History of the Family

Two Families – One History – Two Regions – One Nation

...is the project name concerning two companies that are connected by one story. They are located in two different countries that once formed one large entity. This is the story of the famous noble families of Forgách and Esterházy, whose representatives met in the 17th century and joined forces with one common goal, namely to defend their homeland, Hungary.

In the places where members of these famous Hungarian noble families were active, we can now find beautifully restored manor houses, abandoned castles, ruined castles on high hills, memorial plaques commemorating important battlefields. In the worse cases, however, they are just ruins, wreckage, fragments of forgotten history of the important Hungarian nobility.

Representatives of both families met on the battlefield of Vezekeny in the 17th century, where they fought on the side of the Habsburgs against a threefold Turkish overwhelming force. The first significant defeat of the Turks is symbolised today by a bronze statue of a lion on a stone pedestal, which also symbolises the death of four brave commanders from the Esterházy family.

Fortunately, there are also places that have been preserved almost unchanged for centuries. Such are, for example, the Forgách mansion in the Hungarian town of Mándok, which today operates as a 5-star hotel, or the Esteházy mansion in the Slovak town of Galanta, where, in addition to a gallery and a beautiful exhibition dedicated to the history of the mansion, you can admire the paintings of the famous Esterházy family in a themed restaurant with a wine bar.

Visit these unique places with us, go back in time with us and discover the history of these two Hungarian noble families. We look forward to your visit!


The Battle of Veľké Vozokany

The Battle of Veľké Vozokany is a significant encounter in the anti-Turkish wars, which took place on 26 and 27 August 1652 between the villages Veľké and Malé Vozokany. The united forces of the powerful Hungarian Forgách and Esterházy families, the garrisons of adjacent castles and the local peasants crushed the Turkish predatory expedition led by the vizier Kar Mustafa, commander of the garrison in Esztergom. There is a magnificent monument on the site of the battle where the four leading sons of the Esterházy family fell.

In August 1652, Turkish troops set out to plunder Upper Hungary in order to secure supplies for the winter. The Turks crossed the Danube and headed for the fortress of Nové Zámky, whose commander and general of the defense of the mining towns of Pohronie, Count Adam Forgách, repelled their attack. The Turks therefore continued along the Nitra River to Vráblí. Along the way, they looted the estates of the Forgáches and the Oponicks. Adam Forgách from Nové Zámky called military garrisons from the fortresses of Vrbel and Levice as reinforcements against the marauding Turks. Soldiers from the fortresses of Balážské Ďarmoty and Pápa also came to the aid of Forgách, Mikuláš Nadané and Žigmund Esterházy. Forgách correctly assumed that the Turkish army would return via the road through Veľké Vozokany, which connected Požitavie and Pohronie. The Hungarian forces from the region grouped in the area between Tesárskymi Mlyňanmi and Veliki Vozokany to block the Turks' way. Forgách decided to build a wagon fort near Veľké Vozokany on a large field. He asked for help from the noble Esterházy family – Ladislav(†), František(†), Tomáš(†), Gašpar(†), Ján, Žigmund, Mikuláš and Alexander with their troops arrived on the battlefield.

Kara Mustafa had fairly accurate information about the strength of Forgách’s forces. He did not know, however, that Forgách had asked the advocatuses of the surrounding villages for help. On the second day, peasants from the 16 villages of Požitavia also joined the battle, armed with axes, scythes, pitchforks and other weapons. Altogether, the Christian army had about 1,300 soldiers and several hundred peasants, against the threefold superior numbers of the Turks. In the morning they attacked the surprised Turks, wounding the horse of Kara Mustafa, who took to flight, and after a while his troops followed him. A total of 814 of Mustafa's fighters died in the battle, including several commanders, as well as Kara Mustafa's son, the Esztergom beg Aga Hussein.

The Battle of Velkovozokan was not of particular strategic importance. It was one of dozens of similar ones that took place in the territory of today's Slovakia in those times. However, it made history with the death of four members of the Esterházy family, whose remains were kept in the chapel of Šintava Castle until the funeral ceremony. The funeral took place on 26 November 1652 in Trnava and was attended by the leading representatives of Hungary. The coffins were placed in the family tomb in the Church of St. John the Baptist. The beautiful epitaphs of the four deceased are still on the wall of the presbytery.