Rulers of Lithuania – The Duchy

Historical Lithuania


Lithuania has a proud heritage and history, a well documented list of rulers back to the 1230’s, and castles which dot the landscape. We are a proud people with
– involvement in defense against the crusades and invasions,
– civil war,
– a history of occupation and
– one of being the largest state in Europe for centuries.
We present historical collections of Rulers, castles, and some historical perspective.

Rulers of Lithuania

Assembled from Wikipedia
This is an aggregation of information about the rulers over Lithuania – heads of authority over historical Lithuanian territory as a sovereign entity or legitimately part of a greater sovereign entity. Alternations in Lithuanian, Ruthenian (later Belarusian) and Polish are included.
Lithuania as a state was formed in the 1230s, when threatened by the Livonian Order in the north and the Teutonic Knights in the west and south. Baltic tribes united under Mindaugas leadership, and he became the only crowned king of Lithuania. His state became known as Grand Duchy of Lithuania. After Grand Duke Jogaila became also king of Poland in 1386, the two states became closer connected and since 1440 both were ruled by a common ruler. In 1569 Union of Lublin was signed and a new entity—the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth—emerged. The commonwealth was partitioned in 1795 and Lithuania became part of the Russian Empire until 16 Feb 1918.
The first republic of Lithuania existed until 1940 when it was occupied by the Soviet Union and then by Nazi Germany. In 1944, Russia re-occupied Lithuania and established the Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic. On 11 March 1990, Lithuania became the first Soviet republic to declare independence. The restored Republic of Lithuania is a democratic republic, a member of both the European Union and NATO.
Livonian Order
Baltic tribes

Covered in separate articles are Lithuania Rivers & Castles (referred to in this article) and

Rulers is broken into three parts- “Rulers- Grand Duchy of Lithuania (1236–1569),”  “Rulers 1569 to 1918.” and “Rulers 1569 on”.

Grand Duchy of Lithuania(1236–1569)
House of Mindaugas (1236–1285)
House of Gediminas (1285–1440)
House of Jagiellon (1440–1569)

  Algimantas and Ryngold

Lithuanian Coat Of Arms

Ryngold or Rimgaudas was a mythological Grand Duke of Lithuania from the Palemonids legends and father of Mindaugas, the first King of Lithuania (1251–1263). Ryngold, son of otherwise unknown Algimantas, is first mentioned in the second redaction of the Lithuanian Chronicle written c. 1515 and has no historical basis.
In the chronicle Ryngold returned to Navahrudak after a victorious battle with Mongols on the bank of the Neman River at Mohilna near Minsk. This battle could have some historical basis as Mongols did invade Lithuania, but it happened in late 1230s and early 1240s.
However, factually at the time, Mindaugas already had supreme power in Lithuania. The legendary account claimed that Ryngold fathered three sons. He left Navharudak to one of his sons, Vaišvilkas. However, it is known from reliable contemporary sources that Vaišvilkas was son of Mindaugas.
Therefore the third redaction of the Lithuanian Chronicle, or the Bychowiec Chronicle, made Ryngold father of Mindaugas to correct this clear contradiction. This legendary version was popularized by Maciej Stryjkowski and other medieval historians, and it still survives to this day. There is nothing known about Mindaugas’ father from reliable sources. The Livonian Rhymed Chronicle, a contemporary source, just mentions that Ryngold was a powerful duke, but does not provide his name.  



Grand Duchy of Lithuania (1236–1569)  Main article: Grand Duchy of Lithuania
Title: Grand Duke (Lithuanian: didysis kunigaikštis; Belarusian: vialiki kniaź; Polish: wielki książę) (Mindaugas was the only King of Lithuania (Lithuanian: Lietuvos karalius).)

I. House of Mindaugas (1236–1285)   Tree included in Article:

Dates are approximate because of scant written sources.

