[formerly Ger. Weitzen]
Town in Hungary 35 km north of Budapest on the left bank of the Danube. In the 11th century an episcopal see was established there by Stephen I (reg 997–1038), who built a fortified Romanesque castle and cathedral. After the town was invaded by the Mongols in 1241, Béla IV (reg 1235–70) rebuilt the castle and had the fortifications strengthened. In the 14th century the cathedral was rebuilt in Gothic style, and at the end of the 15th century Bishop Miklós Báthori had the town redesigned in Renaissance style and a new cathedral built. From 1544 to 1686 Vác was ruled by the Turks. After they were driven out, the ruined town was again rebuilt in the 18th century by the bishops of Vác.
Plans for the 18th-century cathedral, the most important building in Vác, were drawn up by Franz Anton Pilgram under the direction of Bishop Károly Esterházy. Although construction did not begin until ...