Przemysł I.

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Seal of Przemysłs I, 1252

Przemysł I (also Przemysław I , Latin Primislaus I ; * between June 5, 1220 and June 4, 1221 in Trzebnica (Trebnitz) ; † June 4, 1257 in Posen ) was Duke of Greater Poland from 1239 . He came from the Greater Poland Piast line .


He was the eldest son of Duke Władysław Odonic of Greater Poland and his wife Jadwiga (Hedwig), from whom it is disputed whether she came from the house of the Samborids , the Přemyslids or the Counts of Andechs . According to chroniclers, he is said to have read Latin psalms with skill , a level of education that was unusual for secular aristocrats of that era.

From 1232 he is mentioned on his father's documents. After his death on June 5, 1239, he took over the rule of his hereditary lands.


In 1241 he formally accepted his younger brother Bolesław the Pious as co-regent , but without any practical consequences . After the Silesian Duke and Senior Duke of Poland Heinrich II. Died in the Battle of Liegnitz in 1241, Przemysł regained the Wielkopolska dominions of Poznan and Gniezno and set about recapturing parts of Wielkopolska that had been ruled by the Silesian Piasts . In order to consolidate his power, he worked very closely with the Church, in particular with the Poznan Bishops Bogufał II and Bogufał III.

In 1247 he got into a dispute with his brother Bolesław, first swapped territories with him, then held him prisoner and only gave him the ducal dignity of Gniezno and Kalisch until Easter 1253 , but kept the foreign representation of Wielkopolska at all times.

The greatest foreign policy challenge was the expansionist urge of the Margraves of Brandenburg . Although he was able to stop their military advances in Santok in 1247 , in Bentschen in 1251 and in Driesen in 1252 , tensions continued. In order to diplomatically alleviate the conflict, he engaged his eldest daughter Constanze to Konrad, the son of Margrave Johann I. The marriage did not take place until after Przemysł's death in 1260 and ultimately caused new conflict, as the Brandenburgers later established claims to parts of Greater Poland.

Around 1249 he began to have a castle built in Poznan, which was later completed under his successors in a larger form as the Poznan Royal Castle . In 1254 he took part in the assembly of the Polish dukes in Cracow on the occasion of the canonization of Bishop Stanislaus of Cracow . The host was the Senior Duke Boleslaw V the Shameful . In 1255 Duke Mestwin II of Pomerania conquered the area around Nakło . After he failed to recapture, Przemysł bought back the Nakło area with 500 silver coins.

On June 4th, 1257 Przemysł I died in Poznan. His body was transferred to Krakow and buried in the Wawel Cathedral .


Przemysł I married Elizabeth of Breslau (Polish Elżbieta wrocławska ), a daughter of Henry II the Pious of Silesia and Anna of Bohemia . The marriage had five children:

  • Constanze (* 1245/46, † October 8, 1281), married Conrad I of Brandenburg in 1260 .
  • Euphrosyne (* 1247/50, † 17/19 February 1298), abbess of the monastery of St. Klara in Trzebnica .
  • the Twins
    • Anna (* 1253, † after June 26, 1295), abbess in Owińska .
    • Euphemia (* 1253, † September 5, 1298), nun in the monastery of St. Clara, in Breslau .
  • Przemysł II (born October 14, 1257, † February 8, 1296), Duke of Greater Poland, from 1294 also of Pomerania, from 1295 King of Poland.


  • The Wielkopolska Chronicle (Original Chronica Poloniae Maioris around 1273 in Latin)
    • Polish translation: Kronika wielkopolska, przeł. Kazimierz Abgarowicz, wstęp i komentarze oprac. Brygida Kürbisówna, PWN, Warszawa 1965, Vol. 2, Kraków 2010, ISBN 97883-242-1275-0

Web links

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