House of the Nation-The Hungarian Parliament


View of the Hungarian Parliament from Buda

The Hungarian Parliament Building is one of the oldest legislative buildings of Europe, dating back to the year of 1885.

Being the seat of National Assembly of Hungary, Országház, as it is named in hungarian, or in English, The House of the Nation, The Parliament is one of the main landmarks of Hungary .

Currently, it is thought to be the largest building in the country, and additionally, the tallest building in the capital, with its height of 96 m referring to the nation’s millenium (1896).

Seven years after Budapest formed from three distinct cities, the National Assembly of Hungary Diet demanded a representative Parliament Building to express the sovereignity of the nation through it.

The best way to achieve their aim was to set up an international competition. Finally, Imre Steindl emerged to be the victorious architect of the impozant building , with the completion of the project being finished in 1904.

The beauty of the Parliament lies on its Gothic Revival style. Symmetry is visible on the facades and on the central dome. The main facade is decorated with statues of Hungarian rulers, Transylvanian leaders and famous military people.

The dimension of the entire building measures 268 m length and 123 m width. Its interior includes 10 courtyards, 13 passenger and freight elevators, 27 gates, 29 staircases and 691 rooms ,including more than 200 offices.

Over the windows, pictures of coats, arms, kings and dukes can be seen. The main entrance starts with the stairs, located on the eastern side, bordered by two lions.

When entering the Parliament, visitors can walk up great ornamental stairs, see frescoes on the ceiling and pass by the bust of the creator, Imre Steindl, in a wall niche. Other statues include those of Árpád, István I and János Hunyadi.


The hexadecagonal interior of the Parliament

The hexadecagonal or the sixteen sided central hall is one of the most representative and famous parts of the building.Its wide chambers adjoins it as it follows: the Lower House and the Upper House.

All of the Parliament’s interior rooms are decorated with Renaissance and Baroque elements, in contrast with the exterior’s Gothic Revival style. The entire building is opened for tourists.


Székely flag on the Parliament Building

With aproximately one thousand people working consecutively for 13 years to finish this extended huge project, the local economy and industry boosted, as the principle of working primarily with Hungarian material and Hungarian craftsmen was followed all the way through.

The total cost was estimated to be around 18,5 million korona, the era’s currency, but it ended up at 38 million. Around 176 000 cords ground were moved, 40 million bricks were laid and more than half a million ornamental stones were carved.

The Hungarian Parliament, located on Kossuth Lajos Street in Budapest is of great significance both for the local citizens and tourists. With its Gothic, spectacular symmetry and graciousness, the building will always remind us of Hungary’s prestige.

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About the Author: Denise Nazelis

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