Lake Balaton Principality

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The Balaton Principality (Pannonia) with its capital Blatnohrad around 846

The Balaton Principality or Pannonian Principality (also: Transdanubian Principality , Principality of Moosburg , Slovak : Balatónské kniežatstvo , Slovenian : Spodnja Panonija , Bulgarian : Blatensko Kneževstvo ) was a domain of the Franconian Empire and Eastern Franconia . The principality existed from 839 to 900/901. The capital was Blatnohrad (also Blatenski kostel) on the Little Lake Balaton . The predominantly Slavic - Avar population was an independent mixed culture: the so-called Pókaszepetk-Zalakomár group . The historical events of the region were characterized by intensive Christianization as well as the efforts of the Slavic Knesen for more independence from the Franks. In 900/901 the area was conquered by the Magyars and integrated into the newly emerging Hungary .


The Pannonian Principality (PANNON) before the arrival of the Magyars. Map: Dr. Sándor Márki.

The Pannonian Principality lay in the east of the Pannonian Mark and extended between Styria , Lake Balaton and the Drava , whereby there must have been overlaps with the County of Steinamanger under Rihheri (from approx. 825 and 860) and Odalrich (after 860). It bordered the Greater Bulgarian Empire to the east and south-east, the Franconian-Slavic principality of Lower Pannonia to the south , the Franconian counties of Carantania and Steinamanger to the west, and the Moravian Empire to the north .

Administrative units of the principality were the counties of Lake Balaton, Ptuj and Dudleben. The former Etgarovho principality between Klosterneuburg and Kőszeg was possibly also a county. During Pribina's lifetime, his son Kocel also administered his own area. The capital was Blatnohrad (also Mosapurc, today Zalavár ). The principality's bases were also Ptuj , Veszprém and Eisenburg and the already town-like Pécs .

Numerous Carolingian settlements in the area are known by name from the sources . The majority of it can no longer be localized today, however, because the villages have lost their way over time or have been given new names, as in the case of Quartina at Lake Balaton, Wumpaldsdorf at Lake Balaton, Reginwartsdorf, Rosdorf an der Raab, Waltunesbach, Hrabasgiskeit, Chirichstätten, Ortach and Fizkere (on the Fischa in Lower Austria). Salapiugit ( Zalabér ) is known, for example . Ternperch is probably the Hungarian Szentlőrinc , Spizzun perhaps the "headland" Tihany . In today's Burgenland , Kitzladen (Chezilsaden) was probably owned by Prince Koceľ (also Chezilo ).


The Bavarian King Ludwig the German made Pribina the first prince of the Pannonian principality in 839.

The area around Lake Balaton was part of the Avars Empire in the 7th and 8th centuries and was predominantly settled by Slavs at that time , who met remnants of the Lombard and Romanesque population. In 796 , the troops commissioned by Charlemagne under King Pippin of Italy and Duke Erich of Friuli plundered and destroyed the Avar dominant center of Hring. The Avar Empire was thus finally conquered and was incorporated into Karls Avarmark . At the request of subjugated Avar dignitaries (Tudun, Khagan and Canizauci), a dependent Avar principality - the so-called Avar Khaganate - was created within the Avarmark between Carnuntum and Sabaria and in the area of Lake Neusiedl , which existed from around 805 to 828.

The Lake Balaton area was in the extreme east of the Franconian Empire. And although the Franconian Rihheri was commissioned with the administration of the county of Steinamanger not far from Lake Balaton to protect the border, presumably before 825, the area was due to its borders with the Bulgarian Empire and the principality of Posavina Ljudevits and Ratimirs , with whom the Franks fought armed conflicts , as well as the up-and-coming Moravian Empire (originated from around 830) in a special political and military situation, which was exacerbated by the dissolution of the Avar Khaganate, which until then had acted as a military buffer zone. In addition, due to its predominantly pagan inhabitants , the Lake Balaton area has been the focus of church efforts to Christianize since Charlemagne's first Avar campaigns in the 790s .

With Pribina after 833 on the flight from the new Moravian ruler Mojmir I, a Slavic prince and a large entourage came to the East Mark prefect Ratpot . He had already cultivated contacts with the Franks and had a church consecrated by the Salzburg Archbishop Adalram in 827/828 on his then seat of power, Neutra . He was now baptized in the Bavarian Ostland. Pribina mastered the Slavic language, was familiar with the customs and traditions of the Slavs and must therefore appear suitable for assuming a management position in the Lake Balaton area. At the intercession of Ratpots and Salachos (Prince of the Carantanian Carniolan) he was commissioned in 839 by the King of Bavaria, Ludwig the German, to manage what is now known as the Pannonian Principality. Pribina received part of the principality as a fief .

Rulership history

Diploma of King Ludwig the German dated February 20th, 860 in which he confirmed the donation of "his faithful Prince" Pribina to the Niederaltaich monastery from his principality.

