Antun Vrančić

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His Excellency
Antun Vrančić
Archbishop of Esztergom
Primate of Hungary
Antun Vrancic by Martin Rota.jpg
Engraving of Vrančić by Martin Rota
Archdiocese Archdiocese of Esztergom
Installed 17 October 1569
Term ended 15 June 1573
Predecessor Miklós Oláh
Orders
Consecration 3 August 1554
Created Cardinal 5 June 1573
by Pope Gregory XIII
Personal details
Born May 29, 1504
Sebenico, Republic of Venice
(today Šibenik, Croatia)
Died June 15, 1573 (1573-06-16) (aged 69)
Eperjes, Kingdom of Hungary
(today Prešov, Slovakia)
Buried Saint Nicolas' Church, Trnava (Slovakia)
Nationality Venetian
Croatian[1]
Previous post
Motto "Ex alto omnia"
Coat of arms {{{coat_of_arms_alt}}}

Antun Vrančić or Antonio Veranzio (May 29, 1504 – June 15, 1573[2]) was a Croatian[1] prelate, writer, diplomat and Archbishop of Esztergom of the 16th century. Antun Vrančić was from Dalmatian town of Šibenik (modern Croatia), then part of the Republic of Venice.[3] Vrančić is also known under his Latinized name Antonius Verantius, while Hungarian documents since the 19th century[4] refer to him as Verancsics Antal.[5][6]

Biography[edit]

Early years[edit]

Vrančić was born and raised in Šibenik, city in Dalmatia in the former Republic of Venice.[3] Most historians accept a hypothesis that the Vrančić family was one of the Bosnian noble families that had moved to Šibenik in the era of Ottoman military incursions.[7] Vrančić's uncle Ivan Statilić and his other relative, Croatian viceroy Petar Berislavić, took care of his education.[2] His maternal uncle, John Statileo, Bishop of Transylvania also supported him in Trogir, Šibenik, since 1514 in Hungary and in Padua, where he earned the degree of magister in 1526. After later studies at Vienna and Kraków, Vrančić entered diplomatic service, aged only 26.[3]

Diplomat and prelate[edit]

Zápolya's service[edit]

In 1530 John Zápolya appointed him as the provost of the Buda cathedral and as a royal secretary. Between 1530-1539 he was also the deputy[8] of the King and after his death he remained with his widow, Isabella Jagiellon.[9] In 1541 he moved with her to Transylvania, but he mostly traveled fulfilling diplomatic services because of his disagreement with cardinal Juraj Utješinović's policy of claiming the Hungarian throne for Isabella's and Zápolya's infant son (instead of conceding it to Ferdinand I as per Treaty of Nagyvárad). Utješinović, appointed by Zápolya as a guardian of his son, John Sigismund Zápolya, fought against Ferdinand and allied himself with the Ottoman Empire.

Habsburg service[edit]

In 1549 Vrančić entered Ferdinand's service. In parallel to his diplomatic duties, he held important positions in Catholic Church (the chief dean of Szabolcs County, abbot of Pornó Abbey). In 1553 he was appointed as a bishop of Pécs and sent to Constantinople to conduct negotiations with sultan Suleyman I on Ferdinand's behalf. That mission was previously declined by many other diplomats as an earlier negotiator was imprisoned by the Ottomans. Vrančić spent four years in Asia minor and finally concluded peace treaty. After his return he was appointed bishop of Eger (July 17, 1560 – September 25, 1570). After the Battle of Szigetvár in 1566, as one of Maximilian's ambasadors, Antun was sent to Turkey to negotiate peace again; he arrived in Istanbul on 26 August 1567.[10] After five months of negotiations with Sokollu Mehmed Pasha and Selim II, agreement had been reached by 17 February, and the Treaty of Adrianople was signed on 21 February 1568, ending the war between the Holy Roman Empire and Ottoman Empire.[10] In appreciation of his diplomatic work, the king named him archbishop of Esztergom (17 Oct 1569 - 15 Jun 1573).

During his stay in Istanbul, together with Ogier Ghislain de Busbecq, Vrančić discovered Res Gestae Divi Augusti (Eng. The Deeds of the Divine Augustus), a Roman monument in Ankara. His travels throughout the Transylvania, Balkan and Asia minor resulted in writing extensive travel accounts.