1. Grand Duke Mindaugas



Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania (1236–1251)
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1251–1263 (27 years)
Predecessor: Unknown    Successor: Treniota
Coronation: 6 July 1253
Dynasty: House of Mindaugas
Spouse: anonymous or unnamed person, sister of Morta, Morta
Children: anonymous or unnamed daughter, Vaišvilkas, Ruklys, Rupeikis
Father:   ? Ryngold       Mother:
Born: ca. 1203
Died: Fall 1263 [assassinated by pagan nephew- Treniota]
Remarks: Initially Grand Duke, since 1253 King of Lithuania. After he was killed by his nephew Treniota, a war between nobles for power erupted.
Mindaugas (ca. 1203 – fall 1263) was the first known Grand Duke of Lithuania and the only King of Lithuania.
Despite Mindaugas’s conversion to Christianity, the Teutonic Knights regularly made incursions in Lithuanian territory.

2. Grand Duke Treniota



Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1263–1265 (2 years)
Predecessor: Mindaugas   Successor:  Vaišvilkas
Dynasty: House of Mindaugas

Remarks: Treniota (Belarusian: Транята; Troniata; ca. 1210–1264) was the Grand Duke of Lithuania (1263–1264).
Treniota was the nephew of Mindaugas. While Mindaugas had converted to Christianity in order to discourage Livonian Order and Teutonic Knights attacks on Lithuania, becoming king in the process, Treniota remained a staunch pagan. It is believed that Treniota was trusted to rule Samogitia.
Despite Mindaugas’s conversion, the Teutonic Knights regularly made incursions in Lithuanian territory. After the Battle of Durbe in 1260, Treniota convinced Mindaugas to relapse from Christianity and attack the Teutonic Order, though the attack was ineffective and the Teutonic Knights were barely weakened. Mindaugas began to question his alliance with Treniota. However, before he was able act against his pagan nephew, Treniota together with Daumantas assassinated Mindaugas and two of his sons in 1263. Treniota usurped the throne and reverted the nation back to paganism. However, he only ruled for a year before being deposed by Vaišvilkas, the younger son of Mindaugas.

3. Grand Duke Vaišvilkas

Vaišelga or Vaišvilkas
Vaišelga or Vaišvilkas

Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania (1265–1268)
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1265–1268 (3 years)
Predecessor: Treniota   Successor:  Sgvarn
Dynasty: House of Mindaugas
Father: Daniel of Halych-Volhynia           Mother: Unknown
Died: killed on 9 Dec 1268 by Shvarn’s brother, Leo I of Halych Assumption Church in Volodymyr-Volynskyi
Remarks: Son of Mindaugas, voluntarily gave up the throne for the benefit of his brother-in-law Shvarn
Vaišelga or Vaišvilkas (also spelled as Vojszalak, Vojšalk, Vaišalgas,) was the Grand Duke of Lithuania (1264–1267). He was son of Mindaugas.
Vaišvilkas, in 1254, made a treaty, in the name of his father King Mindaugas, with Daniel of Halych-Volhynia transferring territory to Lithuania. Vaišvilkas was appointed as duke of some of these lands. After Vaišvilkas was baptized in Greek Orthodox rite in 1267, he was drawn to the religious life so much that he transferred his title and lands to Roman Danylovich, son of Daniel of Halych. He founded a monastery, traditionally identified with Lavrashev Monastery on the bank on the Neman River and entered it as a monk.
In 1264, Vaišvilkas allied himself with his brother-in-law Shvarn from Halych-Volhynia. They managed to take control over Black Ruthenia and Duchy of Lithuania. Vaišvilkas became the Grand Duke of Lithuania. As a Christian, he tried to maintain friendly relationship with the Teutonic Knights and the Livonian Order.

4. Grand Duke Shvarn or Shvarno
Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania (1268–1269), Duke of Halych-Volhynia
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1268–1269 (1 year)
Predecessor: Vaišvilkas   Successor:  Traidenis
Coronation:  –
Dynasty: House of Mindaugas             Royal House: House of Rurik
Spouse:  Vaišvilkas’ sister
Children: Unknown
Father:  Daniel of Galicia         Mother:  Anna of Novgorod
Born: c. 1236/1240  Halych (now Ukraine)
Died: c. 1270  Kholm (modern Chełm, Poland)
Remarks: Sgvarn was the knyaz of western parts of Galicia. An influential leader, he became involved in internal struggles of power within neighboring Grand Duchy of Lithuania and briefly (1267–1269) was the Grand Duke. He also held the town of Kholm (modern Chełm, Poland) in his domain.

