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Magyar ni sorsok

az I. vilghborban
(Wo)men Are Heroes, Too:
The Lives of Hungarian Women
in World War I
1

az els vilghbor volt az els modern hbor. Abban az rtelemben


is, hogy nem csupn a hadseregeknek kellett meg
kzdeni egymssal,
hanem a hadvisel felek igyekeztek egsz trsadalmukat mozgstani
a gyzelem rdekben. Ezrt a hbor Magyarorszg szmra sem csak
a hadkteles kor frfiak rszvtelvel zajlott, hanem rszt vett
benne az akkori orszgban lt mintegy 11 milli n is. A killts s jelen
kiadvny az kzdelmes helytllsukat kvnja nhny jellemz rsz
let segtsgvel bemutatni.
Ha a fegyveres harcokban nhny rdekes, de nagyon csekly szm
kivteltl eltekintve csak a frfiak vettek is rszt, a nkre is fontos
feladatok hrultak. A frfiak lelkestse, a sebesltek polsa a ha
gyomnyos elvrsok kz tartozott, de ezt most kiegsztette, hogy
a millis zmra a frontra kerlt frfiak helyt is zmmel a nknek
kellett betlteni a gazdasgban. Az elhzd hborban a termels
fenntartsnak nagy szerepe volt, s mivel a megt ermelt javakbl
elssorban a harcol hadseregek rszesltek, a htorszgban marad
tak elltsa egyre romlott. Ennek krvallottjai kz tartoztak a sok
esetben csald
fenntarti szerepre knyszerlt nk is. A htorszg
laki azonban nem csak materilis rtelemben nlklztek. Sokaknak
ennl is nehezebb lehetett a lelki szenveds: az aggds a szeretett
firt, fivrrt, frjrt vagy kedvesrt. A remny, hogy nem lesz baja, s
psgben visszatr. A szom orsg, ha fogsgba kerlt, megsebeslt, ha
csonkn s betegen trhetett csak haza. A hsi hallt haltak utn
maradt szzezernyi gyszol tragdija.

Ismeretlen: Krhzbarakk eltt 1917, KK tul.


Unknown: Outside of Medical Barracks, 1917, Property of K.K.
Ismeretlen: Csoportkp bosnyk s trk katonkkal, 1916, Fortepan,
Unknown: Group Picture with Bosnian and Turkish Soldiers, 1916, Fortepan
2

As the first modern war, World War I meant far more than great armies locked in conflict against one
another: the powers at war also strove to mobilize every aspect of society in the interest of victory.
For Hungary, this war therefore demanded much more than the contributions made by conscriptionaged men: the roughly 11 million women living in Hungary at this time also did their part for the war
effort. The aim of this exhibition is to present a few, representative glimpses of their wartime struggles
and sacrifices.
Other than a few very rare, yet fascinating cases, women did not march into battle: their equally
important duties lay elsewhere. While the traditional roles of supporting the troops or nursing the
wounded was still expected of women, it was also up to them to fill the absence of millions of men
needed to support agriculture and the economy. As the war continued to drag on, a nations ability to
maintain production became vitally important: since the majority of manufactured goods and food
stuffs were sent to the front, those back home faced increasingly diminished circumstances. Frequently
thrust into the position of supporting their families, women bore the brunt of this burden. Yet those
waiting on the homef ront did not suffer from material privation alone: far worse was the mental
anguish they endured while agonizing over the fates of beloved sons, brothers, or husbands. This
exhibition pays tribute to their hope that everything would be all right their loved ones would come
back from battle unscathed. To their grief over those captured, injured, or returned home missing
limbs or racked by illness. To the hundreds of thousands of personal tragedies evoked by the words:
He died a heros death, in the service of his country.

1.

E lv rsok
A hbor eltti Magyarorszgon a nk trsadalmi szerepe korl
tozott volt. Elsdleges feladatuknak a frfiak segtst tartottk,
s a hbor elejn az elitek ltal irnytott sajt is ezt vrta el
a magyar nktl. A frfiak ltal elindtott hbort a nknek a maguk
eszkzeivel kellett tmogatni: a hazafias lelkeseds fokozsval,
a hadba vonul frfiak tmogatsval, ltalban a hbor melletti
killssal. A sajtban pldaknt bemutatott nfelldoz honl e
nyok a haza cljaira felajnlottk kszereiket, arany gyriket;
odaadan poltk a hbor sebesltjeit; hadiklcsnt jegyeztek, s
msokat is erre buzdtottak; s takarkoskodtak mindenhol, ahol
csak lehetett. A konyhban elviseltk, hogy mind nehezebben s
drgbban lehetett beszerezni a nyersanyagokat, s j teleket
talltak ki. A ruhzkodsban elvrtk, hogy az ellensges orszgok
divatja helyett legfeljebb nmet vagy osztrk mintkat kv etve
ltzkdjenek a hlgyek, de persze a hazai termkek elnyben
rszestse szmtott a leghelyesebb magatartsnak. A mintt ter
mszetesen a legelkelbb trdsadalmi rtegek adtk meg. Az ural
kod csald ntagjai s az arisztokrata hlgyek lltak a klnbz
jtkonysgi akcik lre, elvllalva sok szervezet vezetst, vagy
legalbb vdnksgt. Klnsen fontos volt a Habsburgok magyar

orszgi ghoz tartoz, npszer Jzsef fherceg felesge, Auguszta fhercegn, aki a nevt visel
Auguszta alap rvn ltalnos elismertsgre tehetett szert.
Ez a minta s elvrs-rendszer azonban jrszt a felsbb rt egekre gyakorolhatott csak hatst,
hiszen a szegn yebbeknek nem az okozta a f problmt, hogy nem kvethetik a prizsi divatot.

