Multiple Loyalties in Habsburg-Hungarian Relations at the Turn of the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Century

Bence Péterfi
Research Centre for the Humanities
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Hungarian Historical Review Volume 10 Issue 4  (2021):621-652 DOI 10.38145/2021.4.621

In this essay, I examine how people with business and political interest on both sides of Austrian–Hungarian border, sometimes even in royal courts, could survive in spite of the rather capricious relationship between Hungarian kings and Habsburg rulers in the second half of the fifteenth century and the early sixteenth century. Most of them sought a solution that would enable them to keep the estates and the positions they had already acquired. This “double loyalty” was practically impossible in the midst of the war between Matthias Corvinus and Frederick III, Holy Roman emperor: very few of the figures in question managed to maintain attachments to both sides. A window of opportunity opened with the Peace of Pressburg in 1491, when the two parties recognized the possibility of service in the neighboring ruler’s service. Although the peace treaty did not alter the significant shrinking of the camp supporting the Habsburg claim to the throne, which had been relatively large in the time of the 1490–91 Austro-Hungarian War, from the 1490s on and in strikingly large numbers from the mid-1510s, more and more people could be found whose activities made plainly clear that they were not exclusive in their loyalties: they were quite able to serve two masters at the same time.

Keywords: multiple loyalties, late Middle Ages, Hungarian Kingdom, Habsburg dynastic politics, cross border contacts

 “A Hungarian will always be a Hungarian, with faith and loyalty rather unstable.” Florian Waldauf made this claim in a letter written to Sigismund, archduke of Austria in October, 1490. Waldauf was informing the archduke about the recent developments of the military expedition launched by Emperor Frederick III (1440–1493) and his son, King Maximilian I (1486/1493–1519) in the autumn of the same year.1 As the imperial army entered the Kingdom of Hungary by force, several Hungarian and Croatian noblemen yielded to it, some of whom undoubtedly did so not simply out of necessity but rather as a strategic move. For those going over to the Habsburg side, the peace treaty signed in Pressburg (Bratislava, today in Slovakia) on November 7, 1491 meant relief from retaliatory actions.2 King Vladislaus II of Bohemia (1471–1516) and Hungary (1490–1516) not only had to guarantee a pardon for these subjects of his, he also acknowledged, for the future, that they had the right to join any prince in any country outside Hungary who was not an enemy of His Majesty and the country and who had not allied with such enemies, especially the Holy Roman emperor, as wished or considered convenient, but by all means remained, like the others, obedient and loyal to Vladislaus II before all else, preserving the freedom of the country and bearing the burdens deriving from their possessions and incomes at all times.3

The Peace of Pressburg in 1491 put an end to a period which had borne witness to repeated outbreaks of conflict from the late 1470s on, the roots of which went back to the 1440s. After the death of Albert, king of the Germany and Hungary (1439), there escalated a civic war of varying intensity between the parties in order to acquire possession of the Holy Crown of Hungary and conquer the Hungarian throne as an ultimate goal: some supported the posthumous-born son of King Albert, Ladislaus (1440/1453–1457), while others supported Vladislaus I, king of Poland (1434–1444). King Vladislaus I was killed in the Battle of Varna (1444), so no rivals were left for Ladislaus the Posthumous, but the civil war was not over. At this point, some estates in Western Hungary ended up in the possession of Duke Albert of Austria for a short time and his brother, King Frederick, from the 1440s onwards, some (the smaller share) by right of pledge and some (the larger share) because they were simply taken by force. Peace with Frederick was finalized in the Treaty of Wiener Neustadt (1463) in the sixth year of the reign of the next king, Matthias Corvinus (1458–1490). The most severe “compromise” in the treaty proved to be the terms regarding the right of inheritance of the Hungarian throne. Supposedly keeping the unsatisfying and frustrating conditions in mind, Matthias Corvinus started an open conflict with the emperor in 1477 which did not come to an end until December 1487 (without any significant success). The aforementioned Peace of Pressburg not only set aside the military conflict between King Wladislaus II and his Habsburg rivals after the death of Matthias Corvinus but also confirmed the main points of the Treaty of Wiener Neustadt. Wladislaus II and Maximilian I then signed a marital agreements involving their dynasties, first in March 1506 and eventually, in its final form, in July 1515.4 Finally, the elevation of Ferdinand, archduke of Austria (1521–1564) to the throne of Hungary was based neither on the treaty of Wiener Neustadt nor on the Treaty of Pressburg, but on two symbolic acts at the time: his election in 1526 and coronation in 1527, as was also true in the case of his rival, János Szapolyai (who was elected and crowned in 1526).5

The following questions arise: 1) did the Peace of Pressburg constitute a new phenomenon that had been unknown or did it merely “legalize” it on the highest level; 2) after 1491 and before the Habsburg provinces and the Jagiellonian Kingdoms of Hungary and Bohemia were united by King Ferdinand (1526–64), how many people, if any, took advantage of the opportunity, created by the Treaty of Pressburg, to show dual loyalties and serve two rulers, a Jagiellon and a Habsburg at the same time? In order to answer these questions, I first examine the issue in general. I then consider, touching on its antecedents and with the help of some graphic examples, what the point included in the Peace of Pressburg, which may seem a bit unusual at first, actually meant in reality.

Multiple Loyalties

Today, we are perhaps more likely to think (or even judge) about loyalty in categorical terms, but apart from in times of war, loyalty has never been a simple question, as rulers and their counselors themselves quite pragmatically realized in the late Middle Ages. Undoubtedly there were some individuals who showed dual or multiple loyalties for a shorter or longer periods of time, or in other words who served and were loyal to two (or more) masters at the same time.6 Paul-Joachim Heinig stressed that for rather a long time, until the reign of Emperor Charles V (1519–1555), personal commitments predominantly showed a lack of regulation in the Holy Roman Empire. The phenomenon of “serving or being committed to more masters, could, at various levels, lead to one being given the status of familiaritas or being appointed to serve as a counselor. It was not only about titles and formality, but rather went hand in hand with certain functions.”7 Occasionally, however, contemporaries argued8 that “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other” (Mt 6.24).9 Similar arguments can be found in several pieces of medieval European poetry. The strict disapproval of multiple loyalties, however, may suggest that this kind of conduct was more common than poets wanted to admit.10 However, there may have been other “practical” reasons for references to multiple loyalties: conflicts, defections, and betrayals make a more exciting story line. Authors only rarely narrated something that seemed to favor avoiding conflicts and accepting compromise for the sake of realizing multiple interests.11

Multiple loyalty extended beyond borders: first and foremost, permeability was possible due to the identical or very similar social structure (the feudal system).12 Subjects coming from the Low Countries could easily belong to the Holy Roman emperor and to the French king as their liege lord at the same time.13 However, multiple loyalty became more and more conflicted by the growing French expansionism in the early modern period.14 Independently from the social system, actors sometimes performed services for several parties in the world of diplomacy, as recent analysis has shown, drawing on the examples of nuncios, legates, and clerks of the Holy See and the envoys of foreign rulers in Rome in the second half of the fifteenth century.15 Crossing borders between Christian and Muslim countries was not a privilege for traders at all, and sometimes Christian mercenaries paid by Muslim rulers represented the interests of Christian kings (or of the people who had commissioned them).16

