Saint Stephen's Day (Bridge Day) in Hungary in 2019

Saint Stephen's Day (Bridge Day) in Hungary in 2019
  How long until Saint Stephen's Day (Bridge Day)?
This holiday next takes place in 33 days.
  Dates of Saint Stephen's Day (Bridge Day) in Hungary
2021Hungary Fri, Aug 20National Holiday
2020Aug 20, Aug 21
HungaryFri, Aug 21National Holiday (bridge day)
HungaryThu, Aug 20National Holiday
2019Aug 19, Aug 20
HungaryTue, Aug 20National Holiday
HungaryMon, Aug 19National Holiday (bridge day)
2018Hungary Mon, Aug 20National Holiday
2017Hungary Sun, Aug 20National Holiday
Public holiday as National Day falls on a Tuesday in 2016. Compensated by Saturday 5 March
  Which regions observe Saint Stephen's Day in 2019?
Hungary  HungaryAug 19National Holiday (bridge day)
Hungary  HungaryAug 20National Holiday

When is St. Stephen's Day?

St. Stephen's Day is celebrated in Hungary on August 20th each year. It is also known as Foundation Day and Constitution Day. This is the official state holiday of Hungary.

St. Stephen's Day may be called "the day of the new bread" as it is a tradition to cut bread on this day to celebrate the arrival of the harvest.

History of St. Stephen's Day

St. Stephen of Hungary (Szent István király) was the first king of Hungary and he laid the foundation of the state by converting the Magyar people to Christianity.

After a serious military loss in 955 AD, Hungarian tribal leaders decided to abandon their nomadic existence. Stephen, the Grand Prince of the Hungarians, realised that conversion to Christianity would be a way of strengthening the idea of Hungarian nationhood. He received a crown from Pope Sylvester II becoming Hungary's first king in 1000 AD, ruling until his death on 15 August 1038. The Holy Crown has survived the centuries since and it is now Hungary's most precious treasure.

Stephen became a saint on August 20th 1083. He became the patron saint of Hungary. As part of the canonization process, King Stephen's remains were dug up and legend has it that his right hand had not decayed at all. The hand was removed from the body and can still be seen in St. Stephen's Basilica in Budapest.

Until 1687, August 20th was St. Stephens feast day and thus became Hungary's national day, even after the feast day itself has switched around in the calendar a few times. In 1945 Communist leaders prohibited celebrations due to its religious nature and in 1950 it was changed to Constitution Day. It was reinstated as a celebration of St. Stephen in 1990 by the Hungarian Parliament.

How is St. Stephen's Day celebrated?

The highlight of the St. Stephen's Day celebration is a massive fireworks display on the bank of the Danube in the evening.

As this day is a national holiday, all stores, shops and supermarkets will be closed.

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