Ismeretlen: Hadik Karolina grfn s Apponyi Albert grfn, a Gyors segtsg a harcmeznek akci irnyti.
FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.
Unknown: Countess Karolina Hadik and the wife of Count Albert Apponyi, Directors of the Urgent Aid to the Battlefield Drive.
Property of the Budapest Collection of the Budapest Metropolitan Library
Ismeretlen: Lbadozk dltelepe a Margitszigeten. Auguszta fhercegasszony vrskeresztes ltzetben megrkezik az
nneplyes megnyitsra. FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.
Unknown: Centre for Convalescents on Margit Island. Archduchess Augusta Arriving in Red Cross Uniform for the Official Opening.
Property of the Budapest Collection of the Budapest Metropolitan Library
5

Ismeretlen: Magyar hadifogolyment mozgalom Rkosi Szidi s szninvendkei az Andrssy ton. FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.
Unknown: Movement to Save Hungarian Prisoners of War, Szidi Rkosi and Her Drama Students in Andrssy Street.
Property of the Budapest Collection of the Budapest Metropolitan Library
Ismeretlen: Pnzgyjts katonanapon a Npsznhz eltt 1915. k. FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.
Unknown: Money Collection on Soldiers Day, in front of the Public Theatre, circa 1915
Property of the Budapest Collection of the Budapest Metropolitan Library
Ismeretlen: Szekerek a Nagykrton, rajtuk katonknak sszegyjttt meleg ruha. FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.
Unknown: Wagons Transporting Winter Clothes for Soldiers, on Budapests Main Boulevard.
Property of the Budapest Collection of the Budapest Metropolitan Library
7

e x pectations
Women were allowed a very limited social role in pre-war Hungary.
According to the norms of the times, a womans primary duty was to
be a helpmate to her husband, mother to her children. Completely
controlled by Hungarys elite, the press played a particularly
important role in engendering and propagating this image of women.
Trapped in a conflict created by men, women supported the war the
only ways they could: by boosting patriotic fervor, encouraging
troops on their way to the front and advocating the war effort.
Newspapers abounded with references to self-sacrificing, patriotic
daughters who donated rings and jewellery to their country,
selflessly nursed the wounded, collected money for war bonds, or
convinced others to perform similar, patriotic acts. Thriftiness was
a trait women dedicated themselves to with zeal: as basic staples
began to vanish from kitchen pantries, women invented new dishes.
Instead of following fashions imported from enemy countries,
women were expected to dress at the very least in the German

Ismeretlen: Sebeslteknek sszegyjttt gynemk, prna, takar, huzat, leped. FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.
Unknown: Bedding, Pillows, Blankets, Sheets Collected for the Wounded. Property of the Budapest Collection of the Budapest
Metropolitan Library
8

or Austrian style; purchasing and wearing local products


remained the most ideal wardrobe choice for a woman to make.
Hungarys nobility naturally provided the role models for
women to follow. Various charity campaigns and organizations
were either led or sponsored by women connected to the
royal family or other aristocractic lineages. A particularly
important role was played by Archduchess Augusta, a member
of the Hungarian branch of the Habsburg line as well as wife
to the popular Archduke Joseph. Her influence became even
more widespread through the institution that bore her name,
the Augusta Foundation.
These kinds of expectations and social norms had the most
effect on members of the upper classes: even in times of
peace, the poor had few opportunities to feel concerned
about Paris fashion.

Ismeretlen: Ezer karcsonyfa nnepe a Vigadban a hadbavonultak gyermekei szmra lltotta a fvros kznsge.
FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.
Unknown: Celebration of One Thousand Christmas Trees at the Vigad, Held by the Capital City for the Children of Soldiers Fighting
on the Front. Property of the Budapest Collection of the Budapest Metropolitan Library
9

2.

bcs
1914. jlius 28-n adtk t Belgrdban az OsztrkMagyar Monarchia
Szerbinak szl hadzenett, s a kvetkez napokban bekvetkez
tovbbi hadzenetekkel megindult a vilghbor. Az osztrk-magyar
hadvezets elei nte igyekezett a legfiatalabb korosztlyokat behvni,
azaz a mg ntlen s gyermektelen, teht nem csaldfenntart
frfiak vonultak be elsknt. A ksbbiekben is prbltak figyelni
arra, hogy a htorszgi termelsben fontosabb szerepet betltk
(mozdonyvezetk, hadiipari szakmunksok stb.) helyett inkbb a fld
nlkli szegnyparasztok kerljenek a frontokra, de az risi
vesztesgek s az el
hzd hbor miatt korbban felmentett
csoportokra is sor kerlt. A hbor msodik felben ezrt mr az is
ter
mszetesnek szmtott, ha negyvenes veikben jr, tbb
gyer
mekes csaldapk harcoltak a fronton.
A legkzelebbi laktanyba bevonult frfiaknak a frontra induls
eltt lehetsget adtak arra, hogy elbcszzanak csaldtagjaiktl.
Sokan ekkor lefotografltattk magukat, s ez a kp gyakran az
utols emlk maradt a frjrl.

10

A frontra indul frfiakat nneplye


sen bcsztattk a vastllomson.
A frfiakat a hbor elejn mg a har
ciassg s lelkeseds jellemezte, de
az otthon maradt nk mr ekkor is
megknnyeztk

szeretteik

hadba

vonulst. A ksbbiekb en a lelkese


ds albbhagyott, s csak a legfia
talabbakra volt jellemz a hazafias
buzgalom.

Alexy Trajn Bla: Bcszik a baka. 1918. k. Az rdekes jsg plyzatn harmadik djat nyert kp. KK tul.
Trajn Bla Alexy: Infantryman Bidding Farewell, circa 1918. This photo won 3rd place in a competition held by the rdekes jsg.
Property of K.K.
Ismeretlen: Hzaspr utols fnykpe 1914. zselatinos napfnypapr, KK tul.
Unknown: Married Couples Last Photograph 1914. Silver chloride paper, Property of K.K.
11

12

farewell
On 28 July, 1914 the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy declared war on Serbia, a move quickly copied by other
nations. The war had begun: at first, Austro-Hungarian military leaders made efforts to conscript men
young enough to be still single and without families. The first battles were therefore not fought by
fathers responsible for supporting a wife and children. Later on, care was still made to send landless
and impoverished peasants to the front, rather than those (train engineers, munitions workers, etc.)
who played a key role in production. As the war drew on and casualties climbed to horrifying numbers,
even men from these fields were called into service. By the second half of the war, it was deemed natural
for men in their forties often fathers supporting multiple children to be in battle.
While still quartered in nearby barracks, men were able to bid farewell to their loved ones before
heading off to war. Many took this opportunity to have their photograph taken: this picture was
frequently a wifes final memory of a beloved husband.
At the train station, soldiers travelling to the front were sent off amidst great ceremony. At the
beginning of the conflict, men were filled with martial zeal and patriotic ardor, while the tears were
already streaming down womens faces. With the wars progression, even the men had little appetite for
battle; only the youngest of the young were able to marshal an air of patriotic fervor.

