Croatia - Great Britain
Overview of historical relations - a sketch
Darko Zubrinic, 2004.
It is interesting that King Richard the Lion-Hearted (1157-1199) sojourned in Zadar (and not in Dubrovnik as it has been believed). Also Henry of Lancaster, the future King Henry IV, visited Zadar and Dubrovnik during his pilgrimage to the Holy Land in 1392 and 1393. See [Mardesic], p. 134-135.
Interesting impressions about the Croats can be seen in ``The Journey'' written by Thomas Watkins, published in London in 1792 (second edition in 1794). He praises Croatian soldiers (Esclavonian soldiers) and sailors. He was enthralled by the beauty of Dubrovnik, its hospitality, competent administration, high level of education and scholarship found among many of its inhabitants. He also cited some of the verses that the Durbovnik poets addressed to him as a guest. Talking about inhabitants of Dalmatia, he stated that they are ``in their attire and manners not unlike highland Scots - bold, honest, simple and so incured to inclement weather that even now, when the snow is 4 inches high, some of them (as I can see from my window) spend the night round a small fire in the open'' (see [Mardesic], p. 186).
It is interesting that Thomas Fink from the University of Cambridge defended his doctaral thesis in physics dealing with - ties! Also a recent monograph has been issued devoted to various applications of ties in science: The 85 Ways to Tie a Tie: The Science and Aesthetics of Tie Knots, by Thomas Fink Yong Mao Fourth Estate: 1999.
Croatian soldiers served in many European armies since the seventeenth century. So in the French army in the 17th century, during the reign of Louis XIII, there was a cavalry composed exclusively of the Croats, called Royal - Cravate, which existed in the period of 1664-1789. These soldiers gave the world something that is today inavoidable in fashion: the tie, called la cravate by the French and by the Germans die Krawatte - the expression was coined from the Croatian name, and mentioned for the first time in 1651. The name entered also