LINGUIST List 14.1

Sun Jan 5 2003

All: Obituary: Tine Logar

Editor for this issue: Karen Milligan <karenlinguistlist.org>


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  • Donald F. Reindl, Obituary: Tine Logar (1916-2002)

    Message 1: Obituary: Tine Logar (1916-2002)

    Date: Sat, 4 Jan 2003 02:52:10 -0500 (EST)
    From: Donald F. Reindl <dreindlindiana.edu>
    Subject: Obituary: Tine Logar (1916-2002)
    The following obituary appeared in the Slovenian daily newspaper "Delo" on 4 January 2003.

    "Tine Logar 1916-2002", by Vera Smole

    On Christmas Eve at the age of 87, a true patriot, beloved professor, academician, researcher and interpreter of the most intimate expression of national existence, the great dialectologist and Slovenian historical linguist, Dr. Tine Logar, passed away. To take one's farewell on such a family-oriented holiday may be seen as fitting for one to whom family was sacred in the deepest sense of this word. Professor Logar dedicated himself to two families: his own and his spiritual family. This included all of us that -- alongside him or with him -- have lived for his and our great love: for the Slovenian language in its historical and dialectal roots. Tine Logar was born on 11 February 1916 into a large farming family in Horjul. After his exit exams from the secondary school in Ljubljana, in 1935 he enrolled at the Department of Slavic Languages at Ljubljana's Academy of Arts, from which he graduated in 1940. He then taught for a short time and, on the threshold of World War II, completed his doctorate in June 1941 under his mentor, Fran Ramovs. With a completed education and a passionate love for Slovenian culture, he joined the Liberation Front (OF), but was betrayed and interned in a prison camp. Although near death himself, he instilled his fellow internees with courage and, despite the apparent hopelessness of the situation, enlightened them and prepared them for a new and more just life. The new authorities initially rewarded him with an expert's position in the Slovenian Ministry of Education but, soon after he returned to linguistics in 1947 at Ramovs' request, they committed an unpardonable wrong against him when the Bureau of Propaganda (Informbiro) condemned him and sent him to [the prison camp at] Goli Otok and then to the mines in Bosnia. His sturdy peasant background, his love of his native country and his own young family, as well as his unbending will and faith in justice, supported him in body and spirit. It was only deep in his soul that bitterness remained, without a desire for revenge, but only with great concern for his personal justice. His decade of work at the Institute for the Slovenian Language at the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts (SAZU, 1947-1958), despite the bitter interruption of 1949-1950, marked the first high point of his research. In his recording of locations for the Slovenian Linguistic Atlas (SLA) he walked and bicycled across the majority of Slovenian territory, attuned his ear to the diversity of dialectal features, defined their boundaries, interpreted them in a versatile manner, gave an account of them, and discovered for himself and others the richness contained in the dialects of Slovenian. Logar, a born educator, truly came into his own as a lecturer in dialectology and Slovenian historical grammar at the Faculty of Arts, from 1958 -- when he became an assistant professor -- until 1978, when he retired as full professor. Logar became professor emeritus in 1984, lectured until 1986, and during his retirement oversaw a number of master's and doctoral degrees. Despite his administrative duties (he was the chairman of the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures and also served as the deputy dean and dean of the Faculty of Arts, 1968-1970), through seminar and degree work with his students he continued collecting material for the SLA, was a regular lecturer, organized seminars for Slavic linguists from abroad on multiple occasions, spoke at Slavics conferences at home and abroad, delivered guest lectures at numerous European universities, and edited professional publications. The entire time he remained closely connected with the Institute for the Slovenian Language, be it as a colleague, a project leader, the director of the dialectology division, or a member or the president of its scientific council. In 1972 Logar became a corresponding member and, in 1981, an ordinary member of SAZU; from 1986 onwards he was also a corresponding member of the Yugoslav Academy of Arts and Sciences -- the current Croatian Academy of Arts and Sciences. Logar is best known for his book _Slovenksa narecja_ (Slovenian Dialects, 1975), which in 1993 was supplemented by cassettes with audio recordings of selected dialects and the _Karta slovenskih narecij_ (Map of Slovenian Dialects), coauthored with Rigler, which was first published in 1983. His selected contributions from professional journals are published in the collection _Dialektoloske in jezikovnozgodovinske razprave_ (Discussions on Dialectology and Historical Linguistics, 1996). As the coauthor of the scientific and critical edition of the _Brizinski spomeniki_ (The Freising Fragments, 1992), he capped his achievement by producing a sound recording of the manuscript in 1994. His work in helping create the SLA at all levels of its preparation was valued. Of inestimable value was his exceptionally dependable field data, which he personally gathered in over 200 locations in Slovenia and bordering regions -- and in an additional 350 with the help of his students. This has long been an inexhaustible source for many dialect, etymological and other studies and at the same time it charged the younger generation with the task of publishing one of the fundamental linguistic works of the nation: a linguistic atlas. Tine Logar had a gentle character that only became aroused when discussing dialects, and perhaps sometimes politics; he softened at the mention of his children, and especially his grandchildren, and with deep gratitude recalled his wife and parents. To us, his students, he devoted his friendly goodwill and care for our professional growth and personal happiness. There were no formalities between us, and therefore the human ties that with our professor's death become the stuff of memories are all the stronger.

    (Trans. Donald F. Reindl)

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