List of Hungarian Jews

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This is a list of Hungarian Jews. There has been a Jewish presence in today's Hungary since Roman times (bar a brief expulsion during the Black Death), long before the actual Hungarian nation. Jews fared particularly well under the Ottoman Empire, and after emancipation in 1867. At its height, the Jewish population of historical Hungary numbered more than 900,000, but the Holocaust and emigration, especially during the 1956 Hungarian Revolution, has reduced that to around 100,000, most of whom live in Budapest and its suburbs.

This is a list of anyone who could be reliably described as "Hungarian" and is of significant Jewish heritage (ethnic or religious). See List of Hungarian Americans for descendents of Hungarian émigrés born in America, a significant number of whom are of Jewish ancestry.

The names are presented in the Western European convention of the given name preceding the family name, whereas in Hungary, the reverse is true, as in most Asian cultures.

Historical figures[edit]

Religious figures[edit]

See Hungarian-Jewish Religious Figures

Inventors and scientists[edit]

Nobel Prize winners[edit]

Seven out of the ten Nobel Prize winners who were born in Hungary were Jewish. This number does not include Robert Bárány, who was born in Vienna, John Polanyi, who was born in Berlin, Milton Friedman, who was born in Brooklyn, while Elie Wiesel was born in Sighet, belonging to Romania after the First World War. Avram Hershko was born in Karcag, Hungary, while the remaining six Nobel Prize winners on the list were born in Budapest.


  • ** His parents were born in Hungary

Physicists[edit]

Social scientists[edit]

Olympic gold medalists at the Summer Games[edit]

Period 1896-1912 1924-1936 1948-1956 1960-1972 1976-1992 (1984 excluded) 1996-2008
# of Olympics 5 4 3 4 4 4
Total Golds 442 482 440 684 903 1172
Hungarian Golds 11 22 35 32 33 26
Hungarian/total World 2.49% 4.56% 7.95% 4.68% 3.65% 2.22%
Hungarian Individual Gold 9 17 26 22 27 16
Hungarian Jewish Individual 5 3 6 4 0 0
Jewish/total individual Hungarian 55.56% 17.65% 23.08% 18.18% 0% 0%
Jews in Gold Teams 57.14% = 8/14 28.21%= 11/39
Jews in population 5.0% (1910) 5.12% (1930) 1.45% (1949) 0.13% (2001)

Before the Holocaust[edit]

Hungarian Jews, while comprising some 5% of the population of Hungary, won 8 individual gold medals for Hungary out of 26 (30.8%) in the Olympic sports events between 1896 and 1936. In each of the 7 gold winning teams, there were Hungarian Jews making up 35.8% of the teams (19 out of 53 team members).

1896[edit]

  • Alfred Hajós-Guttman (2) swimming, 100-meter freestyle, 1,500-meter freestyle

1906[edit]

  • Henrik Hajós-Guttman, swimming, 800-meter freestyle relay

1908[edit]

  • Dezső Földes, fencing, team saber
  • Dr.Jenő Fuchs (2), fencing, individual saber, team saber
  • Dr. Oszkár Gerde, fencing, team saber
  • Lajos Werkner, fencing, team saber
  • Richard Weisz, Greco-Roman wrestling, heavyweight

1912[edit]

  • Dezső Földes, fencing, team saber
  • Dr. Jenő Fuchs (2), fencing, individual saber, team saber
  • Dr. Oszkár Gerde, fencing, team saber
  • Lajos Werkner, fencing, team saber

1924[edit]

  • Alfred Hajós, Olympic art competition, architecture

1928[edit]

  • János Garay, fencing, team saber
  • Dr. Sándor Gombos, fencing, team saber
  • Attila Petschauer, fencing, team saber
  • Dr. Ferenc Mező, Olympic art competition, epic works

1932[edit]

  • István Barta, water polo
  • György Brody, water polo
  • Miklós Sárkány, water polo
  • Endre Kabos, fencing, team saber
  • Attila Petschauer, fencing, team saber

1936[edit]

  • György Bródy, water polo
  • Miklos Sárkány, water polo
  • Endre Kabos (2), fencing, individual saber, team saber
  • Ilona Elek, individual foil
  • Károly Kárpáti, freestyle wrestling, lightweight

After the Holocaust, 1948-1972[edit]

After the Holocaust, less than 1% of the population of Hungary remained of Jewish heritage. In individual sports events, Hungary won 48 gold medals between 1948 and 1972. Sportsmen and mainly sportswomen of Jewish extraction won 10 gold medals (20.8%). Hungarian Jewish women won 7 gold medals out of the 15 individual gold medals won by Hungarian women. In the 19 gold medal winning teams for Hungary, 9 had Jewish members.

There are no known Hungarian Jewish gold medalist since 1976. Overall, Hungarian Jews won 15.4% of the 117 individual gold medals of Hungary, and had part in at least 16 out of the 42 gold medals in team events.

