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 Village of Pálfa
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(The County of Tolna)

The simple shield symbolises 4 essential main motifs.

In the horizontal 1/4 part of the shield in field azure the Sió and Sárvíz argent are borne, symbolising the two watershed areas next to the village.

The lower 3/4 part of the shield is divided by an arched line, and upper field is wedged into them.

In the filed dexter argent a tree vert – symbolises the name-giver – Paul’s tree (“Pálfalva, Pálfa”) – and the historical development of he village.

In the field sinister on base argent a bunch of grapes is borne, symbolising wine culture connecting the village to Öreghegy. In its lower third on base azure with pattern argent the symbols of the temples of the main denominations (Catholic, Calvinist, Evangelic) are present.

All the contours in the coat-of-arms, the meeting points of colours and figures are emphasised by lines sable.

About the village of Pálfa:

The Village of Pálfa is situated in the northern part of the County of Tolna, on the right bank of Channel Sió. The settlement borders with Simontornya on the north, wood and hills on the south-west. The closest train station is Vajta, 3 kilometres from the village. The village can be accessed from the direction of Vajta from main road 63.

About the history of the settlement:

The ancient settlers settled along river Duna, Sió, Sárvíz and Kapos. “Pálfa was the site of human activities even in the Stone Age.” “Traces of prehistoric life found in Felsősziget, Nagy-, Kisdombos and Zsidódomb are from the Neolithic period.”

Traces of human life in the area are proved by the findings from the Bronze Age, Roman period and late Iron Age found in the fields of the village and preserved in the museum of the County of Tolna. Findings from around the age of the great migration were not found.

During the Hungarian Conquest the majority of the countries of Fejér and Tolna became the possession of the Árpád family. The first name of Pálfa was Pálfalva, from 1580 for a short period it was called Nagy-Pálfalva, then again the village was known as Pálfalva. Villages with the compounds “falva”, “laka” and “háza” were formed in the 13th century when the feudal possessions formed and the primitive society ceased to exist. The name of Pálfalva also may have been formed in the 13th century. The contemporary documents prove that in the neighbourhood of the village of Pálfalva and Apor, along the old Sió Pechenegs lived, so it can be assumed that these two villages were also inhabited by Pechenegs. According to a letter dated 1241 the landowner of the village was master Marius.

In 1543 the village fell under Turkish rule. According to records from 1563 both Apor and Pálfalva had 8 houses, while in 1571 Apor had 8 and Pálfalva 18 houses. Durin the Turkish rule in the district of Simontornya there were 74 villages. Pálfalva was also among them. The Serbians (Rác) who came with the Turks occupied many abandoned villages. In this way Alegres became the property of the Serbians (Rác) that is called Rácegres since then. Rácegres had 15 houses in 1563 and 24 in 1571. The old village of Rácegres is not the same as the today Felső- and Alsórácegres (Upper and Lower Rácegres). The old Alegres (Rácegres) was situated on the right bank of Sió, north-west of the bridge of Rácegres, where the foundation of the old Roman style church of Rácegres can be found. The Hungarian population did not like the settling Serbians. The surrendered population started to make frineds with the Turks. After the expulsion of the Turks, according to the census, Pálfalva was considered an abandoned village with the remark that its 8 inhabitants live in Sziget, in huts.

The first name of the village (Pálfalva) is often spoken about in connection with the Apor clan. Considering that Pál is among the family members of the Apor clan, it can be assumed that the name-giver of Pálfalva was a member of the Apor family. The village has the name “Pálfa” since 1719. According to a tradition at the east end of Kossuth Lajos street (Old street) on the plot of István V. Szabó, a man called Pál used to live. In front of his house a big acacia tree used to stand, that could be seen from a distance and served as a guide for those who came by boat from the direction of Cece. Coming to Pálfa it became a common saying: “Head for the tree of Pál!” Maybe it is more probable that villages ending in “falva” changed it to “fa”.

