...the Bay family

Bay family (bai and ludányi)

(Abstract of the Hungarian original work)


An ancient family whose name is originated from the Bai settlement, Nógrád county owned by the family and inherited by the Ráday family.

First significant members:

László Bay:member of the Diet of Hungary by Borsod county in 1477.

Mihály Bay: constable of Dévényvár under judge royal Miklós Báthori.

András Bay and Ferenc Bay:defended Eger Castle under the commandership of István Dobóin 1552, András was commander of Sáka Castle, Ferenc was commander of Krasznahorka Castle in 1567.

They had lands in Szatmár county in Gebe and Kis- Mada, moreover in Szabolcs, Bereg, Borsod, Zemplén, Bihar, Máramaros, Komárom and Győr counties.

The family's coat of arms: silver unicorn, standing on three hummocks in blue field, holds three roses in its forelegs. A similar unicorn is on the helmet's crown. The mantling is gold and red on the right and silver and blue on the left.

Many of the family's male members made notes in their memoirs or diaries about contemporary events in which they had participated. Moreover these writings contain important information about their ancestors as well. These men consciously wrote the documents to aquaint their sons with their family history and in order that they could learn from their ancestros' experiences and mistakes.

Important members from the 17th century on:

Mihály Bay de Ludány (cca. 1645 – cca. 1717): kuruc (armed anti-Habsburg rebels) diplomat, Hungarian envoy to Turkey, diary writer.

1665: chief clerk of Bereg county

1671: envoy in Eperjes

1682: commander of Munkács Castle

1685: first vice-count in Bereg county

1692: envoy of Imre Thököly to Constantinople, he documented his journey

1705 – 1706: envoy of Ferenc Rákóczi II to Crimea, he documented his journey

1705: moved to Nikodemia (today: Izmit, Turkey) with Imre Thököly, his envoy at the Diet of Hungary in Szécsény, 1705. After the emperor's death he moved back to Hungary and served Ferenc Rákóczi II.

István Bay (1676-1742): landowner in Bökény (today: Tiszabökény, Ukraine). His work titled Memoriale diarium consists of 240 pages, from which the magazine Ugocsa published some parts. It contains contemporary family events, the hardship of Bökény's Protestant Church and the events of the Mongol invasion of Europe in 1717.

István Bay II (1764-1820): his father: István Bay I, his mother: Eufrozina Nagy. He studied law. He worked as a clerk, a vice-judge, a royal counsellor and avice-count. He documented information about the ancestors of the family in his memoir. His brother Ferenc (1746-1820) was the only family member who was the member of the Order of Saint Stephen of Hungary. He got the Knights Crossfrom Francis II (1768–1835), Holy Roman Emperor, in 1808.





Ferenc Bay (1815-1901): István Bay II's son from his third wife. He continued his father's memoir. He studied in Debrecen and Sárospatak and graduated as a Juris Doctor. He worked as a vice-judge, a chief judge, an envoy to the Diet of Hungary in Pozsony (Bratislava), later a vice-count of Szabolcs county, a chief superintendent of Hajdúváros (a special district of Szabolcs county between 17th-19th century) from 1850 , a police superintendent of Szabolcs county and the first president of the feudal court in Debrecen.

The original memoir was lost but one of the relatives of Ferenc Bay borrowed it and copied it in c. 1890. The 27-paged typed document consists of two parts, which represent two different eras proved by the different kinds of writing style and language. These memoirs and diaries of the Bay family are invaluable documents of the history of the eras in which they were written.








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