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UNDERGROUND PRINTING: Naša Koroška [Our Carinthia] Zoom

UNDERGROUND PRINTING: Naša Koroška [Our Carinthia]

Author: Anon. Janez VIDIC (1923 - 1996), cover design.
Place and Year: [Gorenjsko, Slovenia]: Trilof, early 1945.
Technique: 12°: 31 pp., original wrappers with illustrated cover, stapled (minimal staining, tiny cuts in the lower margin, otherwise a very good, seemingly unread example, originally unevenly cut).
Code: 67718

A pamphlet, printed by a WWII underground Yugoslav press, was made in the last months of the war to commemorate the fighting for the Carinthia region in the northmost part of Slovenia and the southmost part of Austria.

The striking cover represents the Prince's Stone, a symbol of a Slavic principality in Carinthia. The stone is an ancient Roman column capital, on the place of the ruined Roman city Virunum, and was used in the process of coronation of princes. The ceremony was held in Slovenian and German language. It was last performed in 1414, when the Habsburg Ernest the Iron was enthroned as Duke of Carinthia. The Stone is surrounded by people, framed by the red colour, representing the blood in the lower part and fire above, superpositioned by a row of partisans and a Slovenian flag.

The pamphlet with a beautiful colour cover was made by a secret press Trilof, which specialized in colour printing.

The Trilof Press occupied a hut hidden beneath a heavily wooded mountainside. It was privately operated by ‘Don’ and his girlfriend ‘Julia’ (Partisan noms de guerre), outside of the oversight of the Partisan committees. The press was known for the unusually high quality of its productions, including coloured prints. The linocut cover was made by Janez Vidic, who was active in the decades after the war as an illustrator, graphic designer, printer and fresco master. The linocuts are thought to have been made from plates of linoleum taken from the floors of kitchens of local Alpine villas.

The pamphlet is extremely rare. As it was printed in the last weeks of the war, it probably only reached a smaller number local readers. The bibliography on the partisan literature from 1964 only quotes one example in al Yugoslav libraries. We could find two institutional examples in Sloveniana libriaries and none abroad (Carinthian Central Library dr. Franc Sušnik, Ravne na Koroškem and University Library in Maribor). The Slovenian National and UniversityLibrary does not record an example.


References: OCLC 440739280. Bibliografija 1964, no. 6187.