Articles tagged:


From the Balkans to Nürnberg

by Nicky Gardner

What was Rebecca West doing 75 years ago this summer? West’s accomplishments as a travel writer are complemented by a fine range of other work. In the summer of 1946, West was sitting alongside Martha Gellhorn and Erika Mann at the International Military Tribunal in the German city of Nürnberg.

Balkan identities

by Nicky Gardner

So you think you know the key ethnic groups in Kosovo? Serbs and Albanians, to be sure. But life on the ground is more complicated. Who are the Gorani? Then there is a trio of ethnic groups who are locally referred to as the RAE community, viz. Roma, Ashkali and Egyptians. We explore the ethnic mosaic of modern Kovoso.

The three pillars of Rusyn life

by Nicky Gardner

The fragile flame of Rusyn consciousness is flickering back to life. There is renewed interest in Rusyn art and literature. A group that endured "fifty years of Soviet silence" (Norman Davies' words) is reasserting its right to be heard. We look at a minority which has as its cultural heartland the hill country where the territories of Ukraine, Slovakia and Poland converge.

A life less ordinary

by Nicky Gardner

Jacob Maria Mierscheid was born on 1 March 1933, so we hear. Still going strong at 80, Mierscheid is a German enigma with a knack for missing key events. Earlier this year, Mierscheid failed to show up for his own 80th birthday party. hidden europe uncovers the story of Germany's most understated politician.

Livonian culture in Latvia: Mazirbe

by Toby Screech

Guest author Toby Screech travels to the heartland of the Livonian minority in Latvia to visit the their annual cultural festival. Not as grand as the main Latvian event in Riga, it is an altogether more intimate affair. And it reveals that the Livonian identity today is hardly more than the ephemeral memory of a once mighty realm.

So what really needs correcting here?

by Nigel Roberts

When Nigel Roberts returned this year to Vetka, the small town in Belarus upon which he reported for hidden europe in 2009, he encountered another side of Vetka life. Nigel takes us behind the scenes at the town's 'correction centre' for children.

Erronkari's claim to fame

by Karlos Zurutuza

The memory of Julián Gayarre, the accomplished nineteenth-century tenor, is perpetuated in his home village in the Pyrenees by a larynx preserved in formaldehyde. Karlos Zurutuza, who is a regular contributor to hidden europe, took the bus to Erronkari to unpick the tale of a local lad whose voice was revered in Europe's great opera houses.

Gnome world

by Nicky Gardner

Gnomes of Europe arise! You have nothing to lose but your shackles. hidden europe checks out the sanctuaries where liberated gnomes, freed from enslavement to oppressive gardening cultures, can live in dignity and peace.

Remembering Cheryl Summerbee

by Nicky Gardner

Cheryl Summerbee deserves to be better known. hidden europe takes a sideways look at one of the more intriguing characters to have emerged from a campus novel. Conceived by David Lodge in Small World, Cheryl works at London's Heathrow Airport. Or rather, she used to work there.

Double enigma

by Nicky Gardner

Who cracked the code? We look at two street sculptures, one in England and the other in Poland that tell a tale of mathematical ingenuity.

Edith Durham in Prokletije

by Rudolf Abraham

It was one hundred years ago this year that Edith Durham made the Albanian journeys that were to feature in her book "High Albania". We look at Edith Durham's adventures in the Albania-Montenegro border region.