A Magyar Himnusz ~ The Hungarian National Anthem

It is always interesting to watch the Olympics! I enjoy the opportunity to see some really skilled athletes in action from around the world as well as hear about their struggles and triumphs and a little about each country. I particularly like to hear the different national anthems.

When I was growing up, I regularly heard the Hungarian National Anthem at the Hungarian events we would attend. But, it wasn’t until much later that I looked into the lyrics a bit. It became a challenge for me to memorize the lyrics of the first verse so when I was at a Hungarian event I would be able to sing along when the anthem was sung. The lyrics were written by poet Ferenc Kölcsey in 1823, and its music was composed by romantic composer Ferenc Erkel in 1844.

As we have had conversations with 1st, 2nd, and 3rd generations American Hungarians around the USA, we found that many people simply don’t know the words or the translation. Hungarian is a bit complicated to learn and each family that settled outside of Hungary had to decide whether or not to teach their children how to read, speak, and write in Hungarian. If the family lived in a strong Hungarian community, it was certainly much easier to pass along the language. But not everyone had that convenience.

If you aren’t familiar with the anthem, listen to it and follow along with the words. You might even challenge yourself to memorize it! You can sing along with the video and practice. The first verse is below along with a translation. My Hungarian reading and comprehension skills aren’t quite ready to try to translate the first verse so I appreciate that others have done so. The translation into English helps me get a sense of the depth of this anthem. And, if you want to keep this all fresh in your mind, we do offer a lovely coffee mug with the words, in Hungarian, on the back side. It is a wonderful tribute to Hungarian heritage! CLICK HERE for more details and to purchase.

If all of this makes you curious about learning Hungarian, let us know! We offer Hungarian language classes as well as other opportunities that will help you connect with your Hungarian heritage in a variety of ways! Our goal is to help you deepen your connection to your Hungarian heritage!



Magyar Himnusz

(first verse)

by Ferenc Kölcsey

Isten áldd meg a magyart.
Jó kedvvel bőséggel,
Nyújts feléje védő kart
Ha küzd ellenséggel.
Bal sors, akit régen tép,
Hozz rá víg esztendőt, Megbűnhődte már e nép,
A múltat s jövendőt.

The music was composed by Ferenc Erkel.

Hungarian National Anthem (first verse)

Translation by Julianna C. Toth

Gracious God, bless the Magyar

With good cheer, prosperity,

In the ravages of war,

Shield them from adversity;

Whom from old ill fate has torn,

Bring us to a happy morn!

Longs have we atoned and mourn for past and years unborn!

I don’t know that wikipedia is always the most reliable source for information, but CLICK HERE to see all the verses of the Magyar Himnusz in Hungarian along with an English translation of each verse.

We love to help you discover, celebrate, and share Hungarian heritage! To receive the latest Magyar Marketing catalog, please call 1-800-786-7851 so we can get your name and mailing address and send one to you! CLICK HERE to check out the Magyar Marketing website!

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