The Kingdom of Hungary and Foreigners. Connection between the State Power and the Foreigners in the Light of Laws and Regulations in Medieval Times

Miloš Marek


The medieval kingdom of Hungary within its borders, geografically limited by the crest of the Carpathians and connected by the river Danube, included in itself a number of nations and nationalities. Some of them lived there from the very beginning (the Slovaks, Magyars, Romanians), others got there in the course of time. Throughout the Middle Ages people migrated there from the West and from the East. The kingdom thus had been formed in a multiethnic state in which members of various nationalities lived side by side in peaceful symbiosis. Generally speaking, the central royal power in the Hungarian kingdom was positively inclinedtowards foreigners and tried to create favorable conditions for their arrival. Some of the Hungariankings, especially those who were themselves of foreign origin (Peter Orseolo, Charlesof Anjou, Sigimund of Luxembourg) were favourably inclined to foreigners, much more thenother sovereigns, to the extent that they preferred them at the expence of domestic imbalance naturally aroused jealousy on the part of domestic Hungarian aristocracy. Under its pressure the rulers were therefore forced to take measures that prevented foreignersfrom reaching the highest state ranks, but these measures were o!en a formality since they themselves did not follow them and made their way. Many times, however, just these foreignpeople and mercenaries hired from abroad caused unrest and conflicts in the country andthat was another reason to take measures against foreigners to prevent these ills. In general, however, kings and nobility tried to form a favourable legislative framework for the peacefullife in the Hungarian kingdom. They tried to assimilate only foreigners of religion other than Catholic or at least to give their life in the country reasonable and acceptable limits.

Słowa kluczowe

Królestwo Węgierskie w średniowieczu, państwo wieloetniczne, przybysze, asymilacja

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