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The Conversion and Destruction of the Wends
By E.L. Skip Knox


The final and most crucial element in the destruction and conversion of the deeds was the farmer. The most basic reason why all the gains of conquest and preaching were so precarious was the fact that Slavia was not populated by German Christians. During the twelfth century a flood of settlers poured across the Elbe River and took up residence in Slavia, thereby making the political and religious control of the region a permanent reality. The settlers could not have come without the military victories, but without the settlers those victories, like so many before, would have been fleeting. The countless missionaries helped to prepare the way too, but it was the presence of the settlers that made it possible to turn baptisms into genuine conversions. At the same time, the settlers were the greatest threat to Wendish culture. The Wends were vulnerable to colonization because of the structure of their economy. As a people they were too scattered and too few. As inhabitants they made too little use of their land. As a society they could not cope with the feudal Germanic ideas of property, and as farmers they could not compete with the immigrants.

Much of the Wendish economic behavior was dictated by geography. Slavia was, and still is, part of a natural geographic region extending from the Low Countries into Prussia. The entire region is dominated by water. The water comes not so much from rain as it does from the sea and from a myriad of rivers. The countryside is very flat and close to sea-level, so the rivers tend to meander, forming many swamps, lakes and large deltas. The "northwestern lowlands" are made up of polder (marschen), peat bogs (move), and a sandy heathland (geest).

Much of Slavia was covered by swamps and lakes in the Middle Ages. Western Holstein (Ditmarsh and Sturmaria), much of Mecklenburg, northern Brandenburg (along the Havel River), and much of Vorpommern, were all covered by swamps and lakes.3 This was good land, often bottom land, that was capable of good crop yields; but the Wends did not have the ability or the need to exploit it extensively. When the need did arise, in the thirteenth century, the Wends borrowed German methods and did found new villages.4 Farming this land, however, meant draining it first, and the Wends as a people never developed the technology or the social organization necessary. Here again we see the diverging paths taken by Germans and Wends that led to important differences by the twelfth century. The Germans by the early eleventh century were developing the technical skills and resources to drain flood plains, as a result of the shortage of good land. Equally important, they were developing a village organization that made drainage projects feasible. These were difficult projects far beyond the means of individual families. The Flemish, Dutch and Frisians formed peasant associations for the pooling of skills and resources. This was unthinkable in a pastoral tribal society; therefore, the Wends were unable to exploit the very kind of land in which the German settlers were specialists and which the German princes were most eager to see brought under cultivation Land that was not covered by swamp was most likely to be covered by forests, some of which were so dense that they were all but impassable.5 Just as there were certain sociological and technological prerequisites for cultivating marshland, so there were similar prerequisites for clearing and exploiting forest land. Germans from Westphalia and the lower Harz district had already developed the skills needed, while the Wends apparently never did. The forest, for the Wends, was a place to hunt and a place of refuge in times of invasion, but it never became a place to live.

It was on the land that remained that the Wends lived. This was often the poorest land, the geest, with light sandy soil that could be easily ploughed. This land was largely by-passed by the Ger man colonists in favor of bottom land that, while requiring more work to bring it under production, also yielded larger harvests.6 One can discern many traces of the Wends' nomadic past, particularly in the fact that they were still shifting the area of cultivation occasionally. Wendish communities consisted of irregular parcels of land attached to farmsteads that clustered around an open space. These scattered tracts were not systematically tilled, and farming was more or less a communal enterprise rather than an individual one.7

Agriculture was not the basic mode of production in the Wendish economy, but rather was only one component in a pastoral economy that relied heavily also on hunting, fishing, the rearing of livestock, piracy, beekeeping, trapping, and the mining of amber and salt. This economy was more diversified than the developing German economy, and it was less specialized. Family or clan units practiced all modes of production, though slaves were widely used on the farms.8 There were probably no families that survived wholly by iarming.9

The Wends were no longer nomads; they were bound to the land. Even though they counted the destruction of their villages but a slight loss, still they did eventually return from their forest hiding places to rebuild their huts. The bond, however, was far looser than it was for the German farmer, and this was due primarily to the fact that west of the Elbe River, agriculture dominated the economy.