The feudal system of Western Europe never set foot in the Hungarian Kingdom, which is why the findings of scholarship on multiple loyalties in Western Europe (a topic which is often intertwined with analysis of the local social system) can only be taken into account in a limited way. A member of the lower nobility, for example, was often “employed” as a so-called familiaris, a position which was distinctive to the world of Hungary and which meant belonging to the familia of a landlord, working in his service. This position had nothing to do with the position of the vassal in the feudal system.17 Based on the criterion of disloyalty, one sees where the limits of loyalty lay.18 However, no systematic analysis has been done on what it meant to be a “good” and “loyal” subject in the Hungarian Kingdom19 or what was done for and thought of loyalty and disloyalty in theory and practice.20 Positions which involved working in the service of the court constituted the highest, most prestigious slice of the “spectrum of loyalty.”21 In most cases, we do not know exactly what service involved or whether any services were actually performed. Receipts and accounts are available only from the turn of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries on from the court of the Holy Roman emperor, certifying that someone made it onto the list of payments, or in other words received regular income for his services, but the nature of this service remains unclear.22 The source material on matters of the medieval court of the Hungarian king is even more scattered and fragmented.23

As seen from the discussion of the differing legal systems, the Hungarian-Austrian border had very sharp contours, but this did not really prevent people from crossing it and having short-term or even long-term (business) issues on the other side of the border. If one interprets the concept of loyalty loosely, multiple loyalties might also mean that, for whatever reason, someone was a landowner in one or more provinces or countries, whether these lands were under a single, autonomous sovereign or belonged to a common composite state under one ruler. In fact, in order to maintain possession of an estate successfully over the long run, a certain degree of loyalty was needed. Otherwise, the estates would have been lost. This kind of double or multiple ownership of estates, or in other words, owning estates which were in more than one country, was not a new phenomenon in the late medieval period; it may certainly be detected, albeit in a fragmented form, in the Austrian-Hungarian borderland from the thirteenth century on. From the second half of the thirteenth century, there is more and more evidence of less significant figures settling in or relocating to and acquiring smaller estates on both sides of the border.24 The will of nobleman Wolfgang Rauschar/Rauscher of Levél or Gáta, written in 1526, offers a clear indication of the places which were decisive in his life. For instance, he designated the hospital in Pressburg as a beneficiary, but also the hospitals in Hainburg and Bruck an der Leitha, right across the border.25 Noblemen were not the only people who obtained estates. Ecclesiastical institutions also did (Heiligenkreuz, Pöllau, Vorau), as did burghers, who indeed obtained them in even higher numbers (Bruck an der Leitha, Wiener Neustadt etc.), usually with vineyards in Hungary, which “enjoyed a special status since the thirteenth century, their owner having the right to sell or bequeath them to whomever he wanted as long as he cultivated them regularly.” The burghers in particular managed to make their voices heard when they repeatedly expressed their resentment for having to pay foreign trade duties, that is, the thirtieth and the ninth (nona), the tax of landlords, for the wine they produced on their own Hungarian estates.26 The predominantly German inhabitants of Pressburg and Sopron, which were both close to the border, must certainly have had interests in the territory of the Empire (owing to their numerous family ties),27 but few details are known about this.

As a consequence of the aforementioned wars in the second half of the fifteenth century, life in the Hungarian-Austrian border region became more complicated and conflicted. The world beset by party strife was vividly captured by German poet Michael Beheim, who wrote in the mid-fifteenth century, a time at which the Hungarian, Bohemian, and Austrian territories were plagued by civil war. In one of his poems, Beheim described how a Hungarian nobleman, having noticed the coat of arms on Beheim’s shield and realized that he was in the service of Ladislaus the Posthumous drove him away, shouting imprecations at him all the while for having discouraged his king from visiting Hungary.28 In another poem, Beheim gave an account of an episode when he was verbally abused at the wedding of a prominent big landowner from the Austrian-Hungarian borderland, Count Sigismund of Szentgyörgy-Bazin, in Óvár. This time, however, the source of conflict was not anti-German sentiment but tensions within the House of Habsburg. When the poet inquired as to why he was being taunted, a jester named Christopher told him that, while Beheim was on the side of Frederick III, those hurling abuse at him supported the monarch’s brother, Albert VI, archduke of Austria.29

Waldauf’s negative view of Hungarians, cited in the first sentence of this essay, may have been indirectly fed by this tumultuous period. Bad experiences were naturally engraved more deeply in the memories of those living in the borderland than they were among the inhabitants of the Tyrol (like Waldauf himself). However, the news affected those living farther from the events as well, as they could hardly avoid hearing the flood of reports. The fear of Hungarians became so intense that it was still palpable in Habsburg territories even in the mid-sixteenth century, by which time the rulers sitting on the Hungarian throne had been from the House of Habsburg for decades.30 On the other hand, it was not only Habsburg supporters who were prejudiced against the people of the Kingdom of Hungary. Similar attitudes were also prevalent among members of the Hungarian nobility.31 Later generations were also swayed by these preconceptions. The once significant royal town of Sopron, for instance, was often accused of being “two-faced” or “false-hearted” because, due to its location near the Austrian-Hungarian border, at times of political crisis, it sometimes had to adopt a prudent policy and make shows of loyalty both to the Hungarian king and the Holy Roman emperor.32

From the Empire to the Kingdom of Hungary

If we wish to have a more subtle grasp of what being in the service of more than one ruler meant after 1491, we would do well first to examine the decades before this period. Members of the Cilli retinue, who took part in the administration of their “empire” (which included lands in Carinthia, Carniola, Styria, the Kingdom of Hungary and Croatia), which fell to pieces after the assassination of Ulrich II, count of Cilli (1456), all found their way somehow. It is a well-known fact that thanks to the influential Cilli family, a great number of imperial subjects arrived in the Kingdom of Hungary as castellans or familiares.33 Nevertheless, few of them were able to achieve anything resembling the career of Bohemian mercenary captain Jan Vitovec who, in the 1450s and 1460s accumulated a considerable size and number of estates by maneuvering between Frederick III and Matthias Corvinus.34 Yet, however prominent Jan Vitovec may have been at the beginning of Matthias Corvinus’s reign, his sons were driven away from their Hungarian estates incredibly easily, by the increasingly autocratic king’s troops in 1488.35 All their significant estates in Hungary were lost, and there was probably little left of the estates amassed and owned by the mercenary captain in the territory of the Empire either. According to the records, the two sons, William and George, were on the side of the Habsburgs in 1491,36 although at this time they also enjoyed support from Matthias Corvinus’ widow, Beatrice of Aragon.37 Presumably because of his knowledge of Slavic languages, Count William was sent as an envoy by Frederick III and Maximilian I to Poland, Mazovia, and Russia in 1493–1494,38 then he became assessor of the supreme court (Kammergericht) in Wiener Neustadt. He was given the estate of Bruck an der Leitha, on the Austrian side of the border, probably as a payment for his services.39 His elder brother, Count George, was able to remain on the Hungarian estates, which were then only a fraction of their previous size, but according to the book of accounts of 1494–1495, he may have been given a place in the court of Vladislaus II.40 Complaints concerning various properties were made in George’s name,41 but the family was unable to get back most of the former estates.