5. Grand Duke Traidenis


Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania (1270–1282), Duke of Kernavė (from Aukštaitija), Duke of Halych-Volhynia
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1270–1282 (12 years)
Predecessor:  Sgvarn  Successor:  Daumantas
Coronation: –
Dynasty: House of Mindaugas

Father:  Unknown         Mother: Unknown
Died: 1282
Remarks: Traidenis (Polish: Trojden, Belarusian: Трайдзень) was the Grand Duke Lithuania from 1270 (or 1269) until 1282. He is the second most prominent, after Mindaugas, Grand Duke of Lithuania in the 13th century. His reign ended a seven-year unrest period after Mindaugas was assassinated in 1263 and firmly established the Grand Duchy as a pagan state for another hundred years. Traidenis expanded the Grand Duchy into the territories of Sudovians and Semigalians and strengthened its influence in Black Ruthenia. Unlike Mindaugas, Traidenis did not concentrate on expansion into east.
Tensions with Shvarn (#4) eventually resulted in the 1274–1276 war.
Traidenis, known for his devotion to paganism and anti-German attitude, was also successful in fighting with the Livonian Order. In 1281, Traidenis conquered Jersika Castle in the present-day Preiļi District, and was able to exchange it for Dinaburg Castle.
Traidenis is the first known Lithuanian duke to have died a natural death. All others before him were assassinated or killed in battle.

6. Grand Duke Daumantas or Dovmont
Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania (1282–1285), Duke of Nalšia
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1282–1285 (3 years)
Predecessor: Traidenis   Successor:  Butegeidis
Coronation: –
Dynasty: House of Mindaugas
Died: abt 1285
Remarks: Daumantas or Dovmont was the Grand Duke of Lithuania in 1282/1283–1285.
He is presumed to have ruled as Grand Duke a short time. It is possible that he is identical to Daumantas of Pskov, — there is a lot of uncertainty who inherited the title of Grand Duke after Traidenis’ death in 1281 or 1282.
Daumantas was succeeded by Grand Duke Butegeidis. Relationships between Daumantas and Butegeidis or between Daumantas and Traidenis are unknown.

COA House of Gediminas (1285–1440)

II. House of Gediminas (1285–1440)    Tree included in Article:

Some dates are approximate.
7. Grand Duke Butigeidis
Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania (1285–1291)
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1285–1291 (6 years)
Predecessor: Daumantas or Dovmont   Successor: Butvydas (or Pukuveras), his brother
Coronation: –
Dynasty: House of Gediminas

Died: 1290 or 1292
Remarks: Founder of the Gediminid dynasty
Butigeidis (Budikid; Belarusian: Будзікід) He is the first known and undisputed member of the Gediminids.
He started his rule when the Livonian Order and the Teutonic Knights were finalizing their conquest of the Baltic tribes. In 1289, leading about 8,000 troops, Butigeidis attacked Sambia. In 1289 the Teutonic Knights built a castle in Tilsit and their raids intensified. Lithuanians were forced to abandon Koklainiai Castle located on the other bank of the river. Butigeidis was the first to build strong castles along the Neman River. The castle system was further developed after his death and helped to resist the raids until the second half of the 14th century.

8. Grand Duke Butvydas (also known as Pukuveras)
Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania (1291–1295)
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1291–1295 (4 years)
Predecessor:  Butigeidis, his brother  Successor: Vytenis (Kunigaikštis)
Coronation: –
Dynasty: House of Gediminas     Royal House: House of
Spouse: Unknown
Children: Vytenis and Gediminas
Died: 1295
Remarks: Brother of Butigeidis, father of Vytenis and Gediminas
Butvydas (or Pukuveras) (Belarusian: Будзівід; also known as Боудивидъ, Liutauras, Pukuwer or Pucuwerus)  His influence was strong during his brother Butigeidis’ reign. This led some historians to believe, that they were co-rulers, much like the grandsons Algirdas and Kęstutis. During his short reign Butvydas tried to defend the duchy against the Teutonic Knights; he also attacked Masovia, an ally of the knights. He was a direct ancestor of the Gediminids.