Trade was never a major part of the Wendish economy, but it had a vital role, nonetheless. The first evidence of trade in Slavia we possess is the general prohibition against selling arms to them, issued in the ninth century.l0 The question immediately arises, what were the Wends using to buy arms? It was almost certainly not their own coins. It may not have been their own goods bartered at all but rather Muslim coins that were being used. m ese first appear in hoards in the tenth century.11 The goods most heavily traded at the edges of Slavia in the west and north were slaves, arms and treasure. These items reflect not only the nature of Wendish economy but also the nature of the people with whom they were trading. Given the preponderance of Muslim coins, we may infer that before the eleventh century the Wends were part of the great international trade-and-plunder network of the Vikings, especially of the Swedes. The Wends themselves sold slaves to outsiders, particularly to the Jews who worker the slave trade with the Muslims. Whether they traded anything else, such as amber, furs, or honey, is highly problematical. The western nobles did not acquire the taste or the resources for such things until rather later. It is possible that the Swedes bought them to trade to the Byzantines, but it is unlikely given that the Russians produced the same items. Whatever the rlends traded, it was what they got in return that is significant. Articles of war were what the Wends desired most, which is not surprising. Warfare was a crucial part of their culture. The buying of arms and horses, presumably of a quality higher than they themselves could produce, is in the nature of luxury trade--low volume and high prices--but it was extremely important for all that.

The Wendish towns of this period were scarcely more than walled gathering points. The towns (oppida) were rarely occupied except for markets, fests, and in times of invasion. Otherwise they stood empty, save perhaps for the flamens if the town held a temple.l3 These towns were the site of what trade in Slavia we are able to discover.

Oddly enough, it is in economics, where we possess almost no sources of any type, that we find the outlines of internal development. The Wends present a picture, probably falsely, of a culture completely static, except in their economic history. The Wends were initially nomads who settled down in the seventh and eighth centuries to pastoral farming in Slavia. Their trade flourished as Viking trade flourished, then appeared to fall off as the Viking trade fell.l4 Towards the end of the eleventh century, though, the Wendish economy was certainly growing, for in the 1070's appear the first Wendish coins. 5 In the early twelfth century, Pribislav (Heinrich) in Brandenburg ruled what was obviously a very healthy economy, and other tribes also give the impression of strength.l6 The decline in the middle of the eleventh century must have occurred as the Wendish economy was re-orienting itself from a northern, Scandinavian connection, to a western, German connection. At this point, in the middle of the twelfth century, the Drang nach Osten rolled across Slavia, and a very different economic history began.

The fundamental cause of the Ostsiedlung was the existence of a surplus population in the lands west of Slavia. In the lowlands of Saxony and in Holland and Flanders there were more people than the economic system could support. As more families in the region sought land to establish themselves they found less and less land readily available. Initially these families reclaimed land by draining flooded districts. It is difficult to tell whether simple reclamation would have provided sufficient land. The economics of reclamation was not the only factor in the choices made by the families. For one thing, the colonist had to know where land was available, and in a period of poor communications this knowledge was imperfect indeed. This is why many colonization efforts were directed by institutions outside the village unit, most notably by monasteries. Monasteries had land to distribute, and they were able to advertise its availability.l7 There is evidence that the polders could not absorb the whole surplus, or at least could not absorb it fast enough, for as early as 1062 East Saxon princes were attracting Flemish settlers to the Weser River.l8 m e existence of a significant population dissatisfied with their lot, some perhaps already dispossessed, looking for good land, was a vital precondition for the Ostsiedlung.

Demographic change was not the only factor in creating a "landhungry" population. The peasants in this lowland region of Flanders, Holland, and Saxony were being "oppressed" by their lord19. This oppression consisted of the imposition of new tithes and the increase of old ones, the commutation of payment in kind into money payments, and a broad attack on traditional peasant rights.20 The oppression, a result of both feudalization and urbanization, caused a variety of reactions among the peasantry, one of which was flight.21 The oppression of the peasants by the abbot of Siegburg, on the lower Rhine, "caused many to sell their patrimony and to move to foreign lands." The increasingly unfavorable legal conditions, as well as the shortage of land, contributed toward making it even more difficult for families to recover from the common disasters of storm and famine.23

