Pre-Christian Magyar religion

deaf tuner

Ad Honoris
Oct 2013
I've been looking around a bit on the pre-Christian religion of the Magyars but have not seen much. What is more surprising the concurrent lack of wild speculation on what their religion was. Does anyone know any sources? Were they Tengrist?
Thinking a bit (my two pennies).

If You mean "religion" as something "structured", I don't think we will ever find something.

In my opinion, there was never such a thing. Hungarians were more a confederation than a people (it's generally agreed that they were not all "Hungarians" when they arrived in Central/Western Europe).So I think it was more about beliefs, myths, shamans, mags, witch, with different forms/importance from a tribe (community) to another.

Also, they certainly had a lot of influences "along the road" (as tulun had showed us on lexical term, I think the same could be expected in some way on religious term).

And as Christianity was imposed in a very short time, as a "state policy" by the Hungarian Kings, a lot was lost quickly, without records. Hungarian sources, as they were written after Christianizing did not record them, foreign knew nothing on the matter.

So, all we can have is by analyzing the Hungarian folklore, fairy tales, customs.

Not much actual sources/facts :confused:

Meanwhile, I found something (that could be interesting) in English
Shamanism: An Encyclopedia of World Beliefs, Practices, and Culture - Google Books
Balassa–Ortutay: Hungarian Ethnography and Folklore / Figures of the World of Beliefs
Shamanic Elements in Hungarian Folk Tales ? An Excerpt from Fairy Tale Therapy - Hungarian Review
Feb 2014
The Hungarians were fire vorshippers based on the contemporary sources (Ibn Rusta, Gardizi, etc.), but presumably this was not correct. There is a very strong Iranian origin layer between the Hungarian folktales, complette Iranian myths about the Simargl, the holy mountian, etc. And even our first king ordered the keeping of the fire in a law. But there are other layers about the shamanism (táltos = shaman) and this is very strong too. Other laws prohibited the communion on the old places. So presumably the Hungarians had a syncretic shamanism, with very strong Iranian influence or a syncretic Zoroastrianism with very strong shamanistic influence. Basically an Irano-Siberian syncretism.

And no clear evidence onto Tengrism between the Hungarians. The only sign of a Tengrist influence is the Hungarian gyarat (makes) word, what origin from the Turkic jarat (create).

Some Hungarian were Byzantine Christian and great part of the conquerors were Muslim and Jewish (mostly Iranians and Turkics).