Romanian Achievements and Records: Part 8

61. The Romanian armed opposition to communist state terror was one of the most long-lasting in the Eastern Bloc.

Armed resistance was the first and most structured form of resistance against the communist regime. It wasn’t until the overthrow of Nicolae Ceauşescu in late 1989 that details about what was called “anti-communist armed resistance” were made public. It was only then that the public learnt about the several small armed groups, which sometimes termed themselves “haiducs”, that had taken refuge in the Carpathian Mountains, where some hid for ten years from authorities. It was initiated in the late 1940s and the last fighter was eliminated in the mountains of Banat in 1962 by the communist security forces.

This fact is even more important as it is largely acknowledged that, throughout its existence, the Romanian communist rule was one of the most ruthless, pervasive, and uncompromising among the Soviet bloc.

(see Ruxandra Cesereanu, ed., Comunism şi represiune în România. Istoria tematică a unui fratricid naţional (Iaşi: Polirom, 2006); and Stéphane Courtois, ed., Il libro nero del comunismo europeo. Crimini, terrore, repressione (Milan: Mondadori, 2006 [French ed. 2002]), 295–353.)

(sources 1, 2)

Map of Romania with main armed resistance areas marked in red

62. in 1909, the Romanian scientists C. I. Parhon and Moise Goldstein published the first book of endocrinology in the world, called Secreţiile Interne (“The Internal Secretions”). It was a complex study as it had more than 800 pages. (sources 1, 2, 3)

C. I. Parhon

63. “The Science of Petroleum” (by Dr. A.E. Dunstan, published by Oxford University Press in 1938) certifies the fact that Romania was the first country in the world with an oil production officially registered in the international statistics (established in 1858 with an oil production of 275 tons). It was followed by the United States in 1859, Italy in 1860, Canada in 1862 and Russia in 1863. (sources 1234)

The petroleum, the ‘black gold’

64. Romanian gymnast Marius Urzică had won, through his unique technique and style of performance, the recognition as the one of the greatest masters on pommel horse ever, together with Miroslav Cerar (YUG) and Zoltan Magyar (HUN). (source 1)  

Marius Urzică

And although now retired from the sport, many remember him as the “King of Pommel Horse” as he has an E difficulty skill named after him, the Urzică. (source 2)

Marius Urzică

Marius Urzică receiving a Perfect 10

65. Mircea Eliade was the first person ever for whom the United States Congress granted American citizenship in an ad hoc session. (sources 1, 2, 3)

Mircea Eliade

The proposal for convening the US Congress was made by Illinois Sen. Charles H. Percy, a big admirer of the great historian and writer. Called by the Romanian Communist authorities an “enemy of the people” and kept away from Romania, Eliade had been refusing for decades to accept American citizenship. Finally, at the senator’s lingering, he accepted the U.S. citizenship at almost 74 years. The procedure of approval lasted two minutes. Eliade was revered before for his outstanding merits at the University of Chicago, but after this step honors, awards, invitations started coming.

Charles H. Percy

US Congress