2,000 forint – 175th Anniversary of Setting the Szózat to Music

Series: Hungary – Commemorative 2000 forint coins

Image of 175th Anniversary of Setting the Szózat to Music – 2000 forint coin Hungary 2018.  The Brass coin is of BU quality.
To honour the 175th anniversary of composing music to the Appeal, the Magyar Nemzeti Bank will issue a particularly large, silver commemorative coin on 10 May 2018, the anniversary of its premiere. Issuing the commemorative coin with a face value of HUF 20,000, the Bank seeks to highlight the everlasting lines of the Appeal, the message of Hungary’s second national anthem that remains relevant to this day.

The poem, encouraging patriotism and loyalty, was written by Mihály Vörösmarty in 1836. Béni Egressy composed music to it in 1843 in response to an open competition launched by the National Theatre. Egressy submitted his composition with the motto “May every man be human and Hungarian!”. Its premiere took place on 10 May 1843. The outcome of the competition was decided by the audience: the composition was recognised with a standing ovation. A reason for its huge success might have been that the winning composition reflected the current trends in music and rhythm, it matched the spirit of the age; therefore, it soon became well-known as a popular “national song”. With the Appeal commemorative coin, the MNB pays tribute to both the poet and the composer, because the everlasting lines of the poem addressing all Hungarians is complemented perfectly by Béni Egressy’s music based on verbunkos style, which captures well the sentiment of the era. “Composing music to the Appeal” commemorative coins are legal tender in Hungary, but they do not serve circulatory purposes. Primarily, they are a means to commemorate and raise awareness of the national values of Hungary. The silver and the non-ferrous metal versions have the same design, the only difference being their value numerals.

On the obverse of the commemorative coins a half-body portrait of Mihály Vörösmarty writing the Appeal is shown with the national flag in the background. This composition was inspired by a Miklós Barabás’ painting. On the left, the coat-of-arms of Hungary is featured, while on the right a quotation, the most significant stanza, taken from the original manuscript of the Appeal, is shown (“No other spot in all the world / can touch your heart as home— / let fortune bless or fortune curse, / from hence you shall not roam!”) completed with the poet’s signature.

The compulsory design elements of commemorative coins are placed on the obverse: the lettering “MAGYARORSZÁG” in the upper legend, under it, the mint year 2018, and below, to the right in three lines below each other the value numerals 20.000 and 2000 FORINT and the mint mark “BP.”, which includes security features in micro lettering to provide protection against counterfeiting. On the reverse side of the commemorative coin a half-body portrait of Béni Egressy, the composer of the music to the Appeal is shown, which was also inspired by a Miklós Barabás’ painting. The representation of the old building of the National Theatre is positioned in the background: the premiere of the musical composition took place here. The lettering “175 ÉVES A SZÓZAT ZENÉJE” highlights the occasion the coin is issued on. Next to Egressy’s figure a part of the sheet music for the Appeal, the starting melody often quoted in later compositions is shown, while the composer’s signature is placed at the bottom. The master mark of applied artist Gábor Kereszthury, the designer of the coin is hidden in the coin design.

Both collector coins are 52.5 mm in diameter. Their edge is reeded. The coin with a face value of HUF 20,000 is struck in 925‰ silver and the non-ferrous metal coin with a face value of HUF 2,000 is made from an alloy of copper (75%) and nickel (25%). The silver coin weighing 77.76 grams is made in proof finish and the non-ferrous metal coin weighing 76.5 grams in made in BU finish. The commemorative coins are issued in limited edition: 5,000 pieces can be made of each.