Pálfa was re-established with 6 serf and 2 villain families in 1719 in the place of Pálfalva. The population of the village increased not only naturally but also with settlers who came from the counties of Veszprém and Komárom because of religious persecution. The first dwellers were Calvinists. The landowner of the time allowed free practice of religion. Later Evangelics and Catholics settled as well. From the register of birth of the Calvinist church it can be concluded that the nobles who lived in the village were squireens.

The estate of Appony

Documents prove that the people of Appony are directly descended from Ivánka, son of Zegg. The name of the Appony family comes from the Castle of Apony in the County of Pozsony in 1404. The first Apponyi in the County of Tolna was Lázár Apponyi, the landowner of Bátaapáti, founder of the oldest branch of the Apponyi family. In 1739 he granted the earl's rank. His son, György is the first Apponyi who is the owner of the estates of Hőgyész and Pálfa. This estate is not tenure but was bought by the family. The main profession on the big estates was sheep-breeding where stranger – mainly Saxon – shepherds, so-called “számadó” shepherds (head shepherds) worked. The manor provided home for the shepherds, and pasture for the animals in exchange of the yearly progeny. The newcomers were called “számadók” (accountants), that is where the name “számadó juhász” (head shepherd) comes from (Gyula Illyés).

The manor kept a great number of staff for the leading and maintaining of the estate. The landowner rarely visited the manor. On these occasions he used the many-roomed building in Pálfa puszta, in the site of the today new estate, situated east and north-west of the castle. In the Apponyi family György was the oldest, after the death of Antal his 3 sons György, József and Antal. Károly, the son of György, became his heir who inherited the land of Pálfa from his uncle. Rácegres became the property of Rudolf Apponyi, landowner in Lengyel at this time. Géza, the son of Károly bore the title of Lord Lieutenant of the County of Tolna for years. To his estates he bought Alsó- and Felsőrácegres. Sándor Apponyi was an outstanding figure of scientific life and he did a lot for archaeology. His main work is the collection of Hungaricas, entitled: Foreign Prints Concerning the 15th-18th century Hungary. After the death of Géza Apponyi his son, Károly inherited the estate of Pálfa in 1927. He built the Castle of Pálfa in 1924-28 claiming that the fields of Pálfa are good riding grounds. He died in Pálfa in 1959 and was also buried here. He was the last landowner of the estate of Appony. He played an important role in the founding of the settlement. He built the late Baroque style Catholic Church and the village school in Rácegres puszta where Gyula Illyés and Ervin Lázár studied. He bore an artesian well for the village to prevent typhoid fever, not to mention the library that he gave to the museum.

The building up of the village

The first resettlement started in 1719 in Kossuth Lajos Street (Öreg street). Most of the houses were rebuilt here with the exception of 1-2 houses eg.:Bárdos-house, Porteleki-house. At the time of the Kossuth Street the settling of the Evangelics to the Lenin Street started. Their church was also built here (today Fő Street). The today Arany János Street started in the early 1820s, the increase of the population made it necessary (7-8 children in a family). The Hunyadi Close also started to build up at this time. The Zrínyi Street (Putrom) was only one house in the early 1800s, the Pásztorház of the village was built in 1772. This was the oldest house of the village that the dwellers can remember. Today a new building is found in this place. The building up of the Rákóczi Street with the exception of 1-2 houses started in 1840. The Rákóczi Street started in 1939 and at the same time the Petőfi Street as well. Only 7 houses were found on this street that is why the street was known as “Hétház” (“Sevenhouses”). The west side of Petőfi Street was built later. The Wesselényi Street started in 1840, almost at the same time as Zrínyi Street. Teleki Street started in 1870 with 4 houses (Tödő, Szőke, Horváth, Hordó). The west side of the street was built from 1926 to 1943. Deák Street was built in 1880, the west side of Damjanich Street and Petőfi Street in the 1900s. The dates of building are preserved on main girder beams.