Matthias Corvinus called Matthias I, was King of Hungary and Croatia from 1458 to 1490. After conducting several military campaigns, he was elected King of Bohemia in 1469 and adopted the title Duke of Austria in 1487, he was the son of John Hunyadi, Regent of Hungary, who died in 1456. In 1457, Matthias was imprisoned along with his older brother, Ladislaus Hunyadi, on the orders of King Ladislaus the Posthumous. Ladislaus Hunyadi was executed. After the King died unexpectedly, Matthias's uncle Michael Szilágyi persuaded the Estates to unanimously proclaim Matthias king on 24 January 1458, he began his rule under his uncle's guardianship, but he took effective control of government within two weeks. As king, Matthias waged wars against the Czech mercenaries who dominated Upper Hungary and against Frederick III, Holy Roman Emperor, who claimed Hungary for himself. In this period, the Ottoman Empire conquered Serbia and Bosnia, terminating the zone of buffer states along the southern frontiers of the Kingdom of Hungary.
Matthias signed a peace treaty with Frederick III in 1463, acknowledging the Emperor's right to style himself King of Hungary. The Emperor returned the Holy Crown of Hungary with which Matthias was crowned on 29 April 1464. In this year, Matthias invaded the territories, occupied by the Ottomans and seized fortresses in Bosnia, he soon realized he could expect no substantial aid from the Christian powers and gave up his anti-Ottoman policy. Matthias introduced new taxes and collected extraordinary taxes; these measures caused a rebellion in Transylvania in 1467. The next year, Matthias declared war on George of Poděbrady, the Hussite King of Bohemia, conquered Moravia and Lausitz, but he could not occupy Bohemia proper; the Catholic Estates proclaimed him King of Bohemia on 3 May 1469, but the Hussite lords refused to yield to him after the death of their leader George of Poděbrady in 1471. Instead, they elected the eldest son of Casimir IV of Poland. A group of Hungarian prelates and lords offered the throne to Vladislaus's younger brother Casimir, but Matthias overcame their rebellion.
Having routed the united troops of Casimir IV and Vladislaus at Breslau in Silesia in late 1474, Matthias turned against the Ottomans, who had devastated the eastern parts of Hungary. He sent reinforcements to Stephen the Great, Prince of Moldavia, enabling Stephen to repel a series of Ottoman invasions in the late 1470s. In 1476, Matthias seized Šabac, an important Ottoman border fort, he concluded a peace treaty with Vladislaus Jagiellon in 1478, confirming the division of the Lands of the Bohemian Crown between them. Matthias waged a war against Emperor Frederick and occupied Lower Austria between 1482 and 1487. Matthias established a professional army, reformed the administration of justice, reduced the power of the barons, promoted the careers of talented individuals chosen for their abilities rather than their social statuses. Matthias patronized science. With his patronage, Hungary became the first country to embrace the Renaissance from Italy; as Matthias the Just, the monarch who wandered among his subjects in disguise, he remains a popular hero of Hungarian folk tales.
Matthias was born in Kolozsvár on 23 February 1443. He was his wife, Elizabeth Szilágyi. Matthias' education was managed by his mother due to his father's absence. Many of the most learned men of Central Europe—including Gregory of Sanok and John Vitéz—frequented John Hunyadi's court when Matthias was a child. Gregory of Sanok, a former tutor of King Vladislaus III of Poland, was Matthias's only teacher whose name is known. Under these scholars' influences, Matthias became an enthusiastic supporter of Renaissance humanism; as a child, Matthias learnt many languages and read classical literature military treatises. According to Antonio Bonfini, Matthias "was versed in all the tongues of Europe", with the exceptions of Turkish and Greek. Although this was an exaggeration, it is without doubt that Matthias spoke Hungarian, Italian, Polish and German; the late 16th-century Polish historian Krzystoff Warszewiecki wrote that Matthias had been able to understand the Romanian language of the envoys of Stephen the Great, Prince of Moldavia.