In 1573 he urged Maximilian II to approach rebellious serfs conciliatory during Croatian–Slovene Peasant Revolt. On September 25, 1573, he crowned Rudolf II as a king of Hungary and Croatia in Pressburg.

Death[edit]

He died in Eperjes, Kingdom of Hungary (present-day Prešov, Slovakia), just days after having learned that the Pope appointed him cardinal.[2] Following his own wish, Vrančić was buried in Saint Nicholas church in Nagyszombat, Kingdom of Hungary (present-day Trnava, Slovakia).[2]

Influences[edit]

Antun Vrančić was in touch with German philosopher, theologian and reformer Philipp Melanchthon (1497–1560); and with Nikola Šubić Zrinski (1508–1566), Croatian ban, poet, statesman and soldier.[citation needed] In Viaggio in Dalmazia (1774), Alberto Fortis noted that Vrančić's descendants still kept a letter to Vrančić from Dutch philosopher, humanist and writer Erasmus (1465–1536), but no other evidence of correspondence between the two exists today, and modern scholars find it unlikely.[11]

Legacy[edit]

Vrančić's grave in St. Nicholas Basilica, Trnava, Slovakia

After Antun's death, his nephew Faust, who was a well known humanist, linguist and lexicographer of the Renaissance, took over writings from his estate.[3] Two years later, in 1575, he wrote Life of Antun Vrančić, a biography of his uncle, but did not manage to have it published.[12]

Croatian poet Brne Karnarutić dedicated his version of Pyramus and Thisbe to Antun Vrančić in 1586. Antun Vrančić High School in Vrančić's native Šibenik has been named after him since 1991, while a street in the old town centre also bears his name. Many other towns in Croatia have a street named after Vrančić. Croatian Post issued a stamp depicting Vrančić in 2004 honoring 500th anniversary of his birth.[13]

Bibliography[edit]

  • De situ Transylvaniae, Moldaviae et Transalpinae
  • Vita Petri Berislavi
  • De rebus gestis Ioannis, regis Hungariae
  • De itinere et legatione sua Constantinopolitana cum fratre Michaele dialogus
  • Iter Buda Hadrianopolium

Sources[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Setton, Kenneth Meyer (1984). The Papacy and the Levant, 1204–1571: The Sixteenth Century. IV. Philadelphia: The American Philosophical Society. p. 921. ISBN 0-87169-162-0. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Na današnji dan: Umro Antun Vrančić" (in Croatian). Croatian Radiotelevision. June 15, 2009. Retrieved 2009-08-17. 
  3. ^ a b c d Cvitan, Grozdana (May 19, 2005). "Kako sam služio ugarskog kralja". Zarez (in Croatian) (132). Retrieved 2009-08-17. 
  4. ^ [1] László Szalay, Gusztáv Wenzel: Magyar történelmi emlékek, Verancsics Antal összes munkái, 1858 (The Works of Antal Verancsics)
  5. ^ Google Books Andrew L. Simon: Made in Hungary: Hungarian contributions to universal culture
  6. ^ The Hungarian Quarterly, Vol. XLII * No. 162 *, Summer 2001 László Sipka: Innovators and Innovations
  7. ^ Morić, Živana (June 12, 2004). "Europski obzori hrvatskoga humanista" (PDF). Vjesnik (in Croatian). Retrieved 2009-09-20. 
  8. ^ http://lexikon.katolikus.hu/V/Verancsics.html
  9. ^ http://www.biolex.ios-regensburg.de/BioLexViewview.php?ID=1861 here
  10. ^ a b Setton, Kenneth Meyer (1984). The Papacy and the Levant, 1204–1571: The Sixteenth Century. IV. Philadelphia: The American Philosophical Society. pp. 921–922. ISBN 0-87169-162-0. 
  11. ^ Lučin 2004, p. 11–12.
  12. ^ Lisac, Josip (December 22, 2001). "Svestranik iz Šibenika" (PDF). Vjesnik (in Croatian). Retrieved 2009-08-19. 
  13. ^ "Number: 502 FAMOUS CROATS - 500 ANNIVERSARY OF THE BIRTH OF ANTUN VRANČIĆ", Croatian Post