9. Grand Duke Vytenis(Kunigaikštis)

Vytenis (Kunigaikštis)
Vytenis (Kunigaikštis)

Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania (1295–1316)
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1295–1316 (21 years)
Predecessor: Butvydas   Successor:  Gediminas
Coronation: –
Dynasty: House of Gediminas

Father:  Butvydas    Mother: Unknown

Remarks: Son of Butvydas    Vytenis (Belarusian: Віцень, Vitsen) He became the first of the Gediminid dynasty to rule for a considerable amount of time. In the early 14th century his reputation outshone that of Gediminas, who is regarded by modern historians as one of the greatest Lithuanian rulers. The rule of Vytenis was marked by constant warfare in an effort to consolidate the Grand Duchy of Lithuania with the Ruthenians, Masovians, and the Teutonic Order.

10. Grand Duke Gediminas

Gediminas (ca. 1275–1341)

Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania (1316–1341 )
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1316–1341 (25 years)
Predecessor: Vytenis  Successor: Jaunutis
Coronation: –
Dynasty:  Gediminids   Royal House: House of Gediminas
Spouses: 1 pagan and 1 Orthodox perhaps Jewna, perhaps others
Children: 7 sons Algirdas (Pagan, eldest son), Kęstutis (Pagan, eldest son), Jaunutis (eldest of 2nd wife- Orthodox), Narimantas (Orthodox), Karijotas (Orthodox), Liubartas) (Orthodox), Manvydas
Daughter: Aigusta
Father:  Butvydas ?   Mother:    unknown
Born: ca. 1275
Died: 1341
Remarks: Son of Butvydas. After his death the domain was divided between his 7 sons.
Gediminas (ca. 1275–1341) was Grand Duke of Lithuania until his death. He is credited with founding this political entity and expanding its territory which, at the time of his death, spanned the area ranging from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea. Also seen as one of the most significant individuals in early Lithuanian history, he was responsible for both erecting the capital of Lithuania, and the establishment of a dynasty that can be traced to other European monarchies such as Poland, Hungary and Bohemia.
As part of his legacy, he obtained a reputation of being an inveterate pagan who diverted attempts in Christianizing his country to a political benefit against his enemies, after negotiations with the Pope and other Christian states.

11. Grand Duke Jaunutis
Titles: Overlord and Grand Duke of Lithuania (1341–1345), Duke of Zasłaŭje
Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1341–1345 (4 years)
Predecessor: Gediminas  Successor:  Algirdas, his oldest brother
Dynasty:  Gediminids   Royal House: House of Gediminas
Spouse: Unknown
Children: 2 sons Symeon Zaslawski and Michal Zaslawski (d. 12 Aug 1399)
Father:  Gediminas   Mother: perhaps Jewna  (Orthodox) (died ca. 1344) Source: Bychowiec Chronicle
Born: ca. 1300
Died: after 1366
Remarks: Son of Gediminas. Grand Duke, deposed by his elder brothers Algirdas and Kęstutis in 1345.
Jaunutis (Belarusian: Яўнут; literally young man; baptized: Ioann,”Jawnuta”, “John” or “Ivan”)
Very little is known about years when Jaunutis ruled. Those were quite peaceful years, as the Teutonic Knights were led by ineffective Ludolf König.
(Gediminas had divided the kingdom among his 7 sons.) His brothers were much more active: Algirdas attacked Mozhaysk, Livonian Order, defended Pskov, Kęstutis was helping Liubartas in succession disputes in Galicia–Volhynia.

12. Grand Duke Algirdas(Kunigaikštis)


Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign: 1345–1377 (1316–1377) (32 years)
Predecessor: Jaunutis    Successor: Jogaila

Dynasty:  Gediminids
Spouses: Maria of Vitebsk        Uliana
Sons (12):
Demetrius I Starszy        Andrei        Konstantin    Vladimir
Fiodor            Jogaila        Skirgaila        Dymitr Korybut
Lengvenis        Karigaila        Vygantas        Švitrigaila
Daughters (10):
Fiedora            Nowosielska    Agrypina        Kenna
Helena of Moscow        Maria        Wilheida        Alexandra
Jadwiga Oświęcimska    ?
Father: Gediminas          Mother:  Jewna  (perhaps not rather Gediminas’ 1st wife)
Born: ca. 1296
Died: end of May 1377       Place of death: Maišiagala (?)
Remarks: Son of Gediminas. His co-ruler was Kęstutis, who was active in the west. Algirdas was mostly active in the east. Algirdas (Belarusian: Альгерд, Russian: Ольгерд, Polish: Olgierd) (c. 1296 – May 1377)  Algirdas ruled the Grand Duchy of Lithuania from 1345 to 1377, which chiefly meant monarch of Lithuanians and Ruthenians. With the help of his brother Kęstutis, who defended the western border of the Duchy, he created a vast empire stretching from the Baltics to the Black Sea and reaching within fifty miles of Moscow.

