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 »  Home  »  History  »  (E) CROATIAN INVENTIONS
By Nenad N. Bach | Published  12/7/2004 | History | Unrated

Adam S. Eterovich

Croatians invented double entry booking, the parachute, blimp, dural
aluminum, crab chioppino and forensic medicine. Their inventiveness
usually went to benefit other nations. These type of accomplishments should be publicized
in the American and world press. The Republic of Dubrovnik-Ragusa was one of
the great mercantile centers of Europe which practiced market capitalism long
before many other nations. Ideas of invention and freedom flowed thru her ports
and ships to many places in the world.

Invention of Double Entry Bookkeeping

Benedikt Kotruljevic (Benedetto Cotrugli Raguseo) of the Republic of
Dubrovnik wrote in 1458, "The Book on the Art of Trading" in which, among
other things, he presented the the principles and methods of double entry
bookkeeping as a necessary attribute of trade activity. Benedikt Kotruljevic, born in
Dubrovnik, Croatia 1416; Died Aquila 1469. was a merchant by profession,
a humanist by education, a scientist by vocation and a diplomat by invitation (in the
service of Aragon kings). He traveled all over the Mediterranean, of keen
observing and lucid conclusions, who polished his conclusions in the
discussions with humanists of the Court of Naples in which he lived for some fifteen
years. In his book, Kotruljevic was writing "On Orderly Keeping the Business
Records. The authors analyze that chapter on the basis of newly found manuscripts
of his "Book on the Art of Trade" finding there considerably more extensively
and in detail an elaborated system of double entry bookkeeping, than presented
in the contents of the book printed in 1573. Kotruljevic set forth
theoretical postulations and rules for keeping business records according to the
double entry principle to be valid also nowadays. He applied then the procedures giving
suggestions for the organization of business records keeping by a

Invented the Parachute

Faust Vrancic, born in Sibenik in 1551, died in Venice 1617, was a typical
Renaissance "homo universalis". A notable scholar whose interest comprised
mathematics, physics, philosophy and technology, he spent some time at the
court of the German emperor Rudolf II who was also the sovereign to the
Croatians, Hungarians, and Czechs. His major work was "Machine Novae" (New Machines),
printed in Venice at the beginning of the 18 century, with the pictorial
(49 etchings) and textual descriptions of 56 different technical
constructions. He had anticipated the numerous technical inventions which were to be applied
later to water or wind powered machines, to mills, ships, boats and excavators.
His most interesting invention was, certainly, a parachute or "Homo volans"
(The Flying Man) as called by Vrancic himself. Faust Vrancic performed a jump
with his parachute somewhere in Venice in order to test it. This fact is
explicitly stated in a book written by English bishop John Willkins (1614-1672),
secretary of the Royal Society in London, only 30 years after the jump.
The title of his book which contains this important testimony about Faust Vrancic is
Mathematical Magic of the Wonders that may be Performed by Mechanical
Geometry, part I: Concerning Mechanical Powers Motion, part II, Deadloss or Mechanical
Motions, published in London in 1648.

Invented Forensic Medicine and Criminal Pathology

Eduard Miloslavic(1884-1952) was a descendant of Dubrovnik emigrants to
the USA, born in Oakland, California. His family returned to Dubrovnik in
1889. Eduard studied medicine in Vienna, where he became a professor of
pathology. In 1920 an invitation came from Marquette University in Wisconsin, USA, to
take the chair of the full professor of pathology, bacteriology and forensic
medicine. In subsequent years "Doc Milo", as colleagues called him,
inaugurated criminal pathology in the USA. As an outstanding specialist he was also
involved in investigations of crimes perpetrated by al Capone gang. He was one of the
founders of the International Academy for Forensic Medicine, member of
many American and European scientific societies and academies. He was active in
the Croatian Fraternal Union and also vice president of the CFU in the USA. In
1932 he moved to Zagreb, where he was a full professor at the Faculty of medicine.
He was lecturing also pastoral medicine at the Faculty of Theology in
Zagreb, and was known as ardent adversary of abortion and euthanasia. In 1940 he
was elected member of the prestigious "Medico-Legal Society" in London in 1941
and promoted the full member of the Tzarist Leopoldine Carolingue Academy of
Natural Sciences in Germany, and doctor "honoris causa" at the University
of Vienna, where he started his scientific career. He again moved to the USA (St.
Louis, Missouri), where he was working until his death.

