Permanent exhibition - Room 2

From the Diet in Sopron (1681) to the formation of the congregation in Pest (1787)

            The Diet declared that on the territory of  Royal Hungary there should be two places in each county legalized by the law, pro­viding opportunities for the Protestants to have public worship. The Diet of Szécsény in 1705 provided favourable conditions for the development of the Protestant congregation: determined the usage of the churches on the principle of majority. It was at this time that the Lutherans were able to hold a Synod (1707) at Rózsahegy). The original protocol is displayed here, complete with the signature and seal of the participants.

Pietism, the spiritual movement with profound biblical knowledge and faith-evoking activity exerted an influence overcoming denominational limits mainly among the Slovakian inhabitants of Northern Hungary. The books and letters of Mátyás Bél (1684-1749) witness to this vivid period together with the so-cal­led "Tranoscius" hymn-books, choral and passion books.

The church-politics of the enlightened emperor Joseph II has brought about decisive reforms. The Edict of Tolerance is presented here, which declares that Protestant and Orthodox denominations are allowed to build the church and school of their own, to have their own pastor and teacher where the members of their adherents surpassed one hundred families. The religious tolerance which had been only a royal concession at the beginning became constitutionally legalized during the reign of Leopold II. The Diet of 1791 issued a law on the religious freedom of the Protestants.

The period following the Edict of Tolerance was characterized by the spread of the Enlightenment at the turn of the 18th-19th century. A significant representative of this period was Sámuel Tessedik (1742-1821). He was a pastor in Szarvas and he also founded a school for economics 200 years ago. His book written in Hungarian and German bears witness to his responsibility for the lot of the Hungarian peasants.

After the Turks had been driven out in 1686, only the Roman Catholics were allowed to settle down in Pest. Several years have passed after the Edict of To­lerance until a small but rapidly-growing body of Lutherans could think of founding a congregation with the help of some aristocratic patrons. The busy-years of the church foundation are documented by the land-buying contract (1792) and the list of subscription (1792-1797). You can see the school and church-designs. The process of construction was directed by two laymen: Professor Lajos Schedius (1768-1847) and the dealer Sámuel Liedemann (1756-1834). The former was the first Supervisor, the latter the first curator of the congregation. Their portraits can be seen in the show-case. You can also see a silver Lord's Supper Flagon and a baptismal flagon.


Lutheran Museum,
1052 Budapest, Deák tér 4.
Tel.: +36/20 824-3864