List of famous Hungarians

This is just a list of famous Hungarian people that we plan to write about in the future:

István Széchenyi - "the greatest Hungarian"

István Széchenyi – “the greatest Hungarian”

Kings, princes

  • Grand Prince Álmos (820 – 854 – 895), leader of the Hungarians before the conquest of the Carpathian Basin, father of Prine Árpád‘s
  • Grand Prince Árpád (840 – 895 – 907), Hungarians settled down in the Carpathian basin under his rule, his dynasty ruled 400 year long (until 1301)
  • Stephen I (967 – 1000 – 1038), great-great grandson of Árpád‘s, born as Vajk, adopted Stephen as a Christian name, the founder and first king of the Hungarian Kingdom, under his rule Hungary became a Christian country, established dioceses in Hungary, built the state administration, adopted European customs
  • Ladislaus I (1045 – 1077 – 1095), the protection of the private property hardened, under his rule Hungary occupied Croatia, which then was under Hungarian rule eight centuries long (1091 – 1918)
  • Coloman (1074 – 1095 – 1116), known as “the Booklover”
  • Andrew II (1177 – 1205 – 1235), issued the Golden Bull of 1222, the first constitutional document of Hungary
  • Béla IV (1206 – 1235 – 1270), rebuilt the country after the Mongol invasion, known as “the second founder of the homeland”
  • Charles I (1288 – 1312 – 1342), also known as Charles Robert and Caroberto, financial reforms, foreign policy
  • Louis I (1326 – 1342 – 1382), known as “Louis the Great”
  • Matthias Corvinus (1443 – 1458 – 1490), appeares in lot of folktales and legends, known as “the Just”
  • Maria II Theresa (1717 – 1740 – 1780, Austrian) Empress, the only female ruler of the Hungarian Kingdom
  • Franz Joseph I (1830 – 1848 – 1916, Austrian), Emperor of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy
  • Empress Elisabeth (Sissy) (1837 – 1898, German), Franz Joseph’s wife

Politicans, statesmen

  • János Hunyadi (1407 – 1456, Hungarian-Romanian), Regent governor of the Kingdom of Hungary, voivode of Transylvania, General, Siege of Belgrade, 1456, father of King Matthias Corvinus.
  • Miklós Zrínyi (1620 – 1664, Croatian-Hungarian), Ban of Croatia, poet, general, fought against the Ottoman Empire
  • Prince Francis II Rákóczi (1676 – 1704 – 1711), Prince of Transylvania, leader of the Hungarian uprising against Austria, 1703 – 1711
  • István Széchenyi (1791 – 1860), first Minister for Transport, 1848, builder of Chain Bridge, founder of Hungarian Academy of Sciences and several other institutions, reformer of transportation, sport and foreign policy, known as “the greatest Hungarian”
  • Lajos Batthyány (1807 – 1849), first Prime Minister, 1848, martyr
  • Lajos Kossuth (1802 – 1894), first Minister of Finance, 1848, Governor, 1949
  • Ferenc Deák (1803 – 1876), known as the “wise of the homeland”
  • Miklós Horthy (1868 – 1957), Governor, 1920 – 1944, his activity is controversial and subject of debate still today
  • Mindszenty József (1892 – 1975), Cardinal, Arcbishop, became the symbol of the anti-fascist and anti-communist opposition, both the regimes inprisoned him, hided in the Embassy of the USA in Budapest for 15 years after the Revolution
  • Imre Nagy (1896 – 1958), the leader of the Revolution of 1956 against the Soviet Union, executed after the Revolution, known as “Martyr Prime Minister”
  • József Antall (1932 – 1993), first freely elected Prime Minister of the 3rd Republic, 1990 – 1993

