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Statue of rpd at Rckeve (Hungary) Grand Prince of the Hungarians Reign c. 895 c. 907

Predecessor lmos Successor Issue Lintika Tarkatzus Jelek Jutotzas Zoltn Dynasty Father Born Died Burial rpd dynasty lmos c. 845 c. 907 Fehregyhza (Hungary) (uncertain) Zoltn (uncertain)

rpd (Hungarian pronunciation:[arpad]; c. 845 c. 907) was the head of the confederation of the Hungarian tribes at the turn of the 9th and 10thcenturies. He may have been either the sacred ruler or kende of the Hungarians, or their military leader or gyula, although most details of his life are debated by historians, because different sources contain contradictory information. Despite this, many Hungarians refer to him as the "founder of our country", and rpd's preeminent role in the Hungarian conquest of the Carpathian Basin has been emphasized by some later chronicles. The dynasty descending from rpd ruled the Kingdom of Hungary until 1301.

Early life
rpd was the son of lmos who is mentioned as the first head of the confederation of the Hungarian tribes by all Hungarian rpd's statue at the Heroes' Square (Budapest) chronicles.[1][2] His mother's name and family are unknown.[3] According to historian Gyula Krist, rpd was born around 845.[4] His name derived from the Hungarian word for barley (rpa).[4] The Byzantine Emperor Constantine Porphyrogenitus (r.913959) states that the Hungarians "had never at any time had any other prince" before rpd, which is in sharp contrast to the Hungarian chronicles' report of the position of

rpd rpd's father.[5][6] In Porphyrogenitus's narration, the Khazar khagan initiated the centralization of the command of the Hungarian tribes in order to strengthen his own suzerainty over them.[7][8] The khagan initially wanted to appoint a chieftain named Levedi to lead the Hungarians.[9] However, Levedi did not accept this offer and suggested that either lmos or rpd should be promoted instead of him.[7] The khagan approached the Hungarians with this new proposal.[10] They preferred rpd to his father, because he was "greatly admired for wisdom and counsel and valour, and capable of this rule".[7] Thereafter, rpd was made "prince according to the custom... of the Chazars, by lifting him upon a shield."[10] Constantine Porphyrogenitus refers to rpd as "great prince of Hungary" (Greek: ).[11][12][13] The reliability of the Byzantine emperor's report of rpd's election is debated by modern historians: for instance, Victor Spinei states that it is "rather vague and scarcely credible", but Andrs Rna-Tas writes that its core is reliable.[7][14] The latter historian adds that rpd's election was promoted by lmos who forced Levedi kende to renounce. Accordingly, in Rna-Tas's view, rpd succeeded Levedi as sacred ruler or kende, which enabled his father to preserve his own position of the actual leader of the Hungarians or gyula.[14]

Towards the Hungarian Conquest

The earliest reliable source of rpd's life is an early 10th-century document, the Continuation of the Chronicle by George the Monk.[4][15][16] It narrates that the Byzantine Emperor Leo VI the Wise (r.886912) sent his envoy Nicetas Sclerus to the Hungarians in 894 or 895 "to give presents" and incite them against the Bulgarian Empire.[16] Sclerus met with their two leaders, rpd and Kurszn, at the Lower Danube.[16][17] Sclerus's mission succeeded: a Hungarian army soon crossed the Danube on Byzantine ships against Bulgaria.[17][18] An interpolation in Porphyrogenitus's text suggests that the invading Hungarians were under the command of rpd's son, Lintika.[17] The positions held by rpd and Kurszn at the time of their negotiations with Sclerus are debated by historians. Spinei wrote that rpd was the gyula, and Kurszn was the kende.[17] In contrast, Krist said that Kurszn was the gyula and rpd represented his father, lmos kende.[16] [19]


3 At that time, the Bulgarians had disregarded the peace treaty and were raiding through the Thracian countryside. Justice pursued them for breaking their oath to Christ our God, the emperor of all, and they quickly met up with their punishment. While our forces were engaged against the Saracens, divine Providence led the [Hungarians], in place of the Romans, to campaign against the Bulgarians. Our Majesty's fleet of ships supported them and ferried them across the Danube. [Providence] sent them out against the army of the Bulgarians that had so wickedly taken up arms against Christians and, as though they were public executioners, they decisively defeated them in three engagements, so that the Christian Romans might not willingly stain themselves with the blood of the Christian Bulgarians. Leo the Wise: Tactics[20] The Hungarian army defeated the Bulgarians, but the latter hired the Pechenegs against them.[17][21] The Bulgarians and Pechenegs simultaneously invaded the Hungarians' territories in the western regions of the Pontic steppes in 895 or 896.[22] The destruction of their dwelling places by the Pechenegs forced the Hungarians to leave for a new homeland across the Carpathian Mountains towards the Pannonian Plain.[23]

rpd's statue in Szkelybere (Bereni, Romania)

