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Pecs History, Hungary

Pecs is a city in Hungary situated in the south-west part of the country, near the border of Croatia. Aside from being the fifth biggest city in Hungary, Pecs is also the government and economic capital of the Baranya County. Along with Essen and Istanbul, the Hungarian city has been chosen as the European Capital of Culture in 2010. Here are other remarkable things in Pecs History.

Pecs History – Early History

During the early 2nd Century AD, the Roman Empire cronies established settlements that produced wine. The city was known as Sopianae at that time and the capital of Valeria, one of Pannonia province’s divisions.

During the first fifty years of the 4th century, Sopianae became a significant Christian city. However, just before the dawn of the 5th century, Roman rule over the city declined exposing Sopianae to attacks from various tribes. When Charlemagne reached the area, the city became part of the Holy Roman Empire and was placed under the Diocese of Salzburg.

Pecs History – Middle Ages

Between the late 9th and early 10th centuries, Hungarians were able to conquer the territory where the present Hungary is situated. They were able to overthrow the Holy Roman Empire. Pecs became a major religious capital and Episcopal center.

A number of religious groups stayed in Pecs such as the Benedictines and Dominicans. The very first university in Hungary was founded in the city in 1367 through the instruction of King Louis the Great.

Pecs History – Ottoman Era

The Ottoman army beat King Louis II’s army during the Battle of Mohacs and Hungary was occupied by the Ottomans. When Ferdinand became the king of Hungary, he granted privileges to Pecs since the citizens of the city supported his campaign for the throne.

The tables were to be turned in Pecs History when in 1529, the Ottomans regained control over Pecs. The citizens were forced to accept John as the king and ruler. After John’s death, the residents of Pecs rose arms against the Ottomans to support Ferdinand but they were unsuccessful.

When the Ottomans finally ruled over Pecs, they began to transform it into a real Ottoman city. Mosques, minarets and baths were constructed in the city. Pecs was governed by Muslim officials.

Pecs History – 18th and 19th Century

After the Ottoman occupation, a more peaceful atmosphere reigned over Pecs. The city made expansions and development in terms of its industry, manufacturing, and trade. In 1777, Queen Maria Theresa raised the city’s status into a free royal town.

During the last half of the 19th century, businesses in Pecs progressed and by 1848, a total of 1,739 people worked in the city’s industrial companies. Products included beer, paper, sugar, coal and iron.

Pecs History – 20th Century

Serbian armies stayed in Pecs after the First World War and issues of whether the city would stay as a Hungarian territory or not grew. Pecs was not severely damaged during World War II. Developments swiftly continued after the war, making the city even better than before. It grew when nearby towns merged with it.

In order to track more facts about Hungary and the European continent, try to read more through Zagreb Travel Guide and Osijek Travel Guide.

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