Maškaral o gav

maškaral o gav – "in the middle of a village". Used in the sense of living in the middle of a village among Gadže.

The expression has an important social sub-text. In feudal Slovak society Roma lived in distant settlements at the edge of a village. If a Roma family arrived maškaral o gav, maškar o gadže (among Gadže), that meant an exceptional elevation of their prestige, occasionally a sign of assimilation. Often blacksmiths lived maškaral o gav so that farmers who needed almost daily services from them would have them at hand.

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Jarovnice (Slovakia), 2002