Officials of the Grand Duke of Lithuania: rich because they are loyal and influential

When you try to imagine how the estate of the ruler, manned and operated by nobles and different servants, seemed to work, thoughts often create an idealized and romantic image. Is he right?

The daily routine of the King of Poland and the Grand Duke of Lithuania differed from the rituals of the English monarch or ruler of France, Louis XIV. And only the last images are most often translated into film scripts.

Admittedly, there were some similarities, because the ruler's legacy functioned everywhere as a carefully organized organization with its own logic, rules, hierarchy and established forms of communication. The basis on which this system was followed was the distribution of the work carried out by the ruler's estate in the so-called estate officials.

Carefully manufactured system

In Western European country houses, the system of posts began to form in the Middle Ages. During the VIII-IX century, the time of Charlemagne, it became clear that the legacy of the lord was not only an important, but also a complex institution, for which care and service need people with certain functions. This resulted in the permanent men's officers who had to ensure that the estate of the lord would function without fault: from its economic structure to the financial aspects, the food supply and the rules of etiquette.

Job titles were also created, indicating a specific area entrusted to individuals. So when all the work was done by ordinary employees for the estate, the situation started to change with the introduction of job titles. Since then, carrying out important tasks has only been credible for representatives of noble aristocrats. It is true that the so-called servants have never left – expanding the organization of the estate, they even needed more – but instructions were given by senior officials.

Officers and their deputies

XII century There are four main positions in the estates of Western European rulers. This is the Marshal (acting as a function of the chief estate officer), a table worker (providing food and supplies), a bowler (responsible for wine cellars and other drinks) and a cochlear. The latter could still be called treasurer, because he not only took care of the internal organization of the mansion, but also for the financial affairs of the lord. Already in the XIII century This list was completed by a cook and master of the estate, and became the most important official.

It is not surprising that the jobs identified for the long term were not sufficient. When they became larger and more complex as a mansion organization, a considerably larger number of people needed to be able to serve the ruler, his relatives and guests. Immediately introduced new functions, such as hunting, horse-drawn carriage, driver, bridge-keeper and the like, as well as point out exactly the area that has been entrusted to each of them. For example, the story manager was responsible for cutting and sharing the game or other food.

A new series of representatives quickly appeared in such a country house organization. The influential nobles themselves became owners of the highest mansion officials and therefore the legacy of the ruler could not spend so much time carrying out all the works entrusted to him. Often they were left to inspect their own land positions or to send out specific orders. So the treasurer had a deputy named panther, a carpenter, a stewardess, and so on.

In the case of the appointment, the trust and the grace of the ruler were assigned to them, and gradually a loyalty system was created. In this way the representatives of noble families were given the opportunity to gain more influence and control the more numerous countries of the country, which rewarded the ruler generously.

This newly created system of positions has determined the hierarchy of noble persons and the accumulation of certain power in the hands of one or more influential tribes. The life of the estate gradually began to remember the game of chess, when some race could wait for success or loss.

First position in Vytautas Manor

The Grand Duchy of Lithuania (LDK) has taken over the already formed model of Western European country houses. The first system of posts was introduced by the Grand Duke of Lithuania Vytautas. Professor Dr. Van de Faculty of History of the University of Vilnius has revealed this in his research. Rimvydas Petrauskas. According to the scientist, the first position in Vytautas estate dates back to the 14th century. at the end

The Grand Duke of Lithuania, Vytautas, began to form the system of the legacy of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. The 19th century of Joseph Ozemblovsky portrait made in the first half. Collection of Lithuanian art museum

It is possible to assume that for demonstrated reliability and loyalty (although personal qualities and abilities for certain positions were also significant) in 1395. Vytautas appointed Stanislaw Chupnar, the nobleman, as his Marshal, the chief estate agent. This person was responsible for handling all matters in the mansion, which of course covered an extremely large area. The marshal of the estate led the servants, arranged the journeys of the Lord, the reception of couriers, ceremonial observance and other unexpectedly confused matters.

As the estate progresses, it is clear that the Marshals would be much larger. Since then, this message has been divided into several smaller ones. Great Marshal became the most important official.

Professor Dr. Petrauskas noted that in addition to the aforementioned officials – influential nuns – so-called "Servants & # 39; have participated in solving the problems of the life of the mansion. Often this was a matter of everyday, elementary tasks, but necessary for the proper functioning of the life of the house.

We must not forget that the Grand Dukes' women also had servants. One can imagine – the mansion was maintained by herds of responsible persons.

