These numbers have a connection with Hungarian political history of the 1860s. They refer to the Hungarian revolution and independence war of 1848-1849. In the 1860s one of the leading party was the "forty-eighters" which meant that they wanted more rights for Hungary in the framework of the Habsburg empire while the other party was the "forty-niners" beacuse they wanted full independence from the Habsburgs.
There is a phrase in Hungarian "Nem enged a negyvennyolcból"-"He/she does not compromise on forty-eight" meaning that he/she insists on his opinion and that he/she is right.
Thank you Wazav94. You've imparted a valuable snippet of Hungarian history that foreigners like me would never know. Hope you've got lots more wisdom to share. It adds a new dimension to learning the language.
DaleEnlight is correct- though I almost found that out just this morning in my internet research concerning the Austro- Hungarian Empire - a fascinating historical phenomenon to me now!