The National Graveyard was created in order to protect the burial places of individuals who made a lasting contribution to the Hungarian nation. It now numbers more than 6000 graves nationwide. Graves that receive legal protection by being classified in the National Graveyard cannot be removed and the National Heritage Institute exercises rights of disposition over them: it maintains a register of protected graves, it assesses their condition and, if justified or an important anniversary connected with the person resting there is approaching, it restores them or tidies thv em up in line with the ruling of The National Memorial and Piety Committee.
Thus, among others, the grave of Alfréd Hajós in Budapest and the memorials of Ferenc Kazinczy in Széphalom, Ferenc Kölcsey in Szatmárcseke and Gyula Benczúr in Benczúrfalva were restored. The National Graveyard includes remarkable sites such as the crypt of the Palatine of Buda Castle, the mass grave of soldiers who fell during the siege of Buda Castle in 1849, and the resting place of members of the footballing Golden Team in St. Stephen’s Basilica.
The aim of the National Heritage Institute is to designate the protected graves individually and by Graveyard, and it also intends to include the graves listed in the National Graveyard as well as the people resting therein in its historical and cultural memory education programme, so that every secondary school student can seek out the graves of our eminent predecessors such as Ferenc Kölcsey, Ferenc Kazinczy and István Széchenyi, furthermore, that young people can take an active part in maintaining the graves and cherishing the memory of those who lie there.