Pest, Hungary

Coordinates: 47°30′N 19°6′E / 47.500°N 19.100°E / 47.500; 19.100
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Buda and Pest connected by Széchenyi Chain Bridge
View of the riverfront of Pest

Pest (Hungarian pronunciation: [ˈpɛʃt]) is the eastern, mostly flat part of Budapest, Hungary, comprising about two-thirds of the city's territory. It is separated from Buda and Óbuda, the western parts of Budapest, by the Danube River. Among its most notable sights are the Inner City, the Hungarian Parliament Building, Heroes' Square and Andrássy Avenue.

In colloquial Hungarian, "Pest" is often used for the whole capital of Budapest. The three parts of Budapest (Pest, Buda, Óbuda) united in 1873.


According to Ptolemy the settlement was called Pession in ancient times (Contra-Aquincum).[citation needed] Alternatively, the name Pest may have come from a Slavic word meaning "furnace", "oven" (Bulgarian пещ [ˈpɛʃt]; Serbian пећ/peć; Croatian peć), related to the word пещера (meaning "cave"), probably with reference to a local cave where fire burned.[1] The spelling Pesth was occasionally used in English, even as late as the early 20th century,[2] although it is now considered archaic.


Flag of Pest before 1873[3]
Historical coat of arms of Pest, used between 1703 and 1873[3]
Buda and Pest view from 1686

Pest was originally founded as a Celtic settlement, then a fortified camp established by the Romans (Contra-Aquincum) across the river from their military border camp at Aquincum. Remains of the original Roman camp can still be seen at Március 15. tér.

During the Middle Ages, Pest was an independent city separate from Buda/Ofen, which became an important economic center during the 11th–13th centuries. The first written mention dates back to 1148.

Pest was destroyed in 1241 Mongol invasion of Hungary, but was rebuilt shortly thereafter.

Demographically, in the 15th century Pest was mostly Hungarian, while Buda across the Danube had a German-majority population.[4]

A map of Pest in 1758, published in 1830. Outside the city wall ran a country road, mirrored by today's Kiskörút completed in 1880, which forms a circular arc between Deák Ferenc tér and Fővám tér.

In 1838 Pest was flooded by the Danube; parts of the city were under as much as eight feet of water, and the flood destroyed or seriously damaged three-fourths of the city's buildings.[5] In 1849 the first suspension bridge, the Széchenyi Chain Bridge, was constructed across the Danube connecting Pest with Buda. Subsequently, in 1873, the two cities were unified with Óbuda to become Budapest.

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Adrian Room (2006). Placenames of the World. McFarland & Company. p. 70. ISBN 0-7864-2248-3.
  2. ^ "Pesth (part of modern-day Budapest), Hungary".
  3. ^ a b Nyerges, András, ed. (1998). Pest-Buda, Budapest szimbólumai [Budapest arms & colours: throughout the centuries]. Budapest: Budapest Főváros Levéltára. p. 2.
  4. ^ "Budapest". A Pallas Nagy Lexikona (in Hungarian). Retrieved 2009-11-03.
  5. ^ Nemes, Robert (2005). The Once and Future Budapest. DeKalb, Ill.: Northern Illinois University Press. p. 107. ISBN 0-87580-337-7.

Further reading[edit]

  • Beksics, Gusztáv: Magyarosodás és magyarositás. Különös tekintettel városainkra. Budapest, 1883

External links[edit]

47°30′N 19°6′E / 47.500°N 19.100°E / 47.500; 19.100