesses of
the past, but not maintained as daily practices.148 He also saw nothing regrettable in this
process of assimilation of inferior nationalities: It is not to be desired that inferior cul-
tures of less interest to civilization should be preserved, but that they should strengthen that
element that has already fulfilled a glorious mission to the advantage of culture and human-
ity, i.e., the Magyars.149 He collected folksongs to preserve Zigeuner culture in print, even as
he sought to assimilate its living practitioners.
Regardless of his own views, Herrmann was prepared to author works extolling the gov-
ernmental policy of Magyarization. His efforts to advance his career through Magyarization
were moderately successful: he became a Privatdozent at the University of Klausenburg, yet
even the royal patronage of Archduke Joseph generated insufficient ministerial support to
fulfill Herrmanns ambition of turning ethnography into a university subject.150 The
Ministry of the Interior nonetheless drew on his expertise for the 1907 Zigeuner census,
and, during Hungarys brief-lived communist government from March to August 1919,
Herrmann oversaw a Zigeuner education program.151 Zigeuner ethnography provided him
with effective means for both integrating himself into Hungarian nationalism and advancing
his own career.

Heinrich von Wlislocki


Whereas Schwicker and Herrmann followed the Enlightenment tradition of Zigeuner reform
within a framework of German and Magyar nationalism, respectively, Wlislocki rejected the
Enlightenment project, Zigeuner reform, and nationalism altogether. He looked instead to
the Zigeuner for evidence of the past. A student of Sanskrit, Wlislocki first took interest in

144
Vilmos Heiszer, Ungarischer (magyarischer) Nationalismus im Kronprinzenwerk, and Zoltan
Szsz, Das Kronprinzenwerk und dessen Konzeption, in Kiss et al., Nation, 6769, 7176.
145
Josef, Die Zigeuner, 565. The Hungarian entry is in Jzsef Foherczeg, A czignyok, Az Osztrk-
Magyar Monachia irsban s kpben Magyarorszg VI, vol. 23/2 (Budapest: Magyar Kirlyi llamnyomda,
1900), 568578.
146
Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 288.
147
A. Herrmann, Dokumente zur Geschichte der Zigeuner, Ethnologischen Mitteilungen 3 (18931894):
5556, 11416, 16870, 210212, 22123.
148
Marius Turda, Entangled Traditions of Race: Physical Anthropology in Hungary and Romania,
19001940, Focaal 58 (2010): 3334.
149
Herrmann, Ethnography, 395.
150
Paldi-Kovcs, Efforts, 53.
151
Bdi, Herrmann, 8586.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 29
the Zigeuner because of their linguistic roots in North India. Drawing on then popular
notions that the further East one went, the closer populations were to their original
Indo-Germanic roots, Wlislocki argued that the Zigeuner provided a window onto
ancient traditions from the very early stages of Indo-Germanic development.152 As Iulia-
Karin Patrut notes, he thus valued Zigeuner folklore not in its own right but rather for its
ability to shed light on the origins of Indo-European culture.153 Financial concerns also
motivated Wlislocki: having concluded that Zigeuner culture would soon vanish, he believed
that scholarship on the topic would be particularly lucrative.154
Wlislockis approach exemplified the influence of Romanticism on Zigeunerkunde.155
Internationally, many Zigeunerkunde scholars identified Zigeuner as the embodiment of
Romanticisms rejection of bourgeois respectability, as well as of its fascination with the
authenticity of folk culture, the cult of genius, and the elevation of artistic creativity. Liszt,
for example, extolled the Zigeuners close connection to nature and their ennoblement
through their musical talents as an antithesis to the degeneration of modern society and
humanitys state of alienation.156 Liszts critic Czeke shared Liszts romantic view of both
Zigeuner and Magyar music, even as he asserted that the two were fundamentally distinct.157
Wlislocki, who published during the revival of Romanticism in the 1880s, did not assert that
Hungarian music was Zigeuner music, but did consider the Transylvanian Wanderzigeuner to
be an unspoiled Naturvolk and an antidote to dystopian modernity.158 To find true folksi-
ness (Volksthmlichkeit), one must make ones way away from the beaten highroads and
laboriously seek hidden, secluded routes, where the haste of our day, which makes every-
thing identical with its swindle of human brotherhood, has not yet completely destroyed
the poetic fragrance of folk life, and where the characteristic features of the individual
tribes have not yet been completely blurred, to be replaced by the social democratic
project and the drooling pursuit of easy profits.159 Wlislocki thus marketed his work as cap-
turing a purer, more organic expression of the human condition.160 This approach reflected
growing anxieties around the supposedly degenerative impact of urbanization, industrializa-
tion, unbridled capitalism, and rising socialism.161 Furthermore, in Wlislockis schema,
Naturvolk around the world shared essential characteristics because of their animal-like close-
ness to nature and their lack of artificial civilization.162 Hence, by studying
the Wanderzigeuner, Wlislocki asserted the ability to cast light on primitive Vlker
everywherewithout having to leave Transylvania.163

