Photographer's Note

The statue of Hungary's first royal couple, King St Stephen I and Giselle, stands at the northwestern peak of Castle Hill (Vár-hegy) in Veszprém. It was created by József Ispánky in 1938.

Also known as the town of queen consorts, Veszprém is built on seven hills. Its historical and architectural heritage stretches back to the Hungarian Settlement and the town is the intellectual and economic centre of its region.
Veszprém lies on the borders of two geographical regions: the Balaton Uplands (Balaton-felvidék) and the Bakony Hills. The River Séd carved deep valleys into the terrain here, hence Veszprém's other name: 'the town built on seven hills' - each with its own name.
The town is also known as the town of queen consorts, which began with Gisella, St Stephen's wife. The establishment of Hungary's first and oldest cathedral is connected to her name. The bishops of Veszprém had the privilege of crowning the queen consorts, and they wore the office of the chancellery of queen consorts. The town nurtures fond memories of Gisella: the arts and science festival of the Gisella Days begin on her name day each year in May.
The castle was built in the 10th-11th centuries on one of the seven hills of Veszprém. The castle district later gained a Baroque character. Most sights, including excellent lookouts and important cultural venues, are clustered here.

King Stephen the Saint (I. István király, Szent István)(Esztergom, 967-977?-1038)

The first crowned king of the country, he led the conversion of pagan Magyars to Christianity. The son of Sarolta and Géza (prince ruler of Hungary and grand-grandson of Árpád, the ruler who settled the Magyar tribes in Hungary). He married Bavarian Princess Gizella around 996 and they probably had 5 children, though only Imre reached adulthood. István took power in 997 and according to tradition he was crowned king in the year 1000. His coronation was held with the approval of Emperor Otto III, and a crown was sent to Hungary by Pope Sylvester II.
As founder of the state, King Stephen was held in great respect throughout Hungarian history; he was canonised on 20th August 1083. St. Stephen's mummified hand closed to a fist (the 'Holy Right') is a national relic kept in St. Stephen's Basilica in Budapest.

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Additional Photos by George Rumpler (Budapestman) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 8900 W: 3 N: 20435] (82620)
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