According to a treaty between John Hunyadi and Đorđe Branković, Despot of Serbia and the Despot's granddaughter Elizabeth of Celje were engaged on 7 August 1451. Elizabeth was the daughter of Ulrich II, Count of Celje, related to King Ladislaus the Posthumous and an opponent of Matthias's father; because of new conflicts between Hunyadi and Ulrich of Celje, the marriage of their children only took place in 1455. Elizabeth settled in the Hunyadis' estates but Matthias was soon sent to the royal court, implying that their marriage was a hidden exchange of hostages between their families. Elizabeth died before the end of 1455. John Hunyadi died on 11 August 1456, less than three weeks after his greatest victory over the Ottomans in Belgrade. John's elder son—Matthias's brother—Ladislaus became the head of the family. Ladislaus's conflict with Ulrich of Celje ended with Ulrich's capture and assassination on 9 November. Under duress, the King promised he would never take his revenge against the Hunyadis for Ulrich's killing.
However, the murd
Barbara Zápolya was Queen of Poland and Grand Duchess of Lithuania as the first wife of King Sigismund I the Old. Marriage to Barbara represented an alliance between Sigismund and the House of Zápolya against the Habsburgs in succession disputes over the throne to the Kingdom of Hungary; the alliance was short-lived as the renewed Muscovite–Lithuanian War forced Sigismund to look for Habsburg allies. The marriage was short. Barbara was the mother of Hedwig, Electress of Bradenburg, but died soon after the birth of her second daughter Anna, she was the daughter of Stephen Zápolya, Palatine of Hungary and Count of Szepes, the Polish princess Hedwig of Cieszyn of the Piast dynasty. Barbara was a younger sister of the future King of Hungary; the family was known for their wealth – Stephen had more than 70 castles in Hungary and Slovakia. Her father died in 1499, leaving the family in care of Casimir II, Duke of Cieszyn. Barbara spent her childhood in the Trenčín Castle and the court of Anne of Foix-Candale, Queen of Bohemia and Hungary.
Sigismund I the Old was the fifth of six sons of Polish King Casimir IV Jagiellon. Not having any inheritance in either Poland or Lithuania, he lived in Buda, at the court of his elder brother King Vladislaus II of Hungary, in 1498–1501 and 1502–1506. At that time he became closer with the House of Zápolya. Sigismund mediated a dispute between his brother Vladislaus and the Zápolyas, who wanted to secure the throne of Hungary to John Zápolya by securing marriage between John and Vladislaus' first-born Anne of Hungary. Vladislaus refused, favoring the interests of Holy Roman Emperor; the Hungarian nobles opposed the increasing reach of the Habsburg dynasty and threatened to take up arms. The conflict lost its urgency when Vladislaus' son and heir Louis II of Hungary was born in July 1506. In August 1506, Alexander Jagiellon died without leaving an heir. Sigismund was elected as King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania and faced growing ambitions of the Habsburgs not only in Hungary and Bohemia, but in the State of the Teutonic Order in Prussia.
That forced him to look for anti-Habsburg allies and Zápolyas in Hungary were the strongest. A royal marriage would strengthen Zápolya position in any future succession disputes and would help keep Hungary out of the hands of the Habsburgs, it seems the plan was developed around 1510 by Jan Łaski, Grand Chancellor of the Crown, Krzysztof Szydłowiecki, Marshal of the Court. Before deciding on Barbara, Sigismund considered Catherine of Mecklenburg, but that plan was interrupted by renewed hostilities between Poland and Bogdan III the One-Eyed, Voivode of Moldavia. In April 1511, Sigismund sent Piotr Tomicki as his envoy to Hungary. Tomicki informed King Vladislaus that his brother sought to wed a Hungarian noblewoman and asked for his assistance in locating a suitable candidate. Vladislaus' trusted physician, bribed by the Polish delegation, suggested Barbara Zápolya and Vladislaus agreed; the ruse worked to secure Vladislaus' approval for the marriage. The marriage treaty was signed on 2 December 1511.
