Wednesday, September 24, 2008


The medieval old town of Toruń is a birthplace of Nicolaus Copernicus. It was inscribed onto the World Heritage List of UNESCO as World Heritage Site in 1997.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Wladyslaw Jagiello

Władysław II Jagiełło (1362-1434), was Grand Duke of Lithuania and King of Poland. He ruled in Lithuania from 1377, at first with his uncle, Kęstutis. In 1386, he converted to Christianity, was baptized as Władysław, married the young Queen Jadwiga of Poland, inducted into the Order of the Dragon and was crowned Polish king as Władysław Jagiełło. His reign in Poland lasted a further forty-eight years and laid the foundation for the centuries-long Polish-Lithuanian union. He gave his name to the Jagiellon branch of the established Lithuanian Gediminids dynasty, which ruled both states until 1572, and became one of the most influential dynasties in medieval Central and Eastern Europe.

Sunday, August 3, 2008


The urus (or aurochs) was a very large type of cattle that was prevalent in Europe until its extinction in 1627. more...

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Wladyslaw the Elbow-high

Władysław the Elbow-high (or Ladislaus I of Poland) 1261 - March 2, 1333, was a King of Poland. He was a Duke until 1300, and Prince of Kraków from 1305 until his coronation as King on January 20, 1320.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


August, 1399. Vytautas, the Grand Duke of Lithuania, marches against Timur Kutlug, the Khan of the Golden Horde. He meets the Khan at the River Vorskla and demands that homage and tribute be paid to him. The Khan agrees at first, but during the negotiations new Tartar forces, led by Edyga, come to Timur Kutlug. The Lithuanian and Tartar forces go into battle, the Tartars crush the Lithuanian army on August 12, and devastate a large territory as far as Kiev and Lutsk.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


Malbork and Malbork Castle, the large brick castle built by the Teutonic Knights.


The name Marienburg was given to many towns in German-speaking countries in the Middle Ages.

The name usually originated in the construction of a fortified (hence -burg) chapel, church, or monastery dedicated to the Virgin Mary. In this book Marienburg refers to Malbork and Malbork Castle, the large brick castle built by the Teutonic Knights.


Castle of the Mazowsze Dukes is located there.

Sunday, June 29, 2008


Wawel is the name of a limestone outcrop situated on the left bank of the Vistula in Cracow, Poland, at an altitude of 228 metres above sea level. This is a place of great significance for Polish people. The Royal Castle and the Cathedral are situated on the hill. Polish Royalty and many distinguished Poles are interred in the Cathedral and royal coronations took place there also.

Monday, June 16, 2008


Bohemia is a historical region in central Europe, occupying the western two-thirds of the traditional Czech Lands, currently the Czech Republic. In a broader meaning, it often refers to the entire Czech territory, including Moravia and Czech Silesia, especially in historical contexts, such as the Kingdom of Bohemia.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Witold or Witold the Great

Witold the Great, ruler of (Grand Duke) of Lithuania. Cousin of Jogaila, King of Poland. Witold was one of the creators of the Union with Poland in 1413. [more]

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Komtur was a rank within the Teutonic Knights. The Komtur was the commander within a specific region, or commandry (Kommende or Komturei). A Komtur commanded procurators.


The Mazurs or Masurs (Polish: Mazurzy) are a sub-ethnic group in the Masovian and Warmian-Masurian Voivodeships in Poland. The name of the sub-ethnic group is derived from the Lekhitic tribe of Masovians who gave their name to the land of Masovia in Poland.


Monday, March 3, 2008


Following the death of Bolesław III in 1138 Poland was devided in dukedoms, according to his testament. Masovia was one of these duchies, and it was governed by a branch of the Piast dynasty till 1526. In 1351 the dukes of Mazovia became vasals of the Polish kings. And the Masovian bishopric of Plock was always part of the Polish archidiocese of Gniezno. Since the Polish-Lithuanian Union of 1385 it was localized between the joined Jagiellonian states. It is now located in east-central Poland and it's largest city Warsaw is also a Polish capital.

