The Union of the Romanian Principalities, national significance and historical scope


– Scientific Symposium dedicated to the Union of January 24, 1859 at the Academy of Romanian Scientists –

Academy of Romanian Scientists celebrated The Union of 24 January 1859 through the Scientific Symposium “The Union of the Romanian Principalities, national significance and historical scope”. The event was organized by the Section of Historical and Archaeological Sciences and with the support of the Iasi Branch of the AOSR and was held on 24 January 2023, starting at 12.00 noon. The event was attended by historians, members of the academic body, personalities of Romanian education, science and culture.

The symposium was opened by Prof. Dr. Eng. Adrian Badea, President of the Romanian Academy of Scientists, and moderated by Prof. Ion I. Solcanu, President of the Section of Historical and Archaeological Sciences and of the Iasi Branch of AOSR. The event had a dense agenda, with lectures by prominent historians: Prof. Dumitru Vitcu, PhD, Stefan cel Mare University, Suceava, Genesis of the Unionist Programme (Unirea Society, Iasi); Prof. Ștefan Vergatti, Valahia University, Targoviste, England’s attitude towards the Union of the Romanian Principalities; Prof. Jipa Rotaru, Focșani Commission; Prof. univ. dr. Ion I. Solcanu, Establishment of the Second Science Section of the Faculty of Philosophy for the uninterrupted training of civil engineers, mechanics and architects by transforming the Royal School, 1860; Dr. Horia Dumitrescu, Alexandru Ioan Cuza and Focșanii; Col. (r) Dr. Marius Nicoară, Buzoians during the Union of the Romanian Principalities; Prof. Stoica Lascu, Dr. Constantin Angelescu: “The Union of the Romanian Principalities, the decisive act that crowned centuries of aspirations and laid the first foundations of today’s Romania; Prof. Valentin Ciorbea, Mihail Kogălniceanu and Dobrogea; Prof. univ. dr. Mihai Drecin, The Union of the Principalities in Cluj in 1959, a century after the historical event; Prof. Ion Zainea, Celebration of the 24th of January in 1972 by the students of Oradea.

At the opening of the Symposium, Prof. Ion I. Solcanu, PhD. stressed that the reign of Alexandru Ioan Cuza was a very dense historical moment, unique in Romanian history: in only seven years, reforms were carried out in all fields and fundamental institutions of the statute were established, which played a decisive role in the building of Modern Romania. By organizing the Symposium, the organizers pay tribute to the founders of the Union, to those who took an important step forward in the fulfillment of the centuries-old national dream of the Romanians.

The lectures, solidly documented, by professional recourse to historiographical sources and by interpreting the information in the light of the truth and the logic of the process, approached the event from various thematic perspectives, highlighting the defining elements of the historical framework at national and international level, the position of the great powers towards the Romanian Principalities and their aspirations, the crystallization of the national project and its progressive realization, the major role of some important personalities in the achievement of the Union, the subsequent development of Modern Romania and the fulfillment of the ideal of national unity through the Great Union and the creation of Greater Romania, the echoes of the Union over time, a century or more later, in the midst of the totalitarian regime, under the pressure of communist ideology and censorship, in the academic world. Symposium papers will be available in video format on the AOSR YouTube channel.

At the event, Professor Adrian Badea, President of AOSR, said: “Iasi is the heart, the cradle of the Union, that’s why we chose it to organize the Symposium. The Union of the Principalities offers us an important history lesson: a people and an elite who set themselves a Country Project managed to achieve it progressively, in several stages. They were educated, patriotic people with clear ideals, who knew how to make intelligent use of the international and historical conjuncture. We must learn from the lessons of history the need for solidarity of the people – “Let’s join hands / Those with a Romanian heart” – and the need to formulate a new, far-reaching Country Project, which can be developed in continuity with the two great moments of the Union of all Romanians: the Union of 1859 and the Great Union of 1 December 1918. The country’s intellectuals play a very important role in this process.”

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