Apáczai Csere, János (1625–59)

Protestant theologian and teacher in Transylvania. In his work Magyar encyclopedia (Hungarian encyclopedia), written in Utrecht, he gave a scholarly summary of the basic knowledge of his age. In order to create and promote a high-level national culture he taught at first at Gyulafehérvár (today's Alba Iulia), then at Kolozsvár (Cluj). Orthodox Calvinism made, however, his efforts fruitless.

Apafi, Mihály I (1632–90)

Prince of Transylvania from 1661. He gave shelter to Imre Thököly fleeing to Transylvania and continued to support him later also. His aim was to join Transylvania to the Holy League, organized to expel the Turks, as an independent state. Antonio Caraffa put him to prison in the Castle of Fogaras (Făgăraş) in 1687 and forced him to recognize Habsburg supremacy.

Apafi, Mihály II (1676–1713)

Prince of Transylvania, son of Mihály I. He was elected prince still in his father's lifetime but Emperor Leopold I did not give his sanction to it and had him taken to Vienna in 1693.

Apor, Péter, Baron (1676–1752)

Transylvanian aristocrat, historian, and poet. His principal work is the Metamorphosis Transylvaniae (1736) in which he recorded the old customs of Transylvania.

Barcsai, Ákos (1610–1661)

Prince of Transylvania between 1658 and 1660. Governor in 1658, at the time of the Polish campaign of György Rákóczi II, launched without the approval of the Turks. The diet elected {2-800.} him prince under Turkish pressure. In 1660 he resigned but was, nevertheless, captured and killed by order of János Kemény.

Báthori, Gábor (1589–1613)

Prince of Transylvania between 1608–13. With his policy he incurred the hatred of the Turks, the Transylvanian aristocracy, and the Saxon burghers alike. He managed to ward off the conquest of the principality by the Habsburgs in 1611. He was assassinated at Várad (Oradea) in 1613, at the time of the Turkish campaign in Transylvania.

Báthori, Stephen (1533–86)

Prince of Transylvania from 1571, King of Poland from 1576. He was educated in the humanistic spirit in Padua. He made efforts to consolidate central power in both of his countries. True to his coronation oath in Poland, he waged wars against Russia. He believed that an alliance of the Central European powers is needed to drive out the Turks.

Báthori, Zsigmond (1572–1613)

Prince of Transylvania on three occasions (1588–97, 1598–99, 1601–02). He fought in allience with the Habsburgs in the Fifteen Years' War. His political irresolution, resignations, and comebacks caused Transylvania serious damage.

Bercsényi, Miklós, Comes (1665–1725)

One of the chief organizers and leaders of the anti-Habsburg Hungarian war of independence in 1703–11. Supreme General of the allied Estates in 1705, governor from 1707. He refused to recognize the Treaty of Szatmár (Satu Mare) and made an abortive attempt to overrun Hungary once again from the direction of Orsova (Orşova) in 1717 with Turkish support. He spent the rest of his life at Rodostó (Tekirdag, Turkey).

Bethlen, Gabriel (1580–1629)

Prince of Transylvania from 1613, nominal King of Hungary in 1620–21. His economic policy brought prosperity for the {2-801.} principality. His court at Gyulafehérvár (Alba Iulia) became a political and cultural centre. He supported talented Transylvanian youth in going to universities abroad. During the Thirty Year's War he led three campaigns against the Habsburgs, annexing seven counties of Upper Hungary to Transylvania.

Bethlen, István (1580–1648)

Prince of Transylvania in 1630. Younger brother of Gábor Bethlen. He resigned in the favour of György Rákóczi I.

Bethlen, Miklós, Count (1642–1716)

Transylvanian politician and writer. He played a significant part in the preparation and publication of the Diploma Leopoldinum. Chancellor from 1691. He prepared a draft of an independent Transylvania under the title Olajágat viselő Noé galambja (Noah's pigeon with an olive-branch). The Habsburgs imprisoned him and did not let him return to Transylvania even after his release from prison. His Önéletírás (Memoirs) is an important historical source.

