Budapest is the capital of Hungary. As the largest city of Hungary, it serves as the
country's principal political, cultural, commercial, industrial, and transportation centre.
In 2010, Budapest had 1,721,556 inhabitants, down from 1980 peak of 2.06 million. The
Budapest Commuter Area is home to 3,271,110 people. The city covers an area of 525 square
kilometres (202.7 sq mi) within the city limits. Budapest became a single city occupying
both banks of the river Danube with a unification on 17 November 1873 of right (west)-bank
Buda and Óbuda with left (east)-bank Pest.
Historically, Aquincum, originally a Celtic settlement, was the direct ancestor of Budapest,
becoming the Roman capital of Lower Pannonia. Magyars arrived in the territory in the 9th
century. Their first settlement was pillaged by the Mongols in 1241-42. The re-established
town became one of the centres of Renaissance humanist culture in the 15th century.
Following the Battle of Mohács and nearly 150 years of Ottoman rule, development of the
region entered a new age of prosperity in the 18th and 19th centuries, and Budapest became a
global city after the 1873 unification. It also became the second capital of
Austria-Hungary, a great power that dissolved in 1918. Budapest was the focal point of the
Hungarian Revolution of 1848, the Hungarian Soviet Republic of 1919, Operation Panzerfaust
in 1944, the Battle of Budapest of 1945, and the Revolution of 1956.
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