List of Slovaks

List of Slovaks

Through the centuries, Slovaks have played an active role in political, military, scientific, cultural and religious affairs. Having been a part of multicultural Hungary (Latin being the official language from its inception until the 1840s) for over 1,000 years and Czechoslovakia for over 70 years, Slovaks and their contributions are often mischaracterized as simply Hungarian or Czech when a more nuanced understanding of ethnic identity is required. Just as Latinos or Asians in Canada consider themselves Canadian as well as Dominican or Chinese by virtue of nationality and ethnicity, Slovaks in Hungary would have felt the same way. This explains how Slovaks could identify with - and be active and proud citizens of - Hungary yet fight to retain their Slovak language and customs despite violent efforts by ethnic Magyars after 1848 to assimilate them culturally and linguistically.

The following is a list of notable people who either:


  • Politics 1
    • Politicians (contemporary) 1.1
    • Politicians (19th and 20th century) 1.2
    • Fighters, Warriors, Soldiers and Revolutionares 1.3
    • First Ladies 1.4
  • Religion 2
    • Notable religious figures 2.1
    • Religious Leaders 2.2
  • Science and technology 3
    • Philosophers, Polyhistors, Teachers 3.1
    • Linguists, Humanists and Historians 3.2
    • Inventors and Engineers 3.3
    • Natural Sciences and Medicine 3.4
    • Geology, Mineralogy 3.5
    • Archeology 3.6
    • Physics 3.7
    • Mathematics 3.8
    • Computer Science 3.9
      • Astronomers (20th century) 3.9.1
      • Astronauts 3.9.2
  • Culture 4
    • Literature 4.1
    • Music 4.2
      • Classical 4.2.1
        • Composers
        • Conductors
        • Instrumentalists
        • Opera Singers
      • Jazz 4.2.2
      • Popular Music (20th century) 4.2.3
    • Fine arts 4.3
      • Painters, Graphic Artists 4.3.1
      • Sculptors 4.3.2
      • Photographers 4.3.3
    • Architects 4.4
    • Film and Theatre 4.5
      • Actors 4.5.1
      • Filmmakers 4.5.2
  • Law 5
  • Sports 6
    • Football 6.1
    • Ice hockey 6.2
    • Tennis 6.3
    • Water sports 6.4
    • Figure Skating 6.5
    • Modelsports 6.6
  • Other 7
    • Historical personalities 7.1
    • Models 7.2
    • Miscellaneous 7.3
  • See also 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10


Politicians (contemporary)

Prime Ministers of the Slovak Republic:



  • Maroš Šefčovič – EU Commissioner
  • Peter Tomka (1956) – Vice-President of the International Court of Justice
  • Timothy Hudak (1967) - Progressive Conservative member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, Canada
  • John Mika (1943) - Republican Congressman representing Florida's Seventh Congressional District
  • Jesse Ventura (1951) – 38th Governor of the U.S. state of Minnesota from 1999 to 2003, as well as an actor, author, and former professional wrestler. His parents were from Slovakia, and his legal name is James George Janos.

Politicians (19th and 20th century)

