Lațcu of Moldavia
Laţcu was Voivode of Moldavia from c. 1367 to c. 1375. He converted to the Roman Catholic faith and attempted to strengthen his realm's autonomy by establishing a Roman Catholic diocese directly subordinated to the Holy See. However, he seems to have accepted the suzerainty of King Louis I of Hungary and Poland in his last years.
Laţcu was the son of Bogdan I of Moldavia, the voivode achieving Moldavia's independence of Louis I. He succeeded his father around 1367. He sent two Franciscan friars of Polish origin to Rome in early 1370 in order to inform Pope Urban V of his decision to convert to the Roman Catholic faith. He also asked the Pope to establish a Roman Catholic diocese at his seat in Siret.
The pope soon appointed three prelates (Jan Očko of Vlašim, archbishop of Prague, Przeclaw of Pogorzela, bishop of Wrocław, and Florian of Mokrsko, bishop of Cracow) to examine the state of affairs in the principality. Their report was received by his successor, Pope Gregory XI who authorized Florian of Mokrsko to consecrate the Polish Andrzej Jastrzębiec bishop with his see in Siret in 1371. The pope bestowed on him the title "duke of the Moldavian parts or of the people of Wallachia" (dux Moldaviensis partium seu nationis Wlachie). Although Laţcu adopted the Roman Catholic faith, his wife, Ana and his daughter, Anastasia remained Orthodox.
Laţcu's action of promoting the establishment of a diocese directly subordinated to the Holy See demonstrates his independence of Louis I of Hungary. The historian J. Sýkora even theorizes that Laţcu was seeking an alliance against the Hungarian monarch with Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor. However, the latter explicitly recognized the suzerainty of Louis I (who had meanwhile been elected king of Poland as well) over a number of countries, including Moldavia in 1372. The Romanian historian Victor Spinei argues that Laţcu took advantage of his peaceful relations with Louis I by expanding his authority towards the Black Sea coasts in the 1370s. In contrast with him, Ioan-Aurel Pop suggests that Louis I prepared an expedition against Laţcu in 1374.
- Deletant, Dennis (April 1986). "Moldavia between Hungary and Poland, 1347-1412". The Slavonic and East European Review (London, UK: University of London, School of Slavonic and East European Studies) 64 (2): 189–211. ISSN 0037-6795.
- Pop, Ioan-Aurel (2006). "Romanians in the 14th-16th centuries: From the "Christian Republic" to the "Restoration of Dacia"". In Ioan-Aurel, Pop. History of Romania: Compendium. Romanian Cultural Institute (Center for Transylvanian Studies). pp. 209–314. ISBN 978-973-7784-12-4.
- Sălăgean, Tudor (2006). "Romanian society in the early Middle Ages". In Ioan-Aurel, Pop. History of Romania: Compendium. Romanian Cultural Institute (Center for Transylvanian Studies). pp. 133–207. ISBN 978-973-7784-12-4.
- Spinei, Victor (1986). Moldavia in the 11th-14th Centuries (Translated by Liliana Teodoreanu and Ioana Sturza). Bibliotheca Historica Romaniae Monographs XX. Editura Academiei Republicii Socialiste România.
- M. Bărbulescu, D. Deletant, K. Hitchins, Ş. Papacostea, P. Teodor, Istoria României, Ed. Corint, 2004, ISBN 973-653-514-2
|Prince/Voivode of Moldavia
c. 1367–c. 1375