Today marks the centenary of the Trianon Treaty. On 4 June 1920, Hungarian officials signed away two thirds of their country and 3.3 million inhabitants.
At the end of World War One, Hungary was forced to cede what vast areas of their country: Slovakia, Vojvodina, Croatia, part of Slovenia, Ruthenia, the Burgenland and Transylvania passed to the new states of Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia, to a growing Romania, and to Austria.
Heroes Square, Budapest, 4 June 2016
Hungary still mourns that loss, and many still mark the shrinking of the country with both complaints and ceremonies on 4 June. I was at one of these events in Budapest in 2016.
For the centenary, a new memorial is being opened in front of the Parliament Building. It is built as a long ramp sloping down from ground level, and its walls are embellished with the names of all the towns and villages of historic Hungary according to their size in the last, pre-war census in 1910. At the centre burns an eternal flame. A monument I’m looking forward to seeing when I next get to this beautiful city.
Copyright Debbie Smyth, 4 June 2020