Inventors, Scientists

  • Farkas Kempelen (Irish descent, Hungarian-German), Automaton Chess Player: “the Turk”, 1770
  • Ányos Jedlik, soda water, 1826, dynamo, 1861
  • János Irinyi, safety match, 1836
  • József Petzval, binocular, 1840
  • Tivadar Puskás, telephone exchange, 1878
  • Károly ZipernowskyOttó Bláthy and Miksa Déri, transformer, 1885
  • Donát Bánki and János Csonka, carburetor, 1893
  • Kálmán Kandó, electric locomotive, 1902
  • Fülöp Lénárd (German-Hungarian),  Nobel Prize in Physics, 1905 “for his work on cathode rays”
  • József Galamb, the design of Ford Model T, 1908, together with Childe Harold Wills and Eugene Farkas
  • Dénes Mihály, sound film, 1918
  • Béla Barényi (Hungarian-Austrian), design of VW Beetle Design, 1925
  • Oszkár Asboth, helicopter, 1928
  • Leó Szilárd (Hungarian-USA dual citizen), refrigerator, 1929
  • Albert Szent-Györgyi (Hungarian-USA dual citizen), Vitamin C, 1932, Nobel Prize in Medicine, 1937, “for his discoveries in connection with the biological combustion processes, with special reference to vitamin C and the catalysis of fumaric acid”
  • László Bíró (Hungarian-Argentinian dual citizen), ballpoint pen, 1931, automatic gearbox, 1932
  • József Mihályi (Hungarian-USA dual citizen), autoexposure still camera, 1938
  • György Jendrassik, Jendrassik gas turbine, 1938, Turboprop, 1940
  • János Neumann (Hungarian-USA dual citizen), computer, 1944
  • Dénes Gábor (Hungarian-British dual citizen), holography, 1947 Nobel Prize in Physics, 1971, “for his invention and development of the holographic method”
  • Károly Péter Goldmark (Hungarian and German descent, Hungarian-USA dual citizen), Gramophone Record, 1948, Color Television, 1948
  • Ede Teller (Hungarian-USA dual citizen), hydrogen bomb, 1952
  • István Győrffy, Soft Contact Lenses, 1959
  • György Békésy (Hungarian-Austrian dual citizen), Nobel Prize in Medicine, 1961, “for his discoveries of the physical mechanism of stimulation within the cochlea”
  • Jenő Wigner (Hungarian-USA dual citizen), Nobel Prize in Physics (shared), 1963, “for his contributions to the theory of the atomic nucleus and the elementary particles, particularly through the discovery and application of fundamental symmetry principles”
  • János Kemény (Hungarian-USA), BASIC general-purpose programming language, 1964 (together with Thomas Kurtz, USA)
  • Marcell János, floppy disk, 1973
  • Károly Simonyi (Hungarian-USA dual citizen), Excel, 1974
  • Ernő Rubik, Rubik’s Cube, 1976
  • Ferenc Anisits, the world’s first eight-cylinder direct-injection diesel engine, 1983
  • György Oláh (Hungarian-USA dual citizen), Nobel Prize in Chemistry, 1994, “for his contribution to carbocation chemistry”
  • János Harsányi (Hungarian-USA dual citizen), Nobel Prize in Economics (shared), 1994, “for their pioneering analysis of equilibria in the theory of non-cooperative games”
  • Áron Losonczi, Light Transmitting Concrete, 2001
  • Avram Hersko (Israeli citizen, Hungarian descent), Nobel Prize in Chemistry (shared), 2004, “for the discovery of ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation”
  • Dániel Rátai, Leonar3Do Virtual Reality KIT, 2010

Poets, writers

  • Bálint Balassi (1554 – 1594), Renaissance poet, the first classical of Hungarian poetry
  • Ferenc Kölcsey (1790 – 1838), writer of the Hungarian Anthem (Himnusz), 1823
  • Mihály Vörösmarty (1800 – 1855), writer of Szózat (1836), considered to be the second Hungarian Anthem
  • János Arany (1817 – 1882), poet, literary translator, director of the Kisfaludy Society
  • Sándor Petőfi (1823 – 1849, Serbian and Slovakian descent), writer of National Song (Nemzeti Dal), 1848, key person of the Revolution of 1848 against the Habsburg Empire
  • Géza Gárdonyi (1863 – 1922), poet, writer, journalist, writer of the Eclipse of the Crescent Moon
  • Mihály Babits (1883 – 1941), poet, writer, literary translator
  • Endre Ady (1877 – 1919), poet, political journalist
  • Attila József (1905 – 1937), poet, literary translator
  • Miklós Radnóti (1909 – 1944),  poet, literary translator, victim of the Holocaust
  • Imre Kertész (1929 – ), writer of Fatelessness, 1975, Nobel Prize in Literature, 2002, “for writing that upholds the fragile experience of the individual against the barbaric arbitrariness of history“, Holocaust survivor

Musicians

  • Ferenc Erkel  (1810 – 1893)
  • Ferenc Liszt (1811 – 1886, Hungarian-Austrian)
  • Béla Bartók (1881 – 1945)
  • Zoltán Kodály (1882 – 1967)

other famous Hungarians

  • József C. Dobos (1847 – 1924), confectioner, created the Dobos Torte, 1884
  • Béla Lugosi (1882 – 1956), actor mostly in horror films, best known as Dracula, 1931
  • Hanna Szenes (1921 – 1944), martyr, executed by the Arrow Cross regime after capturing her on the Yugoslavian-Hungarian border, she was trained and parachuted by the British Army into Yugoslavia to try to rescue the Hungarian Jews from the deportations, she was tortured, but refused to tell the details of her mission
  • Ferenc Puskás (1927 – 2006, Hungarian-Spanish dual citizen), olympic champion (1952) and world championship silver medalist (1954) soccer player, captain of the Golden Team, later plyaer of the Spanish National Team and Real Madrid
  • Imre Makovecz (1935 – 2011), architect, proponent of organic architecture, founder of Hungarian Academy of Arts

non-Hungarians that are respected as heroes in Hungary

  • Józef Bem (1794 – 1850), Polish lieutenant general in the Revolution of 1848
  • Adam Clark (1811 – 1866), Scottish engineer, construction manager of the Chain Bridge, designer of the Buda Castle Tunnel
  • Ronald Reagan (1911 – 2004), contribution to the democratic change of the Eastern European countries
  • Raoul Wallenberg (1912 – 1947), Swedish diplomat, rescued tousands of Hungarian Jews from deportations

dictators of the occupied Hungary (people that we are definitely not proud of)

  • Ferenc Szálasi (1897 – 1946), established a fascists dictatorship with Nazi support, 1944-1945, deported the Hungarian Jews for Nazi request
  • Mátyás Rákosi (1892 – 1971), established a strong Communist dictatorship with Soviet support, 1948 – 1953
  • János Kádár (1912 – 1989), betrayer of the Revolution of 1956, re-established the Communist dictatorship with Soviet support, dictator of Hungary, 1956 – 1988
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