Michael Küchmeister

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Michael Küchmeister
Michael Küchmeister's coat of arms

Michael Küchmeister (* 1360 or 1370 in Silesia ; † December 15, 1423 in Danzig ) was the 28th Grand Master of the Teutonic Order from 1414 to 1422.

He came from the old Meissen noble family of Küchmeister that at the Margrave of Meissen the post of master chef held.

First carers of Rastenburg , Vogt of Samogitians and Vogt of the Neumark was he in the years 1402-1405 United Schaffer in Königsberg . During the war against Poland got it in 1410 at the Battle of crown in Polish captivity, where he remained until the summer of 1411 (?). After his return to Prussia, Heinrich von Plauen appointed him marshal of the order in November 1410 , the leader of the order's army.

In the autumn of 1413, Plauen opposed the arbitration ruling of the imperial envoy Benedikt Makrai in a border conflict over future territorial claims to the Memelland , according to which the Memelland including Klaipėda should not be transferred to the Teutonic Order. Plauen saw this as an occasion for war and called for arms. As the main representative of the “Peace Party” in the order, Küchmeister mutinied against Grand Master Heinrich von Plauen and did not allow the order's army to enter Poland. At the Prussian capital on October 14, 1413, Küchmeister pushed through the removal of Heinrich von Plauen, and on January 9, 1414, he himself was elected Grand Master. Immediately after taking office, he had Heinrich von Plauen arrested for high treason and imprisoned for his entire term of office.

From May 1414 he tried to start completely new negotiations with Poland, which the Polish King Władysław II Jagiełło refused: He insisted on the reinstatement of Plauen and the arbitration decision of Benedikt Makrais. In the summer of 1414, Polish-Lithuanian troops invaded the Teutonic Order state and devastated the Warmia . The so-called hunger war ended with a ceasefire in October . There followed several extended armistices by various conflict mediators, which were extremely costly for the Order, as they were weakened by the past wars, had to conduct expensive negotiations at the Council of Constance and later elsewhere, and troops were to be raised and broken down every year had to equip.

That is why in the following years Küchmeister made little progress in eliminating the consequences of the war and pacifying the country, although under his leadership reforms were also undertaken for the benefit of the craftsmen and citizens of the religious state. From 1419 extensive and protracted peace negotiations began again with Poland, which culminated in the Peace of Melno Sea in 1422 , the conclusion of which, however, he no longer experienced as Grand Master. To better fortify the Marienburg , he continued the construction of a new defensive belt on the north side, which Heinrich von Plauen had begun. The “New Gate” was built by the order builder Nicolaus Fellenstein in his day .

On March 10, 1422, the resigned Grand Master was sick and resigned. After that he was still Commander of Mewe and Danzig, where he died on December 15, 1423. He was buried in the St. Anne's crypt in Marienburg.


Web links

Commons : Michael Küchmeister  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Robert Krumbholtz: The finances of the Teutonic Order under the influence of the Polish politics of the Grand Master Michael Küchmeister (1414-1422) , German journal for historical science vol. 8 (1892), 226-272.