The Hungarian who gave America its Name 

Once, long ago, an Italian from Florence, whose family name was Vespucci, was living in the old city of Buda (now Budapest).  There he developed a devotion to a Hungarian saint, and decided to name his son after the saint.  In Hungarian the saint's name was Imre.  In Latin, Emericus. And in Italian, Amerigo.

And that is how Amerigo Vespucci got his name.  He became a famous navigator, and a European mapmaker used his baptismal name to label the map he was creating that included the unnamed continent in the New World -- America. Here is the map of 1507 naming America:

WaldseemullerMap 1507

And who was this Szent Imre -- Saint Emery, as he would be called in English?

Imre was a prince, the son of King Stephen who was crowned in the year 1000 A.D. when Hungary became a Christian nation. Imre was born in 1007 and he was tutored by a close advisor to the King, Bishop Gellert. Prince Emery was known for his youthful piety. But he was still a prince, and as such partook in such sport as hunting.  And so he died from a hunting accident only 24 years of age.  Here is a medieval picture of his death and burial, with his parents, King Stephen and Queen Gizella at his side:

Szent Imre

Hungarian Storytelling Cover

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