152
Lee, Orientalism, 14147.
153
Patrut, Wlislocki.
154
Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 21219.
155
Willems, Search, 18288.
156
Tim Blanning, The Romantic Revolution (London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 2010), 49, 3141; Saul,
Gypsies, 115.
157
Czeke, Musik.
158
Blanning, The Romantic Revolution, 17681.
159
Wlislocki, Zigeunervolke, 51.
160
Ibid., 4951.
161
Sheila Faith Weiss, Race Hygiene and National Efficiency: The Eugenics of Wilhelm Schallmeyer (Berkeley:
University of California Press, 1987), 713.
162
Wlislocki, Zigeunervolke, 52.
163
Ibid., 3079.

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30 SACHA E. DAVIS

Because Wlislockis claims rested on the unspoiled status of Hungarian and


Transylvanian Wanderzigeuner, he claimed that they had fiercely resisted adopting new
ideas and remained pure and unmixed through tribal endogamy, and also that the
many isolated Transylvanian mountain villages had provided opportunities to practice prim-
itive handicrafts, thus allowing them to preserve their traditions and nomadic lifestyle.164
Wlislocki condemned Maria Theresias and Joseph IIs failed reform efforts, expressing
instead far greater sympathy for the Zigeuner than most of his contemporaries did.165 As a con-
sequence of the failure of these reform efforts, he asserted, one could trace ancient customs and
beliefs through later Western influences.166 Whereas Schwicker dismissed Zigeuner witchcraft
as superstition and trickery, Wlislocki presented these practices in the context of comparative
religion, and thereby broadened the appeal of his work.167 He asserted that, as a Naturvolk,
Zigeuner revealed the most primitive, natural state of religious values, thus providing a useful
comparison to other Oriental primitive religious practices.168 At the same time, he considered
the assimilation of the Wanderzigeuner to be inevitable, and consequently emphasized the
importance of his own work in recording vanishing practices of the past.169
Less condemning of Zigeuner culture than Herrmann and Schwicker, Wlislocki nonethe-
less presented a thoroughly Orientalizing view, disenfranchising the vast majority of (seden-
tary) Roma as inauthentic representatives of their culture.170 Whereas Schwicker and
Herrmann branded integrated individuals of Romani descent as Zigeuner, Wlislocki excluded
them altogether from Zigeunertum, claiming that they had blended with the lowest strata of
the local population, abandoned their traditions, and lost their language and all sense of
belonging together that so characterizes their nomadic comrades.171 He even accused
them of having adopted the worst aspects of modern society: There are also some interna-
tional comrades among them with social democratic-inspired, unpatriotic lives, who have
appropriated for themselves the negative aspects of cosmopolitanism, but less often the
good.172 These representations echoed colonialist discourse denying authenticity to
half-breeds of mixed indigenous/settler parentage.173 Wlislockis views also reflected
fears of urban degeneration; according to the Zigeuner-Conscription, Roma were three to
four times more likely to be industrial workers than the general population was.174
Wlislocki claimed expertise in Zigeuner culture through extensive fieldwork and honorary
membership in a Wanderzigeuner tribe.175 By the time of his death, his mythology included
a (fictitious) Zigeuner wifesomething that contradicted his assertion of Zigeuner endogamy,
but further cemented his legitimacy as an expert on Zigeuner.176 (Such claims of holding a

