Hungarian constitutionalism dates from the earliest beginnings of the nation. In fact, the first constitutional act may be said to have preceded even the honfoglalas (occupation of the land) of A.D. 896 when the seven original Hungarian tribes made a blood-pact in which they swore to unite under Arpad, the leader of the powerful Magyar tribe. The Hungarian constitution, like that of the United Kingdom, was "unwritten" until February 1946, except for the short-lived and thoroughly discredited Communist constitution of Bela Kun ( June- August 1919). The old Hungarian constitution was an agglutination of laws, privileges, and concessions, which had grown up around a very ancient core as a result of bargaining, concessions, and occasional unilateral acts on the part of the monarch or the nation.
The first significant constitutional development after the blood-pact came in A.D. 1000 when Hungary became a Christian monarchy. Vajk, a descendant of Arpad, had himself baptized Istvan (Stephen) and ruthlessly converted his whole nation, thereby determining Hungary's cultural and political orientation toward the West. As a reward, Pope Sylvester II sent a golden crown for his coronation and an apostolic cross to signify the monarch's stewardship over ecclesiastical matters. The Royal Crown was an important element in the constitution, and it has enjoyed both a legal and a mystical hold over the Hungarian people down to modern times.
The promulgation of the Aranybulla (Golden Bull) by King Endre II in 1222 marked a turning point in Hungarian constitutional development. The provisions of the document and the events leading up to its issuance have features surprisingly similar to those of the Magna Charta, which preceded the Bull by only seven years. Each was the result of coercion applied against a weak and corrupt monarch by a