There were more causes of the Ostsiedlung than ones confined to the region west of the Elbe. The factors within the "home" region explain why families left, or were driven out, but they do not explain the direction taken by the immigrants.24 It was not merely that, by 1150, Slavia was passing under German control, but that the princes who were now beginning to control Slavia were consciously trying to attract settlers; they were making the land itself more attractive, economically and legally, to the Lowlanders than was their own land. That was the crucial factor: the attractiveness of the newly won land. Settlers in Slavia received, as a rule, twice the land they would normally hold in their native land.25 The legal and financial attractions were even stronger. Seigneurialism was less advanced in Salvia than in Germany or the Low Countries, and settlers routinely received personal freedom and had to pay only a very modest tax.26 They also often received the right to live according to their own laws, within limits. Moreover, the advanced and highly specialized skills the Lowlanders had learned in previous generations could be more profitably employed in Slavia, where there were fewer constraints.27 Finally, the rulers of Slavia from 1143 on advertised the availability of land in Slavia very heavily in the West. mis advertising developed into organizing the colonial expeditions, and then into the thirteenth century institution of the locatores, who first appear in the late twelfth century.28 The many advantages available in Slavia would have had little effect without this concentrated effort on the part of lay and ecclesiastical rulers to send letters and messengers west to attract and organize those who wished to leave their homeland.

The desire of the princes to bring in settlers marks an important psychological change. The commercial revolution that was in full swing by 1100 was not solely an urban phenomenon. One of the many significant changes was the "commercialization" of the nobility. The lords began to think in terms of increased production as a supplement or alternative to acquiring more land. In doing this they were at first merely trying to cope with the changing economic conditions. The most important factor with which they had to deal was the gradual re-emergence of a money economy in the West, which caused the lords to begin converting payments in kind into money payments and to demand higher payments in order to aell the surplus.29 The nobility was trying to live as it had always done, but it was finding it increasingly necessary to have cash in order to do so. For the ambitious lord, cash was indispensible, and this led him in turn to try to exploit every source of wealth he could. As nobles began to realize the advantages to be had from the great economic growth in the north of Europe, they began to try to master it and tap its enormous potential.3 Once the association was made between the needs of the peasants and the ambitions of the eastern princes, the Ostsiedlung became a powerful force in driving back the frontier - one that would not stop until the European economy had slowed its rate of growth.

The Church played as great or greater a role than lay rulers in the ~ . Bishops controlled huge tracts of land in Slavia, freely using it to attract settlers who would both increase church revenues and provide a population for the priests that was predominately Christian. The greatest exploiters of land, however, and the groups that brought in more settlers than any others, were the reform monastic orders of Citeaux and Pre'montre'.31 The great aim of both orders originally was freedom from all lay overlordship.32 This led the monks to depend solely on the direct exploitation of the land by the monastery.33 The monks sought out uninhabited land deliberately, which made them the perfect instrument for colonizing Slavia, and they were used thus by bishops and lay rulers. The ideal of the monks themselves farming the land gave way very quickly to a system whereby lay brothers performed most of the -work, Since the land was uninhabited, the lay brothers had to be brought in from outside; the many documents recording this transaction show unmistakably how often this was done.34

The Ostsiedlung, as can be seen from the foregoing, was essentially an economic movement. The motives of the participants could be political, religious, or personal, but the economic factor was the driving force and gave to the colonizing movement its peculiar form. This is why the colonization across the Elbe that took place before 1100 should not be called a "drive." Settlement was too sporadic, too fragile, and had little aggressive motivation.35 After the watershed events of the late eleventh century, colonization was informed throughout by a single motive that underlay all others. The change, like the change in conquest and in conversion methods, began in the eleventh century in the lands west, not east, of the Elbe. It was there that a colonizing movement began with specifically economic aims, the Dnnensis lun~. This was the great clearing effort, that had begun even before 1000, but which in the eleventh century became a fully developed movement that would last for centuries. This activity began to move east in the middle of the eleventh century. It is fitting that the document generally recognized as the earliest evidence of the Ostsiedlung is connected with Archbishop Adalbert of Hamburg-Bremen, that man of seemingly boundless ambition, whose desire for power and wealth led him to plant "gardens and vineyards on arid land."3 His foundation of Dutch on the uncultivated lands along the Weser found no immediate successors, for the Wendish revolt of 1066 closed off any prospect of colonizing Slavia for more than a generation.37 The next record of a colonial foundation dates from the year 1106, and documents become steadily more abundant thereafter.38

The appeal of 1108 called for the Christian princes and knights to "liberate" Slavia and to "win the best land for inhabiting."39 As we have seen, this was the first time Slavia itself was viewed as a place worth possessing and actually inhabiting. This is significant mainly as an indication of the changing perception of Slavia, for no reference is made to the possibility of peasants settling these lands; only the nobility Has addressed. Forces were gathering west of the Elbe: economic, social, legal, religious, demographic, and political forces; but as yet there were few colonists who had actually crossed the Elbe River.