Ismeretlen: Mr elmentnk Galicyba.. 1914. zselatinos ezst, KK tul.


Unknown: Already Off to Galicia, 1914. Silver chloride, Property of K.K.
Ismeretlen: Utols csaldi fot 1914. zselatinos ezst, KK tul.
Unknown: Familys Last Photo, 1914. Silver chloride, Property of K.K.
13

3.

hi n yzol...
1914 nyarn mindeki rvid, pr hnapos hborra szmtott, ahonnan
kemny, frfias verekeds utn, bizonyos vesztesgeket is elszen
vedve ugyan, de gyztesen, dicssgben trnek haza a katonk. Az
elhzd hbor az otthon maradottakat lelkileg is megviselte,
hiszen a hossz vesztesglistk s a hazarkez sebesltek olykor
szrny srlsei nyomn mindenkiben feltmadhatott a szorongs:
jl van-e? l-e mg?
A katonk s otthonmaradt csaldtagjaik kztti levelezs rszben
tudott csak vlaszt adni ezekre a knz krdsekre, hiszen a levelek
lassan rkeztek, olykor kereszteztk egym st, radsul a katonai
cenzra nem engedte, hogy bizonyos krdsekrl a valsgnak meg
felelen rjanak egym sn ak. Mgis ezek a levelek jelentettk a t
volban harcol frfia khoz a legszorosabb szlat, akik amennyire
lehetett gy prbltak hrekhez jutni az ids szlk egszsgi lla
potrl, a gyermekek fejldsrl vagy a gazdasg helyz etrl.
A katonkat idnknt hazaengedtk szabadsgra, de ez rendszertelen
s megvonhat lehetsg volt. A fogsgba esettek pedig csak a h
bor utn kerlhettek haza, nem egyszer ngy vagy akr t vnyi
tvollt utn.

Ismeretlen: Frfi nlkl 1916. zselatinos napfnypapr, KK tul.


Unknown: Without Men, 1916. Silver chloride. Property of K.K.
14

15

16

long ing
In the summer of 1914, everyone was counting on a short war, one to be won in tough, manly combat, with
some losses for sure, but still a war to end in utter victory after a couple of months. The conflicts
progression exacted an enormous, emotional toll on those left behind: the release of fresh casualty
lists or the sight of trains bearing wounded sold iers often suffering horrorific injuries was more than
enough for the worry to grow: what of my husband? Is he well? Is he still alive?
Correspondence between soldiers and their families only provides a partial glimpse into the torturous
anxiety that lay behind these questions: not only did it take time for lett ers to arrive, messages
frequently crossed one another, or censorship did not allow certain questions to be answered
according to stark reality. These letters were still the strongest link to men fighting far from home,
themselves anxious for news concerning an elderly parents health, the childrens progress or the
farms condition.
Soldiers were sometimes allowed home on leave, but this privilege was only granted haphazardly and
could be revoked at any time. Those taken prisoner by the enemy were only released at the end of the
war and in quite a few cases returned home after four to five years of absence.

Ismeretlen: Csaldi csoportkp frfiak nlkl 1918. eredeti negatvrl. Fortepan,


Unknown: Family Picture Without Men, 1918. From original negatives. Fortepan
Ismeretlen: Hazavrom a frjem 1915. zselatinos napfnypapr, KK tul.
Unknown: Waiting for My Husbands Return, 1915. Silver chloride. Property of K.K.
17

4.

k v ncsisg
A htorszgot lnken rdekeltk a fronton zajl esemnyek, s az
aktulis hadihelyzet lland beszlgetsi tmnak szmtott. A le
velek s a szabadsgra hazat rt, vagy rokkantsg miatt vgleg haza
engedett katonk elbeszlsein kvl a hborz orszg vezeti is
igyekeztk kielgteni ezt a kvncsisgot.
A lapok els oldalai mind a hbor hreivel voltak tele, s ezen a szrt
s irnytott informcik s a biztos kzbl szerzett magn rtes
lsek segtsgvel a kvhzi Con
radok a vezrkari fnknl is
jobban tudtk, melyik had
m ozdulat milyen kvetkezmnyeket von
maga utn. Az rdeklds kiterjedt a hborban alkalmazott modern
fegyverekre is, ezrt egyrszt az ellensgtl zskmnyolt gykat
tettk kzszemlre a nagyobb vrosokban, msrszt ksbb hadi
killtsokat is rendeztek, ahol a ltogatk meg
i smerkedhettek
pldul a replk rvn talakul harcm odorral is. Ezt tette mg
lmnyszerbb az 1915 nyarn megnyitott pasarti lvszrok is,
amely a harcmodor mell ett akr a frontkatonk mindennapjairl is
fontos inform cikat rulhatott el a figyelmes szemllk szmra.

18

Ismeretlen: Hadikilltson 1917. eredeti negatvrl, Fortepan


Unknown: At a Military Exhibit, 1917. Copy from original negative, Fortepan
19

Ismeretlen: Frontsznhz 12, kztk Pzmn Ferenc, Komromi Gizi, 1915. eredeti negatvrl mai msolat, KK tul.
Unknown: Theatre on the Front 12, Including Ferenc Pzmn, Gizi Komromi, 1915. Modern copy made of original negative.
Property of K.K.
20

Ismeretlen: Ltogatk a pasarti lvszrokban 1915. FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.


