Lordship of Hummel

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Ruins of Hummel Castle

The Lordship of Hummel (Czech: Homole) is a historic landscape zone in the western part of the former County of Kladsko (German: Grafschaft Glatz, Schlesien), then part of Bohemia, now in Silesia, Poland.[1]

The Hummel Castle[edit]

The focus of the Lordship of Hummel was (the no-longer existing) Hummel Castle,[1] located on a mountain above the valley of the Bystrzyca Dusznicka river, approximately 3 km west of Duszniki Zdrój (Dušníky, Bad Reinerz). Due to its geographical location, it secured the important road from Prague via the Hummel Pass to Kłodzko (Kladsko, Glatz) and Wrocław (Breslau, Vratislav), the so-called Poland Route. Hummel Castle was called in German: Landfried until the 15th century. In 1427, it was conquered by the Hussites, who used it as a base for their attacks on Kladsko Land and neighbouring Silesia. During this period, the German name Landfried was replaced by the Czech name Homole. After 1560 the castle was uninhabited and dilapidated. Elector Palatine Otto Henry, Elector Palatine had skeches of the castle made during his journey from Neuburg an der Donau to Cracow in 1536. These sketches are the only surviving pictures of the castle before its destruction.

History of the Lordship of Hummel[edit]

In the 10th century, Hummel was part of the territory of the Slavník dynasty. In 995, it was acquired by the Přemyslid dynasty. Back then, the Lordship of Hummel consisted only of the eastern part of the later Hummel district, that is, the watershed of the Bystrzyca Dusznicka river, with the town of Duszniki Zdrój and a number of villages (Słoszów, Ocieszów, Bystra, Łężyce, Szczytna, Kulin Kłodzki and Dolina).

In the 14th century, the Lordship was held by the Lords of Pannwitz. After the transfer to Dětřich of Janovice (1392–1411), Hummel was united with the neighbouring Lordship of Náchod. In 1412, the lordships came into the possession of Henry of Lažany, who traded Hummel and Náchod in 1414 with Boček II of Poděbrady (d. 1417) for the city and lordship of Bechyně in southern Bohemia. Boček's son Victor, who was a staunch supporter of the Utraquists, died in 1427. The Taborites then conquered Hummel Castle, and used it as a base for their incursions into Kladsko and Silesia. The Lordship of Hummel was ruled jointly by the Taborite captains Jan Holý and Mikuláš Trčka z Lípy. In 1440, the castle came into the hands of the Taborite robber baron Jan Kolda of Žampach. From 1444 to 1454, the Lordship belonged to Hynek Krušina of Lichtenburg, who was also the lien holder of the County of Kladsko. After his death, the Lordship was acquired by George of Poděbrady (later King of Bohemia), who appointed Václav Holý as Burgrave of Hummel Castle. In 1458, George transferred the Lordship to his sons Boček IV (d. 1496) and Victor. After George's deaths in 1471, his sons divided the family possessions, with Henry the Elder receiving the Lordships of Hummel and Náchod.

In 1477, Henry the Elder enfeoffed the Lordship to Hildebrand of Kauffung and made it administratively part of Kladsko, which had been made a County in 1459. At the same time the Bohemian parishes Lewin Kłodzki (Levín) and Czermna (pl) (Čermná) were incorporated into the Lordship of Hummel. The villages of Słone and Brzesowie, that did not belong to the parish of Czermna, but to the parish of St. Lawrence in Náchod, were also incorporated into the Lordship. From this time onwards, the original, eastern part of Hummel was termed the "German" side and the western part was termed the "Bohemian" side.

Under Sigismund of Kauffung, the castle again became a hideout for robber barons. In 1501, Ulrich of Hardegg bought the County of Kladsko, including the Lordship of Hummel. In 1537, his son pledged it to John III of Pernstein,[2] whose son Vratislav II of Pernstein inherited the Lordship in 1548. In 1459, the County of Kladsko, including the Lordship of Hummel, was sold to Ernest of Bavaria of the House of Wittelsbach. On 10 December 1459, Ernest gave the Lordship of Hummel to his illegitimate son Eustace. In 1550, Eustace was ennobled by Emperor Charles V as Eustace of Landfried. Eustace was legitimized as a noble son of Ernest by Pope Julius II. Eustace sold the Lordship after Ernest's death to Ernst Gelhorn von und zu Alten Greckau und Roge. In 1590, the Lordship was acquired by Rudolf of Stubenberg, who pledged it to the city of Reinerz (Duszniki Zdrój) in 1595.

Dissolution of the Lordship[edit]

The Lordship was dissolved in 1598. Rudolf of Stubenberg acquired most of the land the belonged to the castle estate. Most of the towns and villages ware assigned to the Bohemian Chamber (Treasure Office for management of royal assets). Several of them were sold to the city of Reinerz and the Lordship of Rückers by Emperor Leopold I in 1684, to defray the cost of the Great Turkish War.



  • Franz Albert: Die Geschichte der Herrschaft Hummel und ihrer Nachbargebiete, part one: Die Herrschaft Hummel bis zum Jahre 1477, Imself-published by the author, Münster 1932.
  • Lydia Baštecká, Ivana Ebelová: Náchod, Nakladatelství Lidové noviny, Praha, 2004, ISBN 80-7106-674-5.
  • Arno Herzig, Małgorzata Ruchniewicz: Geschichte des Glatzer Landes, DOBU-Verlag, Hamburg, 2006, ISBN 3-934632-12-2, S. 66–70.
  • Joseph Kögler: Die Chroniken der Grafschaft Glatz, edited and republished by Dieter Pohl, part 1: Die Stadt- und Pfarreichroniken von Lewin – Mittelwalde – Wünschelburg – Neurode – Wilhelmsthal, in: Geschichtsquellen der Grafschaft Glatz, series A: Ortsgeschichte, NF 1, Pohl, Cologne, 1992, ISBN 3-927830-06-2, p. 257–259.
  • Angelika Pabel (ed.): Reise, Rast und Augenblick. Mitteleuropäische Stadtansichten aus dem 16. Jahrhundert, Röll, Dettelbach 2002, ISBN 3-89754-201-3 (with picture of Hummel Castle).
  • Hugo Weczerka (ed.): Handbuch der historischen Stätten: Schlesien, Kröners Pocketbooks #316, Kröner, Stuttgart 1977, ISBN 3-520-31601-3.

Coordinates: 50°24′05″N 16°20′51″E / 50.4014°N 16.3475°E / 50.4014; 16.3475