Published: June 22 2023
The presence of Hungarians in Serbia dates back to the early medieval period, when the Kingdom of Hungary controlled parts of the territory that are now part of modern-day Serbia. The migrations of the Magyar tribes to the Carpathian Basin in the late 9th and early 10th centuries, as well as the establishment of the Kingdom of Hungary in 1000, laid the foundation for the Hungarian settlements in the region.
Vojvodina: The Hungarian Heartland in Serbia
The province of Vojvodina, situated in the northern part of Serbia, is where most ethnic Hungarians reside today. Vojvodina's history as a part of the historical Kingdom of Hungary and, later, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, has resulted in a significant Hungarian community in this region. After World War I, the Treaty of Trianon in 1920 re-drew borders in Central Europe, leading to Vojvodina becoming a part of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, later known as Yugoslavia.
The current situation
In the province of Vojvodina, Hungarians represent the largest minority, with around 13% of the province's population. The towns of Subotica (Szabadka in Hungarian), Senta (Zenta), and Kanjiža (Magyarkanizsa) are particularly notable for their high percentage of Hungarian residents.
The Hungarian community in Serbia has maintained its unique identity and culture, with Hungarian-language schools, newspapers, and other institutions. Serbia has also adopted legislation that guarantees minority rights, including the use of minority languages in education, public administration, and media.
Ethnic Hungarians form a significant minority in Serbia, particularly in the province of Vojvodina. The historical events and geographical proximity to Hungary provide the context for maintaining their cultural and linguistic distinctiveness within the Serbian landscape. As of 2011, there are approximately 253,899 Hungarians living in Serbia, proudly preserving their heritage and enriching the cultural diversity of their country.