Unknown: Visitors at the Mock Trench in Pasart, 1915. Property of the Budapest Collection of the Budapest Metropolitan Library.
Ismeretlen: Frontsznhz 1916. Balrl a hetedik Gonda Maca, KK tul.
Unknown: Theatre on the Front, 1916. Maca Gonda is the seventh to the left, prperty of KK
21

curiosity
The homefront was avidly interested in how events were unfolding in the trenches, rendering the
current military situation a topic of constant discussion. Other than desc ript ions provided in letters
or by soldiers either home on leave or declared unfit for service due to injuries, wartime leaders also
did their best to satisfy civilian curiosity.
True, the front pages of newspapers were also filled with headlines about the war: once this highly
filtered and controlled news had been interpreted in the light of inform ation gathered from the very
best, anonymous sources even the generals chief-of-staff could not compete with the strategic
expertise of so-called coffeeh ouse Conrads.
Public interest naturally extended to the modern weaponry being used in the war, the reason why
captured enemy artillery was put on display in larger cities. This type of event was later followed by
military exhibitions held to familiarize visitors with air warfare, for example. In the summer of 1915, the
trench exhibit opened in Pasart allowed the public to explore not only the weaponry of modern
warfare, but also to examine details surrounding the troops daily lives on the front, information that
revealed quite a bit to the careful observer.

Ismeretlen: Nk frfiszerepben 1916. eredeti negatvrl, Fortepan


Unknown: Women in Male Roles, 1916. Copy of original negative, Fortepan
22

23

5.

t rds
A kor felfogsa szerint a ni llekhez leginkbb az polni munka
illett. A hbor elejn a legelkelbb fnemesi csaldok asszonyai
s lenyai szinte versengtek egymssal, hogy valamelyik krhzban
nkntes polni munkt kapjanak, s szinte vrtk mr az els
poland sebeslteket. Hamar kiderltek azonban ennek a honlenyi
buzgalomnak az rnyoldalai is. Eleinte a hivatsos polnk mg
fltek attl, hogy a sok nkntes miatt elveszthetik llsukat, de
a rengeteg sebeslt bven adott feladatot mindnekinek. Komolyabb
gond volt, hogy az elkel hlgyek egy rsze nem rendelkezett sem
komoly kpzettsggel, sem relis kppel az polni munkrl.
Kiderlt, hogy a fronth oz kzeli krhzakban klnsen, de mg
a htorszgban sem abbl ll ez a munka, hogy csak a prnt kell
megigaztani vagy meg kell itatni a sebesltet. A szrny srlsek
s a tragikus sorsok ltvnya lelkileg is megerltet volt, nem
be
s zl
v e a komoly fizikai ignybevtelrl. Nem meglep, hogy
a kezdetben lelkesedk kzl kevesen vllaltk ennek a munknak
valamennyi nehzsgt.

Ismeretlen: Krhz sebesltekkel, polnvel s civil ruhs nvel. 1917. Fortepan


Unknown: Hospital with Wounded, Nurse and Woman in Civilian Clothes, 1917. Fortepan
Ismeretlen: Krhzi nagyzem 1916. eredeti negatvrl. Fortepan
Unknown: Hospital, 1916. Copy of original negative. Fortepan
24

Az polnk ugyanakkor komoly tekin


tlyt
vvtak ki maguk
nak. Fizetst, ell
tst, utazsi
kedvezmnyt kaptak, gy a kemny munka a tr
sadalmi felemelkeds eszkze is lehetett.
A trsadalom szemben ugyanis a nlklz
hetetlen szakm unka a lega lkalm asabb terepe
volt annak, hogy a nk adottsgaiknak meg
felelen vegyk ki rszket a hbors er
fesztsekbl. gy vlik rthetv, hogy mirt
vetette fl a korszak egyik vezet politikusa,
ifj. grf Andr ssy Gyula, hogy a frfiak l
talnos katonaktelezettsge mintjra be
kell ene vezetni a nk szmra az ltalnos
polsi ktelezettsget.

25

Ismeretlen: Reimann Magda nkntes poln kitntetssel 1915. zselatinos napfnypapr, KK. tul.
Unknown: Volunteer Nurse Magda Reimann with Medal, 1915. Silver chloride, Property of K.K.
Ismeretlen: poln az els vilghbor alatt, httrben a rzsahegyi barakk krhz. 1917. Fortepan
Unknown: Nurse During World War I, Rzsahegy Barracks Hospital in Background, 1917. Fortepan
Ismeretlen: Rzsahegy barakk krhz, polnk 1917. eredeti negatvrl, Fortepan
Unknown: Barracks Hospital on Rzsahegy, Nurses, 1917. Copy of original negative, Fortepan
26

27

Sooth ing f eve r e d br ows


According to the times, the female constitution was most suited for the task of nursing. In the beginning
of the war, mothers and daughters from the most distinguished, aristocratic families competed against
one another for work as volunteer nurses in city hospitals it was almost as if they could hardly wait
for the first wounded to arrive. The overzealousness of these patriotic daughters soon rev ealed its
dark side: while professional nurses initially feared losing their jobs to the surplus of volunteers,
the flood of wounded soon supplied everyone with ample work. The fact that many high-born ladies
possessed little serious training and even less awareness of the realities of nursing proved a greater
concern. It quickly became apparent that caring for patients required far more than fluffing pillows
or soothing fevered brows. Other than the extreme amount of physical labor involved, such close
proximity to horrible wounds and tragic fates was psychologically traumatic as well. Not surprisingly,
very few of the initially enthusiastic volunteers were willing to shoulder all the burdens involved.
At the same time, nurses carved out positions of respect and prestige. While also earning their own pay,
nurses were prov ided with food and board as well as travel expenses, making nursing a means of social
advance in spite of the hard work required. In the eyes of society, this essential profession was the
most suitable field for women to participate in the war effort while simultaneously maintaining their
feminine natures. It is therefore understandable why one of the leading politicians of the era, Count
Gyula Andrssy, raised the question that in times of peace, would it not behoove the country to have
one gender completing military service while the other does its national duty as nurses?

