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  • Where the Prince was Born

    A Short History of the Rákóczi Castle in Borsi

    Text: József Sebestyén

    Near Sárospatak and Sátoraljaújhely, right next to the Hungarian border Borsi, a tiny village is located in Slovkia. First mentioned authentically in 1221, the settlement was owned by noblemen and landlords from various families throughout the Middle Ages. As a result of a marriage, in 1616 it was taken over by the Rákóczi dynasty. On the site of the present castle there used to be a mansion which was burnt down in 1604 by troops rebelling against the Hapsburg rule. Ferenc Rákóczi II, later to become a prince, was born here in 1676. After several historic twists, the building was taken over by the Hungarian state in the early 20 century, and then was renovated in the 1940s in a comprehensive restoration project as a historic building. After the change of the political system in 1989, the local government of the village took possession of the castle, and commissioned the Ferenc Rákóczi II Memorial Committee to maintain it. The turn of the millennia saw an extensive research and excavations, as a result of which the building was restored in Hungarian-Slovak cooperation in 2021. Today the castle houses a memorial exhibition surveying and presenting the era when Rákóczi lived.