Barbara, escorted by her family and Polish nobles, departed to Poland in January 1512. Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor, attempted to interrupt the wedding with a last-minute proposal for Sigismund to marry one of the daughters of Francesco II Gonzaga, Marquess of Mantua. On 6 February 1512, Sigismund met Barbara in Łobzów, now a district of Kraków; that way 17-year-old Barbara and 45-year-old Sigismund entered Kraków together. The wedding and coronation ceremony took place on 8 February, her dowry was 100,000 red złoty, a large sum. Sigismund's youngest sister Elisabeth, who married three years brought only 20,000 złoty as her dowry; the celebrations, financed by a loan from Jan Boner, cost another 34,365 złoty. This showed not only the riches of the Zápolya family but the importance of a royal wedding to their family. In exchange for the dowry, Barbara received the towns of Nowy Korczyn, Wiślica, Żarnowiec, Jedlnia, Kozienice, Chęciny, Stężyca, others as well as income from custom taxes of several cities and an annual sum of 200 Hungarian florins from the Wieliczka Salt Mine.
Despite the age difference, the marriage was happy. The couple traveled together when Barbara was late in her pregnancy, their first daughter Hedwig was born on 15 March 1513 in Poznań. After two months and Barbara departed towards Vilnius to attend to the renewed war with the Grand Duchy of Moscow; the two-month-old Hedwig was sent to Kraków. The couple separated for the first time in July–September 1514 when Sigismund organized the army against Moscow. Sigismund returned to his wife in Vilnius after the victory in the Battle of Orsha. In February 1515, the couple returned to Kraków where Barbara was reunited with her daughter after two years. Barbara, pregnant with her second child, remained in Kraków while Sigismund traveled to Bratislava and Vienna from March to August 1515; this was the second time. During that time, they exchanged frequent letters expressing their warm feelings for each other. Sigismund expressed his care and worry Barbara and her well-being, reminding her to take good care of her health and encouraging her to keep up her spirits.
Contemporary sources universally praised Barbara for her virtues. Marcin Bielski wrote of her devotion to god, obedience to husband and generosity to paupers. Marcin Kromer attributed the victory at Orsha to her Catholic piety and devotion, while Justus Ludwik Decjusz did not doubt that Barbara would join ranks of saints in the heaven. Desp
King of Hungary
The King of Hungary was the ruling head of state of the Kingdom of Hungary from 1000 to 1918. The style of title "Apostolic King of Hungary" was endorsed by Pope Clement XIII in 1758 and used afterwards by all Monarchs of Hungary. Before 1000 AD, Hungary was not recognized as a kingdom and the ruler of Hungary was styled Grand Prince of the Hungarians; the first King of Hungary, Stephen I. was crowned on 25 December 1000 with the crown Pope Sylvester II had sent him and with the consent of Otto III, Holy Roman Emperor. Following King Stephen I's coronation, all the monarchs of Hungary used the title "King". However, not all rulers of Hungary were kings--for example, Stephen Bocskai and Francis II Rákóczi were proclaimed rulers as "High Princes of Hungary", there were three Governors of Hungary who were sometimes styled "regents", János Hunyadi, Lajos Kossuth and Miklós Horthy. From the 13th century a certain process was established to confirm the legitimacy of the King. No person could become the legitimate King of Hungary without fulfilling the following criteria: Coronation by the Archbishop of Esztergom.
This meant a certain level of protection to the integrity of the Kingdom. For example, stealing the Holy Crown of Hungary was no longer enough to become legitimate King; the first requirement was confirmed by Béla III, crowned by the Archbishop of Kalocsa based on the special authorisation of Pope Alexander III, but after his coronation he declared that his coronation would not harm the customary claim of the Archbishops of Esztergom to crown the kings. In 1211, Pope Innocent III denied to confirm the agreement of Archbishop John of Esztergom and Archbishop Berthold of Kalocsa on the transfer of the claim, he declared that it is only the Archbishop of Esztergom, entitled to crown the King of Hungary; the King Charles I of Hungary was crowned in May 1301 with a provisional crown in Esztergom by the Archbishop of this city, that lead to his second coronation in June 1309. In this time the Holy Crown wasn't used and he was crowned in Buda by the archbishop of Esztergom; however his third coronation was in 1310, in the city of Székesfehérvár, with the Holy Crown and effectuated by the archbishop of Esztergom.