28

Ismeretlen: Karcsony a krhzban 1915. zselatinos napfnypapr, KK. tul.


Unknown: Christmas in Hospital, 1915. Silver chloride, Property of K.K.
29

6.

m u n ka s oktats
A ma gyakran hallott tvedssel szemben a magyaro rszgi nk mr
az els vilghbor eltt is dolgoztak, s nem is csak a paraszti
gazdasgokban, hanem cseldknt, gyri munksknt, tant- s
vnknt is. Jellegzetes ni munka volt a modern nagyvrosban
a telefonos kisasszonyok is. A vilghbor hatsra persze
arnyaiban is ntt a ni munkavllalk arnya, de taln enn l is
fontosabb volt a foglalkozsszerkezet talakulsa. A termels
bl kiesett frfiak munkahelyt rszben ugyanis a korbban munka
nlkl llk, vagy az amerikai kivndorls hbor miatti megsznse
folytn mgis itthon maradtak tltttk be, de a hbors termels
felfutsa jabb llshelyeket is teremtett, gy teht volt lehet
sg a nk fogl alkoztatsra. Weiss Manfrd csepeli zemeiben egy
idben a nk arnya pldul meghaladta az alkalmazottak felt.
A nk mr a hbor elejtl betltttek olyan llsokat is, ahol
korbban csak frfiak dolgoztak. Ltvnyos volt, ha a vros utcit
ni utcaseprk tartottk tisztn, vagy ha ni villamoskalauznl

Ismeretlen: Falusi gazdasg frfi nlkl 1915. eredeti negatvrl, Fortepan,


Unknown: Village Farm Without Men, 1915. Copy of negative, Fortepan,
Ismeretlen: Nk a budapesti Ferenc krti Szchenyi kvhzban. Fortepan
Unknown: Women in Szchenyi Caf, Franz Boulevard, Budapest. Fortepan
30

kellett menetjegyet vsrolni. Az j helyzetbe


kerlt nkkel szemben sok frfi elutastan
reaglt, ami gyakran konfliktusokhoz vezetett.
Egyesek tovbbra is az alacsonyabb presztzs nt
lttk pldul a kal auzban, s ennek megfelelen
viselkedtek vele, msok meg gy vlekedtek, hogy
a dolgoz n ppen niessgt veszti el a fizikai
munkavgzs rvn. Fontos tudnunk azonban, hogy
bevonult csaldfenntart nlkl a nk pnz
keresete nlk lzhetetlenn vlt, vagyis a ni
munkt a korszakban nem emancipcis sikerknt,
hanem knyszerknt lte meg a nk tbbsge.
Ahogy a nk szmra tovbbi munkalehetsgek
nyl
tak meg a hbor alatt, gy javult a hzi
cseldek helyzete is. Egy Terz krti cseldszerz
szerint nem is csoda, hogy nincsen lny, mert
mindegyik inkbb elmegy gyrba vagy villamoskalauznnek vagy ablaktiszttnak, mint hogy a h
bors nagysgk szekat rjt trje. Sznben

31

volt a rgi al
rendeltsg is, st, a hbor vgi nl
klzsek idejn akr komoly segtsget jelenthetett
a cseldlny falusi rokonsgtl beszerzett lelmiszer.
A nk teht rszben a korbbinl magasabb presztzs
llsokat tltttk be a hbor alatt, amit jl mutat
a tanti plya elniesedse is. Egy 1917-es jsgcikk szerint
a fvrosi kzoktatsban 1400 n dolgozott, azaz szmuk
elrte a frfiakt, s ltalban is elmondhat, hogy A j
md csal
d ok lenyai folytathattak magasabb iskolai
tanulmnyokat is, s ekkorra mr nem volt ritka, ha a l
nyok rettsgiztek, st, egyetemre jrtak. A hbor vei
alatt rettsgit szerzett lnyok szma 2,5-szeresre
ntt, s most mr minden 10. rettsgizett lny volt. Az
1917/18-as tanvben a budapesti tudomnyegyetem hall
gatinak mr 40,5%-a volt n, a bl
c sszkaron pedig
arnyuk 52,5%-ra emelkedett. Ez mr akkor sok vitt
kavart, s innen egyenes t vezetett oda, hogy a fels
oktatsban a hbor utn bekvetkezett reakcik vesz

Harknyi Jnos: Arats a hbors esztendkben. 1917. k. Az rdekes jsg plyzatra bekldtt kp. KK tul.
Jnos Harknyi: Harvest in Wartime, circa 1917. Photo sent to the rdekes jsg competition. Property of K.K.
32

tesei kz tartoztak a nk is. Az polnk ugyanakkor


komoly tekintlyt vvtak ki magukn ak. Fizetst, elltst,
utazsi kedvezmnyt kaptak, gy a kemny munka a trsa
dalmi felemelkeds eszkze is lehetett. A trsadalom
szemben ugyanis a nlklzhetetlen szakm unka a legal
kalmasabb terepe volt annak, hogy a nk adottsgaiknak
megfelelen vegyk ki rszket a hbors erfesz
t
sekbl. gy vlik rthetv, hogy mirt vetette fl a kor
szak egyik vezet politikusa, ifj. grf Andrssy Gyula, hogy
a frfiak ltalnos katonaktelezettsge mintjra be
kellene vezetni a nk szmra az ltalnos polsi
ktelezettsget.

Ismeretlen: Arats, KK tul.


