Barnim I. (Pomerania)

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Barnim I with his 3 wives, from the family tree of the Griffins by Cornelius Krommeny , 1598.
Duke Barnim I's equestrian seal. Redrawing from Theodor Pyl's Pomeranian Historical Monuments , 1894

Barnim I (* around 1210/1218; † November 13, 1278 in Altdamm ), known as the city founder , was a Duke of Pomerania from the ruling house of the Griffins . He first ruled in the partial duchy of Pomerania-Stettin , from 1264 he united the entire duchy of Pomerania in his hand. Under his rule, Pomerania had to accept external territorial losses vis-à-vis its neighbors. Internally, however, he strengthened Pomerania by promoting the German East Settlement and numerous city ​​charter awards . Under his government, Pomerania acquired the face of a German country.


Barnim I was born around 1210 or 1218 as the son of Duke Bogislaw II of Pomerania-Stettin and his wife Miroslawa , the daughter of Duke Mestwin I of Pomerania. He still had two sisters, Woislawa and Dobroslawa. After the death of his father around 1220, his mother Miroslawa, who came from the Pomeranian ruling house of the Samborids , took over the regency and guardianship for him. From around 1226 he ruled together with her and from 1233 then independently. The Duchy of Pomerania was now by his two young dukes Barnim I in Pomerania-Stettin and Wartislaw III. led through difficult times in Pomerania-Demmin , as was the case before by their fathers Bogislaw II and Casimir II. Pomerania was liberated from Danish supremacy after the power of Denmark collapsed in the battle of Bornhöved (1227) . But the two dukes had to struggle with ongoing claims to power by the Margraviate of Brandenburg , whose jointly ruling Ascanian Margraves Johann I and Otto III. 1231 were enfeoffed with Pomerania by Emperor Friedrich II .

The Brandenburgers did not stand still, but initially forced Wartislaw III. in the Treaty of Kremmen on June 20, 1236 for the surrender of extensive estates, for the recognition of the Brandenburg feudal sovereignty and for the recognition of the eventual succession of Brandenburg in the event of his heirless death. Barnim I was able to reverse this last provision in the Treaty of Landin in 1250, albeit against renouncing the Uckermark . After the death of his cousin Wartislaw in 1264, Barnim I also assumed power in his lands and thus united the entire Duchy of Pomerania in his hand. However , Barnim I was less successful in other foreign policy projects, such as the struggle for the legacy of the Ratiboriden rulers in the countries of Schlawe and Stolp or for possessions in the Neumark . Barnim I was appointed heir in 1264 by Duke Mestwin II of Pomerania, his cousin, both grandsons of Duke Mestwin I , while his father Swantopolk II was still alive . According to the editor of the Pomeranian document book , this was for Mestwin but probably "just one move in the fight against his brother Wartislaw " and ultimately led to nothing for Barnim I. When Duke Swantopolk II died in 1266, Barnim I took the land of Schlawe, to which he made claims. He gave the Schlawe land to Prince Wizlaw II of Rügen, who was also a grandson of Swantopolk II, as a pledge. But Wizlaw II lost the Schlawe country in 1277.

The reign of Barnim I was also the beginning of the colonization of Pomerania under German law. To an even greater extent than his cousin Wartislaw III. in Pommern-Demmin he promoted the settlers streaming into the country in his Duchy of Pomerania-Stettin, in particular by granting city rights according to Luebian or Magdeburg law , depending on the origin of the immigrants. The most important awards of town charter in Barnim, which mostly concerned settlements in the immediate vicinity of already existing Slavic castles or proto-cities, were: Stettin (1243), Lassan (between 1248 and 1291), Gartz an der Oder (1249), Anklam (between 1243 and 1264), Stargard in Pomerania (between 1243 and 1253), Altdamm (1249/1260), Greifenhagen (1254), Pölitz (1260), Pyritz (1263), Ueckermünde (between 1259 and 1265), Gollnow (1268) and Cammin (1274).

His first granting of city rights to Prenzlau in 1234 proves that his domain was much larger at the beginning of his reign. The city charter contains another seal above the clearly identifiable seal of Barnim I, possibly an earlier seal of Barnim I or an otherwise unknown seal of Duke Wartislaw III . from Pommern-Demmin. The founding of Bahn 1234 by Barnim I cannot be clearly proven. Together with his cousin Wartislaw III. he granted town charter to three towns - Stavenhagen , Wolgast and Wollin . After Wartislaw's death in 1264, he immediately confirmed the awards which Wartislaw had carried out alone.