Vitovec was not the only person coming from the far side of the border and settling in Western Hungary who entered the service of the Hungarian King but also kept his interests abroad for a time. In 1472, Frederick III complained to Pope Sixtus IV (1471–84) that the king of Hungary had a habit of supporting Austrian noblemen who dared to rebel against the emperor.42 Andreas Baumkircher from Carniola was one such “rebel.” Baumkircher had spent a long time in the service of the Habsburgs (as a mercenary, first of King Ladislaus the Posthumous, then of Frederick III), and he had thus obtained an estate in Western Hungary (Szalónak or Stadtschlaining, today in Austria). On the day of the treaty of Wiener Neustadt (1463), Baumkircher took an oath of loyalty to King Matthias Corvinus, and he was granted a special privilege: he was allowed to serve anyone as long as, in doing so, he caused no harm to the king of Hungary or the kingdom. Not surprisingly, Baumkircher came up as a counsellor of the emperor a few days later. He eventually turned against Frederick III, however, going over to the side of Matthias Corvinus in 1469. In 1471, the emperor had Baumkircher arrested and executed, and neither the Inner Austrian estates or Matthias Corvinus made any protest.43 Thanks to an agreement between the emperor and Baumkircher’s widow and sons in 1472, the family would receive compensation for Baumkircher’s estates on the territory of the Holy Roman Empire, though there is no clear evidence that the whole amount of money was ever actually transferred to them.44 By the end of the fifteenth century, the major part of the estates of the two sons, Wilhelm and Georg,45 consisted of Császárvár (Cesargrad, today in Croatia) and Szalónak, in the territory of the Kingdom of Hungary, and Rohonc (Rechnitz, today in Austria), bought in July 1490.46 Despite the fact that the Austrian-Hungarian war of 1490–1491 probably also hit his Hungarian estates situated close to the border, Wilhelm Baumkircher did not end up among Maximilian’s troops invading the Kingdom of Hungary but rather joined the supporters of Vladislaus II, crowned king of Hungary in 1490,47 and stayed at his side until his death in 1492. He was rewarded for his loyalty with the position of treasurer for a short time.48 Probably due to considerations of property rights, his brother Georg Baumkircher kept his Austrian estate Kirchschlag49 (which he held by right of pledge) when he entered the service of the Habsburgs in 1493, though he did not choose Frederick III, his father’s executioner, but his son, Maximilian I.50 However, records from 1494 refer to Georg Baumkircher as now (or continually?) a counselor to Vladislaus II.51 Although it is not clear that he played these roles at the same time, one thing is for sure: while the father could not manage to strike a successful balance between his loyalties to the two rulers in wartime, his son managed to do so in a time of peace.

Sigmund Weispriach, a brother-in-law of Jan Vitovec, set foot first as captain of Fraknó (Forchtenstein, today in Austria) in the 1450s in Hungary, serving Frederick III at that time. In 1466, rewarding him for leaving Frederick III’s side and joining the Hungarian king, Matthias Corvinus donated Sigmund the estates of Fraknó and Kabold (Kobersdorf, today in Austria), and privileged Sigmund, among others, to use the arms of the former counts of Fraknó. For the following eight years, he was ispán of Sopron county in Western Hungary and, for a while, he even served as captain of the town of Sopron. Meanwhile, he was possibly able to keep his offices on the other side of the border, namely the captaincy of Pettau (Ptuj, today in Slovenia), which belonged, however, to the authority of the archbishop of Salzburg.52 The path to the Hungarian king’s service was less direct for his sons, Ulrich and Andreas.53 In January 1475, Andreas was said to be a courtier (aulicus) of Corvinus.54 In December 1479, the brothers and their widowed mother refused to open the gates of the Castle of Pettau for the troops of the Hungarian king under an agreement between Corvinus and the archbishop of Salzburg.55 It was probably due to the Hungarian invasions in Styria and Carinthia in the early 1480s as well as a financial conflict of financing mercenaries with Frederick III at the same time that Andreas went over to Matthias Corvinus’s side in 148256 and, following in his father’s footsteps, he became ispán of Sopron.57 Later, as a courtier (“unnser diener, hofgesind”) of Corvinus he was even imprisoned by the emperor for a time, against which the Hungarian king tried to take action.58 Matthias took Ulrich von Weispriach under his protection around December 1485 and made him a member of the royal court (“zu unserm diener und hofgesind”).59 In the case of the Weispriachs, too, a serious break came with the aforementioned 1488 campaign against the Vitovec.60 After that, they came to serve Frederick III and Maximilian I, participated in the aforementioned Habsburg invasion of 1490, and Andreas von Weispriach became captain of the Hungarian town of Veszprém, which was occupied by imperial troops.61 After the Peace of Pressburg, the Weispriach family remained in control of the estate of Kabold and acquired the pawned estate of Kosztel (Kostelgrad, today in Croatia).62 The sources offer no indication that they performed any services for the Hungarian royal court after 1490. They started (or kept) collecting estates in the Habsburg lands, and they were commissioned by King Maximilian to perform some services: Ulrich Weispriach, for example, became governor (Landeshauptmann) of Carinthia (1500–1503).63

The third person arriving from the territory of the empire and dominant from a political perspective was Ulrich von Grafeneck from Swabia, who obtained his first estates in 1447 in Hungary (Sopronkertes or Baumgarten, today in Austria) in the service of Frederick III. In the early 1450s, he served as the castellan of Kőszeg, which at the time was occupied by the emperor’s troops. At the turn of the 1450s and 1460s, Frederick III appointed him to serve as ispán of Sopron county. At the same time, Grafeneck got hold of the estate of Trautmansdorf on the Austrian side of the border (1459) and, gradually, further estates in the Archduchy of Austria. In addition to increasing his wealth, Grafeneck also successfully expanded his network of connections. In the late 1460s, he was often seen around Matthias Corvinus, and he even received an estate from the king (Scharfeneck, 1470). In those days, he clearly tried to achieve a balance by serving both rulers. The cracks in the relationship between Grafeneck and the emperor were probably caused by Andreas Baumkircher’s execution in 1471. Grafeneck took part in a feud (Fehde) led by several Austrian noblemen against the empire, which enjoyed the overt backing of the Hungarian king himself. Eventually, Grafeneck and the emperor reached an agreement in early 1477. In return for 50,000 Rhenish guilders, Grafeneck would give up all his estates in Austria. Not much later (before the spring of 1478), though, the Swabian nobleman went back to supporting Frederick III, then, after further unknown turns, he returned to the service of the Hungarian king. It is possible that in 1487 he was about to change sides again, but this was something the Hungarian king would not tolerate, and it is possible that Grafeneck was killed at his behest. There is no indication in the sources that any of his descendants performed any services for the court. They maintained ownership of (or at least their rights to) both their Hungarian and Austrian estates until they sold them in 1504.64