Unknown: Harvest, Property of K.K.
33

work an d e du c at i o n
In contrast to what is believed today, Hungarian women did in fact work before the outbreak of World
War I. Not only did women do physical labor on peasant farms, they also held jobs as maids, factory
workers, or teachers. In the modern metropolis, a job typically held by women was that of phone
operator. While the number of women joining the workforce naturally grew in response to the war,
perhaps the most important factor was how the perception of male vs. female jobs also came under
fire. As male labourers were removed from the production line, either other, unemployed men took
their places, or those unable to emigrate to the United States due to the wars outbreak. The growth
of wartime production, however, meant an increase in jobs. Suddenly, women also had the opportunity
to earn money: at one time, more than half of the workers employed in Manfrd Wiesss Csepel factories
were actually women.
From the very beginning of the war, women took on jobs generally done by men. It was quite a spectacle
to see female street sweepers keeping streets clean, or female conductors punching tickets on the
tram. Many men were scornful of the women occupying these new positions, a situation frequently
resulting in conflict. While some continued to treat female conductors as mere, low-ranking women,
others feared that any woman performing physical labor was in danger of losing her femininity. It must
be emphasized that the salaries earned by women were vital for filling the gap left by a husband or
father off fighting in the trenches. For most women at this time having a job was not a success brought
about by suffragism, but rather the result of not having any other choice.

34

Just as more job opportunities were available to women during the war, maids also found their
circumstances much improved. To quote one maid working on Terz Boulevard: its no wonder theres
not a girl to be had, theyve all gone off to work in the factory, or be a conductor or a window washer
instead of putting up with a wartime miladys vexes and rages. The old hierarchy of mistress and
servant was falling apart: toward the end of the war, as food grew increasingly scarce, a maids
country relatives could play a pivotal role in securing provisions.
In essence, the war allowed women to occupy more prestigious positions. Jobs in education also reveal
a growing number of female elementary teachers. According to one newspaper article, in 1917 1,400
women were working in education in Budapest, a number equal to that of men.
In addition, girls from well-off families had greater access to upper-level education. By this time it was
not rare for girls to attain a secondary school diploma, or even attend university. During the war, the
number of girls to complete secondary school more than doubled; every tenth student to earn a
secondary school diploma was, in fact, a girl. In Budapests universities, 40.5% of the students enrolled
for the 1917-1918 school year were women. The number of women enrolled in humanities courses
actually grew by 52.5%! This situation naturally proved a source of debate: in the afterm ath of the
wars end, it can be said that women suffered the heaviest losses in the battle for attaining a university
education.

35

7.

n lklzs
Az els vilghbor a gazdasgok nagy mrkzse is volt. Az antant
blokdja elvgta a kzponti hatalm akat az Eurpn kvl terletek
rucikkeitl, s ez a sajt termelsre utalta ket. A hadvisels r
dekeinek alrendelt termels s gazdasgirnyts krvallottjai
a htorszg szegnyei voltak, akiknek az egekbe szk rak miatt
egyre slyosabb nehzsgekkel kellett szembenzni. Ha Magyaro r
szgon nem is alakult ki a nmeteknl vagy az osztrkoknl meg
tapasztalt slyos hezs, de a tpllkozs elgtelensge egy
r
telm volt. Az alapvet lelmiszerekre bevezetett jegyrendszer
elvileg a szegnyek rdekeit szolglta volna, de az llami ellen
rzs al kerlt eloszts jabb nehz
sgeket szlt. A hbor
vgre mindennaposs vlt a tbb rs sorban lls, s arra sem
volt biztostk, hogy az csorgs vgn hozzjutottak az ruhoz.

Ismeretlen: Fztanfolyam rsztvevinek csoportkpe 1918. zselatinos napfnypapr, KK tul.


Unknown: Group Photo of Participants in Cooking Class, 1918. Silver chloride, Property of K.K.
36

37

38

Az llam seglyekkel igyekezett a helyzetet orvosolni, de a hadizvegyeknek vagy hadirvknak jut


tatott szerny sszegek csak a nlklzs enyhtsre voltak elegendk. A npkonyhk, ingyenes
telosztsok eltt kgyz sorok vilgosan jeleztk, hogy a hbor a trsadalom szles rtegeinek
elszegnyedst eredmnyezte. A lesllyedt rtegek kz tartoztak a fix fizetsbl l tisztviselk,
hivatalnokok is. Mikzben az rdekeiket szervezettsgk folytn jobban rvnyest gyri munkssg
s az lelemtermel parasztsg knnyebben tvszelte a hbort, a vlemnyforml kzposztly
tnt a legnagyobb relatv vesztesnek. Persze a hbornak voltak nyertesei is: a hadi
t ermelsbe
bekapcsoldott gyrosok s kereskedk hihet etl en hasznokat vghattak zsebre mg akkor is, ha
becstelen s trvnytelen eszkzket nem vettek ignybe. vagyonuk rvn az ltalnos elszegnyeds
kzepette nagyon feltn hadimilliomosokat osztatlan gyllet vezte.
A hagyomnyos trsadalmi rendet alapjaiban felforgat hbor s az eliteken belli trendezds
sok tekintetben elksztette a hbort kvet szlssges mozgalmakat.

Ismeretlen: teloszts a szegnyeknek 1916. k. Hadtrtneti Mzeum tul.


Unknown: Distributing Food to the Hungry, circa 1916. Property of the Military History Museum.
39

destituti o n
over economy and agriculture, the poor were devastatingly affected by the inflation of prices. While
Hungary did not experience the serious level of starvation found in Germany or Austria, a lack of
adequate food was still common. Even though the system of issuing ration tickets for basic foodstuffs
was implemented to alleviate the poors suffering, placing distribution under state supervision caused
new difficulties. By the end of the war, spending hours a day standing in line for food became a daily
chore and one done without any guarantee that there would be enough food to go round.
While the state did create different types of aid to address the situation, the modest sums issued to
war widows or orphans were only enough to ameliorate the situation, not solve it. The long lines
stretching past soup kitchens were a clear indication of how impoverished many social classes had
become as a result of the war. Even government officials and clerks found themselves struggling to
stay afloat in spite of their steady paychecks. In comparison to factory workers able to protect their
interests via organized demonstrations, or peasants capable of growing their own food, the middle
class appeared to be the wars biggest victim. Some, of course, managed to profit from the war: any
factory owner or merchant quick to adapt to wartime production could rake in staggering amounts
of money without even resorting to shady business practices. Surrounded by an increasingly
impoverished population, the sudden and very apparent wealth enjoyed by war millionaires made them
the object of general hatred.
The changes in social structure and the transformation of Hungarys elite brought about by the First
World War did much to pave the way for extreme political movements to emerge once the conflict
reached its end.

