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Third century of a bicycle

Did you know that the poet Ján Kollár was also a fan of cycling and that we can find a mention of it in his masterpiece The Daughter of Sláva?

An important Slovak politician, poet, writer, evangelical priest, linguist, ideologist of pan-Slavism and representative of the Slovak national revival was in the 19th century not only a passionate traveler, but also an enthusiastic supporter of technical progress. He also loved Baron Drais’s “running machine”.

One of the classic means of transport is once again beginning to be promoted as one of the most environmentally friendly alternatives in nowadays city streets crowded with cars – the bicycle.


The history of this popular vehicle dates back to the third century of its existence since the German inventor Karl von Drais designed its predecessor, the Laufmaschine.

The exhibition in the Transport Museum introduces visitors to the history of the means of transport, which at first found it difficult to find its way to the general public. Later, it became a common part of the daily life of the inhabitants and was also used in several professions.


Visitors will be particularly interested in the historic Singer bicycle with a large front wheel dating from the end of the 19th century, as well as the first shared “white bicycle” in Bratislava. An absolute unique, which will celebrate its 100th birthday this year, is a wooden bicycle made at home, on which in 1922 its contractor Matúš Povala completed a trip to work from Orava to Prague.


The exhibition was prepared by the museum in cooperation with students of the Department of Ethnology and Museology at Faculty of Arts of the Comenius University in Bratislava.