The city of Sárvár is the seat of the Sárvár district in Western Hungary, in Vas county. It is the 7th most popular settlement in Hungary in terms of guest nights spent in commercial accommodation.
It is located 25 km east of Szombathely and 18 km west of Celldömölk on the two banks of the Rába, south of the mouth of the Gyöngyös stream on the border of Kemeneshát.
It can also be reached from Sopron and Lake Balaton on the main road 84. It can be reached from Szombathely on the main road 88. Both main roads now bypass the settlement. Its railway station is next to the Székesfehérvár – Szombathely railway line no. Between 1913 and 1974, the Zalabér – Sárvár – Répcevis – Felsőlászló railway line connected Bükk to the north and Kőszeg from there, and Zalabér to the south.
Today's town was established by annexing the villages of Vármellék and Thirteen Cities to Sárvár in 1902, Sárt and Péntekfalu in 1912, and even Rábasömje in 1968.
The origin of his name
Its name refers to a fortress built on the edge of the Gyöngyös stream, in a swampy place; it was originally an earthen castle.
It was already inhabited in prehistoric times, as evidenced by finds from Neolithic pottery, bronze tools and cemeteries. The remains of a late Bronze Age earthen castle were excavated at Major Földvárpuszta.
AD In 10 the area was conquered by the Romans and a settlement called Bassiana was established north of today's Sárvár, near the mouth of the Gyöngyös, where the amber road crossed the Rába. Previously, there was a Celtic settlement at the crossing; their fortress was at Ostffyasszonyfa-Földvárpuszta. Remains of a Roman fortress built to protect the road were found on the eastern side of the Gyöngyös stream, in a place called Óvár.
The 9th-century cemetery of the Carolingian population was excavated at the End Mill.
After the conquest, the Hungarians built an earthen castle against the German attacks at the confluence of the Gyöngyös and the Rába, which is first mentioned in 1192. The castle was royal property until the 1280s, then it became the property of the Kőszeg family during the feudal anarchy.
In 1327, Sándor Köcski recaptured Károly Róbert from Németújvária, and in 1328 the king granted privileges to the inhabitants of Sársziget, which stood in today's downtown area.
In 1390 King Sigismund donated it to the Kanizsa family, and after they became unfaithful, in 1403 he besieged it and recaptured it from them. In 1405, the city was looted by the rebel Ludányians. In 1409 Pipó Ozorai became the owner of Sárvár, then in 1424 the Kanizsais recovered it by exchanging it for Simontornya. In 1444 the castle became the property of the Rozgonyi, and the Kanizsai could only reclaim it after a fruitless siege in 1454 by betrayal. In 1532 he was besieged unsuccessfully by the Turks; meanwhile, a hundred Sárvár fell in defense of the market town and the castle. Orsolya Kanizsai married Tamás Nádasdy in 1534 (or 1535), and as part of the dowry, Sárvár also became the property of the Nádasdy family.
The educated humanist Tamás Nádasdy established one of the cultural centers of the decaying country in the market town:
He founded a school in 1534,
In 1537, a printing house.
He appointed the school's teacher, János Sylvester, to head the printing house, and he translated and printed the translation of the New Testament here in 1541: it became the first book printed in Hungarian in the country.
He died here in 1556, and Sebestyén Tinódi Lantos rests on the land of the castle.
The lord of the castle was Ferenc Nádasdy, the “black beg” - his widow was Erzsébet Báthori, who was slandered by her girls.
In 1671, with the execution of Ferenc Nádasdy, his estates were also taken away, and the castle became the property of the Draskovichs, during which he began to decline as he gradually lost his military significance. He surrendered to the Kurucs in 1704, and on June 2, 1809, during the Napoleonic Wars, the city fell into French hands, with foreign troops remaining here until November.
Description of the settlement at the end of the 18th century:
Mixed Mezőváros Vas Várm. earthly Lord Szily, Brentano, and ‘Genoa Public. The company, its inhabitants are Catholics and others, lies on the waters of Gyöngyös, 4 meters from Szombathely. Once upon a time there was a castle for the Counts of Nádasdy, and there was also a book printing house here; border is good, its wealth is different, sometimes ‘harmful flooding of the countryside.
(András Vályi: Description of the Hungarian Country, 1796–1799)
The new boom began when, in 1803, the Este-Modena family took over the estate. The castle was rebuilt to suit their needs. The city was deprived of its city title in 1871; it was reached by the railway in the same year. It received electricity from the twin power plant from 1897. These two factors made it possible for large-scale industry to settle down:
In 1895 a sugar factory,
In 1904, a rayon factory was built;
small-scale industry and retail boomed, population grew.
At the beginning of the 20th century, the manor was developed
into a model farm by its new owner, Royal Prince Louis of Bavaria.
It was then that the educational institutions from which the
present-day school system evolved were founded. The hospital was
inaugurated in 1909. After the First World War, the development of
the settlement stopped, and after the closure of the rayon factory,
many residents emigrated to France and Belgium, respectively.
After the Second World War, a new plant, the Poultry Processing Company, started operating here, and after 1957 new plants were established in Sárvár. In 1961, oil explorers found medicinal water instead of oil; thereafter, spa tourism played an increasing role in development. Since 1968, Sárvár has been a city again. In 1978, the cultural center of Sárvár moved to Nádasdy Castle.
Production at the sugar factory was stopped in 1998. An industrial park has been built in the city since 1995.