Book's characters

This post may (and probably will) change

  • Zbyszko of Bogdaniec - a young nobleman about to become a knight [pronounce "zbih-shcko”]. Version of old Polish name "Zbygniew" and translates to "the one who will have excess ("zbyt-") of anger ("gniew")" - towards his enemies, that means who will be stronger than his anemies due to his anger or "the one who will get rid of [his enemies] ("zbyc/pozbyc sie", "to get rid of") due to his anger".
  • Maćko of Bogdaniec - Zbyszko's uncle, old and experienced knight. Polish version on Christian name: Mathew.
  • Jurand of Spychów - anti-Teutonic rebel and Danusia's father
  • Danusia - Zbyszko is in love with her, she is Jurand's daughter and Duchess' of Mazovia servant. Child's version of the name "Danuta". Lithuanian equivalent: "Danute".
  • Jagienka of Zgorzelice - a young girl that falls in love with Zbyszko

  • Duchess Anna - the Duchess of Masovia
  • Janusz I - the Duke of Masovia and Duke of Warsaw - a historical figure
  • King Władysław Jagiełło - a historical figure, King of Poland between 1381 and 1434

  • Fulko de Lorche -a rich knight from Lotharingia who becomes close friends with Zbyszko
  • Siegfried de Löwe - the komtur of Szczytno who is behind the evil plan of kidnapping Danusia
  • Kuno von Liechtenstein - the Order's delegate to the King of Poland, who is attacked by Zbyszko
  • Mikolaj of Dlugolas (Nicholas of Long Woods) called Martel - frequently mentioned nobleman.

Sunday, March 2, 2008


A tithe is a one-tenth part of something, paid as a tax to support, in this case, a Christian religious organization.

St. Stanislaw

Stanisław Szczepanowski or Stanislaus of Szczepanów was a Bishop of Kraków known chiefly for having been slain by Polish King Bolesław II the Bold. Stanisław is venerated in the Roman Catholic Church as Saint Stanislaus the Martyr. [more at Wikipedia]

Saturday, March 1, 2008


The Burgundians or Burgundes were an East Germanic tribe.


Saracens was a term used in the Middle Ages for all those who professed the religion of Islam.
[more at Wikipedia]


Belial also named Matanbuchus, Mechembuchus, Meterbuchus in older scripts) is an evil being in Jewish apocrypha, and also a term used to characterize the wicked or worthless. [more at Wikipedia]


A pavise is a large shield used in medieval Europe to protect the entire body. The pavise was primarily used by archers and crossbowmen particularly during sieges. [more at Wikipedia]


Wilno is a Polish name of Vilnius, the largest city and the capital of Lithuania. Vilnius has also been known by many names in different languages throughout its history. Most notable non-Lithuanian names for the city include: Polish: Wilno, Latin: Vilna, German: Wilna.

[more at Wikipedia]


Olesnica is a town in the Trzebnickie Hills in southwestern Poland. It is situated in Lower Silesian Voivodeship. It is the seat of Oleśnica County, and also of the rural district of Gmina Oleśnica.

Tepa Podkowa

Tępa Podkowa is a Polish Coat of Arms. It was used by several szlachta families in the times of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.
The name literally means "Dull Horseshoe". [more at Wikipedia]

Friday, February 29, 2008


A squire was a young man who aspired to the rank of knighthood and who, as part of his development to that end, served an existing knight as his attendant or shield carrier.


Cuirass, the plate armour, is formed of a single piece of metal or other rigid material or composed of two or more pieces, which covers the front of the wearer's person. In a suit of armour, however, since this important piece was generally worn in connection with a corresponding defence for the back, the term cuirass commonly is understood to imply the complete body-armour, including both the breast and the back plates.


The aurochs or urus is an extinct, very large type of cattle originally prevalent in Europe. The animal's original scientific name, Bos primigenius, was meant as a Latin translation of the German term Auerochse or Urochs, which was (possibly incorrectly) interpreted as literally meaning "primeval ox" or "proto-ox".
[more at Wikipedia]


Kraków, in English also spelled Krakow or Cracow is one of the largest and oldest cities in Poland. Situated on the Vistula river (Polish: Wisła) in the Lesser Poland region, the city dates back to the 7th century. It was the capital of Poland from 1038 to 1596. The city's full official name, used on ceremonial occasions, is Royal Capital City of Kraków. [more at Wikipedia]


Tyniec - a historic village in Poland on Vistula river, today a borough of Kraków. Famous of its Benedictine abbey founded by king Casimir the Restorer in 1044.