At the head of the lordly hierarchy was the king of the Franconian Empire, Ludwig the Pious , who ruled predominantly from Aachen . After that, he was replaced by the Pannonian Ludwig the German, who preferred to reside in Regensburg and Frankfurt am Main . Other kings of Eastern Franconia at the time of the existence of the Pannonian Principality were Charles III. (876–887), Arnulf von Kärnten (887–900) and Ludwig IV. The child (900–911).

The Franconian Avarmark was subordinate to the prefect of the Bavarian Ostland with seat in Lorch , who was commissioned by the king. The seat of the prefect was relocated to Tulln under Ratpot (prefect since 832/833). From 839 Pribina was the prince of the newly established Pannonian "Mark". With the Treaty of Verdun in 843 Pribina's principality became part of the newly founded East Franconian Empire under its King Ludwig the German. Ratpot remained prefect even after 843.

On June 10, 846, Pribina received an area "iuxta fluvium Valchau" from the king, possibly near the river Valko, which flows into the Drava near Osijek , amounting to 100 manses as a gift. On October 12, 848, Pribina, on advice from King Ludwig, with the exception of the holdings of the Archdiocese of Salzburg , left his previous fiefs in the principality as a free allod . Before the goods were transferred to Pribina's own, there were disputes between the prince and Bishop Adalwin, which the king decided in favor of Pribina at a court day in October 848. Almost all of the Bavarian elite were on the witness stand at this award ceremony in the “old Bavarian” Palatinate Regensburg: Prince Karlmann , Prince Ludwig III. , Liupram (Archbishop of Salzburg), Erchanbert ( Bishop of Freising ), Erchanfried ( Bishop of Regensburg ), Hartwig ( Bishop of Passau ), Ernst I. (Supreme Count in Baiern), Ernst (Chief General of the Army), Prefect Ratpot, Pribinas Son Kocel, Wernher (sub-vassal Ratpots), Pabo (dux von Karantanien ), Fritilo (Bavarian Count Palatine ), Tacholf (Count of the Sorbian Mark ), Poppo ( Burgrave of Regensburg), Odalrich (later Count von Steinamanger), as well as Count Adalbert, Megingoz, Pernger and Managolt.

In 854 Ratpot, who allegedly had maintained secret diplomatic relations with Rastislav against the king, was removed from his position as prefect. Two years later, Ludwig's son Karlmann became the supreme authority of the Bavarian East, where he pursued his own Ostpolitik. In the first years of his rule, Karlmann replaced trusted counts and Slavic princes of his father with his own followers. Pribina, Ludwig's loyal follower, was able to assert himself as prince in Pannonia, but he too was killed in the fighting of the royal family. In 861 his son Kocel inherited him as a prince with slightly increased powers. Since Kocel did not leave a successor from his family, the Pannonian Principality was regarded by Eastern Franconia as a settled fiefdom and after his death in 875 it was reintegrated into the Bavarian Ostland and subordinated to the Count of Carantania Arnulf of Carinthia . Further prefects of the east until the dissolution of the principality were Wilhelm II and his brother Engelschalk I until 871 and Aribo I from 871 to 909 - temporarily ousted by Engelschalk II.

From 884 to 894 the principality was part of the Moravian Empire under its ruler Svatopluk I , who had this takeover contractually confirmed by King Charles III in the summer of 884 on the Chuomberg (mons Comianus) near the Vienna Woods. In 894 it fell again to Eastern Franconia and was ruled from Carantania under the Eastern prefect Luitpold . In 896 the last ruler of the Principality of Braslav was entrusted by the East Franconian King Arnulf (since 887).


After conquering the Avar Hring, King Pippin transferred the area around Lake Balaton to the Salzburg Church for mission, subject to the consent of his father Charlemagne. Charles was confirmed in 803, after which Bishop Arn sent his priests to Lower Pannonia. The Cundpald chalice found in Petőháza is likely to be the first tangible trace of the western Avar mission. In the interests of Salzburg, however, no separate bishop was installed in Pannonia. In 830, as part of a church reorganization, King Ludwig the German established the Raab as the church border between Salzburg (north of the Raab) and Passau (south of the Raab). The priests of the neighboring county of Steinamanger were subordinate to the church lords of Moosburg.

Despite the intensive work of the missionaries and the establishment of numerous churches, the common people remained with their pagan customs during the 9th century, as one can infer from grave finds. The Christianization of the time remained rather superficial: people were baptized, took part in church services and paid the taxes. The priests probably overlooked it.

