Shoes on the Danube Bank

1st January 1970
Holocaust Memorials
SITE OVERVIEW

Sculptors Gyula Pauer and Can Togay have created a moving memorial to these Holocaust atrocities that sits in front of the magnificent Parliament building on the edge of the river. What visitors will see are 60 pairs of rusted period shoes cast out of iron. Different sizes and styles reflect how nobody was spared from the brutality of the Arrow Cross militia (the shoes depict children, women, businessmen, sportsmen etc.).

The memorial was designed to honour the Jews who were massacred by Fascist Hungarian militia belonging to the Arrow Cross Party in Budapest during the Second World War. They were ordered to take off their shoes (shoes were valuable and could be stolen and resold by the militia after the massacre), and were shot at the edge of the water so that their bodies fell into the river and were carried away. The memorial represents their shoes left behind on the bank. Behind the sculpture lies a 40 meter long, 70 cm high stone bench where at three points are cast iron signs, with the following text in Hungarian, English, and Hebrew: “To the memory of the victims shot into the Danube by Arrow Cross militiamen in 1944–45. Erected 16 April 2005.”

Image attribution:
Dennis JARVIS, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons
Marek Mróz, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

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