Introduction - István Dobó Castle Museum
The castle is a National Place of Memory. The museum collects, preserves and presents items of archaeological, historical, ethnographical, literary and artistic interest. The museum bears a particular responsibility for the preservation of the built heritage of Eger and Heves County and the legacy of the writer Géza Gárdonyi, author of 'Eclipse of the Crescent Moon'. The castle museum's collections and research focus on local history but include artefacts of national and international importance.
István Dobó István Castle Museum is a scientific and educational excellence centre providing high-quality interpretations of historical events. The castle grounds also offer valuable space for the community at large. As a popular tourist destination, we strive to disseminate historical information to as broad an audience as possible.
The Castle Museum is a county institution and has been called 'István Dobó Castle Museum' since 1958. The idea of establishing the museum dates back to the 19th century. The museum integrated exhibits from various exhibitions, including a collection in the Lyceum, items discovered during digs in the castle, and Ferenc Legányi's fossil finds. The museum also curates Gárdonyi's former home next to the fortress. A local history museum opened in the town in 1948. Until 1957 the castle still belonged to the Hungarian Army, and the underground casemates and galleries alone were open to the public. The museum moved to the castle in 1958.
Eger castle in the 16th-century formed a vital part of the border fortress system shielding Europe from further Ottoman aggression. The country had broken into three parts (Royal Hungary under the Habsburgs, Ottoman occupied Hungary and Transylvania, a vassal state of the Ottomans). The siege of 1552 represented the highpoint in the fortress' history when a force of a mere two thousand defended it against a Turkish contingent of nearly forty thousand soldiers. The victory saved the Hungarian Uplands, probably along with the rest of Europe. Sebestyén Tinódi Lantos, the famous chronicler, sang of this celebrated victory. His evocative lyrics, along with Géza Gárdonyi's powerful novel 'The Eclipse of the Crescent Moon' and the resulting film, etched this event forever in the Hungarian psyche.