Temeskenéz, Kingdom of Hungary (?)
(today: Satchinez, Romania)
|Died||November 24, 1494
Semendria (Szendrő), Kingdom of Hungary
(today: Smederevo, Serbia)
|Allegiance||Kingdom of Hungary|
|Years of service||1467?-1494|
|Commands held||Black Army|
|Relations||Balázs Magyar (father-in-law)|
Pál Kinizsi or Paul Kinizsi (Romanian: Pavel Chinezul) (1432–1494) was a Hungarian general, legendary commoner commander in the army of king Matthias Corvinus. He was comes of Temes (comes Temesiensis) since 1484 and Captain General of the Lower Parts of the Kingdom of Hungary (generalis capitaneus inferiorum partium regni). He is famous for his participation with Stephen V Báthory, the Voivode of Transylvania in the victory over the Ottoman Turks in the Battle of Breadfield October 1479.
Kinizsi, previously a journeyman miller, a miller's son, is a hero of some Hungarian and Romanian folk tales along with king Matthias Corvinus as an extremely strong former miller's apprenctice. According to these tales, the king was hunting in the Bakony forest near the mill where he worked and asked for a drink; Kinizsi, to show his strength, served the cup on a millstone. The king, impressed, took him into his service, where Kinizsi's strength, prowess and loyalty earned him rapid promotion. He is said to have wielded two greatswords in battle and to have danced a victory dance after the Battle of Breadfield with a captured or dead Turk under each arm and a third held with his hair or belt in his teeth.
He married Benigna Magyar, the daughter of Balázs Magyar, another general of Corvinus. His central estate was the Castle of Nagyvázsony. He had no known issue. According to Serbian historians, he was of Serbian origin, and was possibly a descendant of Vuk Branković, though this could not be determined.
After the death of king Matthias in 1490 he supported Polish (by birth) king Vladislas II of Hungary and the great magnates against Matthias' illegitimate son and designated successor John Corvinus. He destroyed the former king's mercenary Black Army which had become a robber band after its dissolution. He then was crippled by a stroke and died shortly afterwards.
- Peter F. Sugar, Péter Hanák, Tibor Frank, A History of Hungary, Indiana University Press, 1994, p. 72 
- Géza Dávid, Pál Fodor, Ransom slavery along the Ottoman borders: early fifteenth-early eighteenth centuries, BRILL, 2007, p. 4 
- Franz Babinger, Mehmed the Conqueror and His Time, Princeton University Press, 1992, p. 374
- Charles Hebbert, Norm Longley, Dan Richardson, Rough guide to Hungary, Rough Guides, 2002, p.284 
- Országos Széchényi Könyvtár, The National Széchényi Library, The Library, 1972, p. 21 
- Laszlo Szalay, Das Rechtsverhältniss der serbischen Niederlassungen zum Staate in den Ländern der ungarischen Krone, p. 7
- Љубомир Степанов: Срби у Кнезу (Темишвар, 1998)
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