Franjo Bučar

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Franjo Bučar's monument in Zagreb

Franjo Bučar (Zagreb, 25 November 1866 – Zagreb, 26 December 1946) was a Croatian writer and sports popularizer of Slovenian origin. He is considered to be the father of Croatian sport and olympism.[1]

Personal life[edit]

He was born to Croat parents and was educated in Zagreb, Vienna and Stockholm where he studied Swedish gymnastics.


As a historian of literature he worked on the study of Croatian literature and wrote about Scandinavian literature. He was a prominent sports writer and wrote manuals for many types of sports.

Bučar was the popularizer and initiator of introduction of many sports in Croatia – football, gymnastics, ice skating, alpine skiing, ice hockey, fencing and others.[2]

He participated in the establishment of numerous clubs and professional alliances and also played a prominent role in Sokol organization.[3] He left an extensive correspondence with major figures of European culture and sport and created a library of several thousand volumes. He received national and international awards. In 1909 Bučar was elected the first president of Croatian Sports Federation which he founded. He was the founder and president of the Yugoslav Olympic Committee which initially worked in Zagreb. He was a member of the International Olympic Committee from 1920 until his death in 1946.[4]

In 1991 Croatia established Franjo Bučar State Award for Sport, the highest award for exceptional achievements in the development of sport.

Bučar's greatest personal result was second place in the "steep run" on the ski competition in Prague in 1896.


  1. ^ "Dobitnici nagrade Franjo Bučar za 2008.". 16 October 2008. Retrieved 26 February 2009. 
  2. ^ "Tko je bio Franjo Bučar?". 12 February 2009. Retrieved 26 February 2009. 
  3. ^ Jajčević, Zdenko (December 2004). "STO GODINA HRVATSKOG GIMNASTIČKOG SAVEZA 1904. – 2004.". Retrieved 26 February 2009. 
  4. ^ Salaj, Branko (6 April 2007). "Franjo Bučar (1866.-1946.)". Retrieved 26 February 2009. 
Preceded by
Nikodije Stevanović
President of the
Yugoslav Olympic Committee

Succeeded by
Dušan Stefanović