Mihai Eminescu bust

Mihai Eminescu bust, public art, Bucharest

Public Art : Mihai Eminescu bust

Sculptor: © Ion Jalea (19th May, 1887 Romania - 7th November, 1983 )

Description: A marble bust of  Mihai Eminescu (15th January, 1850 - 15th June, 1889 ) who was a poet , novelist and Romanian journalist. . It is the only one that has been restored after suffering a chip off its chin.

Date Unveiled: 1943

Location: The Mihai Eminescu bust can be found in the "Writers' Rotunda", Cismigiu Gardens near the center of Bucharest, Romania.

Background to the Writers' Rotunda:

The Writers' Rotunda, which is also known as the Roman Round, was built in 1943 in Cismigiu Park as part of an intiative by philosopher and then government minister, John Petrovich.

The rotunda features 12 busts of influential Romanian writers including  Hasdeu , Balcescu, Alecsandri , Mihai Eminescu , Alexander Odobescu , Titu  , Ion Luca Caragiale , Cosbuc , Stefan Octavian Iosif , Ion Creanga , Alexander Vlahuta and Duiliu Zamfirescu .

The original 12 included a bust of Octavian Goga, a Romanian poet, playwright and politician. The bust however was taken to with a hammer and destroyed after World War II. The reason?  When Goga was appointed Prime Minister of Romania in 1937 by King Carol, he had grand plans to strip Romanian Jews of their citizenship. He succeeded in doing this in 1938 with the introduction of his anti Semitic laws. His reign did not last long after that. Following his resignation in 1938 he died from a massive stroke. At his funeral a floral tribute from none other than Adolph Hitler adorned his coffin. In the 1960s a bust of Ion Creanga was finally placed on the empty pedestal to replace the dictator.

Acknowledgements: Thank you to Simon Akkerman and Doreena Nita for kindly providing the photos.

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