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Mundzuk was a Hunnic chieftain, brother of the Hunnic rulers Octar and Rugila, and father of Bleda and Atilla. Jordanes in Getica recounts "For this Attila was the son of Mundzucus, whose brothers were Octar and Ruas, who were supposed to have been kings before Attila, although not altogether of the same [territories] as he".[1]


The name is recorded as Mundzucus by Jordanes, Mundiucus by Cassiodorus, Μουνδίουχος (Moundioukhos) by Priscus, and Μουνδίου (Moundiou) by Theophanes of Byzantium.[2][3] In Vulgar Latin d before i and e, followed by a vowel, became dz.[2][4] Gyula Németh and Rásonyi László rightly saw the name as transcription of Turkic munčuq, munʒuq, minʒaq, bunčuq, bonʒuq, mončuq, with two interconnected meanings of "jewel, pearl, bead" and "flag".[5][4] It has Altaic religious and royal symbolism, as a pearl called munčuq represented the sun and the moon, and the gem was used as a finial on the imperial flagpole.[6]

Same etymology, in abbreviated form, had Gepids general Mundus (Μοΰνδο-, Mundo).[7]


Known as Bendegúz in Hungarian,[8] he appears in Hungary's national anthem as an ancestor of the Hungarians.[9]The name is also present in Croatian, forming the surname Mandzukic.


  1. ^ Maenchen-Helfen 1973, p. 81.
  2. ^ a b Maenchen-Helfen 1973, p. 409.
  3. ^ Pritsak 1982, p. 438.
  4. ^ a b Pritsak 1982, p. 439.
  5. ^ Maenchen-Helfen 1973, p. 410–411.
  6. ^ Pritsak 1982, p. 440.
  7. ^ Pritsak 1982, p. 453.
  8. ^ János Arany (1936). The Death of King Buda: A Hungarian Epic Poem. Benjamin Franklin Bibliophile Society. p. 129. 
  9. ^ Hippokratis Kiaris (2012). Genes, Polymorphisms, and the Making of Societies: How Genetic Behavioral Traits Influence Human Cultures. Universal-Publishers. p. 43. ISBN 978-1-61233-093-8.