Unpaid work

XV century Duke Vytautas the mansion has already appeared in the form of a stabler, a pastor, a kitchen owner, a flagman, a treasurer, a chief roommate and other smaller posts. Very interesting and, incidentally, one of the first, messages – chaplain. He was responsible for taking care of the estate chapel. This meant that the chaplain was accompanied by the Grand Duke of Lithuania and his relatives during tours, military campaigns, although during such visits it was necessary to spend time on prayer.

Professor Dr. Petrauskas has discovered knowledge of the portable altar, which has always been transported wherever the ruler took place. Clergy would serve both members of the Lord's family and pray for them every day.

However, the daily life of the mansion was much more diverse than performing the above tasks. Do not forget that the people who hired to entertain the ruler and his guests were very important to the mansions: musicians, painters, shocks and liliputs. The last rulers even donated or borrowed each other. Of course the ruler's estate had to have a doctor.

And the estate of the King of Poland and the Grand Duke of Lithuania, Jogaila, was even stricter and richer at the service of the servants – they were and were not seen in the manor of Vytautas. For example – swimmers.

The assignment was considered a great honor, so no specific remuneration was awarded for the post. Instead, the people who earned the mercy of the lord were constantly rewarded with land and estates, so that they could have earned a good income.

Pompous hunting festival

Those who want to get a better understanding of what kind of work the officials of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania have done can use an excellent hunting post as an example. In the society at that time hunting was much more than a pleasant pastime. For larger yachts you were preparing for a great vacation, in which everything had to be perfectly smooth and even a little pompous, because all the attributes showed the power of the ruler. The hunt had a ceremony and everything was done in accordance with clearly defined rules.

Big yacht was responsible for organizing every hunt, and they were quite long and frequent. Sometimes the ruler went hunting for several days, in other cases three weeks or even a long time. Therefore, it was necessary during all these journeys to ensure that neither the ruler nor his guests or an abundant escort would miss anything. PhD candidate Toma Zarankaitė-Margienė, when discussing the phenomenon of hunting in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, revealed an example when Grand Duke of Lithuania, Alexander Jogailaitis, along with twenty-six deities (noble masters) had been hunting, and each of them still had a few personal servants. That is why the total number of hunters can reach up to a hundred people. According to the scientist in the sixteenth century In the middle of the middle was the Lithuanian Grand Duke Sigismund August hunts hunters consisted of 22 hunters, 5 shooters, 6 birdwatchers, 6 choppers, 5 Lynx caretakers and lynx caretaker who is responsible for the livestock of the lion.

Of course it took a lot of time and effort to organize everything. De Grote Jacht usually handed over instructions to the hunters who were subordinate to him, who took care of the hunt for all those who spent the night, food supplies, horses, dogs, birds and domestic animals that had to be barked, and other aspects.

The nearest ruler

The intelligent performance of the tasks mentioned was not difficult to win the trust of the ruler. The Great Hunt spent a lot of time with the outsider during long walks. In this way free informal communication was formed, which was not hindered by strict rules and etiquette requirements. It was for this reason that only a familiar and close man could have taken this position, understood the ruler and knew his interests on the side of his lips. It is not surprising that these posts were represented for a long time by representatives of Radvilas, Pacas and other influential tribes.

The kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duke of Lithuania, Sigismund Augustus, is further developed by the system of posts. XVIII century Unknown author. Collection of Lithuanian art museum.

T. Zarankaitė-Margienė, having read a few letters from Sigismund Augustus, wrote her great hunter Mikalojus Radvila Rudai, noted that the ruler not only mentions the wishes and discusses preparations for future yachts, but also shares rather personal impressions about earlier to travel. This is 1569 He informed us in a letter that he is going to hunt tomorrow and hopes to kill at least one deer. In another letter Sigismund Augustus complained about the lack of animals and regretted the hunt for hunting.

Nikolai Radvila Brown 1546-1554 The Grand Duke of the Sigismund Augustus estate occupied the big hunting ground. The portrait of Johan Christoph Sysang. 1721. Collection of rulers of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.

Historian Dr. Raimonda Ragauskiene states that this role of Rudy's Radvila's Rudskis paved the way for his political career to succeed. Presence together with the ruler and direct communication helped create a personal relationship and brought considerable benefits in the future. The historian noted that in 1549 Radcliffe Black, Marshal of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, thanked Mikalojus Radvilai Rudaitis for playing the game, with a special sense of humor, adding that if it was not his big hunting job, he was starving should die. This statement should not be taken directly, but such details reveal the nuances of daily life, which were diverse and colorful.

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