From the Kingdom of Hungary to the Empire

It was not unusual at all, in the fifteenth century, for Hungarian and Croatian nobles in the service of the Habsburgs to maintain their contacts with the Hungarian king.65 Yet the strategy of Emperor Frederick III and his son, Maximilian I, brought new elements, quite similar to the “methods” used by Matthias Corvinus: they exerted influence on the dynastic policy of their neighboring rival, made some subjects falter in their loyalty by making them various offers, and then built a group of followers who would work to further their dynastic policy, which aimed at destabilization and securing local support for possible military action. This method was particularly used in the period between 1440 and the Peace of Wiener Neustadt in 1463 and the period after 1491. After Matthias Corvinus’s death (1490), and later the Habsburg rulers continuously gave indications of their desire to do so. One of the most emphatic examples of these efforts was the funeral procession of Frederick III (December 6–7, 1493). According to the diplomatic protocol, Maximilian I, delegates of the Holy See and of Charles VIII of France were followed by two emissaries of Vladislav II: Tamás Bakóc, bishop of Eger, and Miklós Bánfi of Alsólendva. They were not the only subjects of the king of Hungary present at the funeral: Hungarian noblemen were also seen in the procession symbolizing the lands of Frederick III. Representing the Holy Roman emperor’s title as king of Hungary, they marched with the coat of arms of the Kingdom of Hungary, right in front of the people symbolizing the Empire, and were last but one (in other words, the second most important figures) in the entire procession. Four of the five delegates can be identified. Two of them were individuals who had recently risen to prominence (Jakab Székely of Kövend and János Kishorvát), and two of them were from prestigious Hungarian noble families (Miklós Szécsi of Felsőlendva and János Ellerbach of Monyorókerék).66 The fact that these noblemen represented the interests of the Holy Roman emperor in the funeral procession was probably a consequence of their serving the Habsburgs during the war of 1490–1491 and continuing to maintain their network of relationships.

In the period after the Peace of Pressburg in 1491, for Frederick III and Maximilian I, openly supporting those loyal to the Habsburgs would have meant weakening the peace treaty, which had been signed to strengthen the Habsburg claim to the throne in the first place, so their followers could only count on some informal support. At the turn of 1494–1495, the news of the ongoing military campaign ordered by Vladislav II against Duke Lőrinc Újlaki reached Maximilian I, who at the time was in Antwerp, somewhat differently: The Hungarian king and his counselors were settling accounts with Maximilian’s former and present supporters instead of dealing with the Ottoman threat. The king of the Romans did not wish to violate the peace agreement, nor did he want to let down his followers, who were “his only joy and comfort in the Kingdom of Hungary,” and who (and here he was clearly referring to his estates in the south) would “also serve as a shield against the Ottomans.” Therefore, he intended to send a delegation to the Kingdom of Hungary to address the conflicts and more soldiers to fight against the Ottomans.67 This “hesitation” probably paralyzed the supporters of the Habsburg’s claim to the throne, and in time, their numbers dropped. As time passed, the threat of the Ottoman Empire likewise diverted the attention of the inhabitants of the southern regions, including Maximilian I’s former followers. Perhaps it was despair due to the hopeless situation that motivated Ferenc Beriszló in 1511 to revive his earlier relationships with the House of Habsburg, for as former ban of Jajce (1494–1495, 1499–1503), Beriszló knew very well what the Ottoman threat entailed. In his own name and the name of his brother, Bertalan Beriszló, prior of Vrana, he offered his services to Maximilian I,68 and then to the chancellor of Tyrol, Zyprian von Serntein.69

In the former letter,70 Beriszló also mentioned his joint service he had performed earlier with János Kishorvát. He may have been referring to the civil war of 1490–91, but that he had another in mind is also possible, as he and Kishorvát had served the emperor for several years. Yet as an envoy of Matthias Corvinus in 1489 in the Ottoman Empire,71 two years later during the preparatory meetings for the Treaty of Pressburg, Kishorvát represented fellow Hungarian and Croatian noblemen finding themselves on the side of the Habsburgs,72 and in the spring of 1492, he was seen, with many others, in Habsburg service in military campaigns against the Ottomans.73 It was probably on the grounds of his military services that he lay claim to some smaller or greater sums of money, which can be traced in the documents concerning him from late 1496 on.74 At the same time, the amount owed to Kishorvát was so large that, in 1497, the Holy Roman emperor gave him Arnfels, an estate in Styria.75 Kishorvát received half of the 6,000 guilders, Maximilian’s debt, in June 1506 but the rest was considerably delayed: part of the arrears was still unpaid in 1524, years after Kishorvát’s death.76 Like Beriszló, Kishorvát had estates in southern Hungary, so it is quite possible that he was motivated to serve the emperor at least in part because of the dire necessities he faced back home. He also may have been tempted to serve the Habsburgs because he lost his Hungarian estates by the mid-1490s as a consequence of his highly aggressive, sometimes even criminal activity,77 and it became impossible for him to prosper in the political sphere. In 1503, when Kishorvát and his brother-in-law, Lőrinc Bánfi of Gara, got back a part of their estates with the help of Duke John Corvin (under the condition that, in absence of any heir, the estates would become the property of the Corvin line), Kishorvát obliged himself to serve the duke but nobody else.78 He was chosen to be one of the executors of duke’s will after the death of Corvin (1504).79 However, we can assume, given the large debt which had been incurred by the Habsburg court, that Kishorvát’s contacts with the Habsburg court were eagerly kept.80

Alongside Kishorvát, Jakab Székely of Kövend was also in the permanent service of the Habsburgs. In the 1470s, he took on military service in Matthias Corvinus’s court, and he played important roles in the king’s campaigns against the Habsburg lands in the 1480s and even obtained estates in Styria. His decision to change sides was not prompted by the Ottoman threat, but rather by the hope to protect and keep his estates in the Habsburg lands, which he had received in the 1480s. He proved successful in these efforts. The fact that certain sources in the Holy Roman Empire refer to Jakab Székely as a counselor (Rat) of Maximilian I may indicate that he held a position of some distinction but was never a real insider.81 His place of origin and the fact that he owned a considerable number of estates in the Kingdom of Hungary in the 1490s played almost no role in his services to the empire, with the exception of Frederick III’s funeral procession in 1493. The tasks he was given required loyalty and reliability, such as military missions in Italy (e.g. in 1496) and the Habsburg provinces or supporting the emperor in his disputes with the Styrian estates. Occasionally, Székely participated in negotiations and diplomatic missions. It is also possible that sometimes he was consulted in issues concerning Hungary. Perhaps the greatest achievement of his career was his triumph in ensuring that both his brother and his sons would have opportunities to move up in the ranks in the Hungarian royal court, thus considerably expanding their room for maneuver.82