Bocskai, István (1557–1606)

Prince of Transylvania in 1605–06. During the Fifteen Years' War he defeated the Turks at Gyurgyevó (Giurgiu) as supreme commander of the Transylvanian and Wallachian armies in 1595. Later he became disappointed with the policy of the Habsburgs and concluded an alliance with the Turks. With the peace treaties of Vienna and Zsitvatorok in 1606 he managed to put an end to fifteen years of turmoil in the country. In his political testament he called attention to the importance of preserving the independence of Transylvania.

Charles III of Habsburg (1685–1740)

King of Hungary between 1711 and 1740, as Charles VI Holy Roman Emperor. Younger son of Leopold I. He was the last male member of the House of Habsburg along the male line. The lack of a male successor threatened the Habsburg Empire with disintegration. His daughter, Maria Theresa, managed to {2-802.} stabilize her positions as empress and queen with the Hungarians' armed support.

Cserei, Mihály (1667–1756)

Transylvanian historiographer. His unfinished História (History), written in Hungarian, tells Transylvanian history in the years 1661–1712.

Esterházy, Pál, Prince (1635–1713)

Palatine of Hungary between 1681 and 1713. Son of Palatine Miklós Esterházy. Participated in the defence of Vienna (1683) and in the recapture of Buda (1686). He greatly contributed to the passing by the diet of the law that declared the Habsburgs Hungary's hereditary rulers in 1687. His castle at Kismarton (Eisenstadt) was a centre of culture and music. The Harmonia Coelestis composed by him is a valuable piece of Baroque music even by European standards.

Ferdinand II of Habsburg (1578–1637)

Holy Roman Emperor and King of Hungary from 1619. He fought mercilessly against Protestantism and the separatism of the Estates. His commander, Albrecht Wallenstein, won him considerable victories in the Thirteen Years' War. Gábor Bethlen forced him to recognize the privileges of the Hungarian Estates and religious freedom by several successful campaigns.

Ferdinand III of Habsburg (1608–1657)

Holy Roman Emperor and King of Hungary from 1637. Son of Ferdinand II. In the Treaty of Linz (1645) he was forced to make concessions to the Hungarians and the Treaty of West-phalia (1648) weakened his positions as emperor.

Francis I of Habsburg (1768–1835)

King of Hungary from 1792, Emperor of Austria from 1804. As Francis II he was the last Holy Roman Emperor between 1792 and 1806. Son of Leopold II. Together with Russian Tsar Alexander and Prussian King Frederick Wilhelm he brought {2-803.} about the Holy Alliance to stem the spread of revolutionary ideas.

Hadik, András, Comes (1700–1790)

Hungarian military (Hussar) officer, lieutenant general and chairman of the Vienna War Council from 1774. He participated in the War of Austrian Succession and in the Seven Years' War. Following his daring and brilliantly executed manoeuvres in the latter he even held Berlin, the Prussian capital, to ransom. He was military governor and royal commissioner of Transylvania between 1764 and 1768. Commander-in-chief and civil governor of Poland in 1772.

Joseph I of Habsburg (1678–1711)

Holy Roman Emperor and King of Hungary between 1705 and 1711. Elder son of Leopold I. He was dethroned by the Hungarian Estates at the Ónod diet in 1707. He died a few days before the conclusion of the Treaty of Szatmár.

Joseph II of Habsburg (1741–1790)

Holy Roman Emperor from 1765, King of Hungary between 1780 and 1790. Son of Maria Theresa. He made great efforts to turn the heterogeneous Habsburg lands into a modern and unified empire even at the expense of violating national interests and hurting sentiments. In Hungary he was called "the hatted king" because he refused to be crowned. He ruled by decrees which he revoked on his deathbed with the exception of three.

Károlyi, Sándor, Count (1669–1743)

Hungarian aristocrat, general of the kuruc army. In 1703 he still dispersed the first kuruc peasant forces but later he joined the war of independence. Supreme commander of the kuruc army in 1710. Seeing that fighting further was useless, he concluded peace with the Habsburgs in 1711 without the assent of Rákóczi negotiating abroad. The Treaty of Szatmár contained no guarantees for the Hungarians and the Hungarian troops laid down arms at Majtény on May 1, 1711.