Invented Crab Chioppino

In February 1929, Sunset Magazine adopted the editorial policy that still
guides it: a magazine of Western living for people who live in the West.
Over the years, the recipes that have appeared in its pages have become a history
of Western tastes. Such factors as climate, geography, and ethnic mixtures
have shaped its regional life style. Informality and a willingness to
experiment are a large part of everyday experiences in the West. They first presented San
Francisco's famous Cioppino in 1941, crediting its invention to San
Francisco fishermen from the Dalmatian Coast (Croatia) Dungeness crab is the star of
this robust shellfish stew; clams and shrimp add their flavors, too. It's
traditional to sop up the thick tomato and garlic sauce with lots of
extra-sour sourdough bread.

San Francisco Style Cioppino

1/4 cup olive oil or salad oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic minced or pressed
1 large green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and chopped
2/3 cup chopped parsley
1 can 15oz tomato sauce
1 can 28oz tomatoes
1 cup dry red or white wine
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dry basil
1/2 teaspoon dry oregano leaves
12 clams in shell, suitable for steaming, scrubbed
1 pound large shrimp (about 30 per lb), shelled and deveined
2 ive or cooked large Dungeness crab (about2lb each)
,cleaned and cracked

In a 6-8 quart pan over medium heat, combine oil, onion, garlic, bell
pepper, and parsley; cook, stirring often, until onion is soft. Stir in tomato
sauce, tomatoes (break up with a spoon) and their liquid, wine, bay leaf, basil,
and oregano. Cover and simmer until slightly thickened, about 20 minutes. To
broth, add clams, shrimp, and crab. Cover and simmer gently until clams
pop open and shrimp turn pink, about 20 minutes longer. Ladle hot broth and some of
each shellfish into large soup bowls or soup plates.

Makes 6 servings.

Dalmatian Fishermen

Dalmatian fishermen from the Dalmatian coast and islands of Croatia were
fishermen and oystermen in the bayous of Louisiana, at Biloxi,
Mississippi, Mobile Bay, Alabama and on the Texas Gulf Coast for up to two hundred years.
During the Gold Rush of 1848 they came to San Francisco. Tadich Grill is
the oldest restaurant and fish house in San Francisco being organized by
Dalmatians from Croatia in 1849. Other famous fish restaurants were Mayes
Oyster House (1860's), Sam's (1860's) Chris's, Harpoon Louies, and many others, all
owned by Dalmatians. By 1880 there were over 250 Dalmatian fishermen in San Francisco. The
Fishermen's Association had Dalmatian-Croatians as presidents and officers
in the 1860's-1870's.Many of the Dalmatian fishermen left San Francisco for the state of
Washington, Canada and Alaska, others went to San Pedro in Southern
California. The largest concentration of Croatian fishermen can be found in San Pedro with
an approximate number of 10,000 in the San Pedro Harbor area.
In the 1830's Captain John Dominis-Gospodnetich operating out of Hawaii
barreled and shipped the first salmon out of the state of Washington to
the Eastern United States and established the Salmon Trade. His son John
Dominis-Gospodnetich married an Hawaiian princes who became the last queen
of Hawaii-Queen Lilioukalani and Dominis-Gospodnetich became the King-Consort.
The first European settler and fisherman on Santa Catalina Island was
Maricich. Another Dalmatian fisherman with his boat settled on an island
off the Canadian Coast and married an Indian woman and later was obligated to also
marry her two widowed sisters. He had 28 children and three wives. He became
wealthy and his picture with his wife appeared as a lable on canned salmon.
The Dalmatian-Croatian made a considerable contribution to the fishing
industry and style of fish preparation in the West.

Invention of the Blimp and Dural Aluminum

David Schwarz, a Croatian Jew (1852-1897), invented the airship that is
today unjustly bearing the name of the German count Zeppelin. Indeed, Zeppelin
bought the complete project from Schwartz's wife, shortly after his
premature death. It is true that the `Zeppelin' constructed by Schwartz went down
due to a small technical error in the propeller. He was not able to finance a new
experiment. While preparing the project of his flying ship, which for the
first time was predicted to be made of metal, he had to resolve many technical and
technological problems. This led to the discovery of the special aluminium
alloy now known under the name dural, also called Schwartz aluminium.

Buzadzic, Miroslav. "Benedikt Kotruljevic of Dubrovnik Invented Double
Entry Bookkeeping in 1458." 21st EAA Congress in Antwerp, April 1998. Also known
in the West as Benedetto Cotrugli Raguseo.
Muljevic, Vladimir. "Hrvatski Znanstvenici Antun i Faust Vrancic."
Encyclopedia Moderna, 1993. Invented the parachute.
Sunset Magazine, "Crab Chioppino a Dalmatian-Croatian Contribution."
Sunset Magazine, 1941.
Zubrinic, Darko. "Eduard Miloslavic and David Schwarz."  .

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  • Comment #1 (Posted by Maya)

    This is useful, but please try to make it more interesting instead of just having a CIA factbook.
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