1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Székesfehérvar

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SZÉKESFEHÉRVAR (Ger., Stuhlweissenburg, Lat., Alba Regalis or Alba Regia), a town of Hungary, capital of the county of Fejer, 41 m. S.W. of Budapest by rail. Pop. (1900), 30,451. It is situated in a marshy plain and is a well-built and prosperous town. Szekesfeh6rvar is the seat of a Roman Catholic bishopric, one of the oldest in the country, and was formerly a town of great importance, being the coronation and burial place of the Hungarian kings from the 10th to the 16th century. Amongst its principal buildings are the cathedral, the episcopal palace, several convents, of which the most noteworthy is the Jesuit convent, now a Cistercian secondary school with a handsome church, and the county hall. The town carries on a brisk trade in wine, fruit and horses, and is one of the principal centres of horse-breeding in Hungary. Sz6kesfehervar is one of the oldest towns of Hungary, in which St Stephen, the first king of Hungary, built a church, which served as the coronation church for the Hungarian kings. In the same church some fifteen kings were buried. In 1543 it fell into the hands of the Turks, under whom it remained until 1686. Before evacuat- ing it, the Turks plundered the tombs of the kings, destroyed the old church and several other buildings, and burnt the archives. Several sarcophagi of the kings, and the foundations of the old church, have been found by excavation beneath the cathedral.