The Illuminated Chronicle says that rpd's father lmos "could not enter Pannonia, for he was killed in Erdelw" or Transylvania.[1][24][25] Engel, Krist and Molnr, who accept the reliability of this report, wrote that lmos's death was a ritual murder, similar to the sacrifice of the Khazar khagans in case of a disaster affecting their people.[1][23][26] In contrast with them, Rna-Tas states that even if the report on lmos's murder "reflects true event, the only possible explanation would be that rpd or someone in his entourage" killed the aged prince.[24] Spinei rejects the Illuminated Chronicle's report on lmos's murder in Transylvania, because the last mention of lmos in the contrasting narration of the Gesta Hungarorum is connected to a siege of Ungvr (Uzhhorod, Ukraine) by the Hungarians.[27] The latter chronicle says that lmos appointed rpd "as leader and master" of the Hungarians on this occasion.[28][29]

rpd's name "is completely unknown" to all sources written in East Francia, which was one of the main powers of the Carpathian Basin at the turn of the 9th and 10thcenturies.[12] These sources, including the Annales Alamannici and the Annales Eisnidlenses, only mention an other Hungarian leader, Kurszn.[12] According to Krist and other historians, these sources suggest that Kurszn must have been the gyula commanding the Hungarian forces, while rpd succeeded his murdered father as the sacred kende.[12][31] Proposing a contrasting theory, the Romanian historian Curta wrote that Kurszn was the kende and rpd gyula only succeeded him when Kurszn was murdered by Bavarians in 902 or 904.[12][32]

Ruins of Aquincum "city of King Attila" in the [30] Gesta Hungarorum

rpd In contrast to nearly contemporaneous sources, Hungarian chronicles written centuries after the eventsfor instance, the Gesta Hungarorum and the Illuminated Chronicleemphasize rpd's pre-eminent role in the conquest of the Carpathian Basin.[1][33] The Gesta Hungarorum also highlights rpd's military skills and his generosity.[34] This chronicle also emphasizes that Ttny, one of the heads of the seven Hungarian tribes, acquired "the land of Transylvania for himself and his posterity" only after rpd had authorized him to conquer it.[35][36] Having crossed the Danube, they encamped beside the Danube as far as Budafelhvz. Hearing this, all the Romans living throughout the land of Pannonia, saved their lives by flight. Next day, Prince rpd and all his leading men with all the warriors of Hungary entered the city of King Attila and they saw all the royal palaces, some ruined to the foundations, others not, and they admired beyond measure the stone buildings and were happier than can be told that they had deserved to take without fighting the city of King Attila, of whose line Prince rpd descended. They feasted every day with great joy in the palace of King Attila, sitting alongside one another, and all the melodies and sweet sounds of zithers and pipes along with all the songs of minstrels were presented to them... Prince rpd gave great lands and properties to the guests staying with them, and, when they heard this, many guests thronged to him and gladly stayed with him. Anonymous: Gesta Hungarorum[37] The Gesta Hungarorum says that rpd took "an oath of the leading men and warriors of Hungary," and "had his son, Prince Zoltn elevated" to prince in his life.[38][39] However, the reliability of this report and the list of the grand princes in the Gesta Hungarorum is dubious.[13] For instance, it ignores Fajsz, who ruled when Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus was completing his De Administrando Imperio around 950.[40]

The date of rpd's death is debated.[41] The Gesta Hungarorum states that he died in 907.[1][41] However, Krist wrote that he actually died in 900 or later because the Gesta says 903 is the starting date of the Hungarian "land-taking" instead of its actual date around 895.[41] If the Gesta's report on his funeral is reliable, rpd was buried "at the head of a small river that flows through a stone culvert to the city of King Attila" where a village, Fehregyhza, developed near Buda a century later.[41]

The Hungarians arrived in their new homeland within the Carpathians under rpd.[39] rpd is the principal actor in the Gesta Hungarorum, which attributes "almost all memorable events" of the "Hungarian land-taking" to him.[42] Furthermore, until the extinction of the male line of his dynasty in 1301, Hungary was ruled by "a single line of princes", all descending from rpd.[23] rpd is still famed among the Hungarians as honalapt or the "founder of our country".[39]

rpd's statue in Nagymegyer (Vek Meder, Slovakia)