The formation of cities under German law led to the disappearance of the Slavic castellan constitution . The changes under Duke Barnim's rule gave Pomerania the face of a German country.

Barnim I. supported the diocese of Cammin by means of exchange contracts in the formation of their own sovereignty within Pomerania. He also donated some important spiritual institutions. These included the Stettin Cistercian Abbey (1243), the Marienfließ Cistercian Abbey (1248), the Ueckermünde Canons' Monastery (1260, moved to Jasenitz around 1329 ) and the Stettiner Marienstift (1261), in whose Marienkirche he was buried after his death in 1278.

A lament by the poet Rumelant von Sachsen on his death testifies to his supraregional reputation . Barnim I is one of the most important dukes of the Griffin dynasty .

Marriages and offspring

Duke Barnim I was married three times:

Around 1238/1242 he married Marianne, whose ancestry has not been recorded. In the older literature different origins were suspected, among other things, she was regarded as the daughter of Count Albrecht von Orlamünde or Count Heinrich I von Anhalt. The historian Heidelore Böcker considers her a niece of the Danish King Waldemar II. Marianne died in 1252. She was buried in the Cistercian convent she founded in Stettin .

Around 1258 he married Margaretha, probably a daughter of Duke Otto the child of Braunschweig. It must be very doubtful whether Margaretha, as assumed by the historian Robert Klempin (1816–1874), is identical with the widow of Prince Wizlaw I of Rügen. Margaretha is mentioned as deceased in 1261. She was also buried in the Cistercian monastery in Stettin.

In their third marriage, Duke Barnim married in Stargard in Mecklenburg Mechtilde in 1267 , daughter of Margrave Otto III. of Brandenburg. Mechtilde survived her husband and died in 1316. She was buried in St. Mary's Church in Stettin .

Barnim's children are:

  • Anastasia († 1317), wife of Heinrich I of Mecklenburg
  • Bogislaw IV. (* Before 1252, † 1309)
  • Miroslawa († approx. 1327/28), wife of Count Nikolaus I of Schwerin
  • Mechtilde, wife of Heinrich II. Von Werle
  • Barnim II. (* Around 1275; † 1295)
  • Margaretha
  • Otto I. (* 1279; † 1344)
  • Beatrix († after 1307), nun in the Cistercian monastery in Stettin

See also


Web links

Commons : Barnim I. von Pommern  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files


  1. ^ Martin Wehrmann : Genealogy of the Pomeranian ducal house. Leon Sauniers Buchhandlung Verlag, Stettin 1937, p. 47.
  2. ^ Adolf Hofmeister : Genealogical investigations into the history of the Pomeranian ducal house. (= Greifswald treatises on the history of the Middle Ages . Volume 11.) Universitätsverlag Ratsbuchhandlung L. Bamberg, Greifswald 1938, pp. 64–65.
  3. Rodgero Prümers (arrangement): Pommersches Urkundenbuch . Volume 2, Section 1. Stettin 1881, No. 760, p. 121 ( p. 123 of the e-copy of the Kujawsko-Pomorska library ).
  4. Dietmar Lucht: The urban policy of Duke Barnims I of Pomerania 1220-1278 . Publications of the Historical Commission for Pomerania, Series V: Research on Pomeranian History, Vol. 10. Cologne Graz 1965, p. 8 ff
  5. ^ So: Friedrich Beck , Reiner Groß and Manfred Unger : From a thousand years of German history. Documents from the archives of the GDR. Verlag der Wissenschaften, Berlin 1989, p. 37.
  6. ^ Klaus Conrad (arrangement): Pommersches Urkundenbuch . Volume 1. 2nd edition (= publications of the Historical Commission for Pomerania. Series 2, Vol. 1). Böhlau Verlag, Cologne / Vienna 1970, No. 308a.
  7. Jürgen Petersohn : Barnim I. In: Lexicon of the Middle Ages . Volume 1. Artemis-Verlag, Munich and Zurich 1980, ISBN 3-7608-8901-8 , Sp. 1475.
  8. Gustav RoetheMaster Rumsland . In: Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB). Volume 30, Duncker & Humblot, Leipzig 1890, p. 98.
  9. ^ Martin Wehrmann : Genealogy of the Pomeranian ducal house. Leon Sauniers Buchhandlung Verlag, Stettin 1937, p. 48.
  10. ^ Martin Wehrmann : Genealogy of the Pomeranian ducal house. Leon Sauniers Buchhandlung Verlag, Stettin 1937, p. 49.
predecessor Office successor
Bogislaw II Duke of Pomerania
Bogislaw IV.
Barnim II.
Otto I.