13. Grand Duke Jogaila  (Władysław II Jagiełło)


Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania  Term 1377–1381 (4 years),    jure uxoris King of Poland    Reign: 1386–1499, Sole King of Poland (1399–1434)
Polish Predecessor: Jadwiga    Polish Successor: Władysław III
Coronation: 4 March 1386
Lithuanian Predecessor: Algirdas    Lithuanian Successor: Kęstutis
Dynasty: Jagiellon dynasty    Royal House: House of Jogailaičiai
Spouses: Jadwiga of Poland (queen regnant)
Anne of Cilli
Elisabeth of Pilica
Sophia of Halshany
Children: Elizabeth Bonifacia
Jadwiga of Lithuania
Władysław III of Poland
Casimir IV Jagiellon
Father: Algirdas          Mother:  Uliana Alexandrovna of Tver
Born: about 1351/1362         Birthplace: Vilnius
Died: 1 June 1434    Gródek Jagielloński (now Horodok, Ukraine)
Buried: Wawel Cathedral
Remarks: Son of Algirdas. Crowned the King of Poland in 1386 and established the personal union of Lithuania and Poland. Founder of the House of Jogailaičiai.
Jogaila, later Władysław II Jagiełło was Grand Duke of Lithuania (1377–1434), jure uxoris King of Kingdom of Poland (1386–1399), and sole King of Poland (1399–1434). He ruled in Lithuania from 1377, at first with his uncle Kęstutis.
In 1386 in Kraków he was baptized as Władysław, and was crowned King of Poland as Władysław II Jagiełło.
In 1387 he converted Lithuania to Christianity. His own reign in Poland started in 1399, upon death of Queen Jadwiga, and lasted a further thirty-five years and laid the foundation for the centuries-long Polish–Lithuanian union.
Władysław II was the founder of the Jagiellon dynasty. During his reign Polish-Lithuanian state was the greatest Kingdom of the Christian world.
Jogaila was the last pagan ruler of medieval Lithuania. After he became King of Poland, as a result of Union of Krewo, the newly formed Polish-Lithuanian union confronted the growing power of the Teutonic Knights. The allied victory at the Battle of Grunwald in 1410, followed by the Peace of Thorn (1411), secured the Polish and Lithuanian borders and marked the emergence of the Polish–Lithuanian alliance as a significant force in Europe. The reign of Władysław II Jagiełło extended Polish frontiers and is often considered the beginning of Poland’s Golden Age.

14. Grand Duke Kęstutis


Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania     Reign: 1381–1382 (1 year),  Duke of Trakai
Predecessor: Jogaila   Successor: Jogaila
Dynasty: Gediminids
Spouse: unknown
Children: 7 or 8
Father: Gediminas          Mother:  Jewna  (perhaps not rather Gediminas’ 1st wife)
Born: after 1296
Remarks: Son of Gediminas, co-ruler with Algirdas. Kęstutis ruled the western Lithuania (with capital in Trakai). Deposed Jogaila in 1381 and took control of the whole of Lithuania, only to be captured and killed by him the next year.
Kęstutis (Belarusian: Кейстут; Lithuanian pronunciation: [kæːsˈtutɪs]; born ca. 1297, died on August 3 or August 15, 1382 in Kreva) was monarch of medieval Lithuania. He was the Duke of Trakai and governed the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, 1342–82, together with his brother Algirdas (until 1377), and with his nephew Jogaila (until 1381). He ruled over the Lithuanians and Ruthenians.
See: Lithuanian Civil War (1381–1384)–1384)

15. Grand Duke Jogaila Term 1382–1392 (10 years)
Remarks: Also King of Poland 1386–1434. His governor in Lithuania was Skirgaila (1387–1392).  See # 13 above.

