Charles IV: Life and Death

By: LibertinaGrim via Wikimedia Commons. License at: https://prg.rocks/3l64anQ

The history of the Czech Republic can take pride in many famous names. Today, we decided to take a close look at one of the most phenomenal people in the history of the Czech Republic, Karel IV ( Charles IV). 

Karel IV was born on the 14th of May in 1316 and became a member of the House of Luxembourg (father’s side) and the Czech House of Přemyslid (mother’s side). His dad was the King John of Bohemia and his mother was the Elizabeth of Bohemia. Originally, Karel was named Wenceslaus (Vacláv) after his grandfather (King Wenceslaus II). However, he decided to honor his uncle instead (King Charles IV of France). Charles had spent approximately 7 years at his court and was very attached to his uncle.

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As for the educational aspect, Karel IV was successful in everything he was learning and studying. He received French education, was taught by personal tutors, and was fluent in the following languages: Latin, German, Czech, French, and Italian. Today, he is considered one of the smartest and most educated historical personalities. During his stay in France, Charles IV made a couple of friends – one of them was Pope Clement VI.

In 1331, his father, King John of the Bohemia, taught him the basics of warfare during their time in Italy. Two years later, in 1333, Charles IV went to Lucca, the region of Tuscany, to rule there. To save and protect Lucca from enemies, he built the fortress nearby – Montecarlo. In 1333, Karel IV decided to return to Bohemia where he started to administrate the lands of the Bohemian Crown as his father was absent most of the time. Charles IV served as Margrave of Moravia and did it incredibly well. In 1344, Charles IV received the title of the Archbishop of Prague, removing the Czech State from under the Archbishop of Mainz. 

Unfortunately, on the 26th of August in 1346, King John of the Bohemia died at the battle at Crécy. This sequence of events led to the coronation of Karel IV, the oldest son in the family. He inherited the county of Luxemburg from his beloved father and became the first king of the Kingdom of  Bohemia on the 2nd of September, 1347. The ruler had dispatched the St. Wenceslas Crown, which became symbolic of the influence of the King of Bohemia. The new “Crowning Ceremony” was established in the church of Our Lady of the Snows. 

Karel IV  picked Prague as his capital living arrangement, making the Czech State the primary force base of the Luxembourgs. In contrast with the regular strategy of the time, he didn’t depend on expansionist military force, but on tact and conciliatory marriage. This, to a limited extent, lies behind the four relationships that Charles IV had over his lifetime. His first three wives died at a young age, but the fourth one gave birth to 12 children.  Elizabeth of Pomerania, his last, fourth spouse, was the staunchest ally of her better half and the mother of different heirs to the seat, one of whom was Sigismund of Luxembourg.

In April of 1355, Charles received his Imperial crowning liturgy in Rome, which officially instated him as the head of Christendom. The political race and the illustrious crowning rituals accompanied huge obligations.

The establishment of the Charles University in Prague, the first university in central Europe, on 7th of April 1348, was the following stage of the ruler gigantically reinforcing the power of the Church, and the City’s criticalness, bringing as it did the chance to explore the Czech Kingdom, more by and large, toward the ‘North of the Alps’ locale.

In 1355-56, Charles IV declared his Golden Bull, which became the new Constitution of the Empire. It administered the relations between the Empire and the Czech Kingdom. Charles IV passed away at 62 years old, on 29th November in 1378. 

Sofia Chesnokova

Sofia Chesnokova

Passionate about digital marketing, copywriting, and Prague!
Sofia Chesnokova
Sofia Chesnokova

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Passionate about digital marketing, copywriting, and Prague!