History of Hungary

By | April 28, 2022

According to historyaah, the Hungarians emerged from the ancient Finno-Ugric ethnic community at the turn of the 2nd-1st millennium BC. During the Great Migration of Peoples, they left their ancestral home – the foothills of the Southern Urals – and to the end. 9th c. settled in the Carpathian basin. Here the Hungarian medieval state was formed. After it began in the 10th century. Christianization of the pagan Hungarians, Istvan I (at baptism – Stefan) – a descendant of Prince Arpad, who headed the union of tribes of the times of “gaining a homeland” – in 1000 became the king of Hungary (reigned 997-1038), receiving the crown from the hands of Pope Sylvester II.

The struggle for power between his heirs, which began after his death, and the widespread uprisings of pagans who did not want to deviate from the former “faith of the fathers”, weakened the state. The entire middle of the 11th century passed under the sign of this struggle. Only towards the end of the century did Kings Laszlo I (1077–95) and Kalman, nicknamed the Scribe (1095–1116) for his scholarship, succeed in restoring order and stability.

K ser. 13th c. thanks to active aggressive campaigns, the territory of the Hungarian kingdom reached the largest area, also covering Transylvania, Slovakia, Transcarpathia, Burgenland, Vojvodina and Croatia. In 1241–42, the country survived the invasion of the Tatar-Mongol troops led by Batu, losing almost half of the population. King Bela IV (1235-70) managed to restore what was destroyed, launched the construction of fortresses, stimulated the influx of population from neighboring states, promoted the development of cities, etc. See ehistorylib for more about Hungary history.

In the beginning. 14th c. with the death of King Endre III (1290-1301), the Arpad dynasty ended, whose representatives occupied the throne by right of succession. The feudal elite, in the interests of strengthening their own power, began to invite kings from foreign dynasties that had no real power: the Czech king Laszlo Cech, the Bavarian Duke Otto III. However, under the rule of the representatives of the Angevin dynasty, the grandson of the King of Naples, Karoy (Karl) Robert (1307-42) and his son Lajos (Louis) the Great (1342-82), who managed to achieve relative independence of royal power and provide the treasury with income, Hungary experienced a period of strengthening and the rise of a centralized feudal state.

In the 15th century Hungary is gradually turning into an estate monarchy, where the prerogative of electing a king already belonged to the magnates and nobles. The country was ruled by foreign kings (Duke of Austria King Albert, King Ulaslo I of Poland, King Ladislav of the Czech Republic), a State Council of 5 magnates and 7 military leaders (1445-46), an influential magnate and an outstanding commander Janos Hunyadi (with the rank of ruler of Hungary; 1446-52 ). His son, Matthias Hunyadi, nicknamed Korvin (Raven), was elected king in 1458 and ruled until his death in 1490. Relying on the small and medium nobility, he managed to weaken the power of large feudal lords and temporarily stop the internecine struggle.

In 1514, Hungary was shaken by one of the largest peasant uprisings, led by Gyorgy Dozsa. The peasants, who intended to make a crusade against the Turks, and the townspeople who joined them, turned their weapons against the magnates. Despite the initial victories, the uprising was crushed, and its defeat was used as a pretext for the final enslavement of the peasants.

In the 15th-16th centuries. The Hungarians quite successfully repelled the onslaught of the then growing strength of the Ottoman Empire, but after the defeat of the royal army in the Battle of Mohacs (1526), a significant part of the country fell under Ottoman influence. By 1541, Hungary was divided into three parts: the rule of the Turks was established in the southern and central regions for a century and a half, the northern and western lands were ruled by the Austrian Habsburg dynasty, and the Transylvanian principality with limited independence was formed in the east. After the Austro-Turkish War of 1683–99 and the suppression of the anti-Habsburg movement of 1703–11, led by Ferenc Rákóczi II, all of Hungary came under the rule of the Habsburgs.

1st floor 19th century in Hungary it was characterized by the strengthening of the movement for national independence, social progress, economic freedoms and was called the “epoch of reforms”. Their initiator was Count Istvan Szechenyi (1791-1860), who represented the views of part of the Hungarian liberal nobility and bourgeoisie. Prominent figures – supporters of the reforms were also Lajos Kossuth (1802-94), Ferenc Deak (1803-76), Miklos Veshsheleni (1796-1850), Mihai Tancic (1799-1884) and others.

The opposition of the Viennese court to the reforms and the conservatism of part of the Hungarian political elite led to the national democratic revolution of 1848–49. The defeat of the revolution caused a surge of repressions, the “Germanization” of the country, the rejection of many of the gains of the revolution. Under the Austro-Hungarian agreement of 1867, Hungary became one of the constituent parts of the dual monarchy, Austria-Hungary. Both states had independence in internal affairs, were governed by their own parliaments and governments, but had a common monarch and common military, financial and foreign policy departments.

In October 1918, as a result of the defeat of Austria-Hungary in World War I, a peaceful bourgeois revolution took place in the country, proclaiming state independence. But the post-war borders of Hungary were determined by the Trianon Treaty of 1920, which deprived the country of 2/3 of the territory, incl. a number of areas with a predominantly Hungarian population. The struggle for their return became the core of all Hungarian politics in the interwar period.

On March 21, 1919, the Hungarian Soviet Republic was proclaimed, which existed for only 133 days. After its defeat, the reactionary regime of Miklós Horthy was established in the country, which led it on the eve of World War II to an alliance with the powers of the Nazi “axis”. In 1938–40, as a result of two Vienna arbitrations, Hungary annexed southern Slovakia, Transcarpathia, and northern Transylvania, and in the spring of 1941 captured the Bačka region from Yugoslavia.

June 27, 1941 the country entered the war against the USSR. After the defeat of the 2nd Hungarian Army during the Soviet counteroffensive on the Don in January 1943, Hungary tried to withdraw from the war. The German occupation (March 1944) and the dictatorship of the Nilashists (fascist parties) followed. In September 1944, the Soviet army entered the territory of Hungary, the complete liberation of which was completed on April 4, 1945. The Paris Peace Treaty of 1947 generally confirmed the country’s Trianon borders.

The provisional national government carried out a number of reforms (nationalization of transport, mines, banks, private enterprises, agrarian reform, etc.). By 1948, the power of the Communist Party had been established in Hungary, and in August 1949 the Hungarian People’s Republic (HPR) was established. The policy of the one-party regime of the Communist Party, the infringement of national dignity, the repressive domestic and voluntaristic economic policy caused widespread public discontent, which resulted in a popular uprising in October 1956 demanding democratic freedoms. It was suppressed by the Soviet armed forces.

The new Hungarian leadership, headed by Janos Kadar (1912–89), managed to stabilize the situation and, under conditions of relative liberalization, achieved a significant increase in the welfare of the population. From the 2nd floor. 1960s the development and implementation of a deep economic reform began in the country. However, later the possibilities of reforming the existing socio-political system were exhausted, and in 1989–90 a peaceful transformation of the social system took place in Hungary.

After the first free elections in 1990, a national-conservative coalition came to power, heading for the so-called. return to Europe. The social consequences of such a policy led to the fact that in the 1994 elections the population voted for the socialists, people from the reformist wing of the former ruling Communist Party, who, in alliance with the liberal Free Democrats, continued market transformations in the economy and preparations for Hungary’s accession to NATO and the EU. In the parliamentary elections of 1998, the opposition came to power, led by the Hungarian Civic Party (FIDES), which proclaimed the goal of the final completion of the transition to a market and civil society, integration into the military-political and economic structures of the West. The aggressive nationalist policy of the ruling coalition in the 2002 elections again led to the socialists coming to power.

History of Hungary