Not long ago we have put together a quiz featuring some of the most interesting Hungarian city nicknames. If you took the quiz, you might have wondered why they are actually given those names? In the first part of this series we have already explained some of the most well-known cities’ nicknames, and now we conclude the explanation with some less-known Hungarian cities.

Tihany – A Balaton ékszerdoboza – Lake Balaton’s jewellery box

Tihany is not just Lake Balaton’s crown jewel, but of Hungary’s as well, even though its nickname is restricted only to the ‘Hungarian Sea’. This village is situated on a peninsula which is considered a historic district on the northern shore of Lake Balaton. The reason why Tihany is referred to as a jewellery box is that of its beauty and versatility. The Benedictine Tihany Abbey bears great historical and cultural significance in Hungary, and the unique natural setting of Tihany is remarkable: Tihany is well-known for the great lavender fields and an inner lake.

Balassagyarmat – A legbátrabb város – The bravest city

museum folk tradition

The town of Balassagyarmat took an important and decisive step after the First World War: despite the Entente signing an armistice in November 1918 in Belgrade, Czechoslovakian and Romanian troops have broken into Hungarian territories, keeping the citizens in fear and despair. However, the locals in Balassagyarmat decided to step up against the Czechoslovakian legion’s terror that has cast a shadow over them for weeks and with the help of Hungarian soldiers stationed nearby, they managed to drive the Czechoslovaks out of the city on January 29, 1919. Some argue that the citizens of Balassagyarmat stopped the Czechoslovak troops from breaking further into Hungary.

Szentendre – A művészetek városa – The city of arts

This beautiful, calm city just a few kilometres away from Budapest has inspired various painters, sculptors and other artists in the past. Over 200 visual artists, poets, writers and musicians live today in Szentendre. It has barely over 25 thousand residents, but at least a dozen of museums, a handful more small theatres and lovely little galleries. Szentendre is easily the heaven of artists in Hungary. Fun fact: the second season of the TV series Genius (2017), focusing on the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso, portrayed by the acclaimed Antonio Banderas, was shot here.

Hódmezővásárhely – A paraszt Párizs – The Peasant Paris


When Hódmezővásárhely was first labelled as the Peasant Paris by Hungarian author and journalist Sándor Bródy in 1909, the nickname did not exactly bear positive meanings. Bródy called the city by this name because, in his opinion, people around Hódmezővásárhely were some of the vilest, evil and darkest individuals he has ever seen. However, the well-known Hungarian poet, Endre Ady, who happened to have a fascination with Paris, gave a positive meaning to the original ill-intentioned label. In an article, Ady expressed his belief that the Hungarian intellectual revolution has opened up a new front at Hódmezővásárhely, mostly because of the busy literary scene there.

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Source: Daily News Hungary

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