Fighters, Warriors, Soldiers and Revolutionares

  • Jozef Gabčík (1912–1942) – Soldier who assassinated Reinhard Heydrich, architect of the Holocaust, under Operation Anthropoid.
  • Alexander Petrovič (1823-1849) – Hungary's national poet and one of the key figures of the Hungarian Revolution of 1848. Petőfi Sándor in Hungarian.
  • Jozef Miloslav Hurban (1817–1886) Freedom fighter and leader of the 1848 Slovak National Uprising against the Hungarians.
  • Rudolf Viest (1890–1945?) – Anti-Fascist military leader, member of the Czechoslovak government in exile, member of the Slovak National Council and the commander of the 1st Czechoslovak army during the Slovak National Uprising. First and only Slovak to reach the position of General in the interwar Czechoslovak Army.
  • Brigidier General Ján Golian (1906–?1945) – Supreme Military Leader of the Slovak National Uprising against the Nazis until the arrival of Rudolph Viest. Golian is believed to have been murdered by the Nazis in a concentration camp.
  • Michael StrankU.S. Marine during World War II; the leader of the group of U.S. marines who photographed in Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima.
  • Augustín Malár (1894–1946) – WWII General who commanded the East Slovak units of the First Slovak Republic, a Nazi protectorate state. Deported to Germany and died in a concentration camp.
  • Jozef Turanec (1892–1957) – Slovak General and Nazi sympathizer during World War II.
  • Gustáv Wendrinský (1923–1945) – Slovak SSOberscharführer
  • Karol Sidor (1901–1953) Hlinka Guard (The Slovak equivalent to the SA) first commander.
  • Matej Kocak (1882–1918) – United States Marine Corps sergeant during World War I, posthumously awarded both the U.S. Army and Navy Medals of Honor for action against the enemy on July 18, 1918. He was born in the town of Gbely, in Western Slovakia, and emigrated to the U.S. in 1906.

First Ladies


Notable religious figures

Religious Leaders

  • Štefan Moyses (1797–1869) – Bishop, patriot and the first president of the Matica Slovenská, the first Slovak cultural institution.
  • Jozef Roháček (1877–1962) – Protestant activist and scholar who translated the first Slovak Bible from the original languages
  • Alexander Rudnay (1760–1831)(hung.: Rudnay Sándor) – Parish priest who became Archbishop of Esztergom, Prince Primate of the Kingdom of Hungary and a Cardinal.
  • Ján Sokol (1933– ) – Priest and former Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Trnava
  • Juraj Haulik (1788–1869) - Croatian Cardinal of Slovak ethnicity and the first Archbishop of Zagrab. Acting Ban of Croatia for two separate terms.

Science and technology

Philosophers, Polyhistors, Teachers

  • Pavol Jozef Šafárik (Paul Joseph Schaffarik, Pavel Josef Safarik) (1795–1861) – poet, professor, polyhistor
  • Jakob Jakobeus (1591–1645) – poet, historian, priest, and writer

Linguists, Humanists and Historians

  • Anton Bernolák (1762–1813) – Lower nobleman, Jesuit, author of the first Slovak language standard (in the 1780s), which was based on western Slovak dialects.
  • Ľudovít Štúr (Ludevít Štúr) (1815–1856) – Best known for his role in the development of the modern Slovak language. In 1844 he suggested that the central Slovak dialect be used as the literary language of the Slovaks, and in 1846 he codified the new language standard in his Nauka reči Slovenskej." [Theory of the Slovak language]
  • Adam František Kollár (Adam Franz Kollar) (1718–1783) – Lower nobleman, historian and jurist who rose to the ranks of Imperial-Royal Court Councilor and Chief Imperial-Royal Librarian of Empress Maria Theresa. Coined the term "ethnology."
  • Janko Matúška (1821–1877) - Author of the Slovak national anthem.
  • Martin Hattala (1821–1903) – Linguist.

Inventors and Engineers

  • Jozef Murgaš (1864–1929) – Inventor of the wireless telegraph (forerunner of the radio). Murgas' "Rotary-spark-system" allowed for much faster communication, through the use of musical tones. He patented his new invention, which is now listed as the "Wireless Telegraphy Apparatus", as well as more inventions in this field. These patents would go on to form the foundations for the invention of the radio. Also devised a system which greatly improved the Morse code. His other patents include the spinning reel (for fishing), the wave meter, the electric transformer, the magnetic detector, and an engine producing electromagnetic waves.
  • Aurel Stodola (1859–1942) – Engineer and professor, enabled the construction of steam and gas turbines (around 1900), constructor of a movable artificial arm (the Stodola arm) in 1915
  • John Dopyera (Ján Dopjera) (1893–1988) – Inventor of music instruments, invented the Dobro resonator guitar


  • Ján Bahýľ (1865–1916) – Military engineer, inventor of the motor-driven helicopter (four years before Bréguet and Cornu). Bahýľ was granted 7 patents in all, including the invention of the tank pump, air balloons combined with an air turbine, the first petrol engine car in Slovakia (with Anton Marschall) and a lift up to Bratislava castle.
  • Štefan Banič (1870–1941) – The inventor of the military parachute and of the first actively used parachute
  • Ivan Alexander Getting (1912—2003) - American physicist and electrical engineer, credited (along with Bradford Parkinson) with the development of the Global Positioning System (GPS).

