Place names in Budapest may confuse not only foreigners but locals as well, just take CORVIN: We have CORVIN KÖZ (crescent) including CORVIN MOZI (cinema) and CORVIN PLAZA at the CORVIN NEGYED (quarter) metro station, CORVIN TÉR (square) in Buda near Fő utca and CORVIN ÁRUHÁZ (Department Store) in Blaha Lujza tér, not to mention CORVINUS University at the Szabadság Bridge.

Places called CORVIN are often decorated with a raven with a ring in its beak. The symbolism is obvious to Hungarians who have all read our great poet, János Arany’s eloquent ballad about Erzsébet Szilágyi, King Mathias’s mother. The raven with the ring refers to Matthias Corvinus Hunyadi, our great Renaissance king. CORVIN originates from the Latin for raven, corvus, which was the heraldic symbol of the Hunyadi family.

The cult of King Matthias is deeply seated in the Hungarian psyche. Language learners and parents should show their children the wonderful animated Hungarian tales about King Matthias by Marcell Jankovics:

If you are interested in the real story of Mátyás, read my article published in TIME OUT BUDAPEST