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2018 Szózat 20000 forint

2018 Szózat 20000 forint

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2018 Szózat 20000 forint

Denomination 20.000 forint
Quality Proof
Metal&Fineness Ag 0,925
Total weight 77,76 gramm
Diameter 52,5 mm
Edge milled
Designer Kereszthury Gábor
Date of issue 2018. május 10.
33 500 HUF

175th anniversary of setting the Szózat to music

Along with the official national anthem Himnusz, the Szózat is Hungary’s second national song. The poem was written in 1836 by Mihály Vörösmarty and was set to music in 1843 by Béni Egressy, considered the father of Hungarian popular melodies. At that time, the National Theatre announced an open, anonymous tender for setting the popular poem to music.

Béni Egressy submitted his work with the code title „Let all men be man and Hungarian!” which – together with two other compositions – was then put to popular vote by the jury, which included the poet Mihály Vörösmarty, Ferenc Erkel and the composer Mihály Mosonyi. The selected pieces were performed for the first time on 10 May 1843. At the performance, the votes of the audience decided which work came in first place from the three best pieces selected by the jury. „Hardly had they played four lines, the audience burst into applause time and time again…” (citation from the newspaper Regélő – Pesti Divatlap). As the tender was anonymous, the composer was not known under after the result was announced.

The winning piece reflected the melodies, rhythms and spirit of that age and quickly became known as a popular „national song”. Althought it was also subject to some criticism, many composers drew on motifs from the work, in particular its opening melody, from the second half of the 19th century and even in the 20th century. This aptly reflects the fact that, along with the contents of the poem, the melody of the Szózat has become a musical symbol of Hungarians resilience and fortitude.

Vörösmarty’s Szózat takes an expansive view, expressing that Hungarians anywhere in the world can be proud of their heritage. It is a dynamic song of action and strenght. Its timeless ideas are enhanced by Egressy’s music, based on the verbunkos style which captured the spirit of that era.

The main motif on the obverse of the coin is a half profile of Mihály Vörösmarty (inspired by the portrait by Miklós Barabás), with the national flag in the background. The coat of arms of Hungary is on the left, with an excerpt of the original, handwritten text and the poet’s initials on the right.
The centre of the reverse is occupied by a half profile of Béni Egressy, composer of the Szózat’s music, also inspired by a painting by Miklós Barabás, against the background of the old National Theater, where the piece was first performed. The legend „175 ÉVES A SZÓZAT ZENÉJE” (175 years of setting the Szózat to music) denotes the occasion for this coin. There is a quote of the music next to Egressy, with his initials found below. The coin was designed by the artist Gábor Kereszthury.

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