164
Ibid., 5355, 82.
165
Wlislocki, Zigeunervolke, 2648; Patrut, Wlislocki, 18990.
166
Wlislocki, Zigeunervolke, 53.
167
Wlislocki, Volksglaube der Zigeuner; Thomas Davidson, Review of von Wlislocki, Volksglaube und reli-
gioser Brauch der Zigeuner, JGLS Series I, vol. 3, no. 4 (1892): 24041.
168
Wlislocki, Zigeunervolke, 83, 14950.
169
Ibid., 82, 3079.
170
Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 204; Patrut, Wlislocki, 186.
171
Wlislocki, Zigeunervolke, 5455.
172
Ibid., 166; Patrut, Wlislocki, 18691.
173
Wolfe, Traces of History, 4757.
174
Herrmann, Ergebnisse, 96.
175
Wlislocki, Zigeunervolke, 2; Wlislocki, Volksglaube der Zigeuner, x.
176
Helmolt, Friend, 19394; Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 200.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 31
special status within Zigeuner society [being a Romany Rye] and of sexual relations with
Zigeuner women were common among scholars in this period.177) Opinion remains
divided on Wlislockis fieldwork: he apparently only made two extended field trips, and
gleaned much of his material from sedentary Romani informants (whom he condemned as
degenerate). From the 1890s onward, in fact, Wlislocki gained a reputation for fabrication.178
He thus constructed a largely imaginary stereotype of the authentic Zigeuner as the antithesis of
the modernity he so disliked. Simultaneously, he marked sedentary Zigeuner as incapable of
reform. Hungarian and German modernizing projects could only debase the Zigeuner
without offering them the benefits of civilization, just as they themselves threatened to over-
whelm the other Transylvanian folk cultures. Despite later criticisms of his work, Wlislockis
publications were, by far, the most internationally successful of the three scholars under consid-
eration here, largely because they appealed to the increasingly Romantic sentiments with which
authentic Zigeuner were imagined in Western Europe during the late nineteenth century.179

Conclusion
Schwicker, Herrmann, and Wlislocki represent the wide range of Hungarian-German
responses to the demands made upon them by Magyarization: from embracing the
Magyar modernizing project, to asserting a rival German civilizing mission, to rejecting mod-
ernization entirely. These themes also shaped their writing on the Zigeuner. They deployed
the Zigeuner in support of nationalist struggles in Hungary over what made a good citizen and
what path Hungary should follow to modernity. For Schwicker, the failure of Zigeuner to be
Germanized reinforced the importance of the German civilizing mission. Other peoples
should civilize the Zigeuner, he believed: German culture was for advancing the non-
German elitesincluding Hungarians. For Herrmann, solving the problem of Zigeuner
vagrancy demonstrated the superiority of the Hungarian modernizing project.
Hungarian culture was not only more accessible than German culture, but also offered
greater opportunities for advancement than Romanianization. Racial theories reinforced
Herrmanns beliefs: Magyars could safely absorb the same Zigeuner that would have contrib-
uted to Romanian degeneration. Conversely, for Wlislocki, the Zigeuner showed the mis-
guided nature of all national modernization projects: whereas the idealized Wanderzigeuner
revealed the rich authenticity of premodern culture, the degenerate, sedentary Zigeuner fur-
nished evidence of the negative impact of acculturation, industrialization, and social
democracy.
As a subaltern population that was denied a voice, considered the antithesis of modern,
bourgeois society, and perceived to be in need of surveillance and control, the Zigeuner pro-
vided a particularly fruitful context in which to assert these competing views of modernity.
These views had far greater influence than Romani lived experiences in shaping representa-
tions of the Zigeuner. Schwicker saw no need to carry out primary research on a people he
considered to be without historical agency; Herrmann distorted the evidence of the 1893

177
Lee, Orientalism, 13940; Ian Hancock, The Gypsy Stereotype and the Sexualization of Romani
Women, in Gypsies in European Literature and Culture, ed. Valentina Glajar and Domnica Radulescu
(New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008), 184.
178
Patrut, Wlislocki, 18788; Ruch, Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 23738, 25984; anon., Reviews, JGLS
Series I vol. 3, no. 3 (1892): 181; c.f. Bdi, Herrmann, 84.
179
Willems, Search, 12.

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32 SACHA E. DAVIS

census to support his conclusions; Wlislocki misrepresented and possibly fabricated his mate-
rial. Collectively, all three reinforced broader European stereotypes of the Zigeuner.
Schwicker and Herrmann presented Zigeuner as a neglected, bestial people requiring coercive
reform; Schwicker simultaneously delimited the potential for reform by placing Zigeuner
eternally below German standards of civilization. Wlislocki extolled the virtues of a vanish-
ingly small category of Wanderzigeuner while castigating sedentary Zigeuner (the vast major-
ity of Roma) as degenerate. These parallel discourses branded Zigeuner as needing reform
but as being simultaneously irredeemable. Changing racial theories reinforced such
trends. Inclusive racial views such as Herrmanns gradually gave way after 1900, and espe-
cially after 1918, to increasingly Social Darwinian racial theories in which racial difference
and the struggle for survival were permanent barriers to non-Magyar membership in the
Hungarian nation.180 Such work helped lay the grounds for further discrimination
against Roma in Hungary, Germany, and elsewhereand, ultimately, for the Porajmos
(Romani Holocaust).181
By World War I, the stereotype of the irredeemable Zigeuner predominated over notions
of reform. The discursive function of Transylvanian Saxon and Banat Schwab representations
of the Zigeuner consequently shifted in the interwar period. In 1918, Romania annexed
Transylvania and most of the Banat. Formerly subaltern Romanians became the Staatsvolk,
Romanianization replaced Magyarization, and the nascent Romanian middle class increas-
ingly challenged provincial German elites.182 German, Hungarian, and Romanian national-
ists continued to advance competing modernizing projects and civilizing missions to
legitimize their claims to influence.183
German nationalists no longer discursively employed the term Zigeuner as a battlefield for
reform, however. Rather, Transylvanian essayist Erwin Wittstock and philologist Misch
Orend (18961976), and Banat author Otto Alscher (18801944), presented essentialist
understandings of the Zigeuner as romantic but irredeemable.184 In a semiethnographical,
semifictional account, for example, Wittstock presented the Hungarian village sheriff as a
nave, would-be reformer whose efforts were futile, whereas Saxon villagers knew better
than to try, concentrating instead on how best to manage local Zigeuner as they were.185
Alscher, for his part, also presented Zigeuner in his short stories as a romantic Naturvolk
and reform efforts as doomed.186

