Our Archives enriched with a turned up literary record

Researchers have already known the letter which was sent by Prioress Elena – the superior of the convent for Dominican sisters on the Isle of Rabbits (called Margaret Island today) – to her nephew, István Bocskay around 1520. According to scholars, the letter was put down in writing by Sister Lea Ráskay, the famous copyist of codices. The document in Hungarian belonged to the collection of the Erdődy Archives preserved in our institution.

The archives of the aristocratic family got moved from the Castle of Vép to a place of security in Szombathely during the period of the development of the party-state dictatorship, in the second half of the 1940s, (first to the diocesan and later to the county archives), which was then moved as a deposit to Pannonhalma in 1985. The letter got lost from the collection while staying in Szombathely, but it turned up in the local Smidt Museum not long ago. The Director of Savaria Museum Centre for the Museums in Vas County, Csapláros Andrea handed over the five-hundred-year-old document to László Endrődy, and the legal place of preservation, the Archives of the Archabbey in Pannonhalma, respectively, with all due solemnity on 21 September. Our institution gave the letter’s precious copy in exchange to Smidt Museum. The event’s programme included three talks given about the Erdődy Archives, the literary remains in question and the vernacular literature of the Dominican Order.

A report on the event can be read here. Haader Lea, historian of linguistics, talked about Prioress Ilona Bocskay and Sister Lea Ráskay, copyist of codices in “Gondolat-jel” (‘Dash’), a programme on Kossuth Radio (11.35.45–11.43.36).