The King's coronation was considered legitimate. On the other hand, in 1439, the dowager queen Elizabeth of Luxemburg ordered one of her handmaidens to steal the Holy Crown from the palace of Visegrád, promoted the coronation of her newborn son Ladislaus V, carried out legitimately in Székesfehérvár by the Archbishop of Esztergom. A similar situation occurred with the Matthias Corvinus, when he negotiated to get back the Holy Crown, in the possession of Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III. After obtaining it he was legitimately crowned; as in all the traditional monarchies, the heir descended through the male line from a previous King of Hungary. In accordance with Hungarian tradition, this right passed to younger brothers, before passing to the son of the previous King, which caused family disputes on many occasions; the founder of the first Hungarian royal house was Árpád, who led his people into the Carpathian Basin in 895. His descendants, who ruled for more than 400 years, included Saint Stephen I, Saint Ladislaus I, Andrew II, Béla IV.
In 1301 the last member of the House of Árpád died, Charles I was crowned, claiming the throne in the name of his paternal grandmother Mary, the daughter of Stephen V. With the death of Mary, the granddaughter of Charles I, in 1395, the direct line was interrupted again, Mary's husband Sigismund continued reigning, after being elected by the nobility of the Kingdom in the name of the Holy Crown. Matthias Corvinus was elected by the nobles of the Kingdom, being the first Hungarian monarch who descended from an aristocratic family, not from a royal family that inherited the title; the same happened decades with John Zápolya, elected in 1526 after the death of Louis II in the battle of Mohács. After this, the House of Habsburg inherited the throne, ruled Hungary from Austria for 400 years until 1918. Over the centuries, the Kings of Hungary acquired or claimed the crowns of several neighboring countries, they began to use the royal titles connected to those countries. By the time of the last kings, their precise style was: "By the Grace of God, Apostolic King of Hungary, Croatia, Rama, Galicia, Lodomeria and Bulgaria, Grand Prince of Transylvania, Count of the Székelys".
The title "Apostolic King" was confirmed by Pope Clement XIII in 1758 and used thereafter by all the Kings of Hungary. The title of "King of Slavonia" referred to the territories between the Sava Rivers; that title was first used by Ladislaus I. It was Ladislaus I who adopted the title "King of Croatia" in 1091. Coloman added the phrase "King of Dalmatia" to the royal style in 1105; the title "King of Rama", referring to the claim to Bosnia, was first used by Béla II in 1136. It was Emeric who adopted the title "King of Serbia"; the phrase "King of Galicia" was used to indicate the supremacy over Halych, while the title "King of Lodomeria" referred to Volhynia. In 1233, Béla IV began to use the title "King of Cumania" which expressed the rule over the territories settled by the Cumans at that time; the phrase "King of Bulgaria" was added to the royal style by Stephen V. Transylvania was a province of the Kingdom of Hungary ruled by a voivode, but after 1526 became a semi-independent principality subordinated to the Ot
Slavonia is, with Dalmatia, Croatia proper and Istria, one of the four historical regions of Croatia. Taking up the east of the country, it corresponds with five Croatian counties: Brod-Posavina, Osijek-Baranja, Požega-Slavonia, Virovitica-Podravina and Vukovar-Srijem, although the territory of the counties includes Baranya, the definition of the western extent of Slavonia as a region varies; the counties cover 12,556 square kilometres or 22.2% of Croatia, inhabited by 806,192—18.8% of Croatia's population. The largest city in the region is Osijek, followed by Slavonski Vinkovci. Slavonia is located in the Pannonian Basin bordered by the Danube and Sava rivers. In the west, the region consists of the Sava and Drava valleys and the mountains surrounding the Požega Valley, plains in the east. Slavonia enjoys a moderate continental climate, with low precipitation. After the fall of Rome, which ruled the area of modern-day Slavonia until the 5th century and Lombards controlled the area before the arrival of Avars and Slavs, when the Principality of Lower Pannonia was established in the 7th century.
