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The Good Soldier Švejk

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Map of Austria-Hungary in 1914. The itinerary of Jaroslav Šerák took place entirely within the borders of the Dual Monarchy.

The Fateful Adventures of the Good Soldier Švejk is a novel which contains a wealth of geographical references - either directly through the plot, in dialogues or in the authors own observations. HAJ: was himself unusually well travelled and had a photographic memory of geographical (and other) details. It is evident that he put great emphasis on this: 8 of the 27 chapter headlines in Švejk contain place names.

This web page will in due course contain a full overview of all the geographical references in the novel; from Prague in the introduction to Klimontów in the unfinished Book Four. Countries, cities, towns, villages, mountains, oceans, lakes, rivers, islands, buildings are included. Note that from 14 September 2013, institutions (including pubs) have been moved to the new 'Institutions' page. The list is sorted according to the order in which the names appear through the novel. The chapter headlines are from Zenny K. Sadlon's recent translation and will in most cases differ from Cecil Parrott's version from 1973.

  • The facts are mainly taken from Internet sources but cross-verified when possible
  • The quotes in Czech are copied from the online version of sv: provided by Jaroslav Šerák and contain links to the relevant chapter
  • The toolbar has links for direct access to Wikipedia, Google maps, Google search, svejkmuseum.cz and Švejk online

The names are coloured according to their role in the novel, illustrated by these examples: Sanok as a location where the plot takes place, Dubno mentioned in the narrative, Zagreb as part of a dialogue, and Pakoměřice as mentioned in an anecdote.

>> The Good Soldier Švejk index of places mentioned in the novel (578) Show all
>> I. In the rear
>> II. At the front
>> III. The famous thrashing
Index Back Forward I. In the rear Hovudpersonen

12. A religious debate

Cognacnn flag
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Cognac is mentioned indirectly because Švejk had cognac in his flask during the second field mass with Katz. The field chaplain gallantly offered his pious companion a swig of the bottle. The latter perceived this conspicuous enough to justify a visit to his colleague to try to talk him away from the thornful path of sin. This visit led to the religious debate that [I.12] is all about.

Background

Cognac in this context refers to a group of grape spirits from the region around Cognac in France. The drink is produced here and stored (at least two years) in oak vessels to achieve the particular cognac taste.

Quote from the novel
[1.12] Švejk sloužil s polním kurátem ještě jednu polní mši u zákopníků, kam byl omylem pozván ještě jeden polní kurát, bývalý katecheta, neobyčejně nábožný člověk, dívající se na svého kolegu velice udiveně, když ten mu nabízel ze Švejkovy polní láhve, kterou ten vždy nosil na takové náboženské úkony s sebou, doušek koňaku.

Also written:Koňak cz Konjakk no

Nová Pakann flag
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novapaka1.jpg

1910

Nová Paka is mentioned by Švejk in anecdote he tells Katz. At U zlatého věnce he had spoken to a man from the countryside who had gone to their offices of OHNovaPakato ask why his carriage had been requisitioned for war duty. Here he was unceremoniously thrown out. Then he continued to the town square (see Náměští Nová Paka) where a stranger asked if he could look after his horses. The other man never returned and the poor man was left with the horses and eventually he ended up in Hungary.

Background

Nová Paka is a town in north Bohemia in okres Jičín. It is located 22 km north of the district capital. As of 2016 the population is 9,208. The town hosts a museum and a historic town square.

In 1913 Nová Paka counted 6,057 inhabitants, and all apart from 12 were Czechs. The town was the centre of okres and hejtmanství of the same name.

Links

Quote from the novel
[1.12] Včera jsem mluvil v hospodě ,U zlatého věnce’ s jedním člověkem z venkova, je mu už šestapadesát let, a ten šel se optat na okresní hejtmanství do Nové Paky, proč mu rekvisírovali bryčku.

Also written:Neu-Paka de

Náměští Nová Pakann flag
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novapaka.jpg

1916

Náměští Nová Paka is mentioned by Švejk in anecdote he tells Katz. At U zlatého věnce he had spoken to a man from the countryside who had gone to their offices of OHNovaPakato ask why his carriage had been requisitioned for war duty. Here he was unceremoniously thrown out. Then he continued to the town square where a stranger asked if he could look after his horses. The other man never returned and the poor man was left with the horses and eventually he ended up in Hungary.

Background

Náměští Nová Paka is the town square of Nová Paka, today Masarykovo náměští.