The flood-gates opened in 1143, after the literal devastation of Wagria had left the area "without inhabitants." Of all the documents relating to the Drive to the East, this passage in Helmhold has been the most often cited. It bears repeating here, nevertheless, for it illustrates a number of characteristics typical of the Ostsiedlung. Because there were no people in Wagria, said Helmhold, Count Adolf of Holstein "sent messengers into all parts, namely, to Flander and Holland, to Utrecht, Westphalia and Frisia. . . ." The message was given to whosoever were in straits for lack of fields." He invited these people to "come with their families and receive very good land. . . ." Adolf gave the best and safest land to his own people, the Holsatians and Sturmarians, "since they had won it by force of arms." He divided Wagria into districts, giving one to his own people, another to the Frisians, another to the Westphalians, and another to the Hollanders. The up-country, around Plon, remained uninhabited, and the northern coast he gave to the Wends who had remained in Wagria. Later he built Lübeck, upriver from the Wendish Alt-Lübeck, making an alliance with his Oboirite neighbor Niclot.

These measures have always struck historians with their orderliness. All, or nearly all, the elements of the Ostsiedlung were present here. The land was won by the sword and the natives were either exiled or driven off, leaving only remnants. A neighboring German prince annexed the land, but quickly found that it brought him no profit. Had Adolf not acted to settle Wiagria, its forests would likely have soon filled up with Wendish robbers, necessitating another expedition. That had been the pattern before now, but with Adolf a historic step was taken and colonists were brought in. "All parts," interestingly, extended no further south than Westphalia and no further west than Flanders. Since the Flemings were not mentioned in the settlement, apparently the westernmost respondents were Hollanders. Each of these peoples were settled on lands geographically similar to their homelands, on lands where the colonists could make full use of their technical skill. Moreover, each people was given land separate from the others, allowing true communities to develop. The Wends were given their own land too; poor land, land no one else wanted, and land separate from everyone else. It is worth noting that the tide of colonists was not yet a flood: the Flemings did not respond to Adolf's invitation, and there were not enough settlers to fill even Wagria, a district no more than seventy kilometers long by forty wide. The settling of Wagria was a major innovation because of the highly organized and thorough means by which it was accomplished. It proved its worth four years later when Niclot ravaged the land and its inhabitants remained loyal to Adolf.

The Wendish Crusade also drove Wends off the land, especially in Brandenburg. The sources do not state this fact, but it is observable from documents that appear after 1147 referring to lands that had once been cultivated by Slavs but were now empty.41 By the 1150's there begins to appear evidence that the Ostsiedlung itself was driving back the Wends. Around 1157 Count Adolf of Holstein rebuilt the stronghold of Plon, evidently intending to revivify this last uncultivated district of Wagria. Probably because of this settlement, the Wagiri, who a little over a decade before had been given the district to the northwest as their own, were driven out. This was the occasion of another of Helmhold's oft-quoted lines: "The Slavs who lived in the villages round about withdrew and Saxons came and dwelt there; and the Slavs little by little failed in the land."42

The words apply only to a very small district, but the historical process they describe was in force throughout the Wendenland. Albert the Bear inherited Brandenburg in 1157, and two years later helped secure his control by bringing in large numbers of colonists who had experience with draining land.43 Margrave Albert "had them live in the strongholds and villages of the Slavs." This meant that here, too, the natives had been driven out. Before they could return, Albert settled Germans in the Wendish towns and villages, effectively removing control of the land from Wendish hands.

In the 1160's it was Henry the Lion who figured most prominently in the Drive to the East. Quelling rebellions in 1160 and 1164 he brought a large number of German settlers into Mecklenburg.45 The fall of Duke Henry from power in 1181 marks a convenient terminus to the Ostsiedlung in Slavia.