The time of Pribina

In 850, the Salzburg Archbishop Liupram contractually transferred the mission in the Pannonian Principality to the king's former notary, Priest Dominicus from the Diocese of Regensburg . Dominicus was subject to Pribina according to church law . Dominicus was followed by the scholar Swarnagel, along with deacons and clergy, and later Alfried, a multi-talented and vaunted “master in all art”. Then another 29 priests can be identified who worked as missionaries under Pribina. Dominicus's appointment was preceded by a dispute between Pribina and the archbishop. The background was probably a dispute over the competencies between Salzburg and Regensburg, which could be settled by the contract between Pribina and Liupram.

Since no choir bishop was installed in the new principality , the Salzburg archbishops always had to travel personally to church fairs. The first church consecration took place in 850 Liupram at the Marienkirche. In the same year he consecrated two churches of Koceľ near Blatnohrad . 852/853 Liupram stayed again in Lower Pannonia where he consecrated the church in Zalabér , which Pribina gave him as a fief. Also in 853, son Kocel donated an estate near Rosdorf to the Regensburg monastery of Sankt Emmeram . In the Hadrian's Church of Blatnohrad, built in 855, the relics of the martyr Hadrian were kept, who had come there with Archbishop Method at the latest. Until his death in 859 Liupram consecrated a further 12 churches in the principality, including one each in Ptuj and Pécs .

The successors of the priest Dominicus strove for the position of their own choir bishop and thus for a certain independence. Salzburg, on the other hand, regarded the mission in the Pannonian Principality as its exclusive right since Dominicus' confirmation in 850. Nevertheless, Pribina maintained good relations with Niederaltaich Monastery , which he furnished with properties from his principality in 860, and with the Patriarchate of Aquileja . Among the well-known church founders of the time are the members of the princely family Pribina, Kocel and Unzat, 17 members of the Bavarian-Franconian nobility and the Slav Witimar, one of Pribina's closest confidants. The result of the Bavarian dominance in missionary work was that the western missionary activity met with relatively little response and later the activity of Cyril and Method with their Slavic liturgy was even more popular. In the Slavic liturgy, not only was the sermon held in the Slavic language, which was probably also the case with the Baier missionaries, but the entire mass .

On November 20, 860, shortly before the death of Pribina, King Ludwig the German gave Archbishop Adalwin of Salzburg rich possessions, including from the Pannonian Principality and the County of Steinamanger. These included the Roman city of Sabaria , probably Prostrum and Pinkafeld as well as 24 courtyards that Salzburg had previously held as a fief; including numerous mission churches and a particularly rich property in Zalabér . The fact that the king was able to remove such extensive possessions from Pribina's sphere of influence can possibly be explained by a weakening of the prince in the course of the war of the royal family.

Koceľ and the Slav apostles Cyril and Method

Method , Archbishop of Sirmium, worked at the court of Kocel in Blatnohrad.

After the death of Pribina, his son Kocel initially continued the work in the spirit of his father. In 861 Koceľ, who had perhaps fled from Karlmann or the chaos of war, was in Regensburg and made a gift there to the Bishop of Freising . From Christmas 864 to spring 865 and from summer to autumn 865 Archbishop Adalwin was at Koceľ in Blatnohrad. During this time the metropolitan consecrated eleven new churches. After that, however, the prince turned to the Slavic mission of Cyril and Method, which the Byzantine emperor Michael III. had initiated, and therefore came into conflict with the Salzburg archbishop. The brothers had been in Moravia since 862, where they immediately began to read masses in Slavonic, which made them popular with the people, but met with resistance from the Bavarian clergy. Prince Rastislav tried to put an end to the East Franconian influence with the help of the brothers. In 867 Pope Nicholas I called the two missionaries to Rome to clarify the ecclesiastical affairs of Moravia.

On the trip to Rome, the two Slav missionaries stayed with Koceľ in the summer of 867 and are said to have trained up to 50 students in Blatnohrad during this time. The prince offered them presents, but Kyrill refused and instead asked for 900 prisoners of war to be released. Kocel then spread the Old Church Slavonic liturgy in his domain. Blatnohrad became an important interface between the Franconian and Byzantine missions and Koce es was now concerned with an independent church organization directly subordinate to the Pope and with greater independence from Salzburg and Eastern Franconia. In 869, when Method was still in Rome, Kocel sent messengers to the Pope with the request that Method be appointed to teach his people.

Remains of the Romanesque basilica (Hadrian's Church) in Zalavár in which the relics of the martyr Hadrian were kept.

