Since the publication of Franz Liszt's book 'Des Bohemiens et de leur musique en Hongrie' in 1859 Gypsy music has become the constant cause of academic disputes. In European culture Gypsy music was described as an emanation of the concept of 'Others'. In musicological literature two dominant codes of presenting Gypsy music can be distinguished: the racial discourse - drawing heavily on Darwinian theory practices and national perspective resulting from the 19th century tendencies. Consequently Gypsy music was proclaimed the only real source of Hungarian national music. The writings on Gypsy music are also characterized by the evident fascination with non-European cultures and the exotic features of Gypsy music. The aim of the article is to outline how European authors undertaking the problem of Gypsy music (Franz. Liszt and Bela Bartok) mitigated between the two approaches depending on the historical context within which they wrote their works.