16. Grand Duke Vytautasthe Great

Vytautas the Great

Titles: Duke of Trakai   Postulated King of Hussites Grand Duke of Lithuania

Reign: 1392–1430 (38 years)
Predecessor: Skirgaila     Successor: Švitrigaila
Dynasty: Gediminids
Father: Kęstutis     Mother: Birutė
Born: ~1350     Birthplace: Senieji Trakai
Died: 27 Oct 1430     Place of death: Trakai
Buried: Vilnius, Vilnius Cathedral
Remarks: Son of Kęstutis. Joined his father in the fight against Jogaila, then changed sides and became Grand Duke of Lithuania in 1392. Was to be crowned King of Lithuania in 1429, but the crown was stopped by the Poles. Died before the second crown arrived.
Vytautas (Lithuanian: Vytautas Didysis, Belarusian: Вітаўт, Polish: Witold Kiejstutowicz, Rusyn: Vitovt, Latin: Alexander Vitoldus, Italian: Vito il Grande); styled “the Great” from the 15th century onwards; c. 1350 – October 27, 1430) was one of the most famous rulers of medieval Lithuania. Vytautas was the ruler (1392–1430) of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania which chiefly encompassed the Lithuanians and Ruthenians.
In modern Lithuania, Vytautas is revered as a national hero, an important figure in the national rebirth in the 19th century.

17. Grand Duke Švitrigaila


Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania  Term 1430–1432 (2 years)
Predecessor: Vytautas    Successor: Sigismund Kęstutaitis
Dynasty: Jagiellon dynasty             Royal House: House of Jogailaičiai
Father: Algirdas          Mother:  Uliana Alexandrovna of Tver
Born:  ca. 1370
Died: 10 February 1452
Remarks: Son of Algirdas, brother of Jogaila. Deposed by followers of Žygimantas, son of Kęstutis.
Švitrigaila (Polish: Świdrygiełło)  He spent most of his life in largely unsuccessful dynastic struggles against his cousins Vytautas and Sigismund Kęstutaitis.

18. Grand Duke Sigismund Kęstutaitis

Sigismund Kęstutaitis
Sigismund Kęstutaitis

Titles:   Grand Duke of Lithuania     Reign: 1 Sep 1432–1440 (8 years)

Duke of Navahradak, 1390–1440, Duke of Starodub since 1406
Predecessor: Švitrigaila    Successor: Casimir IV (Jagiellon)
Dynasty: Gediminids    Royal House: House of Kęstutis
Son: (1) Michael Boleslaw, (died 10 Feb 1452)
Father: Kęstutis     Mother: Birutė
Born: c. 1365
Baptized: in Catholic rite in 1383
Died: 20 March 1440 Killed in Trakai Peninsula Castle LT
Remarks: Son of Kęstutis, brother of Vytautas. Killed by Švitrigaila supporters.
Sigismund Kęstutaitis (Lithuanian: Žygimantas I Kęstutaitis; Polish: Zygmunt Kiejstutowicz;)  Sigismund was his baptismal name.
After strengthening his positions in Lithuania, he tried to loosen his ties with Poland and started negotiations 1438–1440 with Albert of Hungary (who was also the German King) for an anti-Polish alliance but was killed by supporters of Švitrigaila (possibly led by Alexander Czartoryski) at on March 20, 1440.

III. House of Jagiellon(1440–1569)

COA House of Jagiellon (1440–1569)

Tree included in Article:
Known for a high degree the tenacity and patience that seem to have characterized all the Jagiellons.
Country: Lithuania, Poland, Hungary, Bohemia

Jagiellonians reigned the Baltic to the Black to the Adriatic Sea

Ancestral house: Gediminids
Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania, King of Poland, King of Hungary, King of Bohemia
Founder: Jagiello
Final sovereign: Anna Jagiellon
Founding: 1377 Dissolution: 1572
At the end of the 15th century, the Jagiellonians reigned over vast territories stretching from the Baltic to the Black to the Adriatic Sea.
The act of personal union with Poland was signed as early as 1385, however, continuous line of common rulers of the two countries started only with Casimir IV (even then Polish and Lithuanians twice selected different rulers following earlier common monarch’s death, but the Lithuanian one always eventually assumed Polish throne). The monarchs retained separate titles for both parts of the state, and their numbering was kept separately. The Jagiellon dynasty was a direct continuation of the Gediminids.

