HUNGARY, John I Zapolya of Transylvania, denar, 1527 KT


HUNGARY, John I Zapolya of Transylvania, 1526-40, denar, 1527 KT, silver, XF

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Hungary is ancient Pannonia. The land was occupied by the Avars, then the Huns. The ancestors of modern Hungarians were Uralic nomads possibly related to the Huns who bothered the Romans, their language related to Turkish. When the Hungarians came to Pannonia they were called On Oghur, or “Ten Oghur tribes,” which, in reference to what seemed to contemporary observers as extraordinary cruelty, gave us the word “ogre.” The became Christians starting in the 9th century and developed an efficient bureaucracy that enabled them to prey upon their neighbors. After several centuries of playing in the European big leagues they got swallowed up by the Habsburgs, who kept them on a leash until the end of World War I.