Links

Quote from the novel
[1.12] Včera jsem mluvil v hospodě ,U zlatého věnce’ s jedním člověkem z venkova, je mu už šestapadesát let, a ten šel se optat na okresní hejtmanství do Nové Paky, proč mu rekvisírovali bryčku. Na zpáteční cestě, když ho z okresního hejtmanství vyhodili, díval se na trén, který právě přijel a stál na náměstí. Nějaký mladý muž poprosil ho, aby mu chvíli počkal u koní, že vezou pro vojsko konservy, a víckrát už nepřišel. Když se pak hnuli, musel s nimi a dostal se až do Uher, kde někde poprosil taky někoho, aby mu počkal u vozu, a tím se jedině zachránil, a to by ho táhli do Srbska. Přijel celý vyjevený a víckrát nechce mít nic s vojenskejma věcma.“
Colognenn flag
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Zlatá Praha, 8.8.1929

farina.png

Národni listy, 5.12.1889

louvain.png

Le Matin, 2.11.1914

Cologne is indirectly mentioned through the term water from Cologne, in other words Eau de Cologne, the world famous perfume.

Background

Cologne is a city on the middle stretch of the Rhine, with currently in excess of 1 million inhabitants. It was in 2016 the 4th largest city in Germany.

Since becoming part of Prussia in 1815 Cologne had experienced an enormous growth and become an important industrial and transport centre, and by 1913 the population count was nearly 700,000. It was at the outbreak of WW1 also the largest fortress complex in Germany, occupying a strategic position on the Rhine. From 1918 until 1926 the city was occupied by British troops. The later so famous Konrad Adenauer was mayor from 1917 until he was dismissed by the Nazis in 1933.

Eau de Cologne

The famous perfume was invented in 1709 by Giovanni Maria Farina and soon trickled down through the various underlying layers of society. The original outlet in Cologne still exists and before WW1 the company had a sales office in Vienna.

The brand Eau de Cologne was one of the early victims of the renaming frenzy during WW1. This happened in France in November 1914 as it after a vote was decided to rename the fragrance "Eau de Lovain" after the Belgian city of Lovain (Leuven) that was destroyed and looted by the Germans in late August that year. Other candidates were also considered but didn't get as many votes. Amongst them was Eau de Pologne (Polish Water).

The best known example of degermanisation is surely Sankt Peterburg which as early as 1914 was renamed Petrograd, but it was not alone. In USA the mildly amusing name "liberty cabbage" was proposed as a substitute for sauerkraut, but it is unclear if it was ever introduced.

Links

Quote from the novel

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[I.12] V ráji účinkují rozprašovače kolínské vody a filharmonie hraje tak dlouho Brahmsa, že raději dáte přednost peklu a očistci. Andílkové mají v zadnici vrtuli od aeroplánu, aby se tolik nenadřeli se svými křídly. Pijte, pane kolego, Švejku, nalejte mu koňak, mně se zdá, že mu není dobře.“

Also written:Kolín nad Rýnem cz Cologne fr

Japannn flag
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japan.png

Das interessante Blatt, 18.2.1904

japan.jpg

Österreichische Illustrierte Zeitung, 6.9.1915

Japan is mentioned indirecty in the conversation between Katz and his pious colleague. Katz shows him a daring picture with a samurai in an intimate situation with a geisha.

Reappairs in [III.1] when cadet Biegler shows off his knowledge of war history after Ságner's gaffe with Die Sünden der Väter (see Ganghofer). He is referring to the Russo-Japansese war of 1904-05 and the cryptographic system being used.

Background

Japan was in 1914 an empire with a parliamentarian constitution. From August the country entered the war on the side of the Entente and soon took possession of some German islands in Pacific Ocean. They also exploited the war to intervene in China and in 1919 they engaged in the Russian civil war by occupying Vladivostok and parts of the Russian Far East.

The war Biegler refers to took place in 1904-05 and the outcome was a Japanese victory over Russia. This was the first time a European power had been defeated by an adversary from another continent.

Quote from the novel
[1.12] Katz se usmál: "To je ,Zuzana v lázni` a ta nahá ženská pod tím je má stará známost. Napravo je japonérie, znázorňující sexuelní akt mezi gejšou a starým japonským samurajem. Pravda, něco velice originelního? Breviář mám v kuchyni. Švejku, přineste ho sem a otevřete na třetí straně."