40

Ismeretlen: Sorbanlls a Teleki tri piacon 1918. k. FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.
Unknown: Standing in Line at Market on Teleki Square, circa 1918. National Szchenyi Library, Property of Budapest Collection.
FSZEK Budapest Gyjtemny tul.
41

8.

e r k lcsk
A hbor a bkebeli viszonyokat az erklcsk tern is felforgatta.
A trsadalom alapegysgt megbontotta a csaldapa frontra vi
tele. A knyszer tvolsg miatt amgy is meglazul kapcsolatot
a levelez s esetleges megszakadsa teljesen ellehetetlenthette,
s a vdelem s tancs nlkl maradt felesg helyzete lelkileg is
nehzz vlt. Az anyagi nehzsgek miatt is kiszolgltatott csald
fenntart asszonyok a hatsgok vagy a munkaadk ji ndulatra is
r voltak utalva, s nem egy visszalsre is sor kerlt. A segly
odatlsrt vagy a tovbbi alkalmazsrt cserbe a fiatalasszony
testre tartottak ignyt, s br ennek term
szetesen a leg
szeg
nyebbek voltak leginkbb kitve, de a kzprtegekn l is sokszor
megrendlt a hzastrsi hsg.

42

A hbor a teljes ltbizonytalansg rzst kelt ette. Mivel egy muszka goly brmikor meglhette
a katont, a pillan atnak ls, az adott nap lehetsgnek kihasznlsa egyre terjed letrzss
vlt. A szabadsgra hazarkez har
cosok tltttk meg a mulatkat, orfeumo
kat, kabarkat, s
a front vres valsgtl minl tvolabbi, csillog s a szrnysgeket elfeledtet szrakozsra,
knny mmorra tartottak ignyt. A prostitci virgzott, hiszen a hbors hangulat megnvelte r
az ignyt, s az erre knyszerl nk tmegei ezt ki is elgtettk.
A csald szthullsnak a gyerekek is krvallottjai voltak. A kenyrkeres munkra knyszerl
nnek nem maradt elegend ideje arra, hogy foglalkozzon velk, vigyzzon rj uk, gy k kell ellen
rzs hjn az utcn olykor bandkba verdve csatangoltak. Ugyan a feministktl az egyhzakig
tbben igyekeztek megszervezni, hogy a munka idejre felgyeljk a dolgoz nk gyerekeit, kln
sen csecsemit, de ezek a ltestmnyek csak a gyerekek tredknek biztosth attak megfelel
krlmnyeket.

43

mora lity
The war also served to overturn pre-war concepts of morality. Placing the head of the family on the
front upset the basic balance of society. Once forced apart, if commun ication via letters was not
possible then the growing distance between married couples was made even more intolerable by the
wifes inability to turn to her husband for protection and advice. Pushed by financial concerns to
support their families, women found themselves reliant upon the bene
volence of employers or
authorities, a situation frequently ending in exploitation. In the case of young women, receiving aid or
further employment often hinged on an exchange of sexual services. While women from poorer classes
remained the most vulnerable, middle-class women were often forced to abandon their wedding vows.
War meant never being able to predict what the next day might bring. Since a Rusky bullet could end
a soldiers life at any minute, the general mood emphasized the importance of living each moment to its
fullest. Dance halls, music halls and cabarets were filled with troops on leave, eager to drown

44

memories of wars atrocities in as much scintillating entertainment as possible. Prostitution boomed,


and the growing numbers of destitute women meant soldiers could take advantage of the oldest
profession.
Children were affected the most by the collapse of family life. A mother working to earn enough
money for food no longer had adequate time to take care of her children. With women spending their
days at workplaces, no adults were around to keep an eye on their children: left without superv ision,
children roamed the streets in unruly bands. From feminist groups to the Church, a variety of
organizations tried to provide proper care for the children and particularly infants of working
women. These institutions, however, could only create better circumstances for a relatively small
number of children.

45

9.

r gi s j frfiak
A hbor nem csupn hzassgokat, de szerelmi vi
szonyokat is
kettvgott. Az egymstl hnapokon keresztl tvol l sze
relmesek szmra a levelezs vkony fonaln keresztl lehetett
csak az rzelmeket fenntartani, gy a katonk rvid s ritka szabad
sgolsaik alkalmbl gyakori volt a lnykrs, de a szoksosnl
gyorsabban le
b onyoltott eskv is. A rendkvli viszonyokra
hivatkozva a szoksoktl eltr mdszerekkel is igyekeztek lehe
tv tenni a szeret szvek trvnyes egymsra tallst. El
fordult, hogy a vlegny helyett annak megbzsbl szabadsgra
hazautaz bajtrsa vezette az oltr el a menyasszonyt, mint ahogy
tudunk pldkat tvhzassgokra is, amikor az egymstl tbb szz
kilomterre l katona s menyasszonya kln-kln eskdtt
rk hsget egym snak.
A frontkatonk szmra a hadsereg tbori bordlyokat rendezett
be, nem is elssorban azrt, hogy kerlje a meghdtott terleteken
l nkkel szembeni erszakot, hanem hogy vja az rtkes katona
anyagot a harckptelenn tv nemi betegsgektl. Mindazonltal

