50 Amazing and Interesting Facts about Hungary | Amazing Facts 4U
Land & Geography
- Hungary has a size of 93 thousand square km and it is strategically situated at the border of Eastern and Western Europe.
- Hungary is a landlocked in Central Europe sharing a border with seven countries, including, Slovakia, Ukraine, Romania, Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, and Austria.
- Hungary’s population is about 10 million. Capital is Budapest which is the with over 1.7 million people. Budapest had it’s origin in 1873 when Buda and old Buda on the west bank of the Danube River unified with Pest on the east bank to become Budapest.
- The north-south flowing Danube and Tisza Rivers divide the country into three large regions. Tisza River is the Longest River in Hungary.
- The highest point in Hungary is Kékes 1,014 m (3327 ft) in the Mátra Mountains.
- The famous Lake Balaton is situated here, which is the largest one in entire central Europe.
- In fact Hungary is one of the oldest countries in Europe. It was founded in 896, before France and Germany became separate entities, and before the unification of Anglo-Saxon kingdoms.
- Hungary became a Christian kingdom under St Stephen in the year 1000. Then the Kingdom of Hungary was one of the largest states in Europe, bigger than France.
- Ottoman empire occupied and ruled Hungary for 150 years (1541-1699). Thereafter it came under Habsburg rule and later formed a major part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire (1867-1918).
- In World War I Hungary was ally to Germany and Austria. In 1918 the Monarchy broke up and the country became the Republic of Hungary.
- After losing the war, the allied Atlantic countries overran Hungary and in accordance with the Treaty of Trianon, split up the country. The Hungary of more than 20 million became a small country of less than 8 million.
- World War II brought more problems to the people of Hungary. After the Germans were beaten by the Allies, Soviets took over the country in 1947. In 1956 the people tried to revolt but failed. The soviet communist rule lasted until 1989.
- Since October 1989, Hungary has become an independent democratic republic. It joined NATO in 1999 and the EU five years later.
Places / Architecture
- The University of Pécs, the oldest university of Hungary, was founded in 1367.
- It is the land of the thermal water. It has one of the most important thermal spring culture in Europe with around 1,500 spas, typically featuring Roman, Greek and Turkish architecture. You can find water with temperature above 30°C in the 70% of Hungary. Some of the most sumptuous thermal resorts include the Széchenyi Medicinal Bath, Gellért Baths, Lukács Baths, and Margaret Island.
- Hungary also has 450 public baths.
- Budapest, the capital city of Hungary, is home for Dohány Street Synagogue, the largest synagogue in Europe and the second largest in the world after one in New York. It was built in the mid nineteenth century.
- World’s largest geothermal cave system is found in Hungary. It is located in the undergrounds of Budapest.
- The Europe’s largest underground lake has also been recently discovered and is located under Gellért Hill.
People Customs & Culture
- The official language of Hungary is Hungarian descending directly as the language spoken by the Hun people. It is unique in that it is like no other languages in Europe except for Finnish and Estonian.
- One third of the 15 million Hungarian speakers live outside Hungary, mostly in Romania and in all adjacent countries to Hungary.
- As per survey, Hungarian is officially among the most difficult language to be learnt and spoken.
- Most of the Western countries alphabet usually contains around 7 vowels. In Italy there are only 5.Whereas the Hungarian language recognizes and uses 14 vowels: a-á, e-é, i-I, o-ó, ö-ő, u-ú, ü-ű.
- Hungarian names have the family names first followed by first name which makes sorting easier.
- Dates are written as year , month , day.
- Around two-thirds of the Hungarian people are Roman Catholic.
- Literacy of total population is 99%.
- As per legend , during execution of 13 revolutionary generals by Austrians , they clinked glasses after each execution. Hence Hungarians never clink glasses or bottles of beer.
- Greece and Bulgaria are the only countries in Europe where more people smoke than in Hungary.
- Hungary the highest death rate by cancer in Europe, and the highest female suicide rate.
- The word ‘coach’ derives from the name of the Hungarian town Kocs, where multi-passenger wheeled vehicles first appeared around 1500.
- Hungary is one of the thirty most popular tourist destinations in the world attracting more than 10 million tourists a year.
- The currency of Hungary is called forint.
- Hungary has the highest standard V.A.T. rate in the world (27 %).
- Amazing fact is that in 1946, after massive inflation , Hungary issued banknotes of a face value of 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 pengo (one quintillion pengo) , the world’s highest denomination ever.
- Hungary’s men’s water polo team is considered the best in the history of the sport with 15 Olympic medals (9 gold), and 10 World Championship medals (3 gold).
- The Hungarian football team has won 3 Olympic titles in 1952, 1964, 1968, made two World Cup finals in 1938 and 1954. Legend Ferenc Puskás is one of world footballs all-time greats.
- Only five countries (USA, USSR, UK, France and Italy) have won more Summer Olympic gold medals won by Hungary in history.
- Hungarians won gold medals at every summer Olympics except Antwerp 1920 and Los Angeles 1984 when they did not compete.
- Hungarian fencer Aladar Gerevich won gold in six consecutive Olympics from 1932-1960.
- Hungarian’s have invented the electric motor (1827) and the Telephone Exchange
- Viamin C was discovered by Szent Albert in 1937.
- BASIC programming language was invented by John Kemeny with Thomas E. Kurtz.
- Laszlo Biro invented the ballpoint pen in 1938.
- Erno Rubik , Hungarian engineer invented the Rubik’s Cube. The most Rubik’s cubes solved in 24 hours is 4,786 and was achieved by Milán Baticz (Hungary) in Budapest, Hungary, on 16 November 2008 averaging 199.4 cubes solved each hour.
- Holography was invented by Dennis Gabord in 1971.
- Hungary is famous for its mathematicians including the designer of modern geometry Farkas Bolyai and his son designer of non-Euclidian geometry János Bolyai, Paul Erdős for Erdős numbers and John von Neumann, who was a key contributor in Quantum mechanics, Game theory, and digital computing.
- in fact 13 Hungarian or Hungarian-born scientists have received the Nobel Prize, all of whom emigrated from Hungary, due to persecution during the communist regime.
- Hungarians have won Nobel Prizes in every category except peace.
- Hungary, like Austria, has a long tradition of classical music. Composers Béla Bartók, Zoltán Kodály or Franz Liszt were all Hungarians.
By Amazing Facts 4U Team