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Hungary Past and Present

The Hungarian Conquest

Munkácsy Mihály - Honfoglalás
The Hungarian Conquest

Some of us may remember the White Horse Legend, according to which the Hungarian Prince Árpád, arriving from the east, struck a deal with Svatopluk, Prince of Moravia, offering him a white horse in exchange for a bag of soil, a jug of water and a handful of grass.  He then claimed that with the deal he had bought his land, its waters and its yield!

This endearing fable satisfies children in the elementary grades, but real life is much more complex indeed.  Due to the great historic distance and scanty written sources, reconstructing the run and events of the Conquest is no simple task.

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Olga Vállay Szokolay

Seven Memorials of the Conquest

A part of the panoramic Feszty körkép, taken from a printed copy
Seven Memorials of the Conquest

When planning for observance of the Millennium in the late 1890’s, a suggestion was made to erect historic monuments to commemorate the Conquest. The idea was put forward by Thaly Kálmán, a representative of the Independence Party and a historian.  He did not wish to arouse animosity against anyone, but wanted to ”express the strength of our consolidated statehood”, as he phrased it.

The information and photos in this article have been culled – with permission of the author – from „Honfoglalásunk hét emlékműve” by Kovács Sándor, published by Romanika Kiadó, Budapest, 2010.

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EPF