Hungarian Huns Hunger for Honor

Hungarian descendents of Atilla the Hun are lobbying for recognition as a distinct ethnic group.

Hungarian Huns bid for new status (BBC)

Hungary’s MPs will hear an application from a group of people who claim descent from Attila the Hun and want recognition as an ethnic minority. The Hun swept across Europe from central Asia in the 4th and 5th Centuries AD, conquering territory as far west as modern-day France. But after Attila’s death in 453, they disappeared from the history books.

Attila is still a popular name, but the emergence of a group of 21st Century Hungary Huns is raising eyebrows. Branded the scourge of God by the peoples he conquered in southern and western Europe, Attila the Hun has had a better press among the Hungarians, the Turks and other related peoples. Nearly 2,500 people have so far identified themselves as Huns on a petition presented to the Hungarian parliament’s national elections committee. Under Hungary’s 1993 rights of national and ethnic minorities act, that is enough for their application to be considered by parliament.

One wonders whether they’ll sit around the campfire telling stories about their ancestors and the times they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, tape wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the country side?

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Meezer says:

    Their armies passed and then returned-
    They killed and raped, they stole and burned.
    So from the cradle we had learned
    To be as hard as stone.

    folk song about the Huns

  2. Attila Girl says:

    I had no idea John Kerry was one of us! This changes everything.