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[3.1] Znám systémy šifer, které byly používány ve válkách o Sardinii a Savojsko, v anglo-francouzské kumpanii u Sevastopolu, při povstání boxerů v Číně i za poslední rusko-japonské války. Systémy tyto byly předávány...“

Also written:Japonsko cz

Moselnn flag
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mosel.jpg

Mosel by Metz

Mosel is first mentioned by Katz as he compares mass wine with Moselle wine.

Mosel appears more directly in [I.14] in the conversation between Wendler and Lukáš. This time the theme is no doubt the river, not the wine.

Background

Mosel is a wine region in Germany, named after the river Mosel that flows through France, Luxemburg and Germany and ebbs into the Rhine by Koblenz.

Quote from the novel
[1.12] „Je to mešní víno lehké, pane kolego,“ řekl Katz, „velice dobré jakosti, ryzlink. Chutí podobá se moselskému.“
[I.14.3] Proč zas se vedou mezi Maasou a Moselou prudké dělostřelecké boje? Víte, že v Combres a Woewru u Marche shořely tři pivovary, kam jsem posílal ročně přes pět set žoků chmele?

Also written:Mosela cz Mosel de Moselle fr

Vlašimnn flag
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Vlašim is mentioned when Švejk tells the pious field chaplain about the dean who, just like Saint Augustine, didn't believe in the antipodes.

Background

Vlašim is a town in central Bohemia, located in the Benešov district east of the Vltava.

In 1913 the population count was 3,201 and all but five were Czechs. Vlašim belonged to hejtmanství Benešov and okres named after the town. The military recruitment district was therefore No. 102.

Jaroslav Hašek visited the town in the summer of 1922. This was his last major excursion before his premature death six months later [4]. He also visited the area together with Zdeněk M. Kudej before the war. The inspiration for the novel would surely have come from the first visit because this part of the novel was written in 1921.

Toulavé House (Radko Pytlík)

V létě 1922 podniká letní cestu na Pacovsko a Vlašimsko. Tentokrát už nejde pěšky, ale vyjíždí kočárem spolu se svými průvodkyněmi (se Šurou a její ruskou přítelkyní) do Dolních Kralovic. Tato místa navštívili už před válkou se Zdeňkem Matějem Kudějem na divokých toulkách "střední Evropou". Z výletu zasílá pozdrav hostinskému Invaldovi: "Mé společnice už ani nemoho plakat, jak jsou unaveny. Táhnu je do Vlašimi. Dnes jsme urazili 37 km. Dostaneme patrně, než přijedem na Lipnici, vši. Počínáme vypadat zpustle. Tvůj Jaroslav Hašek."

Links

Source: Zdeněk M. Zdeněk Matěj Kuděj, Radko Pytlík

Quote from the novel
[1.12] „U Vlašimě byl, poslušně hlásím, pane feldkurát,“ řekl Švejk, „jeden děkan a ten měl, když mu jeho stará hospodyně utekla s klukem i s penězi, posluhovačku

Also written:Wlašim de

Benešovnn flag
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Benešov is mentioned in the story about the dean from Vlašim who didn't believe in the antipodeans. The town is mentioned again [II.3] when discussing Josef Kudrna and in [II.5] when preparing departure to the front. The train with Švejk and Lukáš surely stopped here in [II.1], about one hour after the departure from Prague.

Background

Benešov is a town in central Bohemia with around 16,000 inhabitants. It is located appx. 40 kilometres south east of Prague, and is a stop on the railway line to Budějovice. The well-known château Konopiště, that until 1914 belonged to Franz Ferdinand, can be found just 2 km to the west.

The town and district was the home of IR102. This regiment was assigned to the 17th infantry brigade, just like the author's own 91st infantry regiment (IR91). The two regiments fought side by side throughout the time when Jaroslav Hašek served in K.u.k. Heer.

Benešov was the main town of hejtmanství and okres of the same name. In 1913 the towns population counted 7,400 of which almost all were Czechs. There was also 534 military personnel, serving with IR102 and it's associated recruitment district.

Links

Quote from the novel
[1.12] Vono by jich tam patřilo víc. ,U uršulinek’ mají v klášteře lahvičku s mlékem panny Marie, kterým kojila Ježíška, a v sirotčinci u Benešova, když jim tam přivezli lurdskou vodu, dostali po ní sirotkové takovou běhavku, že to svět neviděl.“

Also written:Beneschau de

Australiann flag
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Australia is mentioned in the anecdote about the dean from Vlašim who didn't believe in the antipodeans after having read Saint Augustine.

