Himnusz

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Himnusz
English: Anthem
Himnusz.jpg
Original sheet music for Himnusz.

National anthem of  Hungary
Also known as Isten, áldd meg a Magyart
English: God, bless the Hungarians
A magyar nép zivataros századaiból
English: From the stormy centuries of the Hungarian people
Lyrics Ferenc Kölcsey, 1823
Music Ferenc Erkel
Adopted 1844
Music sample

"Himnusz" (in English: Anthem, the word having the same origin as the English hymn from the Latin hymnus) is a musical poetic prayer beginning with the words Isten, áldd meg a magyart About this sound listen  (God, bless the Hungarians) that serves as the official national anthem of Hungary. It was adopted in 1844 and the first stanza is sung at official ceremonies. The words were written by Ferenc Kölcsey, a nationally renowned poet in 1823, and its currently official musical setting was composed by the romantic composer Ferenc Erkel, although other less-known musical versions exist. The poem bore the subtitle "A magyar nép zivataros századaiból" ("From the stormy centuries of the Hungarian people"); it is often argued that this subtitle – by emphasizing past rather than contemporary national troubles – was added expressly to enable the poem to pass Habsburg censorship. The full meaning of the poem's text is evident only to those well acquainted with Hungarian history.

The poem and song titled "Szózat" (in English Charge), which starts with the words Hazádnak rendületlenül légy híve, óh magyar (To your homeland be faithful steadfastly, O Hungarian) enjoys a social status nearly equal to that of "Himnusz", even though only "Himnusz" is mentioned in the Constitution of Hungary. Traditionally, Himnusz is sung at the beginning of ceremonies, and Szózat at the end (although the Himnusz, resembling a Protestant Chorale, is substantially easier to sing than the difficult rhythm of the Szózat, which is often only played from recording).

Recognition is also given to the Rákóczi March, a short wordless piece (composer unknown, but sometimes attributed to János Bihari) which is often used on state military occasions; and the poem Nemzeti dal written by Sándor Petőfi.

The public radio station Kossuth Rádió plays Himnusz at ten minutes past midnight each day at the close of transmissions in the AM band, as do the state TV channels at the end of the day's broadcasts. Himnusz is also traditionally played on Hungarian television at the stroke of midnight on New Year's Eve.

Another popular song is the Székely Himnusz (Szekler Anthem), an unofficial national anthem of the Hungarian-speaking Szeklers living in Eastern Transylvania (now part of Romania) and in the rest of the world.

The words of the Hungarian anthem are unusual in expressing a direct plea to God rather than proclaiming national pride, the norm for the genre. This reference to God meant that during the period of strongest communist rule in Hungary (1949–1956), the anthem was played but the words were never sung. Party Secretary Mátyás Rákosi even asked poet Gyula Illyés and composer Zoltán Kodály, two of the nation's most acclaimed artists at the time, to write a new, communist-themed national anthem. Both, however, refused. Following the collapse of the attempted Revolution of 1956, the new communist leader János Kádár tried unsuccessfully to replace Himnusz with Szózat as the national anthem[citation needed].

Lyrics[edit]

Two English versions are given below; both are free translations of the Hungarian words.

Hungarian Lyrics

Literal Translation

Poetic Translation

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!

O God, bless the nation of Hungary
With your grace and bounty
Extend over it your guarding arm
During strife with its enemies
Long torn by ill fate
Bring upon it a time of relief
This nation has suffered for all sins
Of the past and of the future!

O, my God, the Magyar bless
With Thy plenty and good cheer!
With Thine aid his just cause press,
Where his foes to fight appear.
Fate, who for so long did’st frown,
Bring him happy times and ways;
Atoning sorrow hath weighed down
Sins of past and future days.

Őseinket felhozád
Kárpát szent bércére,
Általad nyert szép hazát
Bendegúznak vére.
S merre zúgnak habjai
Tiszának, Dunának,
Árpád hős magzatjai
Felvirágozának.

You brought our ancestors up
Over the Carpathians' holy peaks
By You was won a beautiful homeland
For Bendeguz's sons
And wherever flow the rivers of
The Tisza and the Danube
Árpád our hero's descendants
Will root and bloom.

By Thy help our fathers gained
Kárpát’s proud and sacred height;
Here by Thee a home obtained
Heirs of Bendegúz, the knight.
Where’er Danube’s waters flow
And the streams of Tisza swell
Árpád’s children, Thou dost know,
Flourished and did prosper well.

Értünk Kunság mezein
Ért kalászt lengettél,
Tokaj szőlővesszein
Nektárt csepegtettél.
Zászlónk gyakran plántálád
Vad török sáncára,
S nyögte Mátyás bús hadát
Bécsnek büszke vára.

For us on the plains of the Kuns
You ripened the wheat
In the grape fields of Tokaj
You dripped sweet nectar
Our flag you often planted
On the wild Turk's earthworks
And under Mátyás' grave army whimpered
Vienna's "proud fort."

