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Transcarpathia is the most southwestern region in Ukraine (in Ukrainian - Закарпатська область). Its territory borders on Poland and the Lviv region in the north, the Ivano-Frankivsk region in the east, Romania in the south, Hungary in the south-west and Slovakia in the west. It is embraced by the Carpathian Mountains as a natural boundary in the east and the River Tisza winding along the frontier in the south.. The area of the Transcarpathia is 12,800 square kilometers. More than 360 varieties of mineral waters have been discovered and researched. These waters are used in the treatment of various diseases of the digestive and circulatory systems. Also some of the mineral waters are used for physiotherapy purpose. There are 10 sanatoriums in the region. The most well known of them are Carpathy, Sonyashne Zacarpattya, Polyana, Kvitka Polonyny, Perlyna Carpat, and Shayan. The region is rich in surface waters of high quality, the acute deficit of which is felt in all southeast Ukraine. Rivers of the region hold almost a fourth of Ukraine’s energy potential, which opens possibilities for development of small hydropower. In 896 AD, nomadic Hungarian tribes began to migrate over the Carpathian Mountains to the lands near the Danube River. From the 10th century until 1914 Transcarpathia was a part of Hungary. The Austrian-Hungarian Empire collapsed in autumn 1918. "Trianon", the peace treaty which officially ended the First World War for Hungary, signed in Versailles in the Trianon Castle on the 4th of June, 1920, was one of the most catastrophic events in the history of the Hungarian Nation. With this „treaty”, the Allies or more commonly the 'Entente' implemented the decision by which historic Hungary was dismantled. This is how, under the pretext of founding new nations, the largest minority group in Europe, the Hungarian minority, was created. After the treaty of Trianon, Transcarpathia became an administrative unit. Between 1938-39 it belonged to Czechoslovakia, after it belonged to Hungary again. In 1944 the Soviet Union seized it. The first Soviet census in Transcarpathia was carried out in 1959, in which the ethnic composition of the population was examined. The census data greatly disguised the real situation. The Soviet army occupying Transcarpathia had carried off the Hungarian and German male population between the ages of 18 and 50 for what was called ‘malenkij robot' (‘little forced labour') to the inner territories of the Soviet Union, pursuant to Decree No 0036 of 13 November, 1944. In accordance with the above decree, about 40,000-60,000 men were transported. Ukraine became independent in 1991. Nowadays Transcarpathia belongs to Ukraine. The population of the province is 1,279,000 (Ukrainians - 74.4%, Hungarians - 13.5%, Russians - 7%, Romanians - 2.5%, Gypsies - 1%, Slovaks - 0.6%, Germans - 0.3%). Hungarians form 150-200 thousand people but their number is decreasing because of emigration. Most of the Hungarians in Transcarpathia live in Beregszasz (Beregovo), Ungvar (Uzhgorod), Munkacs (Mukachevo), Huszt (Khust), Tecso (Tyachiv) and around it. Tecso is the old Hungarian crown city. Hungarians had founded the city by AD 1000. In 1329 the city had got different priveleges from the king Karoly Robert. After the First World War, the peace treaty was signed in Trianon and Transcarpathia was given, including Tecso to Czechoslovakia. The Soviet Union seized Transcarpathia in 1944. When Ukraine became independent, after the fall of the Soviet Union, the city of Tyachiv now belongs to Ukraine. The population of the city is 12.900 people, of which 3000 are Hungarians. Today it is a district center in Transcarpathia. The district centre, the town of Tecso, is 136 km from the regional centre – Ungvar (Uzhgorod)


The majority of Ukraine’s population is Christian. Most of the Christian people, who live in Ukraine, belong to the Orthodox Church. The Hungarian population of Transcarpathia is also Christian, and they are mainly members of the Calvinist Church. About 70-75% of Transcarpathian Hungarians are reformed (Calvinist). The Calvinist Church plays the role of a national church. This is illustrated by the popular saying „In Trans-carpathia not all of the Hungarians are Calvinist, but all the Calvinist people are Hungarians”. The Transcarpathian Reformed Church consists of three dioceses. In the Ung (Uzhhorod) diocese there are 23 congregations in which 22,000 believers live. In the Ugocsa (Vinohradiv) diocese there are 30 congregations with 23,000 believers. In the Bereg (Berehovo) diocese there are 47 congregations with 46,000 believers. The bishop of the Transcarpathian Reformed Church is Laszlo Horkai. The Reformed Church runs four church secondary schools in Transcarpathia. One of them is in Tecso (Tyachiv). Besides the Reformed Church, the Roman Catholic and the Greek Catholic Churches play an important role in the life of Transcarpathian Hungarians./ The Tyachiv Reformed Church has old traditions that were laid by our ancestors. We have 1500 members in the Reformed Church. On Sundays there are 300-400 members who visit our church. The Reformed Church helps the Lyceum with material things, equipment and prays for it. The Pastors of Tyachiv visit other churches, where they give Church services in Aknaszlatina, Nagybocsko, Raho.

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