Back in December I was planning so many things for this blog and most of them was Hungary-related. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to talk about many of these things until now, but I plan to make up for my laziness this month.
During the month of March I'll be focusing on what Hungary contributes to the beauty industry. I'll talk about Hungarian cosmetic companies, fashion designers, jewelers, spas and I even plan to introduce you to Hungarian folk art. ;-)
I chose March because for us Hungarians this month is very special. The 15th of March marks the beginning of the 1848-49 Hungarian Revolution by starting a chain of events that changed my country forever. On this day in 1848 mass demonstrations broke out in Pest and Buda (the two cities were only united as Budapest in 1872), and Vienna, the center of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy had to accept the 12 demands which summarized the needs of the Hungarian society. Later on, the House of Habsburg was dethroned and the first Hungarian Republic was formed under Prime Minister Lajos Batthyány and Governor Lajos Kossuth. However, after more than a year of fighting Franz Joseph asked for help from Czar Nicholas I whose armies invaded Hungary and the Revolution was soon suppressed. On October 6, 1849 the 13 leaders of the Hungarian army as well as Prime Minister Batthyány were executed and the hunt for those who took part in the revolution began.
15th of March Hungarian people fought together to throw over an oppressive empire and to set off their country on the road towards modernization and independence. Even though the revolution was repressed in the end, the things that had been put into motion could not be stopped anymore; they could only be slowed down. I can only compare this event to the Hungarian Revolution of 1956 (when we fought against the Soviet rule): people all across the capitol (and the country) put aside their differences and joined forces in order to fight for an independent and democratic Hungary. In both cases it was university students who started it all and whose enthusiasm fueled the masses.
The 12 Points
What the Hungarian nation wants.
Let there be peace, liberty, and concord!
- We want freedom of the press, the abolition of censorship.
- A responsible government in Buda-Pest.
- An annual parliamentary session in Pest.
- Civil and religious equality before the law.
- A Hungarian National Guard.
- A joint sharing of tax burdens.
- The cessation of socage [land tenure].
- Juries and representation on an equal basis.
- A national bank.
- The army must swear to support the constitution, our soldiers must not be dispatched abroad, foreign soldiers must be removed from our soil.
- The freeing of political prisoners.
- Union [with Transylvania].
Since then, the 15 of March has been a national holiday when people remember the events and the heroes of the Hungarian Revolution of 1848-49. On this day most of us wear a cockade with the colors of the Hungarian flag.