Hungary celebrates Revolution Day every 15 March to remember the Hungarian Revolution of 1848.
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The revolution, which blossomed into a war for Hungarian independence, brought an end to the Habsburg rule. Its history reveals the complexity of the Empires that once ruled this part of Europe and also the power of outside military forces. In spite of all this power, Hungarians managed to overcome and free themselves from it. Revolution Day is now widely celebrated throughout the country.
The revolution in Hungary began on the 15 March 1848. It followed a number of uprisings across Europe. The famous journalist Lajos Kossuth came to the forefront of these efforts. A result of the revolution was a new and independent, democratic government in Hungary. This allowed for the election of the first Hungarian Prime Minister, Lajos Batthyány.
At the same time, Vienna was experiencing a revolution under the Habsburg Empire. Although the Empire accepted the demands of the revolution at first, it later defeated the Austrian revolution and moved into Hungary to do the same destruction to its newly-formed parliament. In this way, the revolution in Hungary transformed into a war between Hungary and Austria.
This war for independence continued until August of 1849. The Hungarians started strong and managed to secure independence completely from Austria, making Lajos Kossuth the Governor-President. Such an upset led to the Habsburgs seeking assistance from their ally in Russia: the Czar.
With the Russian army invading Hungary, the revolution was defeated. Kossuth resigned from his Governor-President position and fled, going to the United States for a short time. (Kosuth County, Iowa is even named after him for his efforts in the revolution.) The first Hungarian Prime Minister Lajos Batthyány was then executed at what is now known as Szabadság Square. Thirteen other leaders were then executed in Arad, Hungary.