5 May 2017

Hõbevalge. On the route of wind, fire and the last thule

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5May 2017



Museo Novecento

Free admission subject to availability

On the occasion of the visit to Florence of the President of the Republic of Estonia, Kersti Kaljulaid, the Museo Novecento hosts the presentation of the book “Hõbevalgeby Lennart Meri, politician, writer, documentary maker, former President of the Republic of Estonia.

Speakers Luigi Cecchini, Honorary Consul of the Republic of Estonia in Florence and Tuscany, Gianni Glinni, editor of the book, Daniele Monticelli, semiologist and translator, and Ülle Toode, Director of the Study Center on Estonia and the Baltic at La Sapienza in Rome.

In the book “Hõbevalge” (1976) I presented the hypothesis according to which Pytheas’s journey was caused by the fall of the Kaali meteorite on the island of Saaremaa. The event took place a couple of hundred years before Pytheas’s voyage of exploration. But even then Saaremaa was densely populated and the intense ship traffic of the early Viking era flourished on the Baltic Sea. I assumed that the catastrophic power of the meteorite impact could have profoundly influenced the psychology, language and customs of the peoples of the Baltic coasts, giving rise to a local mythological interpretation. I have presented linguistic, ethnographic and cult-related material in support of this hypothesis. But examples don’t have the same weight as a demonstration. At best, they give a hypothesis the right to exist […] if you are not a tourist, but rather a traveler, leave the castle built five hundred years ago quietly behind you and stop in front of a field that has been continuously cultivated for two thousand years. Take a nice picture of him. It contains a bigger story, because both the past and the future live in it. History begins where poetry ends. Sometimes they touch each other …” (Lennart Meri).

Image: in photo Lennart Meri

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