Debrecen is the third largest and second most populous settlement in
Hungary, the seat of Hajdú-Bihar county and the Debrecen district, a
city with county rights. About 38.2% of the county's population lives
here, and it is the largest city in Tiszántúl. It is sometimes referred
to as "Calvinist Rome" or "Cívisváros". It is the intellectual,
cultural, economic, tourism and transport center of the Eastern Hungary
region, the Northern Great Plain statistical region and the Tiszántúl
landscape, and it is one of the most dynamically developing cities in
It is first mentioned in writing in the 13th century. In 1361, Louis I gave the citizens of Debrecen the right to elect the city's judge and council, and in addition, it was given the status of market town and free royal city in 1693. The main source of income was the cattle trade, animal husbandry and handicrafts. Despite the booming economy, the buildings remained simple and the streets were barely paved. Multi-storey buildings were rare until the 19th century. Between 1450 and 1507 Debrecen was the seat of the noble Hunyadi family. Its name was known throughout the continent for its famous fairs and its reformed school, which was also outstanding in European terms.
During the Ottoman occupation, near the border, without a castle or city walls, Debrecen often found itself in a difficult situation, and the city was saved only by the diplomatic skills of its leaders. The openness of the city enabled the quick and early settlement of the Reformed, which is why the Reformed bishop Péter Méliusz Juhász (ca. 1536–1572) referred to Debrecen as Calvinist Rome not long after, and it has remained the center of Calvinism in Hungary to this day. The Reformation was so radical here that the Catholics lost all their churches. From 1552, only Reformed people could settle in the city. In 1693, Lipó I raised it to a free royal city, and in 1715, the Roman Catholic Church returned to Debrecen, the city also gave them permission to build a church, so the Piarist monks could build the St. Anne's Cathedral. By this time, the city was already an important cultural, commercial and agricultural center, and many future scientists and poets attended its Protestant College founded in 1538 (the predecessor of today's University of Debrecen and at the same time the Reformed Theological University of Debrecen).
In 1849, Debrecen was the capital of Hungary for a short time, when the Hungarian revolutionary government fled here from Pest-Buda (today's Budapest) after the army of Windisch-Grätz occupied it. On April 14, 1849, Lajos Kossuth announced the dethronement of the Habsburgs and the independence of Hungary in the Great Reformed Church. One of the last battles of the war of independence also took place near Debrecen, the Russians allied with the Habsburgs defeated the Hungarian army near the western part of the city.
During the monarchy, the construction of the Pest-Debrecen railway line in 1857 led to an industrial boom. At that time, the School of Natural Resources and Life Sciences and the College of Agriculture were opened, mills, sugar, brick and tobacco factories, gas plants were built, banks and other service providers settled in the city. The Csokonai National Theater opened in 1865. Hospitals, schools, barracks and churches were built. After the construction of the Aranybika Hotel, the county hall and the town hall, it slowly acquired an urban appearance. In the city forest where the university is located today, thermal water was found in 1823, which was used in the newly built Vigadó spa. In 1912, the Parliament founded the Tisza István University in Debrecen, with which, in addition to the church higher education founded in 1538, a state university was established in Debrecen as one of its legal successors, which, as the University of Debrecen, today has the widest range of education in the country, educating about 30,000 Hungarian and 7,000 foreign students. largest university with an annual budget of more than HUF 200 billion. The tram line, which is still operating today, came into service in 1884.
In 1944, Debrecen briefly became the capital and seat of government of Hungary for the second time. In the same year, the Red Army launched an attack towards Budapest and Debrecen. About 70 percent of the houses were affected by the bombing of the Second World War, more than half of the buildings were destroyed.
Before the 1950 county planning, it belonged to Hajdú County. Debrecen City Day: April 11
It is located in the eastern part of the country, not far from
the geographical center of the Hajdú-Bihar county, 230 km from
Budapest. The Romanian border stretches for about 35 kilometers to
the east. The main roads 4, 33, 35, 47, 48, 354 and 471 and the M35
highway, as well as the 100 Railway lines 105, 106, 108, 109, 110
and 333 (Zsuzsivasút).
The city is located near two landscapes, Hajdúhát and Nyírség. The Nyírség is a sandy area, sloping from north to south, its western border is at the Tócó valley. Hajdúhát is a loess area, sloping towards the west. The entire area of Debrecen is located in Nyírség. There are no significant height differences, the height point located in the wall of the Debrecen Reformed College is 119.6 meters above sea level.
The settlement was built primarily on Tertiary and Quaternary sedimentary rocks and black agricultural soil.
The city is first documented in 1235 as Debrezun. The name is derived from the Turkish word debresin, meaning "alive" or "moving", and is also a male given name. Another theory is that the name is of Slavic origin and means "highly esteemed" (e.g. Polish: dobrze cenione), from the Slavic Dübricin, or from dobre zliem ("good land").
The number of hours of sunshine in Debrecen and its surroundings is
approximately 2,000 per year based on an average of many years. In 2013,
the highest number of hours of sunshine in the country was measured
here, which was 2,321.7 hours this year.
The average annual temperature is around 10 °C. The warmest month is July +20 °C, and the coldest is January with an average temperature of −2 °C. Apart from the winter months, frosts in April or May are common.
In 2018, Debrecen fell into the small area where the number of hours of sunshine was the highest in the country and the least amount of precipitation fell.