Monday, March 17, 2014

A Hungarian national hero

"Father of Hungarian Democracy, Hungarian Statesman, Freedom Fighter, 1848–1849."

Lajos Kossuth de Udvard et Kossuthfalva (1802 – 1894) was a Hungarian lawyer, journalist, politician and Regent-President of the Kingdom of Hungary during the revolution of 1848–49. He was widely honored during his lifetime after the failed Revolution of 1848, including in the United States and the United Kingdom. as a freedom fighter and supporter of democracy in Europe. On March 15 of every year, Hungarians remember Lajos Kossuth as a Hungarian national hero during the national holiday. The March 15 holiday is one of the most important national holidays in Hungary.

Lajos Kossuth was a lawyer with radical liberal political views. He was constantly in trouble with the authorities for his political views. In 1837, Kossuth was imprisoned for publishing attacks on the government. The Austrians had military troops stationed in Hungary and had a puppet government in power in Hungary. The Hapsburgs were a conservative authority that were despised by a majority of Hungarians. In the mid-1800s, liberal movements were sweeping Europe.

After he was released from prison in 1840, Lajos Kossuth became editor of the Pesti Hirlap in Budapest. He would eventually get into political life and was elected to the Hungarian Diet. Kossuth became the leader of the extreme liberals and after the French Revolution of 1848, demanded an independent government for Hungary. The liberal movements in western Europe at the time would influence Kossuth.

When the Revolution of 1848 broke out, Lajos Kossuth became the provisional governor of Hungary. In 1849, Kossuth declared Hungary's independence with himself as president of Hungary. Hungarian forces managed to repulse the Austrian Army but the Kossuth regime collapsed when Russia joined in on the war against Hungary.

Kossuth fled to Turkey where he was made a prisoner until being released in September, 1851. Later that year he moved to the United States where he joined a group of Hungarian political refugees who had established the community of New Buda in the United States. Lajos Kossuth would also live in England and Italy before his death in 1894.

Lajos Kossuth is a Hungarian patriot who is still remembered by Hungarians to this very day. His patriotic speeches and leadership will never be forgotten. Kossuth is a special figure in Hungarian history as one who stood up to foreign intervention and domination in Hungary.