Libor Jan

The beginnings of tournaments in Bohemia and their development at the time of Václav II


The article deals with the development of jousts in Bohemia from the first half of the 13th century to the end of the rule of Václav II (1305). The jousts probably started to spread widely at the time of Václav I (1230-1253), but certainly not because of one person only, viz. the German knight Ojíř von Friedberg, as the so-called Dalimil Chronicle suggests. Czech and Moravian nobles could meet with joust in the form of joust during Ulrich von Liechtensteins visits in 1227 and 1240. As the formulary collection in Lao shows, Moravian nobles (e.g. Milota from Dědice) visited jousts in Austria in the beginning of the 1260ies. At the time of Václav II, joust took place at his wedding ceremony in Jihlava (1278), in the conquered episcopal town of Nisa (1284), in connection with the king’s knighting ceremony by Opolí (1292), his coronation as a king of Bohemia (1297, Prague) and Poland (1300, Hnězdno), and the coronation of Elizabeth Rejčka in Žitava (1303). On these occasions buhurt, a less dangerous form of contest, was preferred. Althought Václav II did not participate in the jousts, he was their prominent organizer and donator. The article also elaborates the knights equipment against the background of iconographic and literary material (John of Michalovice, Alexandreis).