19. Incumbent Casimir IV Jagiellon

Casimir IV Jagiellon

TitlesGrand Duke of Lithuania     Reign 29 June 1440 – 7 June 1492 (52 years)
Coronation: 29 June 1440 in Vilnius Cathedral
Predecessor: Sigismund Kęstutaitis     Successor: Alexander Jagiellon
King of Poland      Reign: 25 June 1447 – 7 June 1492
Coronation: 25 June 1447 in Wawel Cathedral
Predecessor: Władysław III of Poland     Successor: John I Albert of Poland
Spouse: Elisabeth of Austria (d. 1505) (m. 1454)
Children: Vladislaus II of Bohemia and Hungary     Hedwig Jagiellon
St. Casimir Jagiellon         John I Albert of Poland (27 Dec 1459-17 Jun 1501)
Alexander of Poland (5 Aug 1461-19 Aug 1506)    Sophia, Margravine of Brandenburg
Elżbieta                                Sigismund I the Old (1 Jan 1467-1 Apr 1548)
Barbara, Duchess of Saxony            Friedrick Jagiellon (Apr 27, 1468-Mar 14, 1503)
Elizabeth Jagiellon (13 Nov 13 1482-16 Feb 1517)
Dynasty: Jagiello
Father: Władysław II Jagiełło    Mother: Sophia of Halshany
Born: 30 November 1427 Kraków, Poland
Died: 7 Jun 1492 (aged 64) Old Hrodna Castle, modern Belarus
Burial: Wawel Cathedral, Kraków
Remarks: Son of Jogaila. Elected and crowned King of Poland in 1447 after the death of king Wladyslaw Warnenczyk.
Casimir IV KG (Polish: Kazimierz IV Jagiellończyk [kaˈʑimi̯ɛʒ jaɡi̯ɛlˈlɔɲt͡ʃɨk]; Lithuanian: Kazimieras IV Jogailaitis; 30 Nov 1427 – 7 June 1492) of the House of Jagiellon was Grand Duke of Lithuania from 1440, and King of Poland from 1447, until his death.
Casimir was the second son of King Władysław II Jagiełło (Jogaila), and the younger brother of Władysław III of Varna.
Grand Duke of Lithuania
When Sigismund Kęstutaitis suddenly died, this left the 13 year old Casimir being proclaimed the Grand Duke of Lithuania on 29 June 1440 in Vilnius by the Council of Lords, contrary to the wishes of the Polish noble lords.
Because he was underage, the supreme control over the Grand Duchy of Lithuania was in the hands of the Council of Lords.
During Casimir’s rule, the rights of the Lithuanian nobility—dukes, magnates and boyars (lesser nobles), irrespective of their religion and ethnicity—were put on an equal footing to those of the Polish szlachta.
Casimir was the first ruler of Lithuania baptized at birth, becoming the first native Roman Catholic Grand Duke.
King of Poland
Casimir succeeded his brother Władysław III (killed at the Battle of Varnain 1444) as King of Poland in 25 June 1447.
In 1454, Casimir was approached by the Prussian Confederation for aid against the Teutonic Order, which he promised, by making the separatist Prussian regions a protectorate of the Polish Kingdom. Rebellion against the Teutonic Order led to the Thirteen Years’ War (1454–1466). Casimir and the Prussian Confederation defeated the Teutonic Order, taking over its capital at Marienburg (Malbork Castle).

20. Incumbent Alexander I(Jagiellon)

Alexander I (Jagiellon)

TitlesGrand Duke of Lithuania      Reign 30 July 1492 – 19 August 1506 (14 years)
Coronation 30 July 1492 in Vilnius Cathedral
Predecessor  Casimir IV Jagiellon      Successor  Sigismund I the Old
King of Poland              Reign 12 December 1501 – 19 August 1506
Coronation 12 December 1501 in Wawel Cathedral
Predecessor John I Albert        Successor Sigismund I the Old
Spouse Helena of Moscow, the Tsar’s daughter
Dynasty Jagiello
Father Casimir IV Jagiellon    Mother Elisabeth Habsburg of Hungary
Born 5 August 1461 Kraków, Poland
Died 19 August 1506 (aged 45) Vilnius, Lithuania
Burial Vilnius Cathedral, Vilnius, Lithuania (1506)