Background

Australia was still in 1914 a dominion but with extensive self-government. The country contributed to the allied war effort; Australian forces were heavily involved in the campaign against Turkey in 1915 (Gallipoli) and in attacks on German colonies in Polynesia.

Australia is by area the sixth largest country in the world, and is also classed as a continent. The population is now just over 20 million.

Links

Quote from the novel
[1.12] Tak si zavolal svou posluhovačku a povídá k ní: ,Poslouchejte, vy jste mně jednou povídala, že váš syn je strojní zámečník a odjel do Australie.

Also written:Australie cz Australien de

Lourdesnn flag
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lourdes.png

Leopold Kolísek, 1907

lourdes1.png

Jean Gaignet, 1875

lourdes2.png

Čech, 1.6.1910

Lourdes is mentioned by Švejk through the adjective "lurdský". This is in the anecdote aboute the dean who didn't believe in the antipodeans. In this case the water of Lourdes was the theme.

The town reappears in [III.4] on the march from Sanok to the front, through The song of Lourdes.

Background

Lourdes is one of the most popular Roman-Catholic pilgrimage destination in the whole world. It is located in south-western France, not far from the border with Spain. The number of inhabitants today (2010) is around 15,000.

The song of Lourdes

The song is printed in full in the book První česká pouť do Lurd roku 1903 (The first Czech pilgrimage to Lourdes in the year 1903) and in the successor from 1907. Both books are written by father Leopold Kolísek.

The novel quotes sixteen of the sixty original verses and these are with a few exceptions reproduced to the letter by the author. The major difference is the refrain, and the first line on some of the verses. He also adds a verse that is not found in the books about the pilgrimages. The verses that appear in the novel are the following: 1, 2, 4, 7, 9, 24, 25, 50, 29, 30, 41, 53, 54, 57, 52 and 60. The somewhat changed verse order and the odd textual discrepancy indicates that the author used other sources than Kolísek's book.

The earliest printed copy in French that has been identified is a small book from 1875 that was written by the abbot Jean Gaignet (1839-1914). Gaignet is therefore no doubt the author of the original lyrics but the music may have been added later. The title of the song varies but is mostly known as l'Ave Maria de Lourdes. Gaignet's version from 1875 is called Cantique-récit de l'apparition de N.-D. de Lourdes en six dizaines de strophes. He wrote the lyrics in 1873 (see link A).

The Czech lyrics do not correspond to the original French version, and is more aligned with the German lyrics from which it presumably has been translated. It is in any case not uncommon that verse lyrics are adapted to make rhyme and rhythm fit. An advert in the Catholic newspaper Čech in 1910 revealed that two versions of the Czech text existed: one complete text across four pages but also a shorter version printed on a single page. The first is listed as a translation done by Beneš Method Kulda (1820-1903). The same man is also behind the short version but it has not been possible to find any copy that may confirm that this was the one Jaroslav Hašek used.

Links

Source: Leopold Kolísek

Quote from the novel
[1.12] Vono by jich tam patřilo víc. ,U uršulinek’ mají v klášteře lahvičku s mlékem panny Marie, kterým kojila Ježíška, a v sirotčinci u Benešova, když jim tam přivezli lurdskou vodu, dostali po ní sirotkové takovou běhavku, že to svět neviděl.“
[III.4] Zatímco se všichni čtyři vypravili na cestu, objevil se u kumpanie pan místní plebán a rozdával vojákům dle jich národnosti lísteček s „Lourdskou písní“ ve všech jazycích.

Also written:Lurdy cz

Gotthard Passnn flag
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Gotthard Pass is mentioned by the pious field chaplain after he has consumed a number of potent drinks.

Background

Gotthard Pass is a mountain pass in the Alps that is located slightly south of the border between the cantons Uri and Ticino. The pass has lost much of its importance since the tunnel beneath it was opened in 1980. There is also a railway tunnel under the pass.

The chaplains somewhat nebulous monologue suggests that he rather has the St Bernhard pass in mind, since Saint Bernhard built mountain huts there for travellers, amongst them many pilgrims.

Quote from the novel
[1.12] „Sv. Ludmilu mám rád, i sv. Bernardina,“ pokračoval bývalý katecheta, „ten zachránil moc poutníků ve sv. Gotthardě.

Also written:Průsmyk svatého Gottharda cz Gotthardpass de Passo del San Gottardo it

Index Back Forward I. In the rear Hovudpersonen

12. A religious debate


© 2009 - 2018 Jomar Hønsi Last updated: 12/10-2018