Mathias Corvinus, also known as the Righteous King, was born 578 years ago, on the 23rd of February, 1443, in Kolozsvár/Cluj-Napoca, Transylvania. He is the son of János Hunyadi and is remembered as one of the most brilliant rulers of Hungary. Although constantly having to defend against internal challenges mounted by the gentry, his reign saw Hungary grow to its largest size territorially, while the arts, culture and overall standard of living made great strides as well.
Furthermore, there is a powerful contemporary relevance to his personality, as during his reign, Central Europe became a very unified region for the first time and not only politically speaking. Different religions and nations stood on common ground — an important message for Transylvanians today.
The fascination surrounding the oldest building of Kolozsvár/Cluj-Napoca — known today as the house where the Great King was born — is due to the mystery behind the birth and early life of Matthias Corvinus, in addition to the unique style of the construction. Although historians haven’t decided why, it seems that Erzsébet Szilágyi, the wife of János Hunyadi, the Voivode of Transylvania, decided to give birth to her second son here.
According to some researchers, this was not random, while other historians argue that Erzsébet was simply passing through the city when Mathias Corvinus was born. One fact is certain, after being born here, Mathias Corvinus became one of the regions most noteworthy rulers — the king of Hungary, Bohemia, and Croatia.
Featured photo: cultura.hu