1948[edit]

  • Ilona Elek, individual foil

1952[edit]

  • Robert Antal, water polo
  • Sándor Gellér, soccer
  • Ágnes Keleti, gymnastics, floor exercises
  • Éva Székely, swimming, 200-meter breaststroke

1956[edit]

  • Ágnes Keleti (4)
    • gymnastics, asymmetrical bars, floor exercises, balance beam,
    • team exercise with portable apparatus
  • Aliz Kertész, gymnastics, team exercise with portable apparatus
  • László Fábián, kayak pairs, 10,000-meters

1960[edit]

  • Gyula Török, boxing, flyweight

1964[edit]

  • Tamás Gábor, fencing, team épée
  • Ildikó Rejtő (2), fencing, individual and team foil
  • Árpád Orbán, soccer

1968[edit]

  • Mihály Hesz, kayak, K1 1000m

1972[edit]

  • Gyorgy Gedó, boxing, light flyweight

Mathematicians[edit]

Chess players[edit]

Psychoanalysts[edit]

Historians[edit]

Films and stage[edit]

Actors[edit]

Conductors[edit]

Composers[edit]

Performers of music[edit]

Musicians[edit]

Writers[edit]

Artists[edit]

Business[edit]

Industrialists and bankers[edit]

  • Lipót Aschner, Tungsram - incandescent lamps
  • Móricz Fischer, china-factory in Herend in 1839
  • Leó Goldberger, textile
  • Manfred Weisz, heavy industry
  • Leó Lánczy
  • Jenő Vida
  • Ferenc Chorin
  • Wolfner
  • Mauthner
  • Fülöp Weisz
  • Kornfeld
  • Kohner
  • Korányi
  • Ullman

Families ennobled between 1874 and 1918 (mainly industrialists)[edit]

  • Biedermann – 1902
  • Dirsztay – 1905
  • Groedl – 1900
  • Gutmann – 1905
  • Harkányi – 1904
  • Hatvany – 1917
  • Hatvany-Deutsch – 1895
  • Hazai – 1912
  • Herczel – 1912
  • Herzog – 1904
  • Kohner – 1904
  • Korányi – 1912
  • Kornfeld – 1908
  • Königswarter – 1897
  • Kuffner – 1904
  • Lévay – 1897
  • Madarassy-Beck – 1906
  • Nauman – 1906
  • Ohrenstein – 1913
  • Orosdy – 1905
  • Posner Karl
  • Schosberger – 1890
  • Tornyai-Schosberger – 1905
  • Ulmann – 1918
  • Weiss – 1918
  • Wodianer – 1874
  • Wolfner – 1918[41]

Sports[edit]

Boxing[edit]

Canoeing[edit]

  • László Fábián, sprint canoer, Olympic champion (K-2 10,000 meter), 4x world champion (3x K-2 10,000 meter and 1x K-4 10,000 meter) and one silver (K-4 10,000 meter)[42]
  • Imre Farkas, sprint canoer, 2x Olympic bronze (C-2 1,000 and 10,000 meter)[42]
  • Klára Fried-Bánfalvi, sprint canoer, Olympic bronze (K-2 500 m), world champion (K-2 500 m)[43]
  • Anna Pfeffer, sprint canoer, Olympic 2x silver (K-2 500 m), bronze (K-1 500 m); world champion (K-2 500 m), silver (K-4 500 m), 2x bronze (K-2 500)[44]

Fencing[edit]

Figure skating[edit]

Gymnastics[edit]

  • Samu Fóti, Olympic silver (team combined exercises)
  • Imre Gellért, Olympic silver (team combined exercises)
  • Ágnes Keleti, 5x Olympic champion (2x floor exercises, asymmetrical bars, floor exercises, balance beam, team exercise with portable apparatus), 3x silver (2x team combined exercises, individual combined exercises), 2x bronze (asymmetrical bars, team exercises with portable apparatus), International Gymnastics Hall of Fame[48]
  • Alice Kertész, Olympic champion (team, portable apparatus), silver (team); world silver (team)[49]

Soccer (association football)[edit]

  • Gyula Bíró, midfielder/forward (national team)[47][50]
  • Alfréd Brüll first owner of MTK Budapest FC
  • Sándor Geller, goalkeeper, Olympic champion
  • Béla Guttmann, midfielder, national team player & international coach
  • Gyula Mándi, half back (player & coach of Hungarian and Israeli national teams) and manager
  • Árpád Orbán, Olympic champion
  • Peter_Fuzes, Born in Hungary. Soccer goalkeeper for Sydney Hakoah club and Australia, Maccabi Hall of Fame 2003. Played 1st grade 1964 till 1976; International career From 1966 to 1972, against Scotland 1967, Greece 1969, Israel 1969 & 1972. Played against various European club sides including AS ROMA 1966, Manchester United at the time of Bobby Charlton & Dennis Law.

Swimming[edit]

  • Andrea Gyarmati, Olympic silver (100-m backstroke) and bronze (100-m butterfly); world championships bronze (200-m backstroke), International Swimming Hall of Fame[51]
  • Alfréd Hajós (born "Arnold Guttmann"), 3x Olympic champion (100-m freestyle, 800-m freestyle relay, 1,500-m freestyle), International Swimming Hall of Fame[48]
  • Michael "Miki" Halika, Israel, 200-m butterfly, 200- and 400-m individual medley
  • József Munk, Olympic silver (4x200-m freestyle relay)
  • Rebecca Soni, her grandfather was born in Nagyvárad (now Oradea)
  • Mark Spitz, his great grandfather (Nathan) was born in Hungary
  • László Szabados, Olympic bronze (4x200-m freestyle relay)
  • András Székely, Olympic silver (200-m breaststroke) and bronze (4x200-m freestyle relay); died in a Nazi concentration camp
  • Éva Székely, Olympic champion & silver (200-m breaststroke); International Swimming Hall of Fame; mother of Andrea Gyarmati[51]
  • Judit Temes, Olympic champion (4×100-m freestyle), bronze (100-m freestyle)[52]
  • Imre Zachár, Olympic silver (4x200-m freestyle relay)

Table tennis[edit]

Tennis[edit]

Track and field[edit]

Water polo[edit]

Wrestling[edit]

  • Károly Kárpáti (also "Károly Kellner"), Olympic champion (freestyle lightweight), silver

Other sports[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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General references[edit]

External links[edit]