Late Przemyslids
The Hussite Period

Bohemia under the House of Luxemburg, 1310-1437

In 1310 Roman (= German) King Heinrich VIII. of the House of Luxemburg engineered the deposition of Behemian king Heinrich von Kaernten and had his relative, blind Johann, crowned instead, thus establishing the Luxemburg Dynasty on the throne of Bohemia.
Under the Luxemburg kings, the immigration of German settlers - townspeople and farmers continued; these settlers settled in communities which preserved their inherited laws and traditions, guaranteed to them in royal privileges, and preserved a German identity, which dominated the mountain ring around Bohemia, in distant future to be known as the Sudetenland. The Bohemian nobility occasionally spoke out against this foreign influx.
Bohemia, the largest of the territories located within the Holy Roman Empire. economically a frontier which attracted settlers from all over Germany, was also the financially strongest unit within the Empire, with a revenue far bigger than that of the Emperor himself.
Blind King Johann's son Charles, as CHARLES IV. was to become Holy Roman Emperor. He made Prague his residence. In 1344 he achieved the ecclesiastical independence of the Bohemian lands - the ARCHDIOCESIS OF PRAGUE was established. He founded PRAGUE UNIVERSITY in 1348. Under Charles, the lands around EGER (permanently), the lands around Sulzbach as well as BRANDENBURG (temporarily) were added to the Lands of the Bohemian Crown.
Charles IV. spoke Czech, German, French, Italian and Latin. Under his rule, PRAGUE grew in size and population; the German and Czech inhabitants lived together in peace and prosperity; the city was referred to as "Golden Prague".
Charles' collection of titles was split up among his sons. WENZEL received the Roman and Bohemian crowns; Jobst received Moravia and Sigismund Hungary. Yet Wenzel was a weak king, soon opposed in the Empire. With HUSSITISM becoming an issue - JAN HUS was burnt at the stake at the CONCILE OF CONSTANCE in 1415 - the Bohemians found themselves under threat, without efficient protection. After Wenzel's death he was succeeded by Sigismund, meanwhile also Emperor; yet Sigismund did not take up residence in Bohemia and lead anti-Hussite crusades instead. With Sigismund's death ended the rule of the Luxemburg Dynasty over the Bohemian lands.

Czechoslovakia, from : Library of Congress, Country Studies

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted in 2000, last revised on November 12th 2004

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