46

Andr Kertsz: Enyelg katona a front mgtt Galcia 1915. Szigetbecse, Andr Kertsz Mzeum tul.
Andr Kertsz: Flirtatious Soldier Behind the Front, Galicia, 1915 Szigetbecse, Property of Andr Kertsz Museum.
Ismeretlen: Udvarls 1917. eredeti negatvrl. Fortepan
Unknown: Courtship, 1917 Copy from original negative, Fortepan
47

a harcok szneteiben a harcosok s a megszllt terleteken l nk kztt is kialakulhattak


kapcsolatok, mg akkor is, ha tbb feljegyzs tanskodik arrl, hogy a magyar bakkat
viszolygssal tltttk el az otthon megszokotthoz kpest az ukrn terleteken tapasztalt ms
higiniai viszonyok. (Ezzel szemben a tisztbbnak szmt olasz nkkel szvesebben bartkoztak.)
A nktl a kor felfogsa jobban megkvetelte a hsget, mint a frfiaktl. Az otthon maradt
asszonyok erklcseire a megszokott krnyezet ellenrz hatsa is jobban vigyzott. Mgis
elfordult, hogy egy-egy n szerelembe esett. Mivel az pkzlb frfiak nagy rsze a frontokon volt,
a szerencss vlasztott gyakran egy magyarul nem is beszl hadifogoly volt. Arra is akadt plda,
hogy az orosz fogoly s a magyar lny sszehzasodtak, s a hbor utn is egytt maradtak
Magyarorszgon.

48

Lovers O ld and N ew
Not only marriages, but also love matches were severed in two by the war. Forced apart for months at
a time, lovers could only maintain their relationships via letters. A few days of rare furlough often
resulted in first the proposal, then the wedding. Due to the unusual circumstances, other methods
were also employed to guide loving hearts into legal matrimony: a fellow soldier able to return home
on leave would sometimes act as proxy and lead the bride to the altar in the grooms name. Some
examples of long-distance marriage are also known, in which a soldier and bride separated by hundreds
of kilometers would vow eternal faithfulness to one another, from afar.
For troops on the front, the army maintained camp bordellos not for the sake of protecting women
in conquered areas from rape, but rather to preserve valuable fighting power from the ravages of
sexually-transmitted diseases. In spite of these precautions, during the lulls between battles re
lation
ships did develop between soldiers and local women, even if multiple sources describe the

49

Ismeretlen: Kertszkeds 1918. eredeti negatvrl. Fortepan


Unknown: Gardening, 1918 Copy from original negative, Fortepan
Psfay Andor: Magyar vendg az orosz parasztszobban 1916. Az rdekes jsg plyzatra bekldtt kp KK tul.
Andor Psfay: Hungarian Guest in Russian Peasant Room, 1916 Photo sent to the rdekes jsgs photo competition. Property of K.K.
50

aversion Hungarian soldiers felt for the lack of hygiene experienced in Ukrainian territory. (Hungarian
soldiers, on the other hand, were willing to become friends with Italian women, thought to be much
cleaner by popular opinion.)
Women, however, were expected to remain faithful. Wives left behind alone found themselves under
even greater scrutiny. It still happened that a woman fell in love. Since all able-bodied men were
fighting in the trenches, the lucky man was often a prisoner of war not even fluent in Hungarian. One
case is known of a Russian prisoner of war and a Hunga
rian woman not only marrying, but then
continuing to live together in Hungary after the war.

51

10.

gys z
A mintegy 21 millis trtnelmi Magyarorszgon 5,5 milli frfi volt
hadkteles, s kzlk krlbell 3,6 millian vonultak be tny
legesen. Pontos statisztikai adatok hinyban csak megkzeltleg
tudjuk megbecslni az l
d o
z atok szmt. A harcosok kisebbsge,
alig flmilli ember trt vissza teljesen pen, mintegy 800 ezren
csak rvidebb-hosszabb hadifogsg utn, krlbell 1.5 millian
sebesltek meg, s a flmillit is meghaladta a hsi halottak szma.
A szomor adatok is jelzik, hogy nem nagyon akadt olyan csald,
ahol ne gyszoltak volna valakit. A szemlyes s a kollektv gysz
sokszor sszefondott, s az egyes falvak vagy vrosi munkahelyek
kzsen emlkeztek meg a hborban elhunytakrl.

52

Ismeretlen: Gysz 1915. zselatinos napfnypapr, KK tul.


Unknown: Grief 1915, Silver chloride, Property of K.K.
Ismeretlen: Gyszol anya s felesg 1916. zselatinos napfnypapr, KK tul.
Unknown: Grieving Mother and Wife 1916, Silver chloride, Property of K.K.
53

Belle Zoltn: Az rvk. 1918. k. Az rdekes jsg plyzatn harmadik djat nyert kp. KK tul.
Belle Zoltn: The Orphans circa 1918, This photo won 3rd place in a competition held by the rdekes jsg. Property of K.K.
Ismeretlen: zvegy a srnl 1918. k. zselatinos napfnypapr, KK tul.
Unknown: Widow at the grave circa 1918, Silver chloride paper, Property of K.K.

54

grief
Out of the roughly 21 million people living within
Hungarys historical borders, 5.5 million men were
eligible for military service. 3.6 million men actually
participated in active duty. Due to a lack of precise
records, the number of lives lost can only be estimated.
Barely a half-million men a pitiful minority returned
unwounded to their families. About 800,000 arrived home
after enduring shorter or longer stints in prison camps.
Approximately 1.5 million soldiers were wounded, while
500,000 were killed in action.
These sorrowful statistics indicate how very few
families were able to end the war without mourning the
loss of a loved one. Outpourings of personal grief
were often channeled into forms of collective grief as
village commun ities or city workplaces made efforts
to commemorate those who sacrificed their lives in the
service of their country.

Ismeretlen: zvegy 1917. k. eredeti vegnegatvrl mai msolat, KK tul.


Unknown: Widow circa 1917, Modern copy made from original glass negative. Property of K.K.
55

Kurtor/Curator: ifj. Bertnyi Ivn, Bodnr Zita, Kincses Kroly


Fordtotta/Translated by: Maya J. Lo Bello
Kiadvnyterv/Design: Kaszta Dnes Arkas Design
Nyomdai kivitelezs/Printing: Nalors Grafika Kft.
Felels Kiad/Published by: Balassi Intzet figazgatja
Balassi Intzet, 2016
www.balassi-intezet.hu