Kemény, János (1607–1662)

Prince of Transylvania in 1661–62. First counsellor of György Rákóczi II, supreme commander of the Polish campaign of 1657. Together with the whole Transylvanian army he fell in Mongol captivity from where he was released against a heavy ransom. In 1661 he had former prince Ákos Barcsai assassinated. The Turks drove him out of Transylvania and he was left to his faith by Raimondo Montecuccoli sent to his relief. His Önéletírás (Autobiography) written during his Mongol captivity is a valuable historical source.

Köprülü, Ahmed (1635–1676)

Son of Grand Vizier Köprülü Mehmed, who had considerably strengthened the Ottoman Empire. Grand Vizier between 1661 and 1676. His campaign in Hungary in 1664 led to his defeat at Szentgotthárd but he still won further Hungarian territories in the subsequent Treaty of Vasvár.

Leopold I of Habsburg (1640–1705)

King of Hungary from 1657, Holy Roman Emperor from 1658. Son of Ferdinand III. Wishing to strengthen his positions as against Loius XIV of France he waged wars in the West and tried to maintain peace with the Turks. Following the Wesselényi conspiracy he introduced open absolutism in Hungary. He decided to drive out the Turks after the Turkish offensive against Vienna in 1683. His measures introduced in the liberated territories led to nation-wide discontent and a war of independence in 1703.

Leopold II of Habsburg (1747–92)

Holy Roman Emperor and King of Hungary from 1790. As Grand Duke of Tuscany between 1765 and 1790 he brought about the model of enlightened absolutism in Italy. Finding a way out of the critical situation in foreign policy after Joseph II's death, he wound up resistance in Belgium and Hungary, made peace with the Turks and concluded an agreement with {2-805.} Prussia. In the Pillnitz Declaration between Austria and Prussia in 1791 he took a stong line against revolutionary radicalism.

Lorántffy, Zsuzsanna (1600–60)

Wife of Transylvanian Price György Rákóczi I. She supported the Protestant clerical and educational institutions, especially the Protestant college of Sárospatak. In 1657 she founded a high-school with instruction in Rumanian at Fogaras (Făgăraş).

Maria Theresa of Habsburg (1717–1780)

Queen of Hungary from 1741, Queen of Bohemia from 1743. Daughter of Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI. In the War of Austrian Succession she lost Silezia but managed to save her throne with Hungarian support. In the Seven Years' War she made a futile attempt to recover Silezia but obtained Galicia at the first division of Poland. Soon she took Bukovina from the Turks. She strove to modernize her empire economically, socially, and culturally alike. She had sixteen children.

Matthias II of Habsburg (1557–1619)

King of Hungary and Bohemia from 1608, as Matthias Holy Roman Emperor from 1612. He forced his elder brother, Rudolf, to renounce the Hungarian and Bohemian kingdoms. His efforts at conquering Transylvania failed.

Micu-Klein, Samuil (1745–1806)

Transylvanian historian and linguist of Romanian origin. In 1780 he edited the first Romanian grammar. Advocating the Latin origin of the Romanian language, he strove to verify the Daco-Romanian theory of Roman descent.

Mikes, Kelemen (1690–1761)

Hungarian memoirist, translator of literary works. Faithful follower of Ferenc Rákóczi II in exile. He lived in Rodostó (Tekirdag, Turkey) from 1720 till his death. In his Törökországi levelek (Letters from Turkey) he reports on the life of {2-806.} the exiles there and on the Turkish society of the day. His request to be allowed to return home was declined by Maria Theresa in 1741.

Montecuccoli, Raimondo, Prince (1609–80)

Habsburg commander of Italian origin. He fought against Princes György Rákóczi I and II. In 1661 he was sent by Leopold I to Transylvania to rescue János Kemény but his mission failed. In 1664 he was commander-in-chief of the Hungarian army. He defeated Ahmed Köprülü at Szentgotthárd on August 1 but instead of launching an offensive, he concluded peace with the Turks at Vasvár. In 1668 he was chairman of the Vienna War Council.

