Naprej, zastava slave

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Naprej, zastava slave
English: Forward, Flag of Glory

Former regional anthem of  Slovenia
Organizational anthem of the Slovene Armed Forces
LyricsSimon Jenko, 1860
MusicDavorin Jenko, 1860
Adopted1919 (as part of Anthem of Yugoslavia)
1995 (by the Slovenian Armed Forces)
Relinquished1941 (as part of Anthem of Yugoslavia)
1989 (by Slovenia)
Succeeded by"Zdravljica"
Audio sample
"Naprej, zastava slave" (instrumental)

"Naprej, zastava slave" or "Naprej, zastava Slave"[notes 1] (English: "Forward, Flag of Glory") is a former national anthem of Slovenia, used from 1860[3][4] to 1989.[5] It is now used as the official service song of the Slovenian Armed Forces.

Lyrics and music[edit]

It tells about a boy who goes to defend his homeland, meaning him more than his mother or sweetheart. As such, it is a patriotic recruiting poem.[6] It was the first Slovene literature to be translated into English.[7] The lyrics were written originally by Simon Jenko and then improved collaboratively by him and his cousin Davorin Jenko who also wrote the music.[8] The poem was first publicly sung with great success in front of a large Slavic audience on 22 October 1860, and was first published in Slovenski glasnik (English: The Slovene Herald) on 1 December 1860.[1] In 1863, it was renamed by Radoslav Razlag to Naprej, zastava Slave.[9] In 1885, it became the first poem in Slovene to have been translated into English, under the title "With Slava's Banner, Forward!"[10] The translators were Andrej Jurtela, the first lecturer of Slavic languages at the University of Oxford,[11] and English journalist Alfred Lloyd Hardy, who had a keen interest in music and in Slavic culture.[7] He arranged the melody by Davorin Jenko for piano,[12] wrote an interlinear translation and published it lithographed as an independent publication.[7]

The poem was originally titled "Naprej" ("Forward") and set to music in an inn in Vienna's Prater by Davorin Jenko,[notes 2] who was in anger over the German snub of the Slovene, on 16 May 1860.[8]


Part of the national anthem of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia[edit]

After the formation of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, the first and the last stanza of the poem were included into the Yugoslav national anthem as its third part, in a medley including the Serb ethnic anthem "Bože pravde" and the Croatian song "Lijepa naša domovino".[13] Even before, during the fight for the northern border, the poem was sung by the Maister's soldiers in November 1918.[6]

Slovene Partisans and Territorial Defence[edit]

In World War II, "Naprej, zastava slave" was the introductory melody of the Kričač radio station, emitted by the Slovene Liberation Front,[14] and was a part of the morning and the evening salutation to the flag by the Slovene Partisans.[15] With the establishment of the Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia in 1946, the royal Yugoslav anthem was replaced by "Hey, Slavs". The first post-war constitution of the People's Republic of Slovenia and the constitution, adopted in 1963, did not specify a regional anthem. "Naprej, zastava slave" was used at official public events and on state holidays since the beginning of the 1970s. In spring 1987, it was replaced by "Zdravljica".[3]

Because it calls to the defence of the homeland,[12] it was since 1992 played during ceremonial events and oathtaking ceremonies in the Slovenian Territorial Defence in line with the draft Rules on Service in the Territorial Defence, adopted on 15 April 1992.

Current role[edit]

It is the current anthem of the Slovenian Armed Forces,[12] based on a government decree from 1995.


  1. ^ The word slava was written uncapitalized by Jenko, despite a popular interpretation that it could refer to the Slavic people in general, Slava being used as a word for Slavs in the 19th century. It was capitalized by public in 1863.[1] Nowadays, it is written with small letters.[2]
  2. ^ Davorin Jenko also composed the Serbian anthem "Bože pravde" (God of Justice) in 1872.[2]