It was incorporated into the Kingdom of Croatia and, after its decline, the kingdom was ruled through a personal union with Hungary. The Ottoman conquest of Slavonia took place in 1536 to 1552. In 1699, after the Great Turkish War, Slavonia was transferred to the Habsburgs. Reform of the empire through the Compromise of 1867 assigned it to the Hungarian part of the realm, a year to the Kingdom of Croatia-Slavonia. In 1918, when Austria-Hungary dissolved, Slavonia was a part of the short-lived State of Slovenes and Serbs which in turn became a part of the kingdom renamed Yugoslavia. During the Croatian War of Independence, Slavonia saw fierce fighting, including the Battle of Vukovar; the economy of Slavonia is based on processing industry, trade and civil engineering. Agriculture is a significant component of its economy: Slavonia contains 45% of Croatia's agricultural land and accounts for a significant proportion of Croatia's livestock farming and production of permanent crops; the gross domestic product of the five counties of Slavonia is worth 6,454 million euro or 8,005 euro per capita, 27.5% below national average.
The GDP of the five counties represents 13.6% of Croatia's GDP. The cultural heritage of Slavonia is a blend of historical influences those since the end of the 17th century, when Slavonia started recovering from the Ottoman wars, its traditional culture. Slavonia contributed to the culture of Croatia, through art, writers and art patronage. In traditional music, Slavonia is a distinct region of Croatia, the traditional culture is preserved through folklore festivals, with prominence given to tamburica music and bećarac, a form of traditional song, recognized as an intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO; the cuisine of Slavonia reflects diverse influences -- a blend of foreign elements. Slavonia is one of Croatia's winemaking areas, with Ilok and Kutjevo recognized as centres of wine production; the name Slavonia originated in the Early Middle Ages. The area was named after the Slavs who called themselves * Slověne; the root *Slověn- appeared in various dialects of languages spoken by people inhabiting the area west of the Sutla river, as well as between the Sava and Drava rivers—South Slavs living in the area of the former Illyricum.
The area bounded by those rivers was called *Slověnьje in the Proto-Slavic language. The word subsequently evolved to its various present forms in the Slavic languages, other languages adopted the term. Remnants of several Neolithic and Chalcolithic cultures were found in all regions of Croatia, but most of the sites are found in the river valleys of northern Croatia, including Slavonia; the most significant cultures whose presence was found include the Starčevo culture whose finds were discovered near Slavonski Brod and dated to 6100–5200 BC, Vučedol and Baden cultures. Most finds attributed to the Baden and Vučedol cultures are discovered in the area around Vukovar, extending to Osijek and Vinkovci; the Baden culture sites in Slavonia are dated to 3600–3300 BC, Vučedol culture finds are dated to 3000–2500 BC. The Iron Age left traces of the Celtic La Tène culture. Much the region was settled by Illyrians and other tribes, including the Pannonians, who controlled much of present-day Slavonia.
