On Szentháromság tér, the busy square at the heart of Buda, stands the bright-roofed Mátyás Church. Inside, the church is fabulously exuberant, with the original thirteenth-century structure used as the base for a late nineteenth-century redesign in a Romantic Nationalist style. The splendid gold leaf and nationalist motifs clearly reclaimed the church as Hungarian – it had been a mosque for a time under Ottoman rule. A statue of King Stephen (Szent Istvan) on horseback stands outside – he is revered as the founder of the Hungarian state and the one responsible for converting Hungarians to Christianity.
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