Famous People of Hungarian Descent

There are many well known celebrities and people of accomplishment who have Hungarian roots. Wonder who they are?

famous Hungarians

Hungarians – They Might Surprise You

There are many more famous Hungarians than you might think, and some of your favorite celebrities might be Hungarian in descent. Look through the lists and learn about a few of them.

You might notice the large contingent of Jewish Hungarians, since Hungary had a long history of Jewish, Turk, and Christians living together with tolerance, there being both periods of toleration and oppression. With notable exceptions of persecution in history, including during the World War 2, when many Jews fled or were forcibly transported from the country.

All histories are biased to some extent… here are a few to read to give some context to the understanding of Hungarian people:

All part of the tragic history and land that has produced some very illustrious people.

Who’s Who?

Who are the famous Hungarians?

American Revolutionary War Hero
Michael Kovats de Fabriczy, “founder of the American light cavalry”.

Actors and Actresses

Jessica Szohr
Jessica Szohr

 

I didn’t know they were Hungarian!

Jessica Szohr

Goldie Hawn

Nick Bakay

Mariska Hargitay

Mickey Hargitay

Rachel Weisz

Don Adams

River and Joaquin Phoenix
Drew Barrymore

Jamie Lee Curtis

Tony Curtis

Zsa Zsa Gabor, Hungarian Born American Actress

Eva, Ava, and Magda Gabor

Mitzi Gaynor

Robert Hegyes

Leslie Howard

Ernie Kovacs

Peter Lorre

Bela Lugosi

Paul Newman

In Pursuit of the Common Good: Twenty-Five Years of Improving the World, One Bottle of Salad Dressing at a Time
In Pursuit of the Common Good: Twenty-Five Years of Improving the World, One Bottle of Salad Dressing at a Time

In retrospect, it is an odd thing that Paul Newman’s  film charisma seems almost eclipsed by the food business his name represents now. From salad dressing to spaghetti sauce and a number of fairly wholesome products in between, His politics and good taste combined in a business. Interesting story to read.

Directors and Film Media

George Cukor

 

William Fox – Hungarian founder of Fox Studios

Who’s Who

Albert Szent-Gyorgyi
Albert Szent-Györgyi

 

In Science

People of Hungarian descent

Donat Banki – co-inventor of the carburetor

James Csonka – Co-invented the carburetor

Les Besser – “Father of microwave computer aided design.”

Charles Simonyi – Computer scientist

Jozsef Szabo von Szentmiklos

Albert Szent-Györgyi

Leó Szilàrd

Edward Teller “the father of the hydrogen bomb”
Dr. Bela Schick, a Hungarian-born American pediatrician discovered a cure for diphtheria. His “Schick test”, given to newborns tested for susceptibility to diphtheria.

Dr. Roy A.E. Bakay -the leading authority on surgery for movement disorders

Sports Figures

The Greatest Soccer Player
Ferenc Puskàs “The Galloping Major” (1927-2006), regarded as one of the greatest soccer players of all time, the “Mighty Magyars”

Famous Athletes of Hungarian Descent

  • Joe Namath, American Football Great
  • Monica Seles, Tennis Superstar Athlete
  • Joe Theismann, famous football player.
  • Ferenc Puskás, one of the greatest soccer players of all time.

In Music

Franz Liszt
Franz Liszt

People of Hungarian descent

 

Franz Liszt

Béla Bartók

Zoltán Kodály

Transylvanian Roots: The True Life Adventures of a Hungarian-American
Transylvanian Roots: The True Life Adventures of a Hungarian-American

How do you say “Famous Hungarians” in Hungarian? “Híres Magyarok”

In Art – Artists of Hungarian Descent

Women of Eger by Bertalan Szekely

Hungarian-descent Artists:

Albrecht Durer

 

Willy Pogány – Artist and Illustrator

Hungarians

A Blend of People and Culture

Hungary stood at the border of many conquests, and in such situations there are groups of people who settle and contribute their culture and influence; additionally some of the conflicts so decimated the population of Hungary that other groups were invited in to resettle the land. And so the fascinating blends and historical distinctions of the story of Hungarians takes place.

This resulted in groups of Magyars, of Germans known as Swabians in Hungary, Turks, numerous other culture and ethnic groups, and Jews.

The Magyars, considered the native people, were themselves invading conquerors. Later the Turks (Ottomans), displaced in rule by the Austrians, with the invited Swabians (Germans) to repopulate the land after the horrendous effects of the Ottoman wars. [1]

 

 

The Hungarians: A Thousand Years of Victory in Defeat
The Hungarians: A Thousand Years of Victory in Defeat

Budapest, Hungary by Julia Thorne

 

Other Disciplines and Accomplishments – More Famous Hungarians

The Famous Houdini

Harry Houdini, Magician was born in Budapest.
The Secret Life of Houdini: The Making of America's First Superhero
The Secret Life of Houdini: The Making of America’s First Superhero

Barbara Palvin – Fashion Model

Barbara Palvin - Fashion Model
Barbara Palvin – Fashion Model

The Truth Is Out There

When Nobel Prize winner Enrico Fermi was asked if he believed in extraterrestrials, he replied:

“They are among us, but they call themselves Hungarians”

Looking At Long Ago

Inventive

Have Fun Watching

Entertainers

Gene Simmons of Kiss fame was born in Israel – both his parents, however were born in Hungary.

Hungarian History

Find Out More About Famous Hungarians – elsewhere on the web

…in a Nutshell

Jews in Hungary

Find Your Rubik’s Cube – And go play with it awhile 🙂

Yes, this was a Hungarian invention.

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