The Castle of Eger
The history of the Castle of Eger reaches back to the days of King St. Stephen, who established a diocese in Eger (in northern Hungary). The stone castle was built at the order of the bishop of Eger following the Mongol invasion As a part of the system of strongholds, the Castle of Eger played a key role in the defence of Hungary.
The most famous moment in its thousand-year history came with the siege of 1552, when commander István Dobó successfully led 2,000 defenders against an Ottoman army more than thirty times their number, as famously celebrated by the bard Sebestyén Tinódi Lantos and described in Géza Gárdonyi’s classic novel “Eclipse of the Crescent Moon”.
The Castle of Eger was divided by a wall into the outer and inner castles. The latter was the oldest and most important part of the castle, with the city’s oldest building, the one-story Bishop’s Palace. The castle is also the site of the baptismal chapel dating from St. Stephen’s day, and the ruins of a 12th century Romanesque cathedral.
With this coin in 2018 the Magyar Nemzeti Bank continues its “Hungarian Castles” series launched in 2004. (Previous coins from this series: 2004: Castle of Visegrád, 2005: Castle of Diósgyőr, 2006: Castle of Munkács, 2007: Castle of Gyula, 2008: Castle of Siklós, 2015: Castle of Kőszeg, 2016: Castle of Szigetvár)
The front of the coin features a profile portrait of István Dobó in armour, with the legend DOBÓ ISTVÁN around the top. To the right of Dobó, there is a grape leaf, referring to his vineyards and Eger’s tradition of wine-making.
The central motif on the back of the coin is a depiction of the south side of the Castle, with the Hippolit Tower, the Gergely bastion and part of the castle wall. It bears the legend “A FALAK EREJE NEM A KŐBEN VAN, HANEM A VÉDŐK LELKÉBEN” (The strength of the walls is not the stone, but the spirit of the defenders), referring to captain István Dobó’s patriotic exhortation to embolden his soldiers prior to the siege in Gárdonyi’s novel. This commemorative coin was designed by the sculptor László Szunyogh, DLA.
Denomination: 10,000 Forint
Total weight: 31.46 g
Issue limit: 7,000 pcs
Date of issue: June 22, 2018
Designer: László SZUNYOGH DLA sculptor