Grandpa Kewl

Book Review – Austria-Hungary

This book was published in 1914 which makes its viewpoint to be in the years prior to the First World War and the breakup of the Empire that occurred after the end of the war.

It is a quite readable and enjoyable “travelog” of the region. I found myself routinely checking some of the locations mentioned on the Internet for further clarification, such as the “Iron Gate of the Danube”. The description of the travel thru the region is certainly from a time long gone and forever lost….a shame. The descriptions of the people are especially attractive.

There are, in addition, a variety of quite interesting color illustrations which I found fascinating.

Some notes I made while reading:

P 13 – The story of the disaster at Mohacs. Includes the following statement: “The Turk has always stood out conspicuously as the only Mussulman power in Europe, and in our time we have seen slice after slice cut away from his territory and set up as independent kingdoms. The time is surely not far distant when the Ottoman power will be pushed back into Asia, to which it so much more fitly belongs; in fact, only the jealosies of the great nations adjacent have so long delayed this consummation.” This was to occur at the end of the Great War.

P 32 – Royalty marries…They are first cousins

P 39 – Princess Zita. She appears on postage stamps of Hungary and was always remembered with reverence and love.

P 47 – A book to find and read: “In the Carpathians” by Mrs Phillimore.

P 58 – Reference to Szeged, which figures into the postage stamps of Hungary and its occupations.

P 60 – The Iron Gates

P 69 – “Numbers of the Alavs emigrate to America in the hope of making enough money to return to their wild fastnesses in comfort.

P 71 – Reference to the gipsies and Jews. Flattering of the first, not of the latter.

P 140 – Mohacs again. A quotation I have seen and read often: “So fearful an impression did this disaster make upon the minds of the Hungarians that even to this day, when a man loses house or land or parents or children it is a saying, “More was lost on Mohacs field”.”


I retain this book in my library associated with my collection of stamps from these 2 countries.

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