  1. ^ a b Kristen, Samo (2007). "V Pragi "Naprej zastava slave", v Ljubljani "Kde domov můj?" Jan Masaryk in Slovenci" [In Prague "Naprej zastava slave", in Ljubljana "Kde domov můj?" Jan Masaryk and Slovenes] (PDF). Anthropos (in Slovenian). 39 (3–4): 272–274. ISSN 0587-5161. COBISS 11065421.
  2. ^ a b Lisjak Gabrijelčič, Luka (2008). "The Dissolution of the Slavic Identity of the Slovenes in the 1980s. The case of the Venetic Theory" (PDF). Department of History, Central European University: 34. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  3. ^ a b Rupnik, Janko. Cijan, Rafael. Grafenauer, Božo (1993). Ustavno pravo [Constitutional Law] (in Slovenian). Faculty of Law, University of Maribor. p. 51. ISBN 978-961-6009-39-3.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  4. ^ Javornik, Marijan, ed. (2001). Enciklopedija Slovenije [Encyclopedia of Slovenia] (in Slovenian). 15. p. 403. ISBN 978-86-11-14288-3.
  5. ^ "Državni simboli in znamka Slovenije" [National Symbols and the Trademark of Slovenia] (in Slovenian). Government Communication Office of the Republic of Slovenia. 2011. Retrieved 3 March 2012.
  6. ^ a b Menart, Janez (1972). "Premislek ob slovenski himni" [Consideration at the Slovene Anthem]. Sodobnost (in Slovenian). Državna založba Slovenije [National Publishing House of Slovenia]. 20 (3): 325. ISSN 0038-0482.
  7. ^ a b c Dobrovoljc, France (1951). "Razgledi: dve zanimivi epizodi iz zgodovine slovensko-angleških kulturnih stikov" [Views: Two Interesting Episodes from the History of the Slovene-English Cultural Contacts]. Novi svet [New World] (in Slovenian). Državna založba Slovenije [State Publishing House of Slovenia]. 6 (10): 958–959. ISSN 1318-2242. COBISS 37239808.
  8. ^ a b "II. Prosvetni veljaki: Skladatelj Davorin Jenko: 1835.–1914" [II. Educational Personages]. Od Ilirije do Jugoslavije: spomenica Davorin Jenkove narodne šole v Cerkljah pri Kranju [From Illyria to Yugoslavia: the Memorandum of the Davorin Jenko's Popular School in Cerklje near Kranj] (in Slovenian). 1931. pp. 60–61. COBISS 2765878.
  9. ^ Tomaževič, Blaž (1957). "Motivi in oblika Jenkove poezije" [Motives and the Form of Jenko's Poetry]. Jezik in slovstvo [Language and Literature] (in Slovenian). Slavistično društvo Slovenije [Slavic Society of Slovenia]. 2 (2). ISSN 0021-6933. COBISS 242784768.
  10. ^ "Pogled po slovanskem svetu: slovenske dežele" [A View Across the Slavic World: Slovene Lands] (in Slovenian). 2 (10). Narodna tiskarna [National Publishing House]. 15 May 1885: 159. ISSN 1408-0214. COBISS 37253889. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  11. ^ "Davorin Jenko je na Dunaju zložil napev pesmi Naprej, zastava slave Simona Jenka" [In Vienna, Davorin Jenko Composed the Melody of the Poem Forward, the Flag of Glory by Simon Jenko] (in Slovenian). Zgodovinsko društvo dr. Franca Kovačiča v Mariboru [Historical Society dr. Franc Kovačič in Maribor]. Retrieved 3 March 2012.
  12. ^ a b c Bric, Roman (11 June 2010). "Himna Slovenske vojske je nastala pred 150 leti" [The Anthem of the Slovene Armed Forces Was Made 150 Years Ago] (PDF). Slovenska vojska [Slovene Armed Forces] (in Slovenian and English). XVIII (9): 26–27. ISSN 1318-0681. COBISS 256918784.
  13. ^ "Anthem". The Lexicon of Yugoslavia. Archives of Yugoslavia. 2008. Retrieved 3 March 2012.
  14. ^ "Na današnji dan od 15. 11. 2010 do 21. 11. 2010" [On This Day From 15 November 2010 Until 21 November 2010]. MMC RTV Slovenia: 1. program Radia Slovenija [MMC RTV Slovenia: 1st Program of the Radio Slovenia (in Slovenian). RTV Slovenija. 15 November 2010.
  15. ^ Lešnik, Doroteja. Tomc, Gregor (1995). Rdeče in črno: slovensko partizanstvo in domobranstvo [Red and Black: Slovene Partisans and the Slovene Home Guard] (in Slovenian). Znanstveno in publicistično središče [Scientific and Journalistic Centre]. p. 85. ISBN 978-961-6014-60-1.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)

External links[edit]