Among the families permanently in the service of the Habsburgs, as opposed to the Hungarian royal court, some of the most prominent members of the Hungarian and Croatian nobility can be found. Among the counts of Szentgyörgy and Bazin, who had close connections to both the Moravian-Bohemian83 and the Austrian-South German84 nobility through kinship and estates, the most important supporters of the Habsburg court were John and Sigismund, who lived in the fifteenth century and whose political role was especially notable in the 1440–60s,85 that is, at the time when the Habsburgs were particularly active in their foreign policies towards the Kingdom of Hungary and Hungary was struggling with serious internal conflicts. And although in the end, the family returned to being loyal supporters of the Hungarian king (mainly because of their important Hungarian estates), their network of connections, the prestige they had won, and their knowledge of German were not wasted, and this sometimes made them seem suspicious in the eyes of several fellow Hungarians, who feared that they might be engaged in malicious negotiations against the Hungarian king.86 It was due to the close-knit network that, in June 1480, a few months after the third Austrian-Hungarian war broke out, Frederick III and counts Sigismund and John made an agreement that would guarantee peace between the two parties with a non-aggression pact, and protect the counts’ estates in Moson County from being taken away by the emperor.87 Count John’s and Sigismund’s orientation to the House of Habsburg was partly followed by Sigismund’s son, Thomas,88 and the half-brother, Christopher, who was in the service of the Habsburgs in 1506.89 Christopher’s ambitions may also have derived from the fact that, thanks to his wife, Elisabeth von Neidberg, he acquired quite a few estates in Styria, which Maximilian I topped up with an estate in pledge (Wachsenegg) in 1501.90

John and Sigismund of Szentgyörgy and Bazin may also have been the people who were able to gain a foothold in the Duchy of Bavaria, though for reasons yet unknown.91 It was, however not them or their lineal descendants, but Count Francis of Szentgyörgy and Bazin, who belonged to another branch of the family, who entered the service of Albert IV, duke of Bavaria (1467–1508).92 It is thus possible that, during the negotiations for the marriage between his son, William IV, duke of Bavaria (1508–1550), and the sister of King Vladislaus II of Hungary and Bavaria (1509–1510), Peter of Szentgyörgy and Bazin, voivode of Transylvania, was purposely commissioned to be the chief negotiator on behalf of the Hungarian party, as he had a good knowledge of both Bavaria and the German language owing to his relatives.93

The Croatian Frankopan family, which had huge estates in the southern regions of the Kingdom of Hungary and Croatia, was also traditionally oriented to the House of Habsburg. Except for a short period, Count Stephen Frankopan was ban of Croatia from 1434 to 1437,94 and between 1436 and 144095 and then again between 1453 and 1454 he served as governor (Landeshauptmann) of Carniola,96 a position that his brother, Duim Frankopan probably also held between 144497 and 1447.98 At the same time, the growing number of members of the Frankopan family in the service of the Habsburgs is also quite notable.99 At the turn of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, Michael Frankopan (from the Slunj line) and his cousins John and Nicholas Angelo (from the Trsat line), as well as John and Nicholas from the Cetin line are noted to have been in the service of the court.100 Bernard from the Modruš line of the Frankopan family may also have had close relations with the House of Habsburg, but the details are unknown.101 In November 1509, Maximilian I reinforced Bernard’s previously granted privileges in the empire (his title as palatine) with reference to the services he had performed.102 The services rendered by Bernard Frankopan’s son Christoph for the Habsburgs in the 1510s and 1520s are among the most documented cases. In 1522–1523, he was Master of the Horse (grand escuier d’escuierie) in Archduke Ferdinand’s court, which, given his role in the War of the League of Cambrai (1508–1516), should be interpreted not as a “classical” position in the court but as a function on the battlefield.103 Presumably maintaining his remarkably good relations with the archduke,104 in 1525 Frankopan appeared as one of the familiares of Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia and then as one of his counselors.105 As in the case of the aforementioned noblemen from the south of Hungary and Croatia, fear of the Ottomans was a decisive factor among fellow Croatian noblemen. Keeping contacts with the Habsburg House and their officials, moreover, receiving financial and military support from them in the 1520s provided a partial solution to the Ottoman threat106 that could, however, give some extraordinary answers to loyalty issues. As Lajos Thallóczy puts it:

the court of Buda was not too delighted to see Christoph, Wolfgang, George and Matthias Frankopan, as well as Stephen Blagajski in the service of Ferdinand, but the same noblemen both frequented the court of Buda and accepted a soldier’s pay from Archduke Ferdinand. This could be accounted for by claiming that, as landowners at the border of Carniola, they were protecting the Austrian territories from the Ottomans too, and the payment they received from the archduke was in fact a contribution to the defense of their own country.107

Although several members of the Kanizsai family, which had estates in the Austrian-Hungarian borderland and enjoyed considerable prestige in the Kingdom of Hungary, likewise served the Habsburgs in times of crisis and civil war, despite their marriages with Austrian families, their service did not prove long-lasting. The only exception was János Kanizsai, whose demonstrable service to the Habsburg court beginning in 1498 can hardly be explained. At the same time, Kanizsai did not give up serving the King of Hungary either (as the ispán of Sopron and ban of Jajce, i.e. a holder of an important military office in the anti-Ottoman defense system), and he kept his estates in Hungary. Initially, he was probably employed as a military man with some horses, then, from the mid-1510s, when he moved to Austria, his service might have involved a permanent presence at the imperial court.108

The fact that János Kanizsai was able to have such a remarkable career may be due in no small part to the intertwining of the Jagiellonian and the Habsburg dynasties. The mutual attitude of distrust, which lasted until 1506 (i.e. until the Treaty of Vienna, which was signed after a short war between Maximilian and Vladislaus II) and, in certain respects, until 1515 (i.e. until the agreements made at the First Congress of Vienna), was obviously not too favorable for the development of such careers. From 1515 on, however, subjects had more room than ever before to find easy transit between the provinces ruled by the dynasties and their courts. The joint courts of young princesses Anna of Jagiello and Marie of Habsburg, who were brought up together in Innsbruck between 1516 and 1521, served as a king of melting pot for the elites, leading to marriages between female and male members of the court.109 It was, however, not the only place where intertwining interests can be seen. One of the master of courts of King Louis II was said to have been a counsellor to Emperor Maximilian I at the same time.110 In 1518, Maximilian I took István Hásságyi, chamberlain of Louis II, into his own service for an annual payment of 200 guilders.111 The assignment of Stefan von Zinzendorf from the Archduchy of Austria was probably partly an undercover maneuver: in February 1516, the Holy Roman emperor gave orders “secretly” to pay him 200 Rhenish guilders for his future services. Zinzendorf’s task was to espouse the issues of Emperor Maximilian I and support them at the Hungarian and Bohemian royal courts. The Austrian nobleman continued performing this task after the death of Vladislaus II in March 1516, following the emperor’s orders, in the court of the new king.112

