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Margaret Island (Margit-sziget), The Centennial Memorial - Budapest, Hungary
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Győr, Hungary

Győr

The city of waters

The city of waters

Győr is situated midway between Budapest and Vienna. Three rivers flow into each other here. It is not only the rivers which represent a kind of mixture, but also the different styles of architecture, the ancient times, cultures and atmosphere. First and foremost it is the Baroque inner city and its charming houses which are responsible for the pleasant atmosphere. And of course the flower-clad and lively streets together with the numerous cafés contribute to the aforementioned.

Győr, Hungary

The city got its name at the time of the foundation of the state, which supposedly came from the name of Knight Gyaur. This area was called Arrabona by the Celts who inhabited it BC. in the 1st century AD it became a province of the Roman Empire. Then 300 years later the Romans renounced the city because of the constant Hun attacks.

During the conquest, in the 9th century, the Hungarians fortified the Roman fortress. Then, in the 11th century the episcopate and the stewardship, granted by Stephen I, the first Christian king of Hungary, proved to be the ground for fast development.

Győr, Hungary

Győr was devastated several times, for example by the Tartars, the Czechs and the Turks. The latter gave the city the following name: ‘burnt city’ (‘Jarik kala’). This happened when the Turks, marching into the city, could see that Kristóf Lambert, having lost hope for defence, chose to burn down all the buildings.

In fact the city was under Turkish rule only for four years, since it was liberated earlier than the eastern part of the country. Furthermore, the new artistic style, the Baroque, appeared. This was the era for the irregular and complex cobbled streets to be born, as well as the typical buildings with ornamental façades.

Győr, Hungary

Besides, it is believed, that after the great fire, regular and straightened streets were developed consciously in order to make it easier to shell through them when defending the city.

An unusual feature for visitors to see in Győr is the often used corner windows. There exists a rumour, namely that ladies always wanted to see who escorted their daughters home.

The silver Herm of St. Ladislaus

The bones and the scull of the King (canonized in the 12th century) was taken out of his grave in Nagyvárad and placed in a Herm. It was first kept in the Cathedral of Nagyvárad, and later it was transported to Győr. The Herm is regarded as one of the sacred objects for Hungarians next to The Crown and The St Right Hand.

Győr, Hungary

Vilmos Apor

The Bishop of Győr, born in Transylvania, was shot to death by Soviet soldiers when he was trying to protect women from rape. His tomb may be visited in the Cathedral.

The Irish Madonna of Győr

On 17 March 1697, which is the day of St Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, this picture shed tears of blood, having been rescued by the Irish bishop, Walter Lynch. In honour of the picture and this event Bishop Ferenc Zichy had an ornamental Baroque altar installed.

Győr, Hungary

The runaway soldier

One of the most beautiful Baroque relics, the statue of the Ark of the Covenant, is situated on Gutenberg Square as a reminiscence of a fable from 1729. A soldier escaped to the Jesuit monastery, as he had been accused of being a runaway, using a false name and being a bigamist. When troops surrounded the monastery, the bishop tried to help him flee to the Episcopal castle cloaking him as an altar-boy. He put him in the rows of people marching in the procession of Corpus Christi. Unfortunately he was recognised by his fellow men, who attacked him and tried to drag him out of the crowd. They knocked the monstrance out of the hands of the priest and it broke into pieces. The monument was erected by Charles III as conciliation for the offence against the Blessed Sacrament; he paid for it from the fine imposed on the runaway soldier.

Győr, Hungary

The poems of Napoleon’s soldiers

The Apátúr House, on Széchenyi Square, was built by the chief abbot of Pannonhalma, and its dining room was a favourite place of the invaders of the city, i.e. Napoleon’s soldiers. But once the Italian officers organized a ball in honour of their leader and on this great occasion they painted the walls with poems glorifying the emperor. Their traces are still visible. Although they painted them with real enthusiasm, they are full of spelling mistakes, since the Italian officers did not have a good command of French.

Characteristics, features, properties

Type:

City or big town

Location:

Europe (Continent)  >  Hungary (Country)  >  Western Hungary (Tourist region)  >  Győr-Moson-Sopron megye (county) (County or province)  >  Little Hungarian Plain (Kisalföld) (Geographical region / area / zone)

GPS coordinates: Latitude 47°41'2", Longitude 17°38'6" (N47 41.03 - E17 38.1) Map

Győr - Photo album, picture galleries (111 photos / 2 galleries)

Győr - Panoramic images (2 photos)

Bécsi Kapu Square - Győr, Hungary
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