Nagy-Magyar Monarchia/Great Hungarian Empire





Head of State

His Serene Highness, Miklos von Horthy und Nagybanya, Regent of the Kingdom of Hungary (1920-1957), His Serene Highness, Prince Robert, Archduke of Austria-Este, Prince Imperial of Hungary, Regent of the Great Hungarian Empire (1957-1973), His Imperial Highness, Csaszar Lorinc I of the Great Hungarian Empire (from 1973)

Ruling Party

Nemzeti Osszefogas Kormanya/Government of National Unity, led by Magyar Nemzetiszocialista Fajvedo Nyilaskeresztes Part-Hungarista Mozgalom/Hungarian National Socialist Race-Protecting Arrow Cross Party-Hungarist Movement

Head of Government

Graf Pal Teleki von Szek (1939-1941), Laszlo Bardossy (1941-1944), Ferenc Szalasi (1944-1958), Istvan von Horthy und Nagybanya (1958-1978), Miklos von Horthy und Naybanya II (1978-1982), Istvan Sharif von Horthy und Nagybanya II (from 1982)

System of Government

Blend of German-type National Socialism, Italian-type Fascism and indigenous threads of reactionary politics (Turanizmus/Turanism, a szegedi gondolat/Szeged Idealism).


Hungary vacillated between pro-Germany and pro-Italy positions throughout the interwar period. The position of the Hungarian Regent Miklos von Horthy, was guided primarily by expediency: Italy provided protection from an expansionist Germany, however alliance with revisionist Germany promised the reconstruction of Hungary to her pre-1918 borders.

By embracing the alliance with Germany, Hungary did restore some of her lost territory. First Ruthenia (Carpethian Ukraine) and parts of Slovakia were taken from Czechoslovakia, then parts of Banat (Ujvidek) and Slovenia (Muravidek) from Yugoslavia (creating a border with Italy). Later Hungary annexed more Ukrainian and Polish territory from the Soviet Union (the region of Stanislaus), and regained Transylvania (Edely) and the connecting Cluj (Koloszvar) Corridor from Romania.

The issue of succession was both extremely contentious and symbolic of the rivalry of pro-Berlin and pro-Rome factions. Various solutions to the problem included the return of Otto von Habsburg, the son of the last King of Hungary, the creation of a new dynasty under Horthy’s son Istvan, or reuniting with Croatia under Zvonimir II or reunification with Austria as part of the Greater German Reich. More far-fetched schemes, such as the formation of a Turanian Federation with Finland and Turkey, were also mooted.

However when Horthy did die in February 1957 his choice of successor was revealed to be the infant Archduke Lorenz, son of a Habsburg prince and an Italian Savoy princess. This caused widespread dismay and led to protests throughout the country by members of a Strasserite faction of the ruling Arrow Cross party, opposed to a restoration of the Monarchy. The new regent, Lorenz’s father Archduke Robert von Hapsburg (the younger brother of Otto) then requested Italian intervention to suppress the rebellion.

Politicians considered to have supported the rebellion were removed from power in one way or another: the premier Ferenc Szalasi was moved to a sinecure in Montreux, in Vaud, Switzerland. Others were sent into colonial exile in the German territory known colloquially as 'Ob-Ungern' ('Hungary-on-the-Ob'). Some were simply murdered. These were replaced by more malleable figures plucked from obscurity, such as Zoltan Mesko and Count Sandor Festetics and by relative youngsters like Laszlo Csizsik-Casatary (aged 42), Karoly Zentai (aged 36) and Gergely Pongratz (aged just 25).

The country is essentially run on nepotistic lines, dominated by the House of Habsburg and the House of Horthy through their control of the Regency and later National High Council. The position of Head of Government has been held by two of Miklos von Horthy's sons, Istvan and Miklos II, and then by his grandson, Istvan II.

Istvan von Horthy II had previously acted as a roving ambassador for Hungary and for Hungarian Turanism, spending time in Turkey, Finland, the Netherlands East Indies, and in Germany's Turkic possessions.