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MATTHIAS


67


MATTHIAS


Buda, his uncle Michael Szildgyi at the same time be- ing appointed governor for five years. Matthias soon freed himself, however, from the regency of Szildgyi, ami took the reins of government into his own hands. At the very beginning of his reign he had to contend with a movement among discontented Hungarians, who offered the crown to the Emperor Frederick III, who had assumed the title of King of Hungary. The quarrel with I'rederick lasted till 1462, when an agree- ment was made by which, among other things, it was settled that if .Matthias should die without leaving an heir, Frederick would be authorized to bear the title of King of Hungary as long as he lived. At the same time Fred(M-ick adopted Matthias as his son, and pledged himself to deliver up the Hungarian crown which he hatl in his possession. The treaty was con- firmed by the Hun- garian Reichstag and Matthias was crowned king in

1463. Not long before he had married Catha- rine, the daugh- ter of t h f Bohemian king Podiebrad, who, however, died at the beginning of

1464. Relations with the Em- peror Frederick again became strained; politi- cal conditions and, in particu- lar, the question of the Bohemian crown, affected them considera- bly. The friction between the Holy

See and King Podiebrad led to the deposition of the lat- ter, and Matthias was now called upon by the pope to take up arms against the deposed king. In 146S came the Bohemian expedition of Matthias, elected king by the Catholics of Bohemia. The war continued till the death of Podieljrad in 1471, when the Bohemians, de- feating Matthias, chose Wladislaw, son of Casimir, King of Polanil, as king. The years up to 1474 were marked by indecisive battles with the Bohemian king and with the Emperor Frederick. An armistice caused a brief cessation of hostilities, but from 1476 relations with the Emperor Frederick grew continu- ally more strained. In 1477 Matthias, invading Aus- tria, besieged Vienna. Peace was effected between Matthias and Frederick by the intervention of the papal legate in 1477, but war soon broke out again, and in 1485 Matthias took Vienna. In the war with the Emperor Frederick, Matthias had in view the Ro- man crown. In this connexion he was led not merely by the aim of securing for Hungary a leading position in the West of Europe, but also by the design to unite the powers of Europe in a crusade against the Turks. He was obliged, however, to abandon this scheme. Equally fruitless was the plan of a crusade against the Turks; nevertheless he managed to fix a limit to the advance of the Turks, and to .strengthen the suprem- acy of Hungary over Bosnia. In 1463 Bosnia fell again into the "hands of the Turks. The victory of Matthias over the Turks in Servia, Bosnia, and Tran- sylvania resulted in 1483 in a truce with the Sul- tan Bajazet. Matthias's relations with the Catholic Church were good till the year 1471; but the second part of his reign was marked by a series of most serious i)lunders and acts of violence. In spite of legal enact- nients, he gave bishoprics to foreigners, and rewarded


King of Hungiiry, 1458-1490


political services with gifts of church property, which he dealt with as though it were the property of the state His relations with the Holy See were at first ilecidedly cordial, but later there was danger of a rup- ture, which was happily avoided. Under Matthias the humanities made their entry into Hungary. His li- brary in Buda, the Bibliotheca Coririniana, wins just admiration even to-day by virtue of the remnants of it scattered over Europe. During his reign the first printing press in Hungary was established, that at Buda, the first known production of which is the ' • Chronicle of Buda ", printed in 1473. The arts, too, found in Matthias a generous Maecenas. Matthias in- troduced reforms in the army, in finance, and in the adininistration of the courts and the law. The reor- ganization of military affairs was based on the princi- ple of a standing army. With this body, the so-called black troops, he defeated the Turks and the Hussite troops of Giskra, which were laying waste Upper Hun- gary. In financial affairs, a reform in the mode of taxation was introduced, while his enactments in judi- cial affairs earned for him among the people the title of "The Just". In 1476 he married Beatrice, the daughter of the King of Naples, but the union was childless. His exertions to secure the throne for his illegitimate son, Johann Corvinus, were rendered fu- tile by the opposition of Hungary and the plotting of Beatrice. Matthias was buried at Sz6kes-Feh(5rvdr (Stuhlweissenburg) .

Teleki, a Humjadiiak kora Magyarorszugon (Pesth, 1852), in Hungariaa: i. e. The Age of the Hunyadys in Hungary, 9 vols.; Cs\N~i, Maaiiarorstdgturtineti fvldrajza a Hunyadyak kordban (Budapest, 1890), i. e. The Historical Geography of Hungary in the Age of the Hunyadys, 3 vols, have appeared; FnAKNiJi, A Hunyadyak es Jagellok kora 1440-56 (Budapest, 1896), Hungarian : i. e. The Age of the Hunyadys and Jagellons; Idem, Mathias Corvinus, Konig von Ungarn (Freiburg im Br., 1891). For infonnatioa aa to church conditions in Hungary see the bibliosraphy of HnNG.\Ry. For JIatthias's relations with the Holy See, see the Latin introduction to Monumcnta Vaticana Hungarica: Mathiw Corvini Hungarice regis epistolte ad Romanos pontifices dates et ab eis acceptw (Budapest, 1891). For the foreign politics of Matthias see Monumenta Hungarim His- torica. Acta extern, 1458-90 (Budapest. 1875); Mdtyds Kirdly levelei KiitSgyi osztdly (Budapest, 1893-95), i. e. Letters of Kin^ Matthias, foreign section. 2 vols. For information con- cerning Joannes Corvinus see .Schonherr, Corvin Jdnos (Buda- pest, 1894): concerning IJueea Beatrice see Berzeviczy, Beatrix kirdlyne (Budapest, 1908).

A. AldXsy.

Matthias of Neuburg or Neoenburg (Neobur- GENSis), chronicler, b. towards the close of the thir- teenth century, possil)ly at Neuburg, in Baden; d. between 1364 and 1370, probably at Strasburg, in Alsace. He studied jurisprudence at Bologna, and later received minor orders, but never became a priest. In 1327 we meet him as solicitor of the episcopal court at Basle, and shortly after, while clerk to Bishop Berthold von Buchecke, holding a similar jiosilion in Strasburg. At present he is generally considered the author of a Latin chronicle from 124;; to 13.')(), and of its first continuation from 13.50 to l:i5.5. Later, three other writers carried on the work to 1368, 1374, and 1:^78 respectively. It is an important contribution to Als:ili:in ;ni(l Ibibslmrg hi.story and for the times in which .Matthias lived; indeed, the part covering the [leriod between lliKi and 13,50 is one of the best au- thorities, not only for the history of his own country, but for that of the entire empire. It has been attrilj- uted to different writers, among them to the Speyer notary, Jacob of Mainz (cf. Wichert, "Jacob von Mainz", Konigsberg, 1S81), also to Albert of Stras- burg, especially by earlier editors, while those of later times attribute it to Matthias of Neuburg. For the voluminous literature on this controversy see Potthast, "Bibliotheca Kin. Med. ^vi." (Berlin, 1896). Among the editions may be mentioned: "Alberti Argentinensis Chronici fragmentum", an appendix to (^^uspinian's work " De consulibus Roman- orum commentarii" (Basle, l.ISS), 667-710, very much abridged; G. Studer, "Matthiae Neoburgensis