유네스코는 에스페란토의 창안자 자멘호프박사를 서거 100주년을 맞이하여, 2017년의 인물로 선정하였다. 세계 에스페란토 협회는 이를 기념하는 다양한 계획을 준비중이며, 2017년 서울 세계 에스페란토 대회에서 자멘호프 학술 회의 개최를 구상하고 있다.
100th anniversary of the death of Ludwik Zamenhof, physician and linguist (1859-1917) (with the support of Germany and Slovakia) (2017)
Born inside the multinational community of the city of Białystok, L. Zamenhof (1859-1917) created the first version of his Lingwe Uniwersala already at a young age. In 1885 Zamenhof decisively finished his project of the international language as we know it today. In 1887 he published a textbook in Russian: “The international tongue – Preface and complete method”, under the pseudonym Doktoro Esperanto. The pseudonym means “The Doctor who hopes” and has caught on as the name of the language. In the same year the textbook was published in Polish, French, German and English.
The first Esperanto clubs started to come into being, and the advantages of the language were recognized by linguists too. In 1905 in Boulogne-sur-Mer, France, the first World Congress of Esperanto took place. While staying in France, Zamenhof was decorated with the National Order of the Legion of Honour. In 1906 Zamenhof published humanitism (homaranismo), which is the idea of the union of all the nations communicating in a common language.
The Esperanto movement he initiated has spread all over the world, while the creator released all his rights, liberating Esperanto for every human’s use. The work of L. Zamenhof is known worldwide reaching over 120 countries. The idea of a common language has fascinated many people and lots of them made similar attempts at creating one, but Zamenhof’s case is the only one to have achieved world success.