In 869 Method became a papal legate at the court of Koceľs. From Rome, in the form of a letter to Rastislav, Svatopluk and Kocel, he received the order to teach in Moravia and to translate the Holy Scriptures into Slavic. The Pope wrote: “Hadrian, Bishop and Servant of God to Rastislav, Svatopluk and Kozel! You have «…» asked for a teacher at this (high) priestly chair. But we were very happy, thought about it and decided to send the Methodios «…» to your countries so that he might teach you as you asked and translate the books into your language «…» Only this one custom is to be observed, that at mass "..." the Gospel is first read in Latin "..." But if one of the teachers "..." mocks the books of your language, he should be excluded not only from communion but also from the Church until he himself improves «...» "

But Kocel was not yet satisfied with that and wanted his own archbishop who would have the necessary authority to defend himself against the hostility to be expected from the Latin priests. Towards the end of the same year, Kocel sent him back to Rome with the desire to have Methodius appointed bishop, accompanied by 20 noblemen. Pope Hadrian II hesitated because Pannonia had historically been divided between Salzburg, Passau and Aquileia and Sirmium had been under Bulgarian rule since 827. When he learned that Bulgaria was subordinate to the Byzantine Patriarchate in 870 after lengthy negotiations with Rome, he made his decision and appointed Method Archbishop of Pannonia and the Moravian Empire with his seat in Sirmium at the beginning of 870 , thus resurrecting the Archdiocese of Sirmium , which had perished at the time of the Avars .

The Pope also pursued his own goals with this appointment as bishop. In league with the Slavic princes, he tried to enforce his claims against Salzburg and the Patriarchate of Constantinople. From an ecclesiastical point of view, the Pannonian Principality was subordinated to the Archbishop of Sirmium and the responsibility of the Archdiocese of Salzburg was withdrawn. The Bavarian clergy, headed by Archpriest Richpaldus of St. Hadrian, left the country in protest when Method arrived in Blatnohrad. The actual seat of the bishopric is likely to have been Blatnohrad, because Sirmium, in the Bulgarian sphere of influence, only served to demonstrate the papal claims.

From now on, the people of Salzburg and their suffragan bishops took all available means to defend themselves against the appointment of Bishop Methods. In 870 Method was condemned by a Bavarian synod of bishops , arrested by Adawin and then spent three years in custody. Meanwhile, the Salzburg missionaries resumed their missionary work in the Pannonian Principality. Only after the intervention of Pope John VIII. , Who threatened the entire Bavarian episcopate with the excommunication to prove, and Adalwin undertook personally for repatriation Methods, he was released.

In 873/874 Bishop Method returned to Koceľs court, but he could no longer remove Pannonia from the influence of the Salzburg Church. In 874 Bishop Theotmar von Salzburg consecrated the church built by Kocel in Ptuj . After the death of his supporter Koceľ 876 Method had to give way to the pressure of his opponents and went to Svatopluk in Moravia, where he worked until the end of his life. After Method's death (885), Pope Stephan V banned the Slavic liturgy Methods. In 886, together with Bishop Wiching - one of Methods's sharpest opponents - the papal envoys banished his former students from the Moravian Empire. After that, the Western-Latin liturgy was finally implemented in the Pannonian Principality.

The fruits of the Christianization of the Carolingian era most likely also survived the Magyar storm after 899. Persistent patronage , building history studies and the fact that German and Slavic priests were still active in the area of ​​the former principality in the 10th century indicate that many of the churches founded at that time continued to exist during and after the takeover by the Hungarians.

Armed conflicts

Ongoing wars against the Franks under Knes Svatopluk I between 884 and 894.

Before the enfeoffment of Pribina

In the south of Lower Pannonia between 818 and 823 fighting raged between the Posavin prince Ljudevit and the Franks. In 828 and 829 there was heavy fighting in the Pannonian region between the Franks and the Bulgarians, who had invaded Pannonia with ships along the Drava . The Bulgarian Khan Omurtag deposed local Frankish vassals and replaced them with Bulgarian masters. King Ludwig was involved in the battles of his brothers against their father Ludwig the Pious . Therefore, he left the Bulgarians most likely provisionally their conquests without making peace with them, so that Posavia was probably under Bulgarian rule for a time. The future prince in Pannonia Pribina fled from Ratpot to the warring Bulgarians for a short time after 833.

In the time of Prince Pribina and Kocel

After 840 battles began between the Franks and the Moravian prince Mojmir, in which Pribina played a prominent role on the side of the king. After defeating Mojmir in 846, Pribina took over lands on the Wulka .

Prince Karlmann , son of King Ludwig the German, strove for more power in his domain in the 850s. In 858 he allied himself with the Moravian Knes Rastislav and in 861 rose up in an open revolt against his father. Eventually Pribina was drawn into these arguments as well. Whether Carlmann actually sacrificed Pribina to Rastislav in order to secure Rastislav's support is controversial, because the exact background and events that led to Prince Pribina's death are still uncertain: in the year 861, Pribina was “owned by the Moravians slain ”. In 864, Karlmann was put in his place by the king. The peace treaty concluded in the same year between King Ludwig and the Bulgarian ruler Boris I , who had fought against the king together with the Moravians and Karlmann the year before, relieved the border between the Pannonian Principality and the Greater Bulgarian Empire. The peace treaty remained in place throughout the 9th century.

