The wine-growing community in the Austrian province of Burgenland lies on the western shore of Lake Neusiedl close to the border with Hungary. It is considered the "secret wine capital of Austria". With 1,700 inhabitants, Rust (which is also called the "town of storks" because of the animals frequently found here) is the smallest town in Austria with its own town charter. The area was first mentioned in 1317 on the occasion of a deed of donation by the Hungarian King Charles Robert I of Anjou-Naples (1278-1343) for his retainer Desiderius Hedevary as "possessio Ceel vocatum circa stagnum Ferthew" and in 1385 as "Rusth" (Hungarian Szil = elm, elm). In 1479 the "Zech" (guild of winegrowers) came into being and the confirmation of special wine export privileges by the Hungarian King Matthias Corvinus (1440-1490).
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