National and historical symbols of Hungary

In this section you can find the crests of almost 2400 settlements of Hungary with notes. Find the starting letter of the settlement in the list and click if you want to see it.

The Coat-of-Arms of the Town of Balatonboglár [¤]
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Balatonboglár

(County Somogy)

Balatonboglár's coat-of-arms is a military shield erect party per cross gules and azure. The first field bears: gules, a leaved and vine-shooted bunch of grapes hanging from a stem couped, all or.

The second field bears: azure, the stylised front view of the town's Roman Catholic church (a listed building) argent.

The third field bears: azure, on a base wavy argent (one trough showing between two crests) a sailing boat reversed argent.

The fourth field bears: gules, on a mound vert a lion rampant queue fourché or, holding in the dexter forepaw a scimitar transfixing its own throat, and stretching the sinister forepaw in search for prey.

As proven by archeological data, this region has been inhabited uninterruptedly for six thousand years. Owing to Lake Balaton, the town boasts a Mediterranean atmosphere. The traditions of viticulture and the growing of fruit are rooted in ancient Pannonia.

During the Magyar conquest of Hungary the area got settled by the Bulcsú and the Bogát-Bő clans, then by the people of Chief Koppány. The town's name was first mentioned in 1211, in a document by King Andrew II, in the form of 'Villa Boclar'. From the early Middle Ages onward there was a ferry operating between Boglár and Zigethrew (today Révfülöp). During the Turkish occupation Boglár got depopulated.

It was György Festetics and István Széchenyi, the renowned personality of the Reform Age, who discovered the beauty of Lake Balaton and realised its economic potential. Their work was supported by the progressive politicians of the comitats; in the case of Boglár first of all by Pál Bárány, who had the Classical-style mansion built, and László Jankovich, whose family had acquired land here in 1773 and became the owner of the ferry as well. In 1846, László Jankovich offered the ferry port to be the landing place of the steamer Kisfaludy free of charge, and the villagers had the road built that led there.

After the Compromise of 1867 between Austria and Hungary the railway along the southern shore of Balaton was constructed and at Balatonboglár a station was built. The railway and the ferry were to become the basis of the bourgeois development of Boglár, which by the turn of the 20th century had become a regional centre of trade and industry. This period is evoked by the Balaton, a ship on display as a historic industrial monument at the port of Boglár. From the 1890s the settlement, which by then had adopted the features of a town, became a favourite resort of the well-to-do citizens of Budapest. In 1912 it was declared a spa. From the turn of the century Boglár's name became widely known due to the work of the landowner Gaston Gaal, a student and research fellow of the natural scientist Ottó Hermann, as well as his spiritual successor, the parson Béla Varga, who excelled himself in politics and public life. Together with their helpers, it was they who developed Boglár into an up-to-date settlement by modern standard.

The co-operation between the local landowners, artisans, merchants and the owners of holiday homes was based on the respect of civil, Christian and humanistic values. This made it possible for Boglár to be the shelter and the home of French and Polish refugees during World War II. It was here in the whole of Europe that a Polish secondary school was in operation. Relations are still maintained with the one-time Polish students, who regard themselves as ones 'coming from Boglár', as well as with their descendants. As a sign of gratitude, the French refugees put a memorial plaque on the wall of the house once owned by Márta Gaal, who supported them. The war did not spare Boglár either. The merchant families were taken to concentration camps and, as the front got nearer, the inhabitants were resettled. After the war the development of Boglár broke and Béla Varga, chairman of the National Assembly, was forced to emigrate.

The fact that the centre of one of the state farms organised on the nationalised land was established at Balatonboglár was a favourable event in the settlement's post-war development. It was here that the economic and research centre of the South Balaton wine-growing region came into being. With its modern, environmental-friendly technology, processing and sales policy, all matching European standards, the establishment hallmarked 'BB' has greatly contributed to the renewal of Hungarian viticulture. As a reward, in 1987 our town was awarded the title of 'International Town of Grape and Wine', which signalled international recognition. The new viticultural enterprises, which emerged in the town and in its environs during the latest decade, have added to the riches of this wine-growing region.

From the 1960s, domestic and then international tourism has witnessed considerable growth. The town has once again become a favourite resort. This was helped by the resolute development of the settlement with the supply of public utilities, which helped the opening of many shops, job creation, and the building of houses and holiday homes. Due to the open-mindedness of the inhabitants, in the 1970s the town became a place where modern, contemporary artists, who had to struggle for recognition, could exhibit their works of art. Also from that time onward, the settlement has become the host of regular events, such as the more and more popular festival programmes, sports and cultural events and open-air theatrical performances, all of which have made Balatonboglár renowned and famous. (The best-known of these events are the performances of the Kaposvár Theatre, the cross-Balaton swimming and the Boglár Vintage Festival.) On 1 January 1986 Balatonboglár was raised to the rank of town.

The future of Balatonboglár can be based on the keeping of traditional values, on tourism promoted by a safe environment, and on a well-developed agriculture. The main objectives of today are the development of the quality of services and a modern environmental management based on the protection of the treasures of Nature. In its effort to achieve these goals, the local authority is backed by a growing number of local organisations, foundations, creative communities, entrepreneurs and holiday home owners.

E-mail: balatonboglar@somogy.hu

Pictures:

1. The Polish school

2. The mansion

3. Vintage festival

4. The Red Chapel

5. A traditional house