Kocel fell in the fighting against the Dalmatian prince Domagoj .

In the 870s, conditions in the southern neighbor Dalmatia were devastating. Prince Domagoj - who had made piracy the main source of income there and continuously waged brutal wars against Byzantium, Venice and the Arabs - attacked the cities of Istria, which at that time already belonged to Karlmann. Venice rushed to the aid of the Eastern Franks. Konstantin Porphyrogennetos , Byzantine emperor and writer, wrote about the situation in Dalmatia according to reports from contemporary Croats: “For a time the Dalmatian Croats obeyed the Franks, but they abused them so inhumanely that they slew the Croatian babies and threw them to the dogs. Since the Croats no longer wanted to put up with this «…», a large army was mobilized against them from the Franconian lands, but after seven years of war the Croats retained the upper hand - albeit with great efforts - so that they ultimately lost all Franks and even killed their archon Koceľ. ”Koceľ was entrusted at the head of a Bavarian army by the new King Karlmann with the suppression of the uprising in Dalmatia. The exact location of the decisive battle in which Koceľ’s army was defeated is not known. The princes Koceľ and Domagoj died in 876 on the battlefield.

Between Moravia and Eastern Franconia

The Balaton Principality (Pannonia) as part of the Moravian Empire under Svatopluk I.

883 the area was in the clashes its new masters Arnulf of Carinthia with the Moravian Kneses I. Svatopluk drawn. In 883 and 884 it was devastated by Moravian troops. In 884 Svatopluk took over the principality and joined it to the Moravian Empire. At the same time he negotiated a peace between the Moravian Empire and Eastern Franconia. In 885 Svatopluk also reconciled himself with Arnulf - on the one hand because it was already clear that Arnulf would become the new East Frankish king (887) and on the other hand because Svatopluk was the godfather of Arnulf's illegitimate son Zwentibold (Zuentibold, i.e. Svatopluk), who later became King of Lorraine , was. Despite the peace, there were again conflicts between Arnulf and Svatopluk over pannonia in 888 and 889. In 890 the newly appointed Emperor Arnulf tried to force Knesen under his feudal sovereignty again. After another two years of war, Svatopluk still saw himself at an advantage.

Now Arnulf turned to the Magyars for help. The Hungarian cavalry troops under Prince Árpád then broke into the Pannonia plains from the east. At the same time the emperor and his allies were advancing into Moravia from the south while allowing the enemy to attack from Bohemia as well. Pressed on all sides, Svatopluk withdrew and left the open country to his opponents, who devastated it "terribly". For the next few years, Arnulf fought unsuccessfully against Svatopluk, albeit without the support of the Hungarians. Only with the death of Svatopluk I in 894 did these wars end and the Pannonian principality could be placed under Franconian suzerainty again.


900/901 the Magyars conquered Pannonia under their Grand Duke Árpád .

After the death of Emperor Arnulf, the Magyars reopened the war against the Franks. At the time of the last ruler, Braslav, the conquest of the Pannonian principality began in 900 under the Magyar sub-generals Usub and Ös. The crew of Veszprém defended their fortress for ten days. But after Eisenburg had also surrendered, the entire area around Lake Balaton was in Magyar hands. Prince Braslav was killed by the Magyars. The penultimate ruler of the Principality of Luitpold was also killed in the battle against the Magyars in 907 at the Battle of Pressburg . The nobility and servants of the Blatnohrad center and the other centers of the principality retreated mainly to the Franconian tribal duchy of Baiern . The abandoned goods began to crumble. That part of the rural population remained whose livelihood was not directly dependent on the centers.

The Magyars dissolved the political and ecclesiastical organization of the Eastern Franks in the conquered areas and set up new structures under Magyar suzerainty. This formerly Slavic area then remained predominantly on Hungarian territory until today . The western kings held on to property claims by repeatedly renewing property rights in Pannonia, at least formally for centuries. The Archdiocese of Salzburg did not give up its claim to part of its possessions in the area of ​​the former Pannonian Principality until the 12th century.

A Frankish principality

Tribute princes who were dependent on the Franconian Empire were mostly referred to as Dux at that time. The stronger the position of such a ruler, the more likely he can be called a prince from today's perspective. The Carolingian county constitution was, according to almost unanimous opinion of the scientists, not (completely) introduced in the Pannonian Principality. Therefore the term count cannot be used for his rulers. The rulers of the Pannonian principality had the same internal rights as a king, which justifies the designation of the rulership around Lake Balaton as a principality and its ruler as the Slavic Knes (prince). Outwardly, however, they were subordinate to Franconian overlords, such as the prefect of the Bavarian Ostland, who in turn, as representatives of the king, had less leeway than the princes subordinate to them. This supremacy was recognized at least by the first two Balaton princes. Only after the death of Kocel was the Pannonian principality handed over to the Bavarian Ostland and thus to counts. But also the rulers of the 880s and 890s Svatopluk and Braslav von Sisak are to be addressed as princes.

