February 24 is Mátyás’s (Matthias) nameday in the Hungarian calendar. According to Hungarian folklore weather forecasting Apostle Matthias’s day is remembered as JÉGTÖRŐ MÁTYÁS (’ice-breaking’ – jég + tör + ő) who cracks the ice with his axe and thus breaks the power of winter. For sure, spring is in the air.
Although not the most popular but Mátyás (Matyi) is one of the best sounding first names in Hungarian mainly thanks to King Matthias, our 15th-century renaissance king, also known as Matthias, Just. Budapest is abundant in mementos related to King Mátyás, among them the The Church of Our Lady, popularly known only as Matthias Church in Buda Castle,and several statues including his robust one at Heroes’ Square and the Matthias Fountain near the Royal Palace (see cover photo).
If you are interested in the real story of one of our greatest kings in 600 words, you’re welcome to read a piece originally published in Time Out Budapest: http://fungarian.hu/category/hungarian-histories/