180
Turda, Race, 155.
181
Willems, Search.
182
Stephen Fischer-Galati, Twentieth Century Romania (New York: Columbia University Press, 1991),
2930; Irina Livezeanu, Cultural Politics in Greater Romania: Regionalism, Nation Building and Ethnic
Struggle, 19181930 (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1995), 14382.
183
Sacha Davis, East-West Discourses in Transylvania: Transitional Erdly, German-Western
Siebenbrgen or Latin-Western Ardeal?, in The East-West Discourse: Symbolic Geography and Its
Consequences, ed. Alexander Maxwell (Oxford: Peter Lang, 2011), 12754.
184
Horst Schuller Anger, Kontakt und Wirkung. Literarische Tendenzen in der siebenbrgischen Kulturzeitschrift
Klingsor (Bucharest: Kriterion, 1994), 1001; also see, e.g., Misch Orend, Die Volkslyrik der
Siebenbrgischen Zigeuner, Klingsor 3, no. 6 (1926): 22328; Wittstock, Zigeunern; Gabriela Sandor,
Interethnische Beziehungen im Banat: Rumnen und Zigeuner in Otto Alschers Erzhlung Die
Toaka, Temeswarer Beitrge zur Germanistik 7 (2010): 10722.
185
Wittstock, Zigeunern.
186
Sandor, Beziehungen.

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HUNGARIAN GERMANS, MODERNIZATION, AND THE ZIGEUNER 33
Other motivations for Zigeuner ethnography also declined. Following territorial losses to
Poland after the war, the German public took a new interest in German minorities in Eastern
Europe. German scholarship on the region gradually shifted from Osteuropaforschung (the
study of the peoples of East Europe) to Ostforschung (the study of the Germans of East
Europe).187 German scholars from Transylvania and the Banat concentrated their research
on their own communities, which opened up funding opportunities from Germany.188
Interwar studies of the Zigeuner were largely derived from prewar works: Wittstock and
Orend primarily recycled Wlislockis material in lieu of performing original fieldwork.
The term Zigeuner nevertheless continued to serve a discursive function in German eth-
nographic descriptions of their own communities. Although most Saxon settlements were
multiethnic, for example, Zigeuner farm laborers were the only non-Germans to appear as a
fixed and permanent part of the Saxon village in Pastor Adolf Schulleruss definitive 1926
study of Transylvanian Saxon folklore, Siebenbrgisch-schsische Volkskunde. Following first
Magyarization and then the upturning of the social hierarchy under Romanianization,
Roma were the only ethnic community over which German social dominance remained
unchallenged.189 In ethnographic descriptions, the Zigeuner were mysterious, amusing,
perhaps a little dangerous and thus needing to be controlled; yet, they were easily predictable
andwithin certain boundsaccepting of their place in society.190 No longer objects for
reform, Zigeuner discursively functioned as the last symbol of German social mastery.

UNIVERSITY OF NEWCASTLE (AUSTRALIA)

187
Michael Burleigh, Germany Turns Eastwards: A Study of Ostforschung in the Third Reich (Cambridge:
Cambridge University, 1989), 2239.
188
Misch Orend, Deutschland und die Auslanddeutschtum, Klingsor 2, no. 7 (1925): 27980; Mathias
Beer and Gerhard Seewann, eds., Sdostforschung im Schatten des Dritten Reiches: Institutionen, Inhalte, Personen
(Munich: Oldenbourg, 2004).
189
Adolf Schullerus, Siebenbrgisch-schsische Volkskunde im Umri (Augsburg: Weltbild, 1998), 78.
190
Wittstock, Zigeunern.

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