Press J to jump to the feed. Press question mark to learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts
Found the internet!
r/AskEurope
276
Posted by
United States of America
2 months ago

Who from your country’s history is an exaggerated hero? As in who is praised for their achievements but really didn’t accomplish much or even was really a horrible person?

There are quite a number of people like this but perhaps Christopher Columbus is the most notable example

352 comments
95% Upvoted
level 1
· 2 mo. ago
Hungary

Kossuth Lajos. He is one of the most iconic faces of the 48-49 revolution, but he made some terrible decisions, and disagreed on basically everything with Görgey, who was our best general by far and appointed a guy in replacement of him, who was famous because he had a great retreat once (Dembinsky), he fucked up the military then Görgey came back and evetually we lost, Kossuth fled and appointed Görgey to stand until the last men, Görgey (seeing the massive numerical superiority of Russia+Austria) wanted to save the lives of his men, so he surrendered. Kossuth painted him as the bad guy, who is a traitor to Hungary etc.. Though it must be mentioned that without Kossuth's rhetorical skills, there wouldn't have been this many volunteers for the army.

75
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Croatia

Funnily enough, I'd say Josip Jelačić, the then-ban of Croatia, is our most overrated historical personality. He is mostly famous for fighting against the Hungarians in 1848 and uniting the region of Međimurje with Croatia proper, but he was also like... an arch-conservative monarchist who fought against Viennese revolutionaries and republicans of any sort.

He was even hated by contemporary Croatian nationalists for being a Habsburg sycophant, but the monarchists managed to turn him into a national hero.

22
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Hungary

What Kossuth did with the other nations in Hungary was in itself a disaster. Or what he did not do (giving a chance for autonomy).

7
level 1
· 2 mo. ago · edited 2 mo. ago
Silver
Slovakia

Juraj Jánošík, the Slovak version of Robin Hood. There is actually a lot of reliable historical evidence for his existence (unlike Robin Hood), but his thieving has been greatly romanticized for centuries.

Actual historians dispute "the noble highwayman who took from the rich and gave to the poor" myth constructed around him by folklore, literature and film.

His "legendary" career wasn't even that long - he was robbing people only for two years (from 1711 to 1713).

50
level 1
· 2 mo. ago
Spain

I think there is no "hero" in Spain's history that has not been thoroughly researched and notoriously taken down from the pedestal: El Cid, the Catholic Monarchs, Hernán Cortés, Columbus, etc.

The only one who still has some credit is Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba, the Great Captain.

147
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Spain

You're forgetting Blas de Lezo as one of the good ones.
In terms of bad heroes, I love the one in Zaragoza, General Palafox. He was made hero for "protecting the city from the French siege in 1808, but turns out he was never in the city during the siege, nor he directly won any battles agains the French. He just happened to be on command then and since the French retreated he was made National Hero of the Spanish war of Independence.

60
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Spain

They are even viewed negatively since the decolonization thinking became mainstream.

31
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Spain

I mean, taken down from the pedestal is a bit of an overstatement. opinion is mixed compared to a few decades ago but they haven’t been exactly repudiated nationally.

As for current heroes, perhaps Picasso. He certainly did achieve a lot, but he abused his sexual/romantic partners, a fact that has been ignored and whitewashed a lot. Dali was also an absolute prick.

22
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Portugal

Wait, what's wrong with El Cid?

16
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Spain

What about female heros like Maria Pita, Agustina de Aragón or even Manuela Malasaña? i think they are pretty much still considered as such.

2
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Germany

Since when is Columbus from Spain?

3
level 2
[deleted]
· 2 mo. ago
level 1
· 2 mo. ago
Dual Polish-German citizen

The current ruling party in Poland tries to build a cult of personality around our late president Lech Kaczyński, whose main accomplishment was dying in a plane crash in 2010 in Smolensk, Russia. They erect monuments, rename streets and parks in his name and in reality he did nothing extraordinary to be deserving of all of this.

256
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Poland

Fortunately, he had made a backup of himself.

78
level 2
· 2 mo. ago
Poland

Don’t sell him short, he also stole the Moon.

10
level 2
· 2 mo. ago · edited 2 mo. ago
Poland

John Paul II takes the cake imo, looking at how he's been worshipped here you'd think that he has single-handedly toppled the Soviet regime but apart from being an "inspiration" he didn't do shit, he just covered up pedophilia in the church and caused our country to be backwards in regards to human rights even to this day

127
level 2

Continuation of soviet stalinism and personality cult

3

About Community

Ask Europeans questions about their countries!
Created Jun 15, 2012

607k

Members

330

Online

Top 1%

Ranked by Size