In the 1510s and 1520s, Péter Erdődi was present in the courts of both Vladislaus II and Louis II,113 but from 1522, in parallel with his service for the latter, he was a familiaris and counselor in the court of Archduke Ferdinand as well.114 It would be difficult to deny that the decisive factor behind this career was his powerful relative, Tamás Bakóc, cardinal and archbishop of Esztergom, who also participated in the First Congress of Vienna in 1515. In 1522, Péter Erdődi obtained the estate belonging to Kőszeg (situated in Western Hungary, under Habsburg rule at the time) by right of pledge, as a result of an agreement to resolve a long financial dispute between Maximilian I and Bakóc, both deceased by then.115


In a formal or informal way, the persons discussed above all tried to balance between the Hungarian royal court and the court of the Habsburgs in the hopes of ensuring their own prosperity and the prosperity of their families. Such relationships, however, involved great risks, especially in times of war. Some of these individuals were executed (Andreas Baumkircher, for instance), while others “only” lost their estates when suspected of disloyalty to the king (such as the sons of Jan Vitovec).

While at the time of the conflicts between Frederick III and Matthias Corvinus it was primarily those who took the side of the Hungarian king who were able to pursue successful careers, after 1491, the situation reversed, and those who were on the side of the Habsburgs seemed to have more opportunities. However, this was not simply a “180-degree turn,” as the period after 1491 was not the exact opposite of the previous one. Rather, it differed in terms of its dynamics and the logic of power, as well as the ways in which one could adapt this logic. The post-1491 period was less about great changes and, for those supporting the cause of the Habsburgs, definitely more about careful maneuvering. Considerable change was only brought about by turns in the dynasty in 1506 and 1515. Perhaps it is not only the wealth of sources which allows us to identify so many instances of dual loyalties to different rulers and ties to the courts from the mid-1510s, or in other words precisely the time when Anna Jagiellon and Mary of Austria were brought up together on Habsburg soil.

The section of the Peace of Pressburg quoted at the beginning of this essay indeed makes mention of a kind of career which may not have been widespread but which was not completely unknown, neither in the borderlands nor in the royal courts. Including this section in the peace treaty probably served the purpose of reassuring the then numerous Habsburg supporters for many of whom the possibility of serving the House of Habsburg would become unrealistic within a few years: they could not expect any military aid from Maximilian I, as a few of the noblemen in the southern regions, who had fallen into despair because of the ever more impending threat of Ottoman encroachment, had already experienced firsthand. The winds of change could also be felt when, due to the Ottoman threat, Louis II and his brother-in-law Archduke Ferdinand were frequently forced to cooperate in the beginning of the 1520s, which was a new situation for both of them. It meant that, besides the royal courts, in which double loyalties had a place as a consequence of the Habsburg–Jagiellon dynastic agreements in 1515, serving two lords (i.e. the Habsburgs and the Jagiellons) became also possible on the Hungarian-Croatian military border for the sake of a more efficient defense system.

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Herzogtum Bayern (HB)

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Äußeres Archiv (ÄA)

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Diplomatikai Fényképgyűjtemény [The Photo Collection of Medieval Documents] (DF)

Magyar kincstári levéltárak [The Treasury Archives of the Hungarian Kingdom]

Magyar Kamara archivuma [The Archive of the Hungarian Chamber]

Vegyes iratok, ügyviteli segédletek, pecsétnyomók [Mixed Files, Finding Aids, Seals]

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1* This study was supported by postdoctoral grant no. PD 124903 and research group no. K 134690 of the National Research, Development and Innovation Office (NKFIH), Hungary, and the János Bolyai Research Scholarship of the Hungarian Academy of Science. I am indebted to Tibor Neumann, Tamás Pálosfalvi, Renáta Skorka and the two anonymous reviewers for their useful comments.
“… aber ein Hunger ist ein Hunger, des glawben vnd trew gantz vnstet ist…” Kraus, Maximilian’s Beziehungen, 35, no. 11.

2 See Wiesflecker, “Das erste Ungarnunternehmen”; Neumann, “Két sorsdöntő esztendő”; E. Kovács, “Miksa magyarországi hadjárata”; Wolf, Die Doppelregierung, 252–72. For the latest assessment of the 1491 Peace of Pressburg see Neumann, “Békekötés Pozsonyban.”

3 Ausgewählte Urkunden, 433.

4 For a new analysis of the period between 1440 and 1464, see Pálosfalvi, “Koronázástól koronázásig.” On the foreign affairs of the reign of King Matthias Corvinus, see Nehring, Matthias Corvinus. On Habsburg-Jagiello dynastic relations, see Das Wiener Fürstentreffen (especially the article by István Tringli). On the Habsburg occupation of Western Hungary, see Bariska, A Szent Koronáért and Csermelyi, “Zwischen Kaiser und König,” 23–30.

5 Pálffy, A Magyar Királyság, 52–59. (The Hungarian version of the monograph is more detailed than the English translation, which is why I cite it instead of the English.)

6 E.g. Heinig, “Römisch-deutscher Herrscherhof,” 232–5; Hesse, Amtsträger, 223–26; Kintzinger, “Servir deux princes”; Metz, “Diener zweier Herren”; Moraw, “Gedanken,” 58–59; Peters, “ ‘Gespaltene Treue’ ” (with the latest literature on the topic of multiple loyalties).

7 “Zugleich mehreren Herren zu dienen oder wenigstens verpflichtet zu sein, ist auf verschiedenen Ebenen bis hin zur Familiarität, zu Ratsernennungen etc. geronnen. Dies waren nicht nur Titulaturen oder Formalia, sondern damit waren auch bestimmte Funktionen verbunden.” – Heinig, “Römisch-deutscher Herrscherhof,” 233.

8 For instance, in the context of Hungarian landlord, Nicolaus Olahus, and his familiaris: Olahus, Epistulae, 477 no. 359, 484 no. 366.

9 See also Lk 16.13.

10 Oschema, “Der loyale Freund,” 28–29; Terada, “Doppelte Lehensbindung,” 137.

11 Peters, “ ‘Gespaltene Treue’.”

12 The earliest traces of double loyalty come up in 1037 in France and in 1074 in the Holy Roman Empire: Deutinger, “Seit wann,” 97–98. For a short overview of the genesis and problematic points of the “feudal” system in the Holy Roman Empire, see Deutinger, “Das hochmittelalterliche Lehnswesen.”

13 E.g. Croenen, “Regions,” 149–53. (Most of the literature concerning the Middle Ages in the Low Countries was inaccessible to me.)