To be sure, the process was not yet complete. The Drive rolled on eastward, across the Oder River, across the Vistula River, and there was still much work left in Slavia itself, but in the 1180's there was a noticeable falling off of settlers. This was due in part the Henry the Lion's fall and the subsequent re-allocation of political power in Slavia and Saxony. It was due in part to the increasing prosperity of the Low Countries, whose cities were demanding more And more labor. The better lands had been taken, so the attractiveness of emigration was diminishing.46 Mostly, though, the tide of settlers was seeping past Slavia and into Prussia and Livonia. Slavia was becoming more a source of immigrants than itself an immigrant's destination. The character of the movement was changing too, from a mostly rural to a heavily urban phenomenon.

As we have seen, the fiends had been engaged in trade for centuries, but primarily in trade associated with arms and plunder, and primarily with the Northmen. In the twelfth century a new development began in which German merchants were entering Slavia, establishing trading centers attached to the cities being built by the conquering princes, and seeking to exploit a very different kind of trade, one that was based on fish, furs, and grain.47 There is no doubt that a shift in trade patterns was involved here. It can be seen in the decline of Hedeby and the rise of Schleswig. It can be seen even better in the decline of Alt-Lubeck and the rise of Lubeck. Alt-Lübeck had been a major Wendish town. It served as the capital for Gottschalk and his descendants. It served as a vital center for Christian missionary activity in Wagria.49 It was a major military objective in times of war.50 It was also an important commercial center.51 Yet, once Lübeck was built by Count Adolf, a few kilometers up the Trave River, Alt-Lübeck was never able to recover. The market at Lübeck was banned by Duke Henry around 1153, because it was drawing business away from his own town of Bardowiek.52 Henry then built a new city, Lowenstadt, specifically to succeed Lübeck. In 1157 the city was destroyed by fire. Yet, even after these setbacks to Lübeck, Alt-Lübeck was unable to flourish. The merchants of Lübeck still refused to go elsewhere. The fire, however, did finally break Count Adolf's resistance, and he gave over the market and fortress of Lübeck to Henry in return for considerable concessione.53 This was a most portentious transaction, for under Henry's care (he gave the town a mint, tolls, rights, and offered "peace" there to the merchants of Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Russia), Lubeck grew rapidly, founding several other towns in its turn. By the 1190's, after Lubeck became an imperial city in 1188, Slavia was becoming dominated by its cities.54

The effects of the Ostsiedlung were not uniform, even within Slavia. Holstein and Brandenburg were the two Wendish districts that were the most completely Germanized. Ih both of these districts the natives were consciously driven out and replaced by Germans. In Mecklenburg that process was begun, but was reversed in 1170 when Duke Henry made Pribislav Prince of Mecklenburg.55 In Pomerania the process, despite concerted attempts by Danes and Poles to take it over, remained in Pomeranian hands. Vorpammern eventually passed under German control, but the case of Pomerellia resembles more the pattern of Poland than it does that of Slavia. There the ruling family converted to Christianity before the Q iedlung began and, despite pagan reactions among the people, was able to Christianize its country sufficiently to preserve a separate identity politically. Germanization in Pomerania, though more complete than in Mecklenburg, came later, in the thirteenth century.

Of the three basic forms of the Drive to the East, colonization and settlement had the most far-reaching effects. It was the ostsiedlung that gave the Drive to the East a different character after 1100 than it had had before. The presence of German settlers ensured the success of gains won by the sword or the cross. German colonies meant greatly increased profits for the lords of the land, and a population that was less likely to rebel. The greatest effects of colonization, though, were on the Wends themselves.

The first effect was negative. The Ostsiedlung did not mean the death of the Wends, but it did spell the end of their culture. To what extent Wendish culture was destroyed would require a more careful description of exactly what comprised "Wendish" culture and a study of the folklore of the Wends who did survive into modern times in the countryside of Mecklenburg. The presence of large numbers of German villages guarded by German swords close by, thoroughly disrupted the Wendish economy. The Wends could not raid the German villages, for the price was now too high. They could raid the Danes, but only the coastal Wends could profit there, and even this became risky with the accession of King Waldemar I. As farmers the Wends could not compete successfully without adopting German settlement and farming techniques, and living according to German laws, all of which meant abandoning their traditionally decentralized way of life.56 Wendish culture was pagan, and the proximity of Germans probably forced p~gan practices underground, for it was more and more difficult to worship at groves or springs undiscovered or to keep temples and shrines from being detected and destroyed. The only place where Wendish culture survived to any appreciable extent, Mecklenburg, was an area passed over by most German settlers.57

