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National Memorial – The Oratory

National Memorial – The Oratory

National Memorial – The Oratory

Throughout nearly five hundred years, countless distinguished historical personalities have visited the College, including Transylvanian princes, Habsburg rulers, intellectual leaders of the reform era such as István Széchenyi and many more. Yet the oratory is considered primarily a memorial of the 1848/49 war of independence. Its two most precious treasures are considered the two National Guard flags of the students. From 9 January until 31 May 1849 the House of Commons of the Hungarian Parliament held its sessions here, and the dethronement of the Habsburgs was also prepared within these walls. Among the various memorial documents of the wars of independence of the estates, the oratory also displays the original of Kossuth’s address, in which he proclaimed Debrecen the “guard-city of Hungarian freedom”. Further, the carving made by the Nagytemplom’s (Great Church) pastor, Mihály Könyves Tóth during his imprisonment in Olmütz (now Olomuc) – later condemned to be hanged by the neck until dead, a page of the Declaration of Independence, and numerous historical relics are also displayed.