Friday, August 24, 2012

Hungarian Crown Guards

The Hungarian Holy Crown and crown jewellery is now guarded by the Hungarian military. In May of 2011, the special Crown Guard unit of the Hungarian military took over responsibility of protecting and serving as guard of honour next to the Holy Crown. In previous years, the Holy Crown and jewellery was protected by and under the jurisdiction of the Hungarian police.

The members of the Crown Guard have been specially trained for their duty. The guards' buttons and belt buckles have been adorned by the Hungarian royal crown. As you can see, the uniforms of this special unit are very stunning and spectacular. A lot of effort and detail has gone into the appearance of the Crown Guard.

The tradition of the guarding the Holy Crown by the Hungarian military has been revived and approved by the Holy Crown Board. This under the reign of the conservative Fidesz government. Many old traditions are now being restored by this government in Hungary. The Holy Crown Board is responsible for any major decisions regarding the crown. It had been sixty-six years, since the Holy Crown was last guarded by the military.

The Hungarian communists while in power during the previous decades, put absolutely no faith in Hungary's true history and historical artifacts such as the Holy Crown. This is because they wanted the Hungarian people to forget their true history and identity. The Hungarian communists were anti-Catholic and anti-royalty, that is why they downplayed the significance of the crown while they were in power. They wanted the people to believe only in the communist society and nothing else. Revivals of old traditions and customs were seen as a threat to their hold on power.

Even when the crown was returned to Hungary in 1977 by the US government, it and the crown jewels ended up in the National Museum guarded by police units. The crown remained in the National Museum in the 1990s, even after the regime change. Since the millennium celebrations in 2000, the Holy Crown has been moved to the Hungarian Parliament and is on permanent display there. Members of the public are allowed to view the crown and jewels from a safe distance. They are guarded by the Crown Guard who have all taken an oath to guard the Holy Crown with their lives.

The Crown Guards took the following oath on May 30, 2011:

“I solemnly swear that I shall protect the Holy Crown incorporating the continuity of constitutional statehood of Hungary in all circumstances, against every danger, and I shall persevere in guarding it, and prevent it from getting into unauthorized hands, even at the cost of my life”

“In order to meet the strict requirements of the special service, I shall strive to keep my best mental and physical condition, and lead an irreproachable life. Guided by the spirit of camaraderie of the HDF Crown Guard, I shall live and die, fighting as a true warrior, in an exemplary way, at all times with honour, as worthy of a Hungarian soldier. So help me God!”

The Holy Crown is a very significant historical artifact for the people of Hungary. It not only shows them their history but more importantly, it shows them their legitimacy as a nation. It was a good decision to move the crown to the Hungarian Parliament from the National Museum. The parliament is where the government is located and conducts its business. The Holy Crown Board made the right decision to allow the Hungarian military to guard the crown again after all these years.

Traditions make a people proud and their culture strong. That is why it is important to maintain traditions in your culture. The guarding of Holy Crown by the members of the military make the Hungarian people feel very proud and also safe that the crown will be defended to the death. This is one tradition that is warmly welcomed back after so many years!