Though archaeological finds of Illyrian settlements are much sparser than in areas closer to the Adriatic Sea, significant discoveries, for instance in Kaptol near Požega have been made. The Pannonians first came into contact with the Roman Republic in 35 BC, when the Romans conquered Segestica, or modern-day Sisak; the conquest was completed in 11 BC, when the Roman province of Illyricum was established, encompassing modern-day Slavonia as well as a vast territory on the right bank of Danube. The province was divided within two decades. After the collapse of the Western Roman Empire, which included the territory occupied by modern-day Slavonia, the area became a part of the Ostrogothic Kingdom by the end of the 5th century. However, control of the area proved a significant task, Lombards were given increasing control of Pannonia in the 6th century, which ended in their withdrawal in 568 and the arrival of Pannonian Avars and Slavs, who established control of Pannonia by year 582. According to the work De Administrando Imperio written by the 10th century Byzantine Emperor Constantine VII, the Croats had arrived in the early 7th century in the region of Dalmatia, although this is disputed and competing hypotheses date the event between the 6th and the 9th
Erzsébet Szilágyi was a Hungarian noblewoman, spouse of John Hunyadi and mother of Matthias Corvinus, King of Hungary. Elizabeth was the daughter of the Ladislaus Szilágyi and Catherine Bellyéni, members of two influential Hungarian families of the 15th century that were loyal to the King Sigismund of Hungary, she had several siblings, including Mihály Szilágyi, who had an important role after the death of Elizabeth's husband, John Hunyadi. Hunyadi was the regent of the Kingdom of Hungary and supreme commander of the armies, an excellent fighter, that counted with the favor of the Pope for confronting the Ottoman Empire, he was the most powerful nobleman of the Kingdom and counted with huge properties and centenars of lower noblemen that supported him. After his death in 1456, his older son Ladislaus Hunyadi became the head of the House of Hunyadi, however after murdering the count Ulrich von Cilli, the counselor of the King Ladislaus V of Hungary, he was executed. Elizabeth's only son Matthias Corvinus of Hungary was taken to Prague by the young King, who felt for his life before the instability caused after the execution of Ladislaus Hunyadi.
Mihály Szilágyi and Elizabeth founded Szilágyi – Hunyadi Liga and became the leaders of this Liga, after the sudden death of the King Ladislaus, she negotiated the release of Matthias, soon crowned as King of Hungary in 1458. After this, Elizabeth became the mother of the King, continued being a great influence in the Kingdom. Matthias had an illegitimate son in 1473, soon was sent to the properties of his grandmother, who raised him with the best teachers of the Kingdom; the illegitimate John Corvinus never became King of Hungary after the death of Matthias because of the pression of the noblemen and the widow of the monarch, but enjoyed titles and properties, fighting the Turkish armies until the end of his life as his grandfather and father did before. His grandmother Elizabeth lived in Óbuda most of his life, founded several monasteries and chapels, following her religious beliefs, she died around 1483
Kingdom of Hungary
The Kingdom of Hungary was a monarchy in Central Europe that existed from the Middle Ages into the 20th century. The Principality of Hungary emerged as a Christian kingdom upon the coronation of the first king Stephen I at Esztergom around the year 1000. By the 12th century, the kingdom became a European middle power within the Western world. Due to the Ottoman occupation of the central and southern territories of Hungary in the 16th century, the country was partitioned into three parts: the Habsburg Royal Hungary, Ottoman Hungary, the semi-independent Principality of Transylvania; the House of Habsburg held the Hungarian throne after the Battle of Mohács until 1918 and played a key role in the liberation wars against the Ottoman Empire. From 1867, territories connected to the Hungarian crown were incorporated into Austria-Hungary under the name of Lands of the Crown of Saint Stephen; the monarchy ended with the deposition of the last king Charles IV in 1918, after which Hungary became a republic.
The kingdom was nominally restored during the "Regency" of 1920–46, ending under the Soviet occupation in 1946. The Kingdom of Hungary was a multiethnic state from its inception until the Treaty of Trianon and it covered what is today Hungary, Slovakia and other parts of what is now Romania, Carpathian Ruthenia, Vojvodina and other smaller territories surrounding present-day Hungary's borders. From 1102 it included Croatia, being in personal union with it, united under the King of Hungary. Today, the feast day of the first king Stephen I is a national holiday in Hungary, commemorating the foundation of the state; the Latin forms Ungarie. The German name Königreich Ungarn was used from 1784 to 1790 and again between 1849 and the 1860s; the Hungarian name was used in the 1840s, again from the 1860s to 1946. The unofficial Hungarian name of the kingdom was Magyarország, still the colloquial, the official name of Hungary; the names in the other native languages of the kingdom were: Polish: Królestwo Węgier, Romanian: Regatul Ungariei, Serbian: Kraljevina Ugarska, Croatian: Kraljevina Ugarska, Slovene: Kraljevina Ogrska, Slovak: Uhorské kráľovstvo, Italian, Regno d'Ungheria.
