Rumours that the United States has given the Hungarian government a firm date for the return of the famed St.
Rumours that the United States has given the Hungarian government a firm date for the return of the famed St. Stephen's Crown have been circulating in Budapest. The 900 year-old symbol of Hungarian nationhood has been held by the Americans since the end of the Second World War, but since President Carter's inauguration Hungarian hopes for its return have been high.
SYNOPSIS: The real crown and accompanying jewels are held at Fort Knox in America, but St. Stephen's Chapel in Budapest keeps this copy of the crown, and copies of the orb and sceptre. The originals date back to the tenth century, and some believe the upper part of the crown was given to Saint Stephen, the first king of Hungary, by Pope Sylvester the Second around the year 1,000.
The crown jewels were taken to Germany during the war and finally came into the hands of the United Sates occupation forces. Since then U.S. officials have said the return of the crown would have to wait for a substantial improvement in relations between Budapest and Washington. Rumours in Budapest say that diplomats on both sides consider this point has now been reached.
The value of the crown isn't known, but for the Hungarian people it's a priceless symbol of their nationhood.