Life in the Pannonian Principality


The principality was a confluence of various ethnic groups who joined the prince. The rural population of the principality consisted mainly of the Avar-Slavic population, who had lived here since the beginning of the 7th century. Slavs, Avars, Western Germans, Danube Bulgarians and perhaps other people from the Byzantine culture lived on the stately Blatnohrad Castle - as far as can be deduced from archaeological finds (costume, jewelry, ceramics, everyday objects) . At the beginning of the 9th century, the ethnicity of the population was still very noticeable. From the 840s, especially among the lower social classes, a strong process of standardization can be observed, which becomes recognizable through the use of "mass goods" of the Carolingian Empire.

At Blatnohrad Castle

The rulership center of Blatnohrad was rebuilt and settled as a fortress by Prince Pribina around 840 on an island in a forest and swamp area on the river Zala . The Archbishop of Salzburg created a mission center that was directly subordinate to him. The permanent population of the capital consisted of the nobility, monks, warriors and service people and lived in comparatively spacious above-ground log houses.

At the beginning Blatnohrad still had the character of a village, from 850 onwards it took on urban features. On the Borjúállás island of Zalaszabar, about 600 meters southwest of the castle island, a settlement with a church was built at the beginning of the 840s, on the edge of which a forge was probably operated. Later a mansion with a palisade wall was added at the highest point of the settlement. The islands around the castle hill were connected by stick paths. The result was a settlement complex with a castle, manors and their houses, craftsmen and merchants.

The royal court of the princes stood in the southern third of the castle island and was separated from the rest of the island. Outside the prince's court, the Marienkirche stood for the parish service, a palace with outbuildings and a fountain for the bishop, as well as two other churches, one of which was demolished in the last third of the 9th century in favor of a workshop for antler processing. Archbishop Liupram also had Hadrian's Church built with three naves as a pilgrimage church outside the aristocratic court . At its west end stood a monastery and a bell tower with the largest bell from the Carolingian era. Confirmations were carried out in Hadrian's Church , ordination to priests was given, and ecclesiastical orders and judgments were announced. Occasionally it served the bishop as a "throne and apparition church".


The settlements of the second half of the 9th century were clustered villages with houses whose land was already permanently limited. The rural population in the villages lived in, usually heated, square, superficial or semi-sunk houses ( pit houses ) with a size of nine to 16 square meters. There were also log houses and post houses . Outside the houses were ovens, pig fattening pits, and storage pits. In some villages there were specialized handicraft businesses such as pottery, blacksmiths, bone-processing workshops, bakeries and leather and textile processing companies, which were also responsible for supplying the center in Blatnohrad.


The fashion in the Pannonian Principality hardly differed from that in the Slavic areas north of the Danube, in Moravia or Carantania, where the inhabitants lived directly or indirectly under Carolingian leadership. So there were no “national” Slavic costumes in the 9th century. The Byzantine-oriental taste from the Avar period continued to have an effect here in the 9th century, even if Carolingian influences are increasingly evident, especially with regard to the women's costume.

The aristocratic women of the principality wore beautifully executed finger rings and pearl necklaces as well as silver or gold-plated earrings with grape pendants. There were also cup earrings and crescent moon earrings, earrings with tin pearl pendants, as well as pearl necklaces and pearl decorations on clothing. Women from the "common" people outside the castle wore wire earrings, simple glass or tin buttons and imitations of the jewelry of the noble women cast from bronze. They rarely wore pearl necklaces. The men's costumes of the upper class were generally less splendid. Various types of spur sets, in special cases even silver-plated, were popular. These spores were very rarely found among the service people.


Several hundred graves were uncovered around the Marienkirche within the Adelshof in the 1950s. There were often wooden grave chambers and coffins here. The grave goods in the area of ​​the noble court are remarkably small. Another 1,500 graves were opened between 1980 and 2010 at Hadrian's Church. The graves were more simply furnished than in the aristocratic district, but here too the dead were buried in board coffins and about a tenth of them were furnished with grave goods (mainly traditional costume accessories). There were graves with and without a coffin at the castle. The simpler people of the country partly adhered to the pagan burial customs, continued to bury their dead according to the extended family order and tended the funeral meal with a vessel, chicken and eggs. Further away from Blatnohrad, the Slavs in particular still practiced cremation . The population with Avar roots preferred body graves.


Kiev leaves: possibly written in Moosburg Slavonic.