14 Spangler, “Those in Between.”

15 Untergehrer, Die päpstlichen nuntii und legati, 264–73.

16 Jaspert, “Zur Loyalität.”

17 Engel, The Realm, 127–28.

18 “Online Decreta Regni Mediaevalis Hungariae,” 1216–17, 1390–91 (István Werbőczy’s Tripartitum, I. 13). See also Bónis, Hűbériség, 530–32 (in the reprinted version: 374–75).

19 See Oschema, “Der loyale Freund,” 32–33.

20 See Rehberg, “Reziprozität,” 438–42 and Spieß, “Loyalität.”

21 On trust generally, see e.g. Schulte, “The Concept of Trust.” On the same topic and the notion of trustworthiness in the courts of the princes of the Holy Roman Empire (Reichsfürsten), see Hirschbiegel, Nahbeziehungen.

22 On the sources of the court of Habsburgs around 1500, see Noflatscher, “‘Die Heuser Österreich vnd Burgund’.”

23 Recently started, a four-year-long research project was launched which will offer systematic research on this topic: The Hungarian Royal Court in the Reign of King Matthias and the Jagiellonian Kings (1458–1526): A Biographical Encyclopedia, NKFIH no. K 134690, principal investigator: Tibor Neumann.

24 See for example the Stuchs family, which owned estates both in the Principality of Austria and the Kingdom of Hungary: Trauttmansdorff, Beitrag. Brunner offers a more comprehensive picture: Brunner, “Der burgenländische Raum zwischen Österreich und Ungarn, 800 bis 1848,” 270–71, 284–85; Allgemeine Landestopographie des Burgenlandes, vol. 2, part 1, 35–37.

25 MNL OL DL 49819.

26 Prickler, “Adalékok”; Prickler, “Weingartenbesitz”; Prickler, “Zur Geschichte”; Engel, The Realm, 275 (citation).

27 See Majorossy, “Egy város.”

28 Die Gedichte des Michel Beheim, vol. 2, 788–91, no. 356.

29 Die Gedichte des Michel Beheim, vol. 2, 652–54, no. 324; Bleyer, “Beheim,” 530–31.

30 Pálffy, A Magyar Királyság, 111. See also Petrin, “Der Verkauf.”

31 Kubinyi, “Az 1505-ös rákosi országgyűlés.”

32 Szende, “Fidelitas.”

33 Miljan, “Grofovi”; Klaužer, “Plemićka obitelj Frodnacher”; Klaužer, “Plemićka obitelj Lausinger.”

34 Ban and Mirnik, “Die Münzen”; Pálosfalvi, “Vitovec János.”

35 Péterfi, “Korvin János.”

36 Deutsche Reichstagsakten: Mittlere Reihe, vol. 4, 691, 696, 704.

37 MNL OL DF 276742.

38 Regesta Imperii XIV, no. 538, MNL OL DL 82076, fol. 5r.

39 Regesta Imperii XIV, no. 4839, ÖStA HHStA RK Maximiliana Kt. 7, Konv. 4/1, fol. 216r, Regesta Imperii XIV, no. 6273, no. 11856, no. 12395, no. 18817, no. 18892, no. 18896, no. 18904, no. 19069, ÖStA HHStA RK Maximiliana Kt. 42, IV/7a, fol. 175r.

40 Neumann, Registrum, passim.

41 E.g. MNL OL DL 101215, DF 233348, DF 276756.

42 Codex epistolaris saeculi decimi quinti, vol. 3, 266–67 no. 241.

43 See Csermelyi, “Idegen származású,” 160–70, 190 n. 948. On the execution of Baumkircher, see Schäffer, “Untreue und Verrat.”

44 Csermelyi, “Idegen származású,” 170.

45 See Csermelyi, “Idegen származású,” 170–75.

46 Engel, “Andreas Baumkircher,” 252.

47 See Neumann, “Békekötés Pozsonyban,” part 1, 357 and n. 120, 359, 363–64.

48 Neumann, “Békekötés Pozsonyban,” part 2, 333.

49 See Neumann, “Békekötés Pozsonyban,” part 1, 367 and part 2, 303. Regarding the Baumkircher interests in Austria see Regesta Imperii XIV, no. 2934, no. 8041; Neumann, “Békekötés Pozsonyban,” part 1, 368. (literature regarding the “Baumkircherschuld” and the case of Katsch).

50 MNL OL DL 103999. See Neumann, “Békekötés Pozsonyban,” part 2, 338. It is worth mentioning that possibly in the summer or autumn of 1490, Prince Christoph of Bavaria and others were commissioned by Emperor Frederick III or King Maximilian I to “convert” Georg Baumkircher into Habsburg service. TLA, Landesfürstliche Hofkanzleien, Sigmundiana XIII/254, Nr. 29 (fol. 36r–v).

51 Neumann, Registrum, 219 n. 1030–31.

52 See Csermelyi, “Idegen származású,” 188–92, and C. Tóth et al., Magyarország, vol. 2, 233.

53 See Csermelyi, “Idegen származású,” 192–97.

54 Ibid., 82.

55 Mátyás király levelei, vol. 1, 448–49, no. 302 (in the reprinted version: 534).

56 Heinicker, “ ‘Sold und schaden’,” 81; Csermelyi, “Idegen származású,” 193, n. 962 (arguing for 1481).

57 C. Tóth et al., Magyarország, vol. 2, 234.

58 MNL OL DL 37151.

59 MNL OL DF 258172.

60 Péterfi, “Korvin János,” 169, 172–76.

61 StLA AUR 8615, Unrest, Österreichische Chronik, 190 (chapter 185) as well as Thurocz, Der Hungern chronica, fol. 63r. See also Csermelyi, “Idegen származású,” 194.

62 ÖStA HHStA UR AUR 1493 IV 14 (two charters), MNL OL DF 233236, DF 248689. See also Csermelyi, “Idegen származású,” 195.

63 Ibid., 194–96.

64 Haller-Reiffenstein, “Ulrich von Grafeneck.” See also Csermelyi, “Idegen származású,” 175–88, 212.

65 In 1312, Master of the Treasury Miklós Kőszegi declared his intention to serve both Charles I, king of Hungary (1301–1342) and Frederick the Fair (or Frederick the Handsome), duke of Austria (1308–1330) (Anjou-kori oklevéltár, vol. 3, 106 no. 223). When in 1374, Count Nicholas “the German” of Fraknó or Nagymarton (Mattersburg, today in Austria) entered the service of Albert III, duke of Austria (1365–1395), he not only offered his services but was also ready to make his entire estate of Fraknó available to support the duke. In case of military conflict, Count Nicholas was not obliged to rush to the duke’s aid against King Louis I of Hungary (1342–1382), although the condition itself became irrelevant after the death of the former: making contact or negotiating with the heir to Louis I was only allowed with the knowledge and approval of the Austrian duke (Lichnowsky, Geschichte, vol. 4, dclxxxviii, no. 1192, Wertner, “Die Grafen von Mattersdorf-Forchtenstein,” 59).

