Tradition & History

Hungarian traditions submitted to UNESCO list

Falconry, Lipizzan horse-breeding and Hungarian string-orchestral traditions have been nominated for the UNESCO’s List of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Suggestions for the list can be submitted once a year, either individually or in collaboration with other countries. Hungary has suggested that falconry, Lipizzan horse-breeding and Hungarian string-orchestral traditions be included on UNESCO’s List of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

In addition to hunting, falconry communities play an important role in the protection of birds and nature, the maintenance of endangered species, and the preservation of traditions. Hunting with birds of prey is a tradition dating back thousands of years in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, North Africa and many other regions of the world. The tradition of falconry has now been nominated for the UNESCO list for the fourth time, with six more countries now joining in on the push.

The tradition of Lipizzan horse breeding has been jointly presented to UNESCO by eight countries. The Lipizzan was bred during the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy to represent court splendor, and the imperial stud was kept in the Lipica settlement in present-day Slovenia. Hungary always played a prominent role in the maintenance of the breed. The stallion used for breeding had to be evacuated to Mezőhegyes in Hungary during the Napoleonic Wars; it was following this move that Lipizzan horse breeding spread in the countries belonging to the former monarchy. Today, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Hungary, Italy, Romania, Slovenia and Slovakia all have Lipizzan horse studs.

Hungary is also known internationally for its use of the Lipizzan horse for carriages. The State Stud Farm Szilvásvárad and the National Association of Hungarian Lipizzan Breeders were the professional partners in the preparation of the nomination. 

Hungary has also independently submitted the Hungarian string-orchestral tradition to be considered for the UNESCO list due to its role in Hungary’s heritage. The submission documentation was prepared with the professional assistance of Hungary’s House of Traditions.

The evaluation of all submissions will take place in December 2021 at the 16th session of the Intergovernmental Committee of Cultural Heritage.

The Intellectual and Cultural Heritage Directorate of the Open-Air Ethnographic Museum commissioned by the Ministry of Human Resources is responsible for the Hungarian submissions.

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