Natural Sciences and Medicine

Geology, Mineralogy

  • Dimitrij Andrusov (1897–1976) – geologist and paleontologist, founder of modern Slovak geology
  • Jan Veizer (1941) – geochemist and paleoclimatologist




Computer Science


  • Matthias_Bel – 17th century astronomer. He made first relatively precise measurement of distance from Earth to Sun.

Astronomers (20th century)


  • Ivan Bella (1964) – the first astronaut of Slovakia (in 1998)
  • Eugene Cernan (1934) – U.S. astronaut, last man to set foot on the Moon, son of the Slovak immigrant Ondrej Čerňan.
  • Michael Fincke (1967)- U.S. astronaut, current American record holder for time in space, grandson of Margaret Hornyak Fincke



See list of Slovak prose and drama authors.
See list of Slovak poets.



For a longer list, see separate article.
Opera Singers


  • Peter Lipa (1943) – an important current Jazz singer, composer
  • Laco Deczi (1938) – Jazz musician, trumpet player, composer
  • Martin Valihora (1976) – Jazz musician, drummer

Popular Music (20th century)

  • Ľubomír Burgr – musician, composer, vocalist
  • Jaroslav Filip (1949–2000) – musician, composer, vocalist, actor, playwright
  • Marika Gombitová (1956) – singer, composer, musician since the second half of the 1970s
  • Dave Grohl (1969) – drummer of Nirvana, singer of Foo Fighters
  • Pavol Hammel (1948) – singer, composer, musician (reached his height the 1970s and 1980s)
  • Jana Kirschner – musician, composer, vocalist
  • Ján Lehotský (1947) – composer, musician, singer of Modus (a band having reached its height in the late 1970s)
  • Peter Lipa – musician, composer, vocalist, scatman, jazzman, co-organiser of BJD (Bratislava Jazz Days) festival
  • Laco Lučenič (1952) – musician, producer, member of Modus
  • Richard Müller (1961) – the best-known current Slovak pop-rock singer
  • Vašo Patejdl (1954) – the most important Slovak pop composer in the 1980s and 1990s, singer, musician
  • Jozef Ráž (1954) – current singer of Elán (a band having reached its height in the 1980s)
  • Dežo Ursiny (1947–1995) – composer, rock singer, musician in the 1960s and 1970s
  • Marián Varga (1947) – rock composer, musician in the 1960s and 1970s
  • Miroslav Žbirka (1952) – singer, composer from the 1970s to the 1990s

Fine arts

Painters, Graphic Artists



  • Dezo Hoffmann (1912–1986) – photoreporter and photographer
  • Tono Stano (1960) – photographer; his photograph Sense inspired the poster for the film Showgirls.


Film and Theatre






Ice hockey

See the long list in a separate article.


Water sports

Figure Skating



Historical personalities

  • Móric Benyovszky (Móric Beňovský, Maurycy Beniowski, Baron Maurice Auguste de Benyowski, many other name versions) (1746–1786) – Hungarian globetrotter, explorer, soldier, writer, and the King of Madagascar with Hungarian and Slovak ancestry.[2]
  • Juraj Jánošík (1688–1713) – the Slovak equivalent of Robin Hood, the topic of many Slovak legends, books and films



See also


  1. ^ Marcel Buntaj
  2. ^ "Memoirs and Travels of Mauritius Augustus Count de Benyowsky: Consisting of His Military Operations in Poland, His Exile into Kamchatka, His Escape and Voyage from that Peninsula through the Northern Pacific Ocean, Touching at Japan and Formosa, to Canton in China, with an Account of the French Settlement He Was Appointed to Form upon the Island of Madagascar".  

External links

  • Slovak People