Porphyrogenitus says rpd "had four sons: first, Tarkatzous; second, Ielech; third, Ioutotzas; fourth, Zaltas".[13][39][43] However, he also refers to one "Liuntikas, son of" rpd; Krist wrote that Liuntikas (Lintika) was an alternative name of Tarkatzous (Tarhos).[39][44] The name and family of the mother of rpd's sons are unknown.[45] The following is a family tree presenting rpd's ancestors and his descendants to the end of the 10th century:[45]

rpd's wife a detail on the Arrival of the Hungarians by rpd Feszty et al. (pusztaszer National Heritage Park, Hungary)

gyek Eld or gyek

Eunedubelian Emese

lmos rpd






Teveli Termatzus

(unknown) Tar Szernd Koppny




Taksony Kings of Hungary***

*Lintika and Tarkatzus are supposed to have been identical. **The father of Tas was one of rpd's four or five sons, but his name is unknown. ***All later grand princes and kings of Hungary descended from Taksony.

[1] Engel 2001, p.19. [2] Krist & Makk 1996, pp.1112, 17, Appendix 1. [3] Krist & Makk 1996, pp.17, Appendix 1. [4] Krist & Makk 1996, p.17. [5] Constantine Porphyrogenitus: De Administrando Imperio (ch. 38), p. 173. [6] Krist 1996, pp.160161. [7] Spinei 2003, p.33. [8] Krist 1996, p.160-161. [9] Spinei 2003, pp.33, 40. [10] Krist 1996, p.160. [11] Constantine Porphyrogenitus: De Administrando Imperio (ch. 40), pp. 178179. [12] Krist 1996, p.201. [13] Engel 2001, p.20. [14] Rna-Tas 1999, p.330.

[15] [16] [17] [18] [19] [20] [21] [22] [23] [24] [25] [26] [27] [28] [29] [30] [31] [32] [33] [34] [35] [36] [37] [38] [39] [40] [41] [42] [43] [44] [45] Rna-Tas 1999, pp.5455. Krist 1996, p.183. Spinei 2003, p.52. Krist 1996, pp.183184. Krist 1996, p.186. The Taktika of Leo VI (18.40), p. 453. Curta 2006, p.178. Engel 2001, pp.1112. Molnr 2001, p.13. Rna-Tas 1999, p.344. The Hungarian Illuminated Chronicle (ch. 28), p. 98. Krist 1996, pp.191192. Spinei 2009, p.72. Krist & Makk 1996, p.15. Anonymus, Notary of King Bla: The Deeds of the Hungarians (ch. 13), p. 37. Anonymus, Notary of King Bla: The Deeds of the Hungarians, note 1 on p. 8. Molnr 2001, p.201. Curta 2006, p.189. Krist & Makk 1996, p.18. Krist & Makk 1996, p.19. Anonymus, Notary of King Bla: The Deeds of the Hungarians (ch. 24), p. 59. Madgearu 2005, pp.9192. Anonymus, Notary of King Bla: The Deeds of the Hungarians (ch. 46), pp. 100101. Anonymus, Notary of King Bla: The Deeds of the Hungarians (ch. 52), p. 115. Krist & Makk 1996, p.21. Engel 2001, pp.1920. Krist & Makk 1996, p.20. Madgearu 2005, p.25. Constantine Porphyrogenitus: De Administrando Imperio (ch. 40), p. 179. Constantine Porphyrogenitus: De Administrando Imperio (ch. 40), p. 177. Krist & Makk 1996, p.Appendix 1.

Primary sources
Anonymus, Notary of King Bla: The Deeds of the Hungarians (Edited, Translated and Annotated by Martyn Rady and Lszl Veszprmy) (2010). In: Rady, Martyn; Veszprmy, Lszl; Bak, Jnos M. (2010); Anonymus and Master Roger; CEU Press; ISBN 978-963-9776-95-1. Constantine Porphyrogenitus: De Administrando Imperio (Greek text edited by Gyula Moravcsik, English translation by Romillyi J. H. Jenkins) (1967). Dumbarton Oaks Center for Byzantine Studies. ISBN 0-88402-021-5. The Hungarian Illuminated Chronicle: Chronica de Gestis Hungarorum (Edited by Dezs Dercsnyi) (1970). Corvina, Taplinger Publishing. ISBN 0-8008-4015-1. The Taktika of Leo VI (Text, translation, and commentary by George T. Dennis) (2010). Dumbarton Oaks. ISBN 978-0-88402-359-3.