The other effect was positive. Even as the Ostsiedlung was undercutting the culture of the Wends, it was creating an alternative so that they did not have to die along with their culture. It was the Ostsiedlung that Germanized the Wends. Recent place-name and archeological research has indicate! that the German occupation of Slavia was a very complex process, and was one in which the wends themselves played an important part. Even in Brandenburg, one day to be the very heart of Germany, it appears that Wends survived in appreciable numbers, though all trace of their culture was lost.58

The Wends did not simply "fail in the land," as Helmhold put it. Archeological evidenoe shows that they were founding villages throughout the Middle Ages, and that the Germans noraally did not force Wends out and take over their villages, but rather they moved in next to or among the natives, being successors to instead of replacements of the Wends.59

The presence of German communities offered a sociological opportunity for Wends to deviate from the tribal customs so they could receive support and approval from the Germans for their actions. The consequences of turning to Christian ways in a pagan environment were severe; radical changes require some kind of support to succeed.60 It is also possible that imitating the Germans was a means of social or economic advancement, since both prestige and profit could be found among the Germans. Surely, if Slavic leaders found it worthwhile to copy German ways, we can hypothesize that lesser families and individuals did likewise. This question of assimilation has not, as far as I have been able to determine, been addressed by researchers. Investigation of it should shed light not only on the history of Slavia, but also on the larger and hotly debated question of German-Slav relations in other times and places.


1. Dickinson, p. 615.

 2. Dickinson, pp. 217-18.

 3. Dickinson, pp. 604 and 615.

 4. Johannes Gehrmann, "Die mittelalterliche Besiedlung des Teltows zwischen 1150 und 1300. Eine Bestandsaufnahme der archaologischen Forschungsergebnisse," JGMO 24 (1975): 1-59, pp. 11-14.

5. Herbord, II, 10, p. 60.

6. The Altmark is dominated by geest, and this district remained inhabited by Wends throughout the Middle Ages. Dickinson, p. 479.

7. Hermann Aubin, "The Lands East of the Elbe and German Colonization Eastwards," CEH I: 449-86, pp. 450-51. See also Dickinson, pp. 140-41.

8. Thompson, Feudal Germany, p. 465.

9. Helmhold gives farming, fishing, and hunting as the basic modes of production among the Wends: Helmhold, I, 83(82), p. 160.

10. See above, p. 29, and n. 42.

11. Duby, Early Growth, p. 126.

12. Duby, Early Growth, pp. 234-35.

13. Palm, pp. 59 and 103. Saxo gives a description of Arkona which may be taken as typical: ". . . munimentum quidem habitatore vacuum serarumque duntaxat claustris firmatum, existimantibus indigenis, parum humanae tutelae egenum, quod presentis numinis excubiis esset vallatum." Saxo, XIV, 742.

14. Thompson, Feudal Germany, p. 535.

15. Duby, Early Growth, p. 129.

 16. Kahl, Slawen und Deutsche, pp. 191-93.

 17. Thompson, "Cistercians," pp. 75-77.

 18. Thompson, "Dutch and Flemish Colonization," p. 171.

 19. The districts most directly involved were Frisia and Westphalia.

 20. This change was often sought by the peasant, but it still put new pressures on traditional modes of production. See Thompson, Feudal Germany, p. 548 and Duby, Early Growth, p. 225.

21. Siegfried Epperlein, Bauernbedruckung und Bauernwiderstand im hohen Mittelalter (Berlin: 1900), pp. 55-57.

22. ". . . multos vendere patrimonium et ad peregrinas migrare terras compulit." Quoted in Richa m Koebuer, "The Settlement and Colonization of Europe," CHM I: 1-91, p. 81.

23. Sigebert, Sigeberti Gemblacensis Chronographia. Continuatio Gemblacensls, an. 11 , ed. Ludwig C. Bethmann, MGH, SS 6 (Hannover: 18~40, p. 388. Annales Egnundani, an. 1177 ed. Johann M. Lappenberg, _ , SS 16 (Hannover: 1859), p. 463.

