The March 19 Style article "Hungarian Rhapsodizing" about the Capitol Hill ceremony at which the president of Hungary presented a replica of the Holy Crown of St. Stephen to the United States was excellent (although it did not give due credit to the role of Rep. Tom Lantos).
I was happy to attend that event because in 1946 I had the unique honor of wearing the original for some minutes when it was in the custody of the American Military Government in Wiesbaden, Germany, before it was sent to Fort Knox.
Neither The Post's story nor the press material from the Hungarian Embassy reported the history of the bent cross that adorns the crown. More than 50 years ago, one of the guardians of the crown told me the following: When Turkish invaders threatened the capital, the royal treasures were hastily packed into a chest; the Turks were defeated at the city gates, and the Hungarians returned in triumph.
When the chest was opened, it was discovered that the lid had been slammed down and bent the cross. Rather than repair the damage, the king commanded: "Let this cross always remind Hungarians to give thanks for our miraculous deliverance." JOY R. SIMONSON Washington