A mounted statue of Count Gyula Andrássy, Hungary’s Prime Minister between 1867 and 1871, has been finally completed and inaugurated in front of the Hungarian Parliament in Budapest’s Kossuth Square. The original 6.5-metre high bronze equestrian statue statue, the work of renowned Hungarian sculptor György Zala, was installed on the square in 1906 but it was demolished due to ideological reasons by the Communist authorities after 1945.
The old-new monument was inaugurated by House Speaker László Kövér on Tuesday afternoon. “The reconstructed Andrássy statue will return to its original place in its former glory”, he said, noting that its inauguration completes the process of restoring the pre-1944 look of the Square. Andrássy saw politics as “the art of seizable opportunities”, Kövér said, adding that the emotion that motivated his policies was patriotism. Budapest Mayor István Tarlós said the inauguration of the statue “gives Andrássy the recognition he deserves.”
In 1866, Gyula Andrássy was elected president of a parliamentary subcommittee tasked with drawing up the Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867. After his four-year term as Prime Minister, he served as the foreign minister of Austria-Hungary until 1879. Parliament approved a decree on reconstructing Kossuth Square in 2011. The project began in 2013 and involved, among other things, building an underground car park, a visitor centre and a museum.
via hungarymatters.hu and MTI photo: Zoltán Máthé – MTI