24. Despite their excellent work, these are the factors to which even some very recent analyses are limited. See Klaus Zernack, "Zusammenfassung: Die hochmittelalterliche Kolonisation in Ostmitteleuropa und ihre Stellung in der europaischen Geschichte," Die deutsche Ostsiedlung, ed. Schlesinger: 784-804, pp. 792-93.

25. Kuhn, Untersuchungen, p. 109.

26. Bryce Lyon, "Medieval Real Estate Developments and Freedom," American Historical Review 63 (1957-58): 47-61, pp. 57 and 61.

27. Stanislaw Trawkowski, "Die Rolle der deutschen Dorfkolonisation und des deutschen Rechtes in Polen im 13. Jahrhundert," Die deutsche Ostsiedlung, ed. Schlesinger: 349-68, pp. 356-57.

28. See, for example, the description in a document from 1188 in Helbig and deinrich, No. 28, pp. 132-34. This was an early form of the locator; his rights and duties were not yet defined in writing, and the word locator was not used.

29. This was a complicated and varied development. For a general discus,ion see Duby, Early Growth, Ch. 8 "Lords"--particularly pp. 211-13, 216-19, 224-27, and 232-34.

30. Duby, Early Growth, pp. 248 and 252-53.

31. Thompson, Feudal Germany, pp. 554 and 572.

32. This desire was expressed in many documents granting monastic lands in Slavia. A detailed, but typical, example can be found in Helbig and Weinrich' No. 39, pp. 176 and 178.

33. The following is drawn from Duby, Early Growth, pp. 219~21 and from Thompson, Feudal Germany, pp. 5 70.

34. See Helbig and Weinrich, Nos. 21, 31, 45, 71, pp. 104, 142, 196, 288 for examples.

35. The settlement connected with the burg erected by Henry the Fowler at Merseburg is an example of the limited, military nature of the colonies prior to 1100. ~ee .T. RRR1R~ ~_~_~

36. Adam, III, 37(36), p. 180. Also, Adam 36(35)-39(38), pp. 178-83.

37. Thompson, "Dutch and Flemish Colonization," p. 171.

 38. Kotzschke, No. 2, pp. 6-9; Helbig and Weinrich, No. 1, p. 11.

 39. Helbig and Weinrich, No. 21, p. 104.

 40. Helmhold, I, 58, p. 113.

 41. For example, Helbig and Weinrich, Nos. 30 and 31, pp. 136-38 and 142, for the years 1149 and 1150 respectively.

42. Helmhold, I, 58, p. 113.

43. ". . . those . . . who live by the ocean and suffer the violence of the sea . . . received all the swamp and open country." Helmhold, 89(88), p. 174, Tschan, trans., Helmhold, p. 235.

44. This was a piecemeal process, not one accomplished at a single stroke. See Helbig and Weinrich, No. 16, p. 86, a typical grant.

45. "Hundreds" says Thompson, "Dutch and Flemish Colonization," p. 178; "a multitude" says Helmhold, I, 88(87), p. 173. The settling of Mecklenburg was largely completed after 1164. See Helmhold, I, 92(91), p. 181.

46. Thompson, "Dutch and Flemish Colonization," p. 178.

47. Around 1170, German merchants were frequenting Rügen "on account of the fish catch." Helmhold, II, 108(12), p. 213.

48. Helmhold, I, 41 and 48, pp. 86 and 94.

49. Helmhold, I, 46, 49, and 54, pp. 91, 97, and 106.

50. Helmhold, I, 53 and 55, pp. 104 and 108.

51. Helmhold, I, 48 and 57, pp. 94 and 111.

52. Helmhold, I, 76, p. 144.

53. Helmhold, I, 86(85), p. 169.

54. Barraclough, origins, p. 265.

 55. See, for instance, Helmhold, I, 88(87), p. 173.

 56. Kuhn, Untersuchungen, p. 110.

 57. Helmhold, II, 110(14), p. 218.

 58. Jürgen Prinz, "Betrachtungen zum Verhaltnis des slawischen und deutschen Elements zur Zeit der deutschen Kolonisation Brandenburgs anhand des Namenmaterials," JGMO 20 (1971)s 1-39,

59. Gehrmann, pp. 11-14, 19, and 21.

60. See the incident related in Translatio Godehardi episcopi Hildesheimensis, an. 1131, ed. George H. Pertz, MGH, SS 12 ~Hannover: 1856), p. 648.

By E.L. Skip Knox



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