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August 20: Here’s How Hungary Celebrated Its 1000+ Birthday – Photo Gallery!

Tamás Székely 2017.08.21.

20th of August, the day King Saint Stephen of Hungary, was celebrated with weekend-long festivities throughout Hungary. The national holiday  commemorates the foundation of the medieval Kingdom of Hungary by the legendary king, who was canonized on 20th of August, 1083 by Pope Gregory VII. Festivities started in the morning with the raising of the Hungarian flag and continue on all day long, culminating in a spectacular fireworks display over the Danube in the evening.

Hissing the national flag in front of the Parliament bulding in the mornin (photo: Tamás Kovács – MTI)

Hungary’s new lieutenants traditionally take their oath on the day of Saint Stephen (photo: Tamás Kovács – MTI)

President of Hungary János Áder delivered a speech to mark the prestigious occasion MTI Fotó: Kovács Tamás


Homeland first, pledged the lieutenants (photo: Tamás Kovács – MTI)


The national holiday was marked by a military parade on the Danube…


… and in the sky as well (photos: Tamás Kovács – MTI)


Meanwhile at the Buda castle, the street of Hungarian flavours welcomed the visitors (photo: Balázs Mohai – MTI)


This year the national dishes and drinks of the other Visegrad countries (Czechia, Slovakia, Poland) were also presented (photo: Balázs Mohai – MTI)


In Debrecen, the traditional flower carnival, was held on August 20 (photo: Zsolt Czeglédi – MT)


Thousands of Hungarians and foreigners celebrated Hungary’s birthday in Budapest (photo: Balázs Mohai – MTI)


The soon-to-be-renovated Chain bridge played an important role in the festivities (photos: Balázs Mohai – MTI)


Bartholomew I of Constantinople, Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople of the Eastern Orthodox Church (left), and Hungarian Roman Catholic Cardinal Péter Erdő, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest (right), attended the traditional Holy Right Hand procession (photo: Balázs Mohai – MTI)



The Holy Right Hand is housed in the St. Stephen Basilica in Budapest and once a year, on August 20, it is carried in the Holy Right Hand ( Szent Jobb) procession. The relic is thought the be the mummified right hand once belonged to King Saint Stephen. (photo: Balázs Mohai – MTI)


President of Hungary János Áder, first lady Anita Herczeg and Deputy Prime Minister Zsolt Semjén among those who attended the Holy Right Hand procession (Balázs Mohai – MTI)


According to the tradition, King Saint Stephen offered Hungary to the Virgin Mary, who became the great patroness and protector of the nation (photo: Balázs Mohai – MTI)


This year the August 20 fireworks were held between the Chain bridge and the Margarethe bridge, just in front of the Parliament building (photos: Tamás Kovács, Attila Kovács and Péter Lakatos – MTI)


August 20 was also celebrated in Kolozsvár (Cluj – RO, Klausenburg – DE) in Transylvania, in Romania as part of the “Hungarian days festival” in the city (photo: István Biró – MTI)