Nádasdy, Ferenc, Count (1625–71)

Hungarian aristocrat, a patron of science and art. Lord Chief Justice between 1655 and 1670. Married the daughter of Palatine Miklós Esterházy. He participated in the anti-Turkish war of 1663–64. He was one of the organizers of the Wesselényi conspiracy, for which he was executed.

Pápai-Páriz, Ferenc (1649–1716)

Transylvanian physician, writer, and lexicographer. His series consisting of four books (A lélek békéje [The peace of the soul], 1680; A test békéje [The peace of the body], 1690; Az udvar békéje [The peace of the court], 1696; A sír békéje [The peace of the tomb], 1698) discusses the spiritual, moral, social, and physical aspects of human life offering valuable advice. His is the first comprehensive work on Hungarian heraldry.

Pázmány, Péter (1570–1637)

Cardinal-Archbishop of Esztergom. He restored Catholicism in Hungary and was the spiritual leader of Counter-Reformation. His principal work, Isteni igazságra vezérlő kalauz (A guide to divine justice), was published in 1613. He founded a seminary in Vienna in 1623 which is still working today under the name Pazmaneum. In 1635 he established a {2-807.} university at Nagyszombat (Trnava) which is now the Eötvös Loránd Tudományegyetem (Eötvös Loránd University) in Budapest as the oldest university of the country.

Rabutin, de Bussy Jean-Louis, Count (1642–1717)

Imperial lieutenant-general of French origin. Commander-in-chief of Transylvania between 1696 and 1708. He was transferred the the Rhine front in 1709.

Rákóczi, Ferenc I (1645–76)

Nominal Price of Transylvania, son of György Rákóczi II. He could not succeed after his father's death. He joined the anti-Habsburg conspiracy of Wesselényi and, in contrast with the other leaders of the conspiracy, he received pardon against a huge ransom.

Rákóczi, Ferenc II (1676–1735)

Price of Transylvania, ruling prince of the allied Hungarian Estates, leader of the anti-Habsburg war of independence in the years 1703–11. Son of Ferenc Rákóczi I and Ilona Zrínyi. Torn from his mother, he was brought up to be loyal to the Habsburgs but the Habsburg despotism wanting to subdue newly recoquered Hungary by heavy taxes, forced labour and the duty of billeting soldiers turned him against the dynasty. The war of independence breaking out after wars of liberation in the past decade and a half had no hopes of winning on its own. Rákóczi's efforts to win allies proved, however, futile both in France and in Russia. The Prince, who refused to recognize the Treaty of Szatmár not containing any guarantees for the Hungarians, died in exile at Rodostó (Tekirdag, Turkey).

Rákóczi, György I (1593–1648)

Prince of Transylvania between 1630 and 1648. Son of Zsigmond Rákóczi. He entered the Thirty Years' War in order to be able to force Ferdinand III to respect the privileges of the Estates and the freedom of religion on the Hungarian territories. The Treaty of Linz (1645) containing also the right of {2-808.} Transylvania to keep the seven counties of Upper Hungary obtained by Gabriel Bethlen earlier is a result of his successful foreign policy.

Rákóczi, György II (1621–60)

Prince of Transylvania between 1648 and 1660. Son of György Rákóczi I and Zsuzsanna Lorántffy. In 1657 he attacked Poland in alliance with Sweden without Turkish assent and this irresponsible step led to a Turkish campaign against him and a civil war, ending a golden age of fifty years in Transylvania.

Rákóczi, Zsigmond (1544–1608)

Prince of Transylvania in 1607–1608).

Rhédey, Ferenc, Count (1610–1667)

Prince of Transylvania in 1657–58.

Rudolf I of Habsburg (1552–1612)

King of Hungary and Bohemia between 1576 and 1608, as Rudolf II Holy Roman Emperor from 1576 till his death. His seat was in Prague. His attempt at the expulsion of the Turks led to a decade and a half of warfare in Hungary. He was one of the greatest art collectors and patrons of his age. Among others, Arcimboldo and Kepler worked in his court.