The language spoken in Blatnohrad ("Moosburg Slavic") belongs to a group of common Slavic dialects that were very similar to one another , along with Old Moravian, Old Bulgarian, Old Bohemian, Old Russian , Old Croatian, Old Serbian and Salonika Slavonic. Cyril and Method founded a writing school ( scriptorium ) in Blatnohrad and thus spread their Glagolitic script in the principality. The Moosburg Slavonic played an important role in the Old Church Slavonic literature alongside the Old Moravian . To this day, however, at most a single text has survived: The Kiev leaves (the oldest surviving monument in a Slavic language ), a missal translated from Latin into Glagolitic script and Slavic language , may have been written in Moosburg Slavic . However, it is possible that Moosburg Slavonic differed from the indigenous Slavonic of the population, as Pribina was already gathering peoples from all over the place.

The Moosburg Slavonic language became extinct as a result of the land being taken over by the Magyars at the beginning of the 10th century. For the same reason, the Pannonian Principality - in contrast to some other early medieval Slavic rule formations such as the Moravian Empire or Slavonia - did not lead to any name-forming ethnogenesis . Whether the Pannonian Slavs were ancestors of the Slovenes or the Slovaks is a matter of dispute in science.

Rulers and political suzerainty


The Pannonian Principality consisted of the counties:

  • County of Lake Balaton - between Veszprém and Drava
  • Ptuj County - around the city of Ptuj
  • Grafschaft Dudleben - between Gnasbach and Sankt Veit am Vogau with the suburb of Dudleipin whose location (roughly in the area of Straß - Mureck ) is not known. Mentioned in a document in 891. In the more recent research the place Dudleben is assumed to be near Radkersburg .
  • possibly county of the (former) Etgarovho principality between Klosterneuburg and Kőszeg

