List of Slovaks

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The Slovak people are an ethnic group mostly inhabiting the modern-day nation of Slovakia, as well as near surrounding areas. Slovaks have played an active role in European history, including politically, militarily, scientifically, culturally, and religiously. Ethnic Slovaks have inhabited Central Europe since the Middle Ages. Slovaks were minority citizens of Hungary, and subsequently Austria-Hungary, from the 7th Century until the formation of Czechoslovakia in 1918 by the Treaty of Versailles. After Slovak calls for greater autonomy dissolved the Czechoslovak parliament, the Slovak Republic was formed in 1993. Many Slovaks and their achievements are erroneously considered solely Hungarian or Czech achievements based on their minority position within a larger, multicultural nationality. Slovaks identify with a nuanced understanding of national and ethnic identity, often embracing a national citizenship while maintaining their Slovak culture. In Hungary, Slovaks have had to resist violent efforts of forced assimilation by ethnic Magyars (cir. 1848) to preserve their language and culture. The major language among Slovaks is Slovak.

The page lists notable people who are citizens of Slovakia, Czechoslovakia, or were of Slovak identity, ancestry or ethnicity.


Politicians (contemporary)[edit]

Prime Ministers of the Slovak Republic:


Speakers of National Council of the Slovak Republic:


  • 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)[edit]

Fighters, Warriors, Soldiers and Revolutionaries[edit]

  • Jozef Gabčík (1912–1942) – soldier who assassinated Reinhard Heydrich, architect of the Holocaust, under Operation Anthropoid.
  • 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.
  • Ján Golian (1906–1945?) – Supreme Military Leader of the Slovak National Uprising against the Nazis. Golian was 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. Died in a concentration camp.
  • Jozef Turanec (1892–1957) – Slovak General and Nazi sympathizer during World War II.
  • 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.
  • Juraj Turzo VII. (1567–1616) – Palatine of Hungary Leader of Hungarian army against Ottoman empire defender of the Slovaks against Hungarian nobility
  • Ján Branislav Hergot (1819–1873) – Freedom fighter who took part in 1848 Slovak Uprising, follower of Jozef Miloslav Hurban renowned for his great strength and many military exploits.

First Ladies[edit]


Notable religious figures[edit]

Religious Leaders[edit]

Science and technology[edit]

Philosophers, Polyhistors, Teachers[edit]

  • 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[edit]

  • 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[edit]

  • 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) – 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[edit]

Geology, Mineralogy[edit]

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




Computer Science[edit]


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

Astronomers (20th century)[edit]

Astronauts / Cosmonauts[edit]

  • Ivan Bella (1964) – the first cosmonaut 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[edit]


  • 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)[edit]

  • 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
  • sk:Jana Kocianová (1947) – singer, musician, jazzman, gospels singer reached her height the 1970s
  • 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 (1947–2017) – rock composer, musician in the 1960s and 1970s
  • Miroslav Žbirka (1952) – singer, composer from the 1970s to the 1990s
  • Sui Vesan – folk musician

Fine arts[edit]

Painters, Graphic Artists[edit]



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


Film and Theatre[edit]






Ice hockey[edit]

See the long list in a separate article.


Water sports[edit]

Figure Skating[edit]



Historical personalities[edit]



See also[edit]


  1. ^ sk:Marián Lapšanský
  2. ^ sk:Marcel Buntaj
  3. ^ "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". World Digital Library. 1790. Retrieved 2013-07-06.

External links[edit]