Hollokö is an outstanding example of a deliberately preserved traditional settlement. This village, which developed mainly during the 17th and 18th centuries, is a living example of rural life before the agricultural revolution of the 20th century. The village has been an UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987.
In the middle of the 13th century, in the aftermath of the Mongol invasion, construction of Hollókő castle first began as a means to protect the area against future attacks. At this time, the area around Hollókő was held by the Kacsics noble clan. The castle was first mentioned in records in 1310. The original village was built just below the castle walls. The Ottomans captured the castle in 1552 and for the next 150 years, control alternated between Ottoman and Hungarian forces. At the end of the Ottoman era (1683) the castle and the village were finally abandoned and the present village grew up below. Many of the existing houses were first built around this time. The houses, which contain wood in their structure, have had to be rebuilt many times throughout the years due to periodic fires, the last being in 1909.
Hollókö is a living community whose conservation not only includes farming activity but also ensures its success. It provides a certainly exceptional and maybe unique example of voluntary conservation of a traditional village with its soil. The plots that were modified by the regrouping of land were returned to their original strip shape. The vineyards, orchards and vegetable gardens have been recreated; the ecological balance has been restored, even in the forestry environment, taking infinite care to respect historical authenticity. Hollókö not only represents the Palocz subgroup within the Magyar entity, but also bears witness, for the whole of Central Europe, to the traditional forms of rural life, which were generally abolished by the agricultural revolution in the 20th century.References:
Built around AD 90 to entertain the legionaries stationed at the fort of Caerleon (Isca), the impressive amphitheatre was the Roman equivalent of today’s multiplex cinema. Wooden benches provided seating for up to 6,000 spectators, who would gather to watch bloodthirsty displays featuring gladiatorial combat and exotic wild animals.
Long after the Romans left, the amphitheatre took on a new life in Arthurian legend. Geoffrey of Monmouth, the somewhat imaginative 12th-century scholar, wrote in his History of the Kings of Britain that Arthur was crowned in Caerleon and that the ruined amphitheatre was actually the remains of King Arthur’s Round Table.
Today it is the most complete Roman amphitheatre in Britain.