66 Borsa, “Néhány bécsi,” vol. 3, 79–82; Pálffy, “Ungarn,” 37–38.

67 Regesta Imperii XIV, no. 1298.

68 MNL OL DF 258444.

69 MNL OL DF 258445.

70 MNL OL DF 258444.

71 Balogh, A művészet, vol. 1, 60.

72 See Neumann, “Békekötés Pozsonyban,” part 1, 367–68.

73 TLA Pestarchiv-Akten XXV/87, [no. 3].

74 Regesta Imperii XIV, no. 4784, no. 4792, no. 7789, no. 15075.

75 Regesta Imperii XIV, no. 4785–6. See also ÖStA HHStA UR AUR 1506 IV 16 (April 16, 1506).

76 See ÖStA HHStA UR AUR 1506 IV 16 (April 16, 1506 and June 11, 1506), ÖStA HHStA UR AUR 1518 X 18, MNL OL E 239, vol. 14, p. 318–19 (original: ÖStA AVA FHKA AHK Gedenkbücher, Österreichische Reihe 22, fol. 320r).

77 E.g. MNL OL DL 20269. See ÖStA HHStA UR AUR 1518 X 18, fol. 2r.

78 Schönherr, Hunyadi Corvin János, 297.

79 DF 254494. He is not mentioned among the executors: Schönherr, Hunyadi Corvin János, 304.

80 ÖStA HHStA UR AUR 1506 IV 16 (April 16, 1506).

81 Wiesflecker, Kaiser Maximilian, vol. 5, 284–85.

82 Péterfi, “Aus Siebenbürgen.”

83 Pokluda, “Magyarországi nemesek,” 238, 240, 272.

84 Wertner, “Die Grafen von St. Georgen und Bösing,” 257–58.

85 See Heinig, Kaiser Friedrich III., vol. 1, passim.

86 Horváth, “Magyar Regesták,” 71, no. 176.

87 Chmel, Actenstücke, vol. 3, 282–83, no. 118.

88 Regesta Imperii XIV, no. 185 (indirect evidence), no. 8321.

89 He would exclusively serve Maximilian I for an annual payment of 200 Rhenish guilders, with the single exception being Vladislaus II of Hungary. MNL OL DL 21614.

90 E.G. Regesta Imperii XIV, no. 12456.

91 See BHStA KB ÄA 973, fol. 51r-v.

92 E.G. BHStA Herzogtum Bayern, Ämterrechnungen bis 1506, Bd. 1123 (“Jahrgang 1504/1505”), fol. 86v.

93 Marth, Die dynastische Politik, 208–24.

94 Engel, Magyarország, vol. 1, 26.

95 Kozina, Die Landeshauptleute, 15–16. See Dimitz, Geschichte Krains, vol. 1, 328.

96 Lichnowsky, Geschichte, vol. 8, dxix, no. 1742e; Dimitz, Geschichte Krains, vol. 1, 328; A Frangepán család oklevéltára, vol. 1, 385 no. 370, vol. 2, 1. no. 1.

97 Kozina, Die Landeshauptleute, 16; Heinig, Kaiser Friedrich III., vol. 1, 234.

98 A Frangepán család oklevéltára, vol. 1, 349, no. 342; Lichnowsky, Geschichte, vol. 8, dxvii, no. 1261d.

99 E.g. in 1437, a ten-year agreement was made between Counts Stephen, Bartholomew, Martin, Sigismund, Andrew and Ivan Frankopan, and the two Habsburg dukes, Frederick V (later called as Frederick III, the Holy Roman emperor) and his brother Albert VI. The contracting parties stated that if the dukes’ estates in Inner Austria were to come under attack, the Frankopan family would rush to their aid with a thousand heavy cavalry hired at their own expense. Furthermore, the agreement specified that the cavalry would not go to war against Sigismund, Holy Roman emperor (1433–1437), Frederick IV, duke of Austria and count of Tyrol (1409–1439), or Albert V, archduke of Austria (1404–1439, king of Hungary between 1438 and 1439). A Frangepán család oklevéltára, vol. 1, 291, no. 295, Chmel, Materialien, vol. 1, part 2, 46, no. 27.

100 For a detailed list of the information concerning the people mentioned, see Péterfi, “Adalékok,” 165.

101 A horvát véghelyek, 9, no. 13 as well as MNL OL DF 276656.

102 ÖStA AVA RAA Karton 120, no. 7. See de Vajay, “Un ambassadeur,” 556, n. 26.

103 Dimitz, Geschichte Krains, vol. 2, 9–10, 12, 14; Györkös, “Aventurier sans scrupule”; Györkös, “Magyar hadvezér”; Wiesflecker, Kaiser Maximilian, vol. 4, 140.

104 A Frangepán család oklevéltára, vol. 2, 359–61, no. 324, 369–70, no. 333.

105 See Fógel, II. Lajos, 56; Fraknói, “II. Lajos király”; A Frangepán család oklevéltára, vol. 2, 378, no. 348.

106 A horvát véghelyek, passim; Rothenberg, The Austrian Military Border.

107 A Frangepán család oklevéltára, vol. 2, xlv.

108 Péterfi, “Johann Kanizsai.”

109 See Lamberg, Rosen Garten; Heiß, “Königin Maria,” 419–48; Kerkhoff, Maria van Hongarije, 91–96; Réthelyi, “Mary of Hungary,” 70–130.

110 “magnificus noster [Maximiliani imperatoris – B. P.] et Sacri Imperii fidelis syncere dilectus N. baro de N., consiliarius noster et serenissimi principis domini Ludovici […] regis […] curie magister,” s. d. [between 1516 and 1519], OSZKK Fol. Lat. 1656, fol. 88r–v no. 198. The unknown person must have been Mózes Buzlai or János Pető or Péter Korlátkői serving as masters of the (royal) court at the same time (C. Tóth et al., Magyarország, vol. 1, 109–10). Korlátkői seems to be more likely than the others, since he was awarded the baronial title of Berencs (Podbranč, today in Slovakia) in 1515. Neumann, A Korlátköviek, 57–58. I am grateful to Tibor Neumann for drawing my attention to this detail of the argument.

111 ÖStA HHStA RK RRB Bd. BB, fol. 273v, 280v–81r.

112 ÖStA HHStA RK RRB Bd. Z, fol. 42r.

113 Fógel, II. Ulászló, 66; Fógel, II. Lajos, 53 n. 4.

114 ÖStA HHStA FA Erdődy D 1242a, fol. 1r–2v, D 10285; MNL OL E 239, vol. 14, p. 211–13 (original: ÖStA AVA FHKA AHK Gedenkbücher, Österreichische Reihe 19, fol. 128r–v), p. 216–19 (original: ÖStA AVA FHKA AHK Gedenkbücher, Österreichische Reihe 19, fol. 292v–93r), p. 219–21 (original: ÖStA AVA FHKA AHK Gedenkbücher, Österreichische Reihe 19, fol. 293r–v).

115 Bubryák, “Kaiserkreuz,” 42.