Remarks: Son of Casimir IV. Elected and crowned King of Poland in 1501 after the death of king Jan I Olbracht
Alexander (Polish: Aleksander Jagiellończyk; Lithuanian: Aleksandras Jogailaitis) (5 August 1461 – 19 August 1506) of the House of Jagiellon was the Grand Duke of Lithuania and later also King of Poland. He was the fourth son of Casimir IV Jagiellon. He was elected Grand Duke of Lithuania on the death of his father (1492), and King of Poland on the death of his brother John I Albert (1501).
Alexander’s shortage of funds immediately made him subservient to the Polish Senate and nobility (szlachta), who deprived him of control of the mint making him unable to resist the Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights surrendering some territory. During his reign, he still held Poland’s land on the Danube River; and with financial help from Pope Julius II and others, he was able to restrain somewhat the arrogance of the Teutonic Order.
Alexander Jagellon felt at home in Lithuania, and died in Vilnius on 19 Aug 1506. In 1931, his forgotten sarcophagus was found in the Vilnius Cathedral, and has since been put on display.

21. Incumbent Sigismund I

Sigismund I

Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign 1506–1548 (42 years)
Coronation 24 January 1507 in Wawel Cathedral, Kraków
Predecessor Alexander Jagiellon       Successor Sigismund II Augustus
Spouse 1 Barbara Zápolya ( -1515) (m. 1512)
Children:     Hedwig, Electress of Bradenburg (1513–1573)      Anna (1 July 1515 – 8 May 1520)

Spouse 2 Bona Sforza (m. 1517) Children: Isabella, Queen of Hungary   Sigismund II Augustus    Sophia, Duchess of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Anna I of Poland   Catherine, Queen of Sweden
By his mistress, Katarzyna Telniczenka (d. 1528), he also fathered three children out of wedlock.
Dynasty  Jagiellon
Father Casimir IV of Poland    Mother Elisabeth of Austria
Born 1 January 1467 Kozienice, Poland
Died 1 April 1548 (aged 81) Kraków, Poland
Burial 7 July 1548 Wawel Cathedral, Kraków
Remarks: Son of Casimir IV.
Sigismund I of Poland (Polish: Zygmunt I Stary; Lithuanian:Žygimantas II Senasis) (1 Jan 1467-1 Apr 1548), of the Jagiellon dynasty, reigned as King of Poland and also as the Grand Duke of Lithuania from 1506 until 1548. Earlier, Sigismund had been invested as Duke of Silesia.
During his predecessor Alexander’s reign, the law of Nihil novi was instituted, which forbade Polish kings from enacting laws without the consent of the Polish lower house. This proved crippling to Sigismund. Even so, he established (1527) a conscript army and the bureaucracy needed to finance it.
The Polish wars against the Teutonic Knights ended in 1525, when Albert, Duke of Prussia, their marshal (and Sigismund’s nephew), converted to Lutheranism, secularized the order, and paid homage to Sigismund.

22. Incumbent Sigismund II

Sigismund II Augustus I

Titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania    Reign 1548–1569 (21 years),
King of Poland (Reign 1548–69)
Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth as King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania (Reign 1569-1572)

Predecessor Sigismund I the Old          Successor Anna Jagiellon &  Interrex 1572–73  Henry of Valois in 1573
Spouses         Elisabeth of Austria (9 Jul 1526-15 Jun 1545)(m. 5 May 1543)
Barbara Radziwiłł (6 Dec 1520-8 May 1551) (m. 1547) (dec. 7 December 1550 forced)
Catherine of Austria (15 Sep 1533-28 Feb 1572) (m. 1553)
Mistresses Diana di Cordona Miss Weiss Miss Relska
Zuzanna Orłowska Anna Zajączkowska Barbara Giżycka
Dynasty Jagiellon
Father Sigismund I the Old     Mother Bona Sforza Italian
Born 1 August 1520 Kraków, Poland
Died 7 July 1572 (aged 51) Knyszyn, Poland
Burial 10 February 1574 Wawel Cathedral, Kraków
Remarks: Son of Sigismund I the Old. Factual ruler since 1529. His most striking memorial, however, