Somogyvár Summary

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Somogyvár
Summary
The settlement lying near lake Balaton, and its vicinity have been continuously populated ever since prehistoric times. It was the centre of the Koppány dynasty already in the second half of the X century. During the times of the great lord, it was a ducal centre under the name of “Somogy duchy”. After Koppány’s defeat, Saint Stephen ordered the Saint Martin hill Abbey – today’s Abbey of Pannonhalma – to get the right of bishopric over Somogy, and also the related tithe of the county for centuries. Saint Ladislas I – who wished to be buried in Somogyvár – invited French monks to settle here in 1091, and founded one of the best-known monasteries of the country in this settlement. The founding king was first buried here in this settlement, and his mortal remains were transported to Oradea only later. Somogyvár was considered to be a very significant ecclesiastical body entrusted with notarial functions in Hungary during the middle ages. The settlement escaped depopulation during the Turkish invasion as well. The monastery, reinforced by Bálint Török, and the borough together with it were occupied by the Turks after the fall of Szigetvár. The occupants held the fortress until 1686.
Later, the settlement became one of the centres of the Széchényi family in Somogy. The best-known figure of the Somogyvár line was Imre Széchényi, who lived in the second half of the XIX century. The peer family started a strong seigniorial domestic economy after the first half of the XVIII century. Authoritative abuse related to this activity often elicited the resistance of the serfs in Somogyvár. This made them submit complaining letters to the king, and the committee representing him. The charter setting out the serfs’ obligatory services was dated on October 30, 1767.
One of the most significant sources of revenue for the settlement was wine production both in the middle ages and during the dualism. This economic activity, however, lost its significant to a large extent by the XX century.
The settlement between the lord and the serfs – which took place between 1854 and 1857 in Somogyvár – gave rise to a large change in the ownership system. At the same time, the Somogyvár estate of count Lajos Széchényi modernised their farming and recruited paid employees. In the middle of the 1880-ies, intensive farming, replacing the earlier extensive farming, showed a slow further development largely due to the estate. Another favourable effect was that the railway line between Kaposvár and Fonyód was also competed in 1896 with one of its stations built here.
The commencement of the favourable processes in Somogyvár was halted by the first world war, after which the economic life of the village was getting richer in a much slower pace. A very significant factor in the life of the village was that the public road connecting Kaposvár and Balatonboglár, which was completed between the two world wars, also reached the village. After the few years full of hopes when the Russian troops arrived, the population of the village also lived their everyday lives determined by Stalinism, personal cult, co-operative organisation, and compulsory produce delivery. After the revolution in 1956, a significant improvement started in the standard of life at the beginning of the 1960-ies. The electrification of the village was completed by 1960, and twelve years later, the village was already covered with a water network.
The people of Somogyvár experienced a time of excitement between 1989–1990, being effected by the approaching historic changes. As a preparation for the first free elections, new parties came into being in the village. The first round-table discussion between the parties, the church and the root organisations took place on February 19, 1990. A statue was erected for Saint Ladislas in 1998. The cult of the great ruler is still fostered in the village.

 

 

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