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AROUND SLOVAKIA - BRATISLAVA

August - September - Schöne Náci finally buried in Bratislava

THE LAST dream of Ignác Lamár, better known as the Schöne Náci, was finally fulfilled after 40 years. On September 2, the remains of the man known for strolling the city centre with a perpetual smile on his face were buried in his hometown, Bratislava.

THE LAST dream of Ignác Lamár, better known as the Schöne Náci, was finally fulfilled after 40 years. On September 2, the remains of the man known for strolling the city centre with a perpetual smile on his face were buried in his hometown, Bratislava.

Several hundred people came to the Ondrejský cemetery to bid him a final farewell, the SITA newswire wrote.

“We see him on many posters, we have his statute in the Old Town, but somehow it was forgotten that he was buried in Lehnice,” Peter Kurhajec from the Society of Ferdinand Martineng told SITA. “Now we are giving him a last goodbye.”

Earlier during the week, Lamár’s remains were exhumed from his original grave and transported to Bratislava.

The new gravestone of the Schöne Náci is engraved with the greeting he gave to passers-by: “Ruky bozkávam” (an old phrase meaning, “I kiss your hands”). The words are engraved in the three languages spoken in Bratislava during his time: Slovak, German and Hungarian.

Lamár was born on August 11, 1897 in Bratislava’s Petržalka area and spent almost his entire life in Bratislava. People remember the Schöne Náci as always dressed in tailcoat with a top hat, bowing to everybody. He died from tuberculosis in Lehnice on October 23, 1967.

A few days before the burial, on August 31, the famous Schöne Náci statue returned to its original place in the Old Town.

During a 10-day restoration, workers also re-welded the top hat to the statue’s hand. The hat was broken off when the statue was pushed over last summer.

Bratislava Old Town Mayor Andrej Petrek considers the statue’s current home on Rybná Brána Street to be an unfortunate location. During the last four years, the statue has been damaged three times.

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