Individual evidence

  1. a b c d e f Béla Miklós Szőke: Christian monuments in Pannonia from the Carolingian era , Zalai Múzeum, 2002, p. 248 ff.
  2. a b Uta von Freeden, Herwig Friesinger, Egon Wamers (ed.): Faith, cult and rule. Phenomena of the Religious. Colloquia on prehistory and early history. Volume 12, Roman-Germanic Commission of the German Archaeological Institute, Frankfurt am Main 2009, ISBN 978-3-7749-3663-8 , p. 400ff.
  3. a b Ernst Dümmler: About the south-eastern brands of the Franconian Empire under the Carolingians , 1853.
  4. a b MOSABURG - ZALAVÁR, The history of the castle island.
  5. On the history and situation of the Germans in Hungary
  6. ^ Ernst Förstemann: Old German name book. 2nd volume. Place names , Verlag Georg Olms, Bonn 1913, ISBN 3-487-01732-6 , pp. 24, 58.
  7. a b c Franz Greszl: A thousand years of German life in the Carpathian region. An examination of the history of the Church and Spirituality. Our Post, Stuttgart 1971, p. 11 ff.
  8. ^ Fritz Zimmermann: Historical-ethnographic analysis of the German settlement areas of western Hungary. Verlag Braumüller, Vienna 1974, ISBN 3-7003-0082-4 , p. 147.
  9. ^ Walter Pohl : The Avars, A steppe people in Central Europe 567–822 AD . 2nd edition Munich 2002, ISBN 3-406-48969-9 .
  10. ^ Emanuel Beiser: Charlemagne and the Avars , GRIN Verlag, Norderstedt 2011, ISBN 978-3-656-14334-5 , pp. 4–10.
  11. Carolingian brands. aeiou , accessed August 22, 2012 .
  12. a b Max Spindler: Handbook of Bavarian History. Old Bavaria. Volume 12, Roman-Germanic Commission of the German Archaeological Institute, Frankfurt am Main 2009, ISBN 978-3-7749-3663-8 , p. 400ff.
  13. a b c d e f g h i j k Herwig Wolfram: Salzburg, Bavaria, Austria. The Conversio Bagoarium et Carantanorum and the sources of their time , Verlag Oldenbourg, Vienna, Munich, Oldenbourg 1996.
  14. a b c d e f g h i Heinz Dopsch : Between Salzburg, Byzantium and Rome. On the missionary work of Pannonia in the 9th century. In: Christianity in Pannonia in the first millennium. Zalaegerszeg 2002, p. 267ff.
  15. RI I n. 1387, on the Regesta Imperii website
  16. ^ Beda Franziskus Dudík: Moravia general history. Presented on behalf of the Moravian Regional Committee, Volume 1, printed by Georg Gastl, Brno 1860, pp. 121ff.
  17. ^ Georg Scheibelreiter: The Babenberger. Imperial princes and sovereigns. Böhlau, Vienna 2010, ISBN 978-3-205-78573-6 , p. 33.
  18. Herwig Friesinger, Brigitte Vacha: The many fathers of Austria. Romans · Teutons · Slavs. A search for clues. , Compress Verlag, Vienna 1987, ISBN 3-900607-03-6 .
  19. a b c d e f Ernst Dümmler: History of the East Franconian Empire, Volume 1 , Duncker & Humblot Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 2009, ISBN 978-3-7749-3663-8 , p. 400ff.
  20. ^ A b c Alfred Ratz: Development of the parish network and the Carolingian era in the southern Burgenland area . Booklet 10 of Burgenland Research, publisher: Bgld. State Archives, Eisenstadt 1950.
  21. a b c d Béla Miklós Szőke: On the history of the Avars and Slavs in southwest Hungary , Zalai Múzeum, 1991, p. 11 ff.
  22. ^ Heinz Dopsch, Hans Spatzenegger (eds.): History of Salzburg, City and Country , Pustet Verlag, Salzburg 1997, ISBN 3-7025-0243-2 .
  23. ^ A b Christian Rohr : Between Bavaria and Byzantium. On the mission history of Eastern Europe in the early and high Middle Ages. (Lecture series of the Salzburg Medieval Studies, WS 2003/04; available online (PDF; 168 KB)).
  24. Michael Mitterauer : Carolingian margraves in the southeast. Franconian imperial aristocracy and Bavarian tribal nobility in Austria , Verlag Hermann Böhlaus Nachf., Graz, Vienna, Cologne 1963.
  25. RI I n. 1442 on the Regesta Imperii website
  26. Peter Stih, Vasko Simoniti, Peter Vodopivec: A Slovene History , Institut za novejšo zgodovino, Ljubljana, 2008, English
  27. a b c Georg Holzer: Old Church Slavonic ( Memento from September 27, 2007 in the Internet Archive ) PDF, on the website of the University of Klagenfurt
  28. ^ Hadrian II. (867 - 872) and his time , on the homepage of P. Otto Schärpf SJ
  29. Franz Zagiba: The Bavarian slave mission and its continuation by Kyrill and Method. Yearbooks for the History of Eastern Europe, Franz Steiner Verlag, Vienna 1961.
  30. Herwig Wolfram: The Birth of Central Europe: History of Austria before its emergence , Verlag Kremayr & Scheriau, 1987.
  31. RI I n. 1387 Donation from Ludwig the German to Dominicus on the Regesta Imperii website
  32. ^ András Róna-Tas: Hungarians and Europe in the Early Middle Ages , Central European University Press, Budapest 1999, ISBN 963-9116-48-3 .
  33. ^ Theodor Schieffer:  Karlmann. In: New German Biography (NDB). Volume 11, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 1977, ISBN 3-428-00192-3 , p. 275 f. ( Digitized version ).
  34. Constantin Jos. Jiriċek: History of the Bulgarians , Textor Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 2008, ISBN 978-3-938402-11-5 .
  35. Ferdinand Sisic: History of the Croats. First part (up to 1102) , Matica Hrcatska publishing house, Zagreb 1917.
  36. ^ A b Ignaz Aurelius Fessler, Ernst Klein: History of Hungary, Volume 1 , Brockhaus-Verlag, Leipzig 1866, p. 52ff.
  37. Homma, Prickler, Fleischer: 1100 Years of Pinkafeld , self-published by the municipality of Pinkafeld, Pinkafeld 1960.
  38. a b c d e f Béla Miklós Szőke: ANTÆUS 31-32 , Communicationes ex Instituto Archaeologico Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae, Budapest 2010.
  39. E. Benkő: The Carolingian Bell Casting Pit of Zalavár , Yearbook for Bells , 2005–2006.
  40. ^ E. Lehmann: From the church family to the cathedral , art historical studies, Baden-Baden 1962, pp. 21–37.
  41. ^ G. Bandmann: Medieval architecture as a carrier of meaning , Berlin 1951, pp. 173, 207.
  42. Béla Miklós Szőke: The relationships between the upper Danube valley and western Hungary in the first half of the 9th century (women's costume accessories and jewelry) , F. Daim (Hrsg.), Awarenforschung Vol. 2, Vienna 1992, pp. 841–968.
  43. a b À. Sós - S. Bökönyi: Géza Fehér's excavations in Zalavár , ArchHung, Budapest 1963.
  44. Bernhard Symanzik (Ed.): Studia Philologica Slavica , Part I, Roman-Germanic Commission of the German Archaeological Institute, Frankfurt am Main 2009, ISBN 978-3-8258-9891-5 .
  45. Franz Zagiba: The Western Slavs and their material and spiritual culture in the early Middle Ages. In: Karl-Heinz Otto (Ed.): II. International Congress for Slavic Archeology. Reports. Berlin 1970, Volume 1, pp. 109-117.
  46. ^ Historical Association for Styria: Journal of the Historical Association for Styria. Volume 93. 2002, pp. 20ff.
  47. Josip Mal: Problems from the early history of the Slovenes. Publishing house Ljubljana, Nova Zalożba 1939.