National and historical symbols of Hungary

In this section you can find the crests of almost 2400 settlements of Hungary with notes. Find the starting letter of the settlement in the list and click if you want to see it.

The Coat-of-Arms of the Village of Harka
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Harka

(The County of Győr-Moson-Sopron)

In a pointed arched shield gules trimmed or the towers of the two temples, the hill of Harka, a garb and a bunch of grapes are borne.

The geographical situation of the village:

Harka is situated in the northwest of Hungary, in the county of Győr-Moson-Sopron, in the Alpokalja, 5 kilometres south of Sopron, right next to the Austrian border.

The village is situated 204 metres above sea level. Approaching the village from the direction of Sopron the Harkai hill can be seen, Kogelberg in its old name. The rock of the 276 metres high hill is gneiss. It is a nature conversation area. Its endangered plant is Stemless Carline.

The history of the village:

The first mention of the settlement is in a document from Székesfehérvár, in MAy 1245. The area of Harka was inhabited in the Roman times, people arrived in 18 BC. Several material proof about their stay were found during the centuries. In the 16th century a huge sarcophagus was found in Harka with the inscription Scarbantia (the ókori name of Sopron) on it. In 900 a water-pipe was found, which is parallel with brook Kecske, carrying the water to the settlement of Keresztúr. Some years later Mihály Reitner, a landowner of Harka found a Roman sarcophagus near Nap-hill with a skeleton and marbles.

From the chronicle and from the work of emperor Constantinus Porphyrogenitus we know more than 70 male names. One of them is Harka. The leader of the Kér dynasty that belonged to the conquering 7 dynasties was called Tétény, and he wore the dignitary of a harka, meaning magistrate. Tétény gave the proper name Harka to his son, who was the future harka. Harka, as a leader, took part in the Hungarian Conquest. In the 10th century the quarters (as well as the settlements) were named after those who lived there (eg.: Szabolcs, Gyula). This happened in the case of Harka as well, so he can derive his name from one of the conquering dynasties, as its quarter. The quarter of the grandson of Harka, the raiding and Bulcsú harka who was executed in 955 at Augsburg can be found in the village of Bulcsú (today it is called Bucsu) near Szombathely. Written documents mention Harka first in 1245, after the Tartar invasion.

The deed of gift of Béla IV writes: "The village became the property of the Küllői family in the middle of the 13th century. This event was followed by hereditary cases and even a murder. Then in 1429, Harka became the serf village of Sopron."

In the early 1500s Harka was the scene of the battles of different empires. The lord of the castle of Lándzsér (today Landsee in Burgenland) attacked, burgled and set Harka on fire. In 1529 the Turks who were marching against Vienna burgled and set the village on fire again. According to the oral tradition for a short period there was a Turkish crescent on the tower of the Péter-Pál Church, built in the early 1300s.

In the second half of the 16th century the teachings of Calvinism started to spread in Harka, however evangelic religious services were prohibited for a while. Despite of the prohibition, the serfs attended the service at Sopronkeresztúr or Nyék, where an evangelic minister preached.

The dwellers were suffering enormously because of the Bocskay uprising. Later the armies of Gábor Bethlen and Ferdinánd II devastated and ransacked Harka. Thanks to the hard work and patriotism of the inhabitants, the village was rebuilt and prospered again. After the edict of tolerance issued by József II, the evangelic church was built in 1787, however, it did not have a tower at that time. It was built 100 years later. The Catholics and Evangelics agreed to use the bell that belonged to the evangelic congregation in the Catholic Church. The felirat on the bell can be seen clearly today: "Property of the evangelic congregation of Harka, cast in 1658." On 2nd October 1707, as part of the war of independence led by Rákóczi, there was a Kuruts-Hapsburg battle in the fields of Harka.

The highest point of the education in Harka was the Noble Academy. The village became recognised nationwide at this time.

Between 1784 and 1789 young nobles came from all over Hungary to study in the school of György Nagy, evangelic minister, where they could learn German language in 6 months. In 1862 Petz minister established the famous four-part Concordia choir, who won 1st prize on a choir contest in Vienna, in 1879.

On 7th April 1881, Ferenc Liszt travelled from Sopron to Doborján, his home village through Harka on a carriage. As a welcome, the Concordia male choir sang the Szózat (second Hungarian national anthem) and Liszt said the following: "Gentlemen, you have gold in your throat."

The economical and cultural life of Harka meant quality among the neighbouring villages. The inhabitants were farming people, sold their goods in Sopron. The German speaking people, who loved their village, endowed two monuments on Harka: the millennium monument erected in 1896 and those people who emigrated to the USA erected a war memorial for the memories of those who were the victims of World War I.

The glorious era of the village that last for centuries ended in 1946. The German speaking Hungarians were displaced, only 15 of them could stay. New settlers arrived from the villages of Rábaköz as well as several families from the Alföld and Transylvania.

László Rajk, Minister of the Interior, the candidate of the village of Harka changed the name of the village into Magyarfalva in 1947 because of the demand of the misled Hungarian settlers. He arbitrarily ordered the repeal of the Hungarian Harka name, that was given to the village at the time of the Hungarian Conquest and the introduction of the name Magyarfalva created in haste. On 20th August 1947, on the dedication ceremony, László Rajk was also present, he was the orator of the day. 43 years later, as a result of a local referendum/census, on 1st April 1990, the village got back its ancient name, Harka.