In Austria-Hungary, the unofficial name Transleithania was sometimes used to denote the regions of the Kingdom of Hungary. The term Lands of the Crown of Saint Stephen was included for the Hungarian part of Austria-Hungary, although this term was in use prior to that time; the Hungarians led by Árpád settled the Carpathian Basin in 895, established Principality of Hungary. The Hungarians led several successful incursions to Western Europe, until they were stopped by Otto I, Holy Roman Emperor in Battle of Lechfeld; the principality was succeeded by the Christian Kingdom of Hungary with the coronation of St Stephen I at Esztergom on Christmas Day 1000. The first kings of the kingdom were from the Árpád dynasty, he fought with Bavarian help, defeated him near Veszprém. The Catholic Church received powerful support from Stephen I, who with Christian Hungarians and German knights wanted a Christian kingdom established in Central Europe. Stephen I of Hungary was canonized as a Catholic saint in 1083 and an Orthodox saint in 2000.
After his death, a period of revolts and conflict for supremacy ensued between the royalty and the nobles. In 1051 armies of the Holy Roman Empire tried to conquer Hungary, but they were defeated at Vértes Mountain; the armies of the Holy Roman Empire continued to suffer defeats. Before 1052 Peter Orseolo, a supporter of the Holy Roman Empire, was overthrown by king Samuel Aba of Hungary; this period of revolts ended during the reign of Béla I. Hungarian chroniclers praised Béla I for introducing new currency, such as the silver denarius, for his benevolence to the former followers of his nephew, Solomon; the second greatest Hungarian king from the Árpád dynasty, was Ladislaus I of Hungary, who stabilized and strengthened the kingdom. He was canonized as a saint. Under his rule Hungarians fought against the Cumans and acquired parts of Croatia in 1091. Due to a dynastic crisis in Croatia, with the help of the local nobility who supported his claim, he managed to swiftly seize power in northern parts of the Croatian kingdom, as he was a claimant to the throne due to the fact that his sister was married to the late Croatian king Zvonimir who died childless.
However, kingship over all of Croatia would not be achieved until the reign of his successor Coloman. With the coronation of King Coloman as "King of Croatia and Dalmatia" in Biograd in 1102, the two kingdoms of Croatia and Hungary were united under one crown. Although the precise terms of this relationship became a matter of dispute in the 19th century, it is believed that Coloman created a kind of personal union between the two kingdoms; the nature of the relationship varied through time, Croatia retained a large degree of internal autonomy overall, while the real power rested in the hands of the local nobility. Modern Croatian and Hungarian historiographies view the relations between Kingdom of Croatia and Kingdom of Hungary from 1102 as a form of a personal union, i.e. that
The Hunyadi family was one of the most powerful noble families in the Kingdom of Hungary during the 15th century. A member of the family, Matthias Corvinus, was King of Hungary from 1458 until 1490, King of Bohemia from 1469 until 1490, Duke of Austria from 1487 until 1490, his illegitimate son, John Corvinus, ruled the Duchy of Troppau from 1485 until 1501, five further Silesian duchies, including Bytom, Głubczyce, Racibórz, Tost, from 1485 until 1490. The Hunyadi coat-of-arms depicted a raven with a golden ring in its beak; the founder of the family, received the eponymous Hunyad Castle from Sigismund, King of Hungary, in 1409. His ethnicity is the subject of scholarly debate; some modern historians describe him as a Vlach, or Romanian, knez or boyar, from either Wallachia or Transylvania. Others describe him as a Slav nobleman. According to the 15th-century historian, Johannes de Thurocz, Voyk moved from Wallachia to Transylvania. Voyk's oldest son, John Hunyadi, was mentioned as a "Vlach" by his contemporaries.