For us let the golden grain
Grow upon the fields of Kún,
And let nectar’s silver rain
Ripen grapes of Tokay soon.
Thou our flags hast planted o’er
Forts where once wild Turks held sway;
Proud Vienna suffered sore
From King Mátyásdark array.

Hajh, de bűneink miatt
Gyúlt harag kebledben,
S elsújtád villámidat
Dörgő fellegedben,
Most rabló mongol nyilát
Zúgattad felettünk,
Majd töröktől rabigát
Vállainkra vettünk.

Ah, but for our sins
Anger gathered in Your bosom
And You struck with Your lightning
From Your thundering clouds
Now the plundering Mongols' arrows
You swarmed over us
Then the Turks' slave yoke
We took upon our shoulders.

But, alas! for our misdeed,
Anger rose within Thy breast,
And Thy lightnings Thou did’st speed
From Thy thundering sky with zest.
Now the Mongol arrow flew
Over our devoted heads;
Or the Turkish yoke we knew,
Which a free-born nation dreads.

Hányszor zengett ajkain
Ozmán vad népének
Vert hadunk csonthalmain
Győzedelmi ének!
Hányszor támadt tenfiad
Szép hazám, kebledre,
S lettél magzatod miatt
Magzatod hamvedre!

How often came from the mouths
Of Osman's barbarian nation
Over the corpses of our defeated army
A victory song!
How often did your own son agress
My homeland, upon your breast,
And you became because of your own sons
Your own sons' funeral urn!

O, how often has the voice
Sounded of wild Osman’s hordes,
When in songs they did rejoice
O’er our heroes’ captured swords!
Yea, how often rose Thy sons,
My fair land, upon Thy sod,
And Thou gavest to these sons,
Tombs within the breast they trod!

Bújt az üldözött, s felé
Kard nyúlt barlangjában,
Szerte nézett s nem lelé
Honját a hazában,
Bércre hág és völgybe száll,
Bú s kétség mellette,
Vérözön lábainál,
S lángtenger fölette.

The fugitive hid, and towards him
The sword reached into his cave
Looking everywhere he could not find
His home in his homeland
Climbs the mountain, descends the valley
Sadness and despair his companions
Sea of blood beneath his feet
Ocean of flame above.

Though in caves pursued he lie,
Even then he fears attacks.
Coming forth the land to spy,
Even a home he finds he lacks.
Mountain, vale – go where he would,
Grief and sorrow all the same –
Underneath a sea of blood,
While above a sea of flame.

Vár állott, most kőhalom,
Kedv s öröm röpkedtek,
Halálhörgés, siralom
Zajlik már helyettek.
S ah, szabadság nem virúl
A holtnak véréből,
Kínzó rabság könnye hull
Árvák hő szeméből!

Castle stood, now a heap of stones
Happiness and joy fluttered,
Groans of death, weeping
Now sound in their place.
And Ah! Freedom does not bloom
From the blood of the dead,
Torturous slavery's tears fall
From the burning eyes of the orphans!

‘Neath the fort, a ruin now,
Joy and pleasure erst were found,
Only groans and sighs, I trow,
In its limits now abound.
But no freedom’s flowers return
From the spilt blood of the dead,
And the tears of slavery burn,
Which the eyes of orphans shed.

Szánd meg Isten a magyart
Kit vészek hányának,
Nyújts feléje védő kart
Tengerén kínjának.
Bal sors akit régen tép,
Hozz rá víg esztendőt,
Megbűnhődte már e nép
A múltat s jövendőt!

Written by: FERENC KÖLCSEY (1823)

Pity, O Lord, the Hungarians
Who are tossed by waves of danger
Extend over it your guarding arm
On the sea of its misery
Long torn by ill fate
Bring upon it a time of relief
They who have suffered for all sins
Of the past and of the future!

Translated by: LASZLO KOROSSY (2003)[1]

Pity, God, the Magyar, then,
Long by waves of danger tossed;
Help him by Thy strong hand when
He on grief’s sea may be lost.
Fate, who for so long did’st frown,
Bring him happy times and ways;
Atoning sorrow hath weighed down
All the sins of all his days.

Translated by: WILLIAM N. LOEW (1881)

Since Hungarian is a genderless language, references to "the Magyar" as "he" in the English translations are in fact directed to all Hungarians regardless of gender.

Himnusz sculpture[edit]

Front
Back

On May 7, 2006, a sculpture was inaugurated for Himnusz at Szarvas Square, Budakeszi, a small town close to Budapest. It was created by Mária V. Majzik, an artist with the Hungarian Heritage Award, depicting the full text of the poem in a circle, centered around a two metres high bronze figure of God, with 21 bronze bells in seven arches between eight pieces of stone, each four and a half metres high. The musical form of the poem can be played on the bells. The cost of its construction, 40 million forints (roughly 200,000 USD),[2] was collected through public subscription.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Magyar Himnusz
  2. ^ convert 40000000 HUF to USD - Google-Suche

External links[edit]