Secondary sources
Curta, Florin (2006). Southeastern Europe in the Middle Ages, 5001250. Cambridge University Press. ISBN978-0-521-89452-4. Engel, Pl (2001). The Realm of St Stephen: A History of Medieval Hungary, 8951526. I.B. Tauris Publishers. ISBN1-86064-061-3. Krist, Gyula (1996). Hungarian History in the Ninth Century. Szegedi Kzpkorsz Mhely. ISBN1-4039-6929-9. (Hungarian) Krist, Gyula; Makk, Ferenc (1996). Az rpd-hz uralkodi [=Rulers of the House of rpd]. I.P.C. Knyvek. ISBN963-7930-97-3. Madgearu, Alexandru (2005). The Romanians in the Anonymous Gesta Hungarorum: Truth and Fiction. Romanian Cultural Institute, Center for Transylvanian Studies. ISBN973-7784-01-4. Molnr, Mikls (2001). A Concise History of Hungary. Cambridge University Press. ISBN978-0-521-66736-4. Rna-Tas, Andrs (1999). Hungarians and Europe in the Early Middle Ages: An Introduction to Early Hungarian History (Translated by Nicholas Bodoczky). CEU Press. ISBN978-963-9116-48-1. Spinei, Victor (2003). The Great Migrations in the East and South East of Europe from the Ninth to the Thirteenth Century. Romanian Cultural Institute (Center for Transylvanian Studies) and Museum of Brila Istros Publishing House. ISBN973-85894-5-2. Spinei, Victor (2009). The Romanians and the Turkic Nomads North of the Danube Delta from the Tenth to the Mid-Thirteenth century. Koninklijke Brill NV. ISBN978-90-04-17536-5.

External links
Marek, Miroslav. "arpad/arpad1.html" ( Genealogy.EU (http:// rpd, painting from the 19th century (
rpd House of rpd
Born: c. 845 Died: c. 907

Regnal titles Precededby lmos Grand Prince of the Hungarians c. 895 c. 907 Succeededby Zoltn (?)

Article Sources and Contributors

Article Sources and Contributors

rpd Source: Contributors: AVM, Adam Bishop, Adam78, AeonHun, Aetil, Alensha, Alma111, Altenmann, Andrea1952, Andromeda321, Angela, BD2412, Baffle gab1978, Balazs.varadi, Beyond silence, Billinghurst, Borsoka, Bryan Derksen, Candyman777, Chicheley, Closedmouth, Colonies Chris, Csendesmark, D6, DavidSzilagyi, Docu, Dougweller, Download, Downwards, Eklir, Emika22, Er-vet-en, Fakirbakir, FeanorStar7, Folantin, From-cary, Grin, HammerFilmFan, Hobartimus, Iritakamas, Japanese Searobin, Jaraalbe, John, Joy, Juro, Jyril, K. Lastochka, KFan II, Kenereth, Khazar2, Khoikhoi, Kiril Simeonovski, KissL, Kitten86, Koertefa, Korossyl, Ktsquare, Kummi, LT910001, LilHelpa, Lysy, Matthew Dillenburg, Michitaro, Mr Stephen, Nikai, Norden1990, Nozdref, Ovidiu., PBS-AWB, PZJTF, Pe-Jo, Qorilla, Rich Farmbrough, Robertgreer, RogDel, Rovibroni, Savolya, Squash Racket, Szabi, Tankred, The Emperor's New Spy, Themightyquill, V. Szabolcs, Vanished user ewfisn2348tui2f8n2fio2utjfeoi210r39jf, Vasile, Wetman, Why Not A Duck, Wizzard, Zigger, 63 anonymous edits

Image Sources, Licenses and Contributors

File:rpd Rckeve.JPG Source: License: Public Domain Contributors: Csandy File:ArpadstatueHerosSquareBudapest.jpg Source: License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Contributors: Ealdgyth File:rpd fejedelem 2 - Szkelybere.jpg Source: License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 Contributors: User:Fmvh File:Aquincum-buda-01.jpg Source: License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.5 Contributors: Antissimo, Civertan, G.dallorto, Olivier, Szczebrzeszynski, 4 anonymous edits File:Nagymegyer176.JPG Source: License: Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike Contributors: Szeder Lszl File:rpd's wife.jpg Source:'s_wife.jpg License: Public Domain Contributors: Fakirbakir

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