Branislav Nusic (1864-1938) is one of the great names of Serbian comedy. Man with a really turbulent life, he is also the proof that comedy was (and still is) a serious force to be reckoned with. Comedy got him into prison, but also made him part of intellectual circles of that time.
The interesting thing for this article, and also for unsuspecting tourists in Belgrade, both local and foreign ones, is the plaque on the National Bank building in Kralja Petra street 12, marking the place where he was born and the inscription on it, which probably makes it one of the funniest plaques of that kind in the world. Translation below.
“I was born in an old little house, near the Belgrade’s Orthodox Cathedral. That little house was later wiped out from this Earth and instead of it, there now stands the grand building of the National bank, so the Bank’s vaults are now at the very same spot where the room I was born used to be.
Say it happens that some kind descendants came along and wanted, say, to mark the spot where I was born with a plaque. That plaque, with the inscription “In this house was born … etc” would have to be built into the wall of the National Bank, right above those basement windows with the thick iron bars, where the vaults with the Bank’s golden reserve lie…
I was also born at midnight, so that the biography couldn’t state “He first saw the light of the day on the October 8th 1864”, but
“He first saw the lights of the paraffin candle on the October 8th 1864”
signed: Kind descendants,
Belgrade, 8th of October 2004