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Hungary, History

death of Arpad, Pope Sylvester, Avars, Magyars, Moravians

The region that now comprises Hungary was once part of the ancient Roman province of Pannonia. Situated on the periphery of the Roman Empire, the region was among the first to fall to the Germanic tribes that began to seize the Roman dominions in the closing years of the 2nd century ad. The Germanic tribes were later driven from the region by the Huns. After the death of Attila the Hun, the Germans reoccupied the area, only to be expelled again, in the 5th century, by the Avars, an Asian people. With the decline of Avar power during the 8th century, the Moravians, a Slavic tribe, seized the northern and eastern portions of the region and, between 791 and 797, Charlemagne, king of the Franks, added the remainder of the region to his domains.

A century later, in 895 or 896, the Magyars, a Finno-Ugric tribe, seized control of Pannonia. Under the leadership of their legendary chieftain Arpad, the invaders conquered Moravia, raided the Italian Peninsula, and made incursions into Germany. The Magyars ranged over central Europe for more than half a century after the death of Arpad in 907, and in 955 they devastated Burgundy. Later in 955 they were defeated by Holy Roman Emperor Otto I, on the Lech River. After this defeat, the Magyars maintained friendlier relations with the Holy Roman Empire, with the result that Christianity and Western culture began to penetrate Hungary. Duke Geza was converted to Christianity in 975. His son Stephen I, the founder of the Arpad dynasty, was granted formal recognition as king of Hungary by Pope Sylvester II in 1001 or 1002.

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death of Arpad, Pope Sylvester, Avars, Magyars, Moravians, son Stephen, Germanic tribes, Italian Peninsula, Holy Roman Empire, Huns, Charlemagne, Asian people, Moravia, incursions, Roman Empire, king of Hungary, invaders, periphery, Franks, Western culture, central Europe, Burgundy, Christianity, Hungary, domains, Germans, king, defeat, century, result, founder, remainder, Germany, leadership, region, area


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