December 23, 2011

0081 HUNGARY (Budapest) - Saint Stephen's Basilica - part of Budapest, including the Banks of the Danube, the Buda Castle Quarter and Andrássy Avenue - Saint Stephen's Basilica (UNESCO WHS)

0081 Saint Stephen's Basilica in Budapest
in nowadays and at the beginning of the 20th century

Saint Stephen's Basilica (Szent István bazilika) is the most important church not only from Budapest, but from the entire Hungary. Completed in 1905 after 54 years of construction, according to the plans of Miklós Ybl, one of Europe's leading architects in the mid to late 19th century, basilica is and will remain the tallest building in Budapest, with 96m (as also Hungarian Parliament Building, the equality symbolizing that worldly and spiritual thinking have the same importance). I said that "is and will remain" the tallest, because the current regulations simply don't allow construction of buildings tallest than that.

The architectural style is Neoclassical, with a Greek cross ground plan, the façade being guarded by two very large bell towers. In the southern one is Hungary's biggest bell, weighing over 9 tonnes. But more important than all these is that in the reliquary of the basilica is the mummified right hand of the King Stephen I, the first King of Hungary (1000 or 1001-1038) and the one who converted Hungary into a western feudal state, completing the forced Christianization, begun by his father, Géza, Grand Prince of the Hungarians

Stephen I ended the Hungary's oscillation between the Pope and the Patriarch of Constantinople in favor of the first one, decision which will have major importance in the history of Europe in the next millennium. Born as Vayk, he was baptized by Saint Adalbert of Prague, receiving the name István (Stephen) in honour of the Saint Stephen, the first martyr of Christianity. Stephen I was canonized in 1083 by Pope Gregory VII as a saint of the Catholic Church (The East-West Schism took place in 1054), and in 2000 was canonized also by the Orthodox Church.

The Saint Stephen's Basilica is part of Budapest, including the Banks of the Danube, the Buda Castle Quarter and Andrássy Avenue, an UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987, about which I wrote here.

About the stamps
The stamps are the same on both cards. The first one is part of a very large series, Antique Furniture, consisting of several sets issued between 1999 and 2009, designed by Nagy Péter. This stamp belongs to the first set, issued in 1999 and reissued in 2001.


• Carved back chair from the XVII century (10 HUF)
• Armchair, 1915 (20 HUF)
• Armchair of Esterházy Pál, 1687-1725 (50 HUF)
• High back chair, 1820 (70 HUF)
• Sofa by Lajos Kozma, 1920 (100 HUF) - It's on the postcard 0081

• Wooden chair, 1838 (2 HUF)
• 19th Century Chair (3 HUF)
• 18th century chair from Dunapataj (9 HUF)
• 1850 Chair (26 HUF)
• 19th century chair with animal designs (29 HUF)
• Chair by Károly Nagy, 1935 (30 HUF)


• Chair by Géza Maróti, 1900 (4 HUF)
• Chair by Ödön Faragó, 1900 (5 HUF) - It's on the postcard 2756
• Chair by Márton Kovács, 1893 (6 HUF)
• Chair, 1840-50 (80 HUF)
• Chair by Lajos Kozma (90 HUF)


• Three-legged stool by János Vincze, 1910 (1 HUF)
• Chair from Tótkomlós, 1853 (7 HUF)
• 19th Century Chair (8 HUF)
• Armchair by Ignác Alpár, 1896 (40 HUF)
• Armchair by Ferenc Steindl, 1840 (60 HUF) - It's on the postcard 0818
• Settee by Sebestyén Vogel, 1810 (200 HUF) - It's on the postcard 0818

• Neogothic chair, 1850 (31 HUF)

• Antique chair, 1809 (33 HUF)
• Antique chair, 1900 (134 HUF)

• Wooden chair with carved back, 19th century (32 HUF)
• Armchair, 18th century (35 HUF)
• Armchair with carved back, 1920 (65 HUF)

• Antique chair, 1809 (52 HUF)
• Antique chair, 1893 (75 HUF)
• Antique chair, 1900 (212 HUF)


• Sofa, 18th century (300 HUF) - It's on the postcard 2756
• Rococo style sofa, 1880 (500 HUF)
• Vaszilij Chair by Marcel Breuer, 1925 (1000 HUF)

• Antique chair, 1900 (230 HUF)

• Chair from Tótkomlós, 1853 (225 HUF)

The second stamp, with the value of 120Ft, shows fruits and vegetables (Healthy Eating), and was issued in 2003.

Saint Stephen's Basilica - Wikipedia

Sender: Gabriel Szünder
Sent from Budapest (Hungary), on 29.11.2011
Photo: Somogyi-Toth Daniel


  1. Nice to see both together! I am always very happy to find "old" and "new" postcards of the same place. It isn't always easy though.

    A very Merry Christmas to you and yours. Have a lovely time.

  2. Yes, I liked the idea and I will repeat this way of presentation. :)