Savoy, Eugene of, Prince (1663–1736)

Habsburg commander of French origin. He defeated the Turks in a number of famous battles, such as those of Zenta (Senta) in 1697, Pétervárad in 1716, and Belgrade in 1717. The treaties of Karlóca (Sremski Karlovci) in 1699 and Pozsarevác (Požarevac) in 1718 which meant Hungary's liberation from Turkish occupation could be concluded as a result of his successful campaigns. In 1704 he defeated the joint French and Bavarian armies near Höchstädt in the War of Spanish Succession, rescueing at the same time Vienna and depriving Rákóczi from the possibility of establishing contacts with the French. He was governor of Austrian-occupied Netherlands in 1714–15 and between 1724 and 1736.

Sobieski, Jan (1629–1696)

As John III King of Poland from 1674. He played a decisive role in the disastrous Turkish defeat under Vienna on September 12, 1683. In 1684 he was one of those who founded the Holy League against the Turks.

Szalárdi, János (1601–66)

Transylvanian historian. His work Siralmas magyar krónika (A miserable Hungarian chronicle) was based on documents and discussed the contemporary history of Transylvania.

Szenczi Molnár, Albert (1574–1634)

Hungarian writer, Protestant theologist, translator, and linguist. In 1604 he prepared a Latin–Hungarian and Hungarian–Latin dictionary. In 1610 he was the first to make an attempt at preparing a full Hungarian grammar. He translated into Hungarian hundred and fifty psalms for the Protestant Church and published in Hungarian Calvin's principal work entitled Institutio.

Thököly, Imre, Count (1657–1705)

Prince of Upper Hungary between 1682 and 1685, Prince of Transylvania in 1690. His father took part in the Wesselényi conspiracy. Unsatisfied with the Habsburgs, he flew to Transylvania and the Partium where he became leader of outlaws. He married Ilona Zrínyi, the daughter of Péter Zrínyi and the widow of Ferenc Rákóczi I. He supported the Turks in their offensive of 1683 and fought against the Habsburgs in the campaigns for the liberation of Hungary from the Turks though most of his soldiers joined the imperial army. In 1690 he could not defend Transylvania against the Habsburgs and died in Turkish exile.

Tótfalusi (Misztótfalusi) Kis, Miklós (1650–1702)

Tansylvanian printer. During his studies in Amsterdam he became a master of printing books and an artist of letter-cutting/engraving. Cosimo Medici and the Pope belonged to his customers. He made the first printed Georgian alphabet. From {2-810.} 1689 on he worked at Kolozsvár (Cluj) and published spelling-books, calenders, and other useful publications at private expense, in thousands of copies. He strove to simplify Hungarian orthography. His efforts were frustrated against Orthodox Calvinism in Transylvania.

Wesselényi, Ferenc, Count (1605–67)

Palatine of Hungary from 1655. As commander of the Castle of Fülek (Filakovo) he collaborated with his future wife Mária Széchy, lady of Murány (Muráň), and occupied the castle for the Habsburgs. After the Treaty of Vasvár (1664), when the Habsburgs did not seem ready to expel the Turks from Hungary, he started to organize a conspiracy that was wound up by the Habsburgs in 1670–71, following his death.

Wesselényi, Miklós, Baron (1796–1850)

Transylvanian aristocrat, liberal politician. At the time of the great flood in Pest in 1838 he rescued many victims and became "the legendary boatman". He was an outstanding reform politician of the diets in the 1830s. Because of his activities the Habsburgs put him to prison where he lost his sight. His principal work Balítéletekről (On Prejudice) was published in 1833.

Zrínyi, Miklós, Count (1620–64)

Poet, writer, and military commander. Ban of Croatia from 1647. In his work Szigeti veszedelem (The Sziget disaster) he spoke of the Turkish siege of Szigetvár in 1566. The commander of the castle had been the poet's great-grandfather. He wished to liberate Hungary from Turkish rule by an international military effort. He led a successful anti-Turkish campaign in 1663–64 but the Habsburgs concluded peace with the Turks despite his successes and the victory at Szentgotthárd. He died in a confused hunting accident. His younger brother, Péter Zrínyi, was executed at Bécsújhely (Wiener Neustadt) in 1671 under charges of participating in an anti-Habsburg conspiracy.