Bucovina Székely

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Hungarian villages in Bucovina
Székely in Bucovina

Five villages (Andrásfalva, Hadikfalva, Istensegíts, Fogadjisten, and Józseffalva) were founded for Hungarian-speaking settlers after the Hapsburg Empire acquired Bukovina from the Ottoman Empire in 1774.

Most of the settlers were Roman Catholic Székely from Transylvania who nearly all came from the eastern Székely counties of Csík and Háromszék.

  • 1776 - one hundred Székely arrived
  • 1784 to 1786 - more than two hundred families arrived
  • 1883 - Hungarian government moved Székelys to part of the Banat. This included the re-settlement the Székelys of Bucovina who received the confiscated homes and lands of the Serbs in southern Bácska
  • 1905 to 1914 - about 600 people from the five villages emigrated to Canada
  • 1910 - census gave Hungarian population as 1.3% of the Bucovinian population
  • 1944 - Hungary evacuated the Banat territory and the Székelys moved to Transdanubia ending up in the former German villages of Tolna and Baranya counties

An interesting Y-chromosome study of former Bucovina Székely families shows their male genetic ancestry to be typical of south east Europe. This suggests the mix of DNA ancestries pre-dates any formation of language differentiation in these regions.


The Silladri is either a men's solo dance of irregular structure or a turning couple dance. The men's dance is related to the Féloláhos (half-Vlach) of the eastern Székely and to the Vlachico (Vlach) of the Hungarian plain region. The couple dance is a simple variant of the old style turning dance. The music is the "swineherds' dance" which is similar to many men's dances and to the Romanian Căluşeri and the Ukainian Kolomejka.

Line dances
Balkan 3 measure 4 measure Hora uni-directional bi-directional in place
    Drumul Dracului*    

* Based on the "folk dance" repertoire version where the second variant given as from the village of Csango in Hungary. This village has decedents of the Bucovina Hungarians and the dance is identical to the north Moldavian Batrâneasca dance.

Men's dances
Ritual dances Brâul Group men's dances Lad's dances Verbunc
Couple dances
walking dance
Turning dances Column dances Csardas Germanic &
central European
  Silladri   Csárdás    




Martin, G, Hungarian Folk Dances, Budapest: Corvina, 1974.



Anthology of Hungarian Folk Music I, LPX 18116-B

© Eliznik2008, Last updated Feb-08