The Town Šamorín
The exact time of the town’s beginning is not known. According to Matthew
Bél and other well-known historians the town was named after the church erected
in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It was first mentioned as Villa Sancta
Maria in records dating from 1238. Its later name was Zenthmaria (1287), later
Samaria which is the basis of the present name. The symbol of Virgin Mary is
often depicted in the emblems of Šamorín: in its coat of arms, flag or on the
town seal from 1405.
In 1405 King Sigismund granted the town with the right of a Royal Free Town.
Šamorín enjoyed all the same rights as Bratislava at that time.
Battles with the Turks in the second part of the 6th century put an end to
the town’s steady development. In 1465 it lost its Royal Free Town status
and was demoted to be a Market Town. Only later in the beginning of the 17th
century Šamorín regained its role as an agricultural and trade center of the
Upper Rye Island.
Towards the end of the 19th century Šamorín has grown to a middle-class
town. Several educational and cultural institutions were established: a
state-funded school in 1872, the Volunteer Fire Brigade in 1873 or its Brass
orchestra in 1875.
During and after the World War I. there was a prison camp for captured
Italian and Russian prisoners of war. Memorials pay honor to them in the local
About 70–80 Jewish families lived in the town until the World War II. They
had their own rabbi, chorister, school and teacher too. Nearly all Jews were
deported and killed in 1944.
The town’s landscape was drastically transformed during the Communism.
Vast portion of the historical town center was demolished to make room for
high-rise buildings with hundreds of apartments.
Until 1960 Šamorín was a district seat, and then it became the part of the
Dunajská Streda district and Trnava county. The town’s population is
currently over 13 000 with majority of Hungarian nationality.
450 various firms and nearly 50 non-profit organizations are located in
Šamorín employing people and contributing to the town’s further
development. Since 2004 an Italian industrial park has being built with 15–20
investors participating (Calearo, Eltra …).
Cultural, ecclesiastical and secular heritage
The Reformed Church: one of the oldest and most beautiful Gothic churches in
the Rye Island Region. It was built in the 13th century in late-roman style and
still has original frescos.
The Roman Catholic Church and Monastery: they were built according to the
plan of J. G. Altenburger between 1722 and 1778 by Minims (Paulinians) and are
significant monuments of the late-baroque style. It was the only Minim monastery
in the Hungarian Kingdom. The organ of the church was built by the most famous
organ maker at that time Ludwig Mooser in 1866.
The Evangelical Church was built in 1875 in classicistic style. The Slovak
statesman, diplomat and scientist Milan Rastislav Štefánik was a student in
the local Evangelical school in 1889–90.
The Roman Church in Šámot: it was built around 1260 in roman style and
bears the name of St. Margaret.
The Synagogue was built in 1912. In the years of socialism it was
disgracefully used as a warehouse. Today it gives a home to the multi-art
foundation called At Home Gallery. The center has acquired national and
international publicity in areas of contemporary fine arts, music and
eurhythmics. The Gallery was visited by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama
The Town Hall is situated on the Main Square of the Town. The original roof
and tower were destroyed in a fire in 1836. There was a known and unhealthy
prison under the building.
Recreation and other local sights
The river Danube is visited mainly for recreational activities. A brand new
aqua park, wellness, sport and congress center will be opened in 2015.
One of the most significant European bicycle routes can be found on the levee
of the river and gives easy access to the nearby villages, Bratislava, Vienna or
Culture and sports in the town
Several folk and art groups work in the town. E.g. the Csalló folk art
group, the Csali and Prvosienka children folk dance groups, the HID (Bridge)
choir and different bands play modern music.
The first soccer match was played in 1912. The STK (Local Association of
Exercisers) was established in 1914.
Other clubs: tennis, kayak-canoe club (the best club in Slovakia), the famous
fencing club, Gladiator Club for wrestlers, basketball team – the local women
team plays in the Slovak First League Championship.
From the 1970s Šamorín is also famous for its horse racing which drew many
visitors to town.
- Mosonmagyaróvár – Hungary
- Hainburg – Austria
- Leiderdorp – The Netherlands
- Gheorgheni (Gyergyószentmiklós) – Romania
Published: 26. 1. 2016