John Hunyadi, a talented military commander, became the first member of the family to acquire the status of "true baron of the realm". He was appointed Ban of Severin in 1439, Voivode of Transylvania in 1441, he was granted the title Perpetual Count of Beszterce in 1452, thus receiving the first hereditary title created in the Kingdom of Hungary. At his death, John Hunyadi held many lands throughout the Kingdom. John Hunyadi's fame and fortune led the election of his son, Matthias Corvinus, as King of Hungary in 1458. Matthias ruled Moravia, Silesia and other neighbouring regions, he attempted to secure hereditary line of succession for John Corvinus. This did not happen and John was only able to retain the Duchy of Glogau, along with some other family domains in Hungary, after Matthias died in 1490. John's only son, Christopher Corvinus, was the last male member of the family, he died at the age of six in 1505. His sister Elisabeth died during childhood; the family was given its land by Sigismund, King of Hungary, on 18 October 1409.
On that day, Sigismund granted its demesne to Voyk and four of his kinsmen. In addition to Voyk, the grant lists his two brothers and Radol, their cousin or uncle named Radol, Voyk's son, the future Regent of Hungary; the granted said that Voyk's father was named "Serbe", but did not say anything further about the origins of the family. Voyk's son, John Hunyadi, bore the nickname "Olah", meaning "Vlach", in his youth, which implied that he was of Romanian stock; the court historian of Voyk's grandson King Matthias Corvinus, Antonio Bonfini, explicitly stated that John had been "born to a Vlach father". Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III knew that King Matthias had been "born to a Vlach father", a Venetian man, Sebastiano Baduario, referred to the Romanians as King Matthias's people. Historians of the 15th and 16th centuries, with perspectives that were either against or in favour of the family, wrote differing reports of the family's status before King Sigismund's grant. Jan Długosz described John Hunyadi as "a man of unknown origin", he is mentioned as "a Vlach by birth, not born" by Aeneas Silvius Piccolomini.
On the other hand, Johannes de Thurocz said that John Hunyadi "was descended from a noble and renowned race of Wallachia". Johannes de Thurocz wrote that King Sigismund, fascinated by Voyk's fame, "took him away from Wallachia to his own realm and settled him there", suggesting that Voyk moved from his Wallachian homeland to the Kingdom of Hungary; the late 15th-century historian Philippe de Commines referred to Voyk's son John as the "White Knight of Wallachia". In accordance with these sources, Pál Engel, András Kubinyi, other contemporary historians have written that the Hunyadi family descended from Wallachian boyars. According to another view on the family's origins, championed by historians Camil Mureşanu and Ion-Aurel Pop, Voyk did not migrate from Wallachia, but was born in a family of Romanian noble knezes from the region of Hátszeg, or Hunyad, they say that Voyk's grandfather could have been a man named "Costea", mentioned in a royal charter from 1360, who fathered a son named Serbe.
According to the charter and Serbe together established two villages in the region of Hátszeg. Historian Dezső Dümmerth offers a third view of the Hunyadis' ancestry, he said that Voyk was of one of the Wallachian boyars. He attributes Tatar ancestry to the Wallachian boyars. Another historian, Miklós Molnár, accepts the Wallachian origin of the family, but represents a fourth perspective on the origins of the family, he said. Neither Paul Lendvai nor András Boros-Kazai excluded the possibility of the Hunyadis being of Slavic origin. John Hunyadi's rapid advance, which astonished his contemporaries, gave rise to legends about his origins. According to one of these stories, recorded in detail by the 16th-century historian Gáspár Heltai, John Hunyadi was the illegitimate son of King Sigismund with a woman named Elizabeth, the daughter of a "rich boyar" from Morzsina in Hunyad County. Antonio Bonfini, on the other hand, wrote that John Hunyadi's mother was an unnamed Greek woman, related to the Byzantine Emperors.
Further legends emerged about the purported Romanian origin of the family. Antonio Bonfini wrote that John Hunyadi "traced his kin to the Roman family of the Corvini"; this story is connected to the Hunyadis' coat-of-arms, which depicts a raven, corvus in Latin, with a golden ring in its beak. Coins minted for Prince Vladislav I