Francis Rákóczi and the Hungarian Rising of 1703-11

In the spring of 1703, the Hungarian people broke into spontaneous revolt against Habsburg rule and, under the leadership of Francis Rakoczi II, for eight years maintained their struggle for national liberty.

Portrait of Francis Rákóczi (1676-1735), by an unkown artist, in the National Museum, Budapest. Courtesy of the Hungarian News Information Service.
Francis Rákóczi the Second is one of those figures of history that the most dry-as-dust chronicling cannot altogether divest of romance, or of pathos. He came of famous stock, on both sides. His paternal great-grand­father and grandfather had been Princes of Transylvania in the age when that obscure tangle of mountains had suddenly emerged as a factor in the European balance of power and a haven for Protestant liberties.

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