Roundtrip in Austria-Hungary

The iron turul of Nyitra

Memorial statues were inaugurated throughout the Monarchy to commemorate the war and to support the families of those killed in the fighting. According to the concept, iron nails or metal tiles could be punched into wooden sculptures or their pedestals. The nails could be obtained for a donation. I have already written about the monuments in Budapest and Székelyudvarhely in previous posts. In this post, I discuss the iron turul of the city of Nyitra.

The description is not difficult, as the contemporary flyer has survived, on which much essential information can be read. The statue depicts a bird from the Hungarian pre-historic saga: the turul. It was a kind of sacral symbol of Hungarian brotherhood.  The memorial itself was erected at the expense of the spouse of Count János Nemes in 1915. The turul statue was made of ore itself, and its pedestal was made of wood, which was also covered with nails purchased from donations. According to contemporary news, the statue was erected on the Town Hall Square. The contemporary view of the square is shown in the opening image of the post.

The statue was removed by the soldiers of the newly created Czechoslovak state, today it is no longer known exactly what happened. In 2015, the statue was re-erected with the help of local Hungarians, but this time in Alsóbodok, 10 km East from Nyitra.

Some war memorials were also depicted on badges. As with the two presented earlier, so did the iron turul in Nyitra. In fact, there were two of them. One of them, the smaller badge depicts the turul over an inscribed ribbon. The other is the badge of the Nyitra House Regiment, the 14th Honvéd Infantry Regiment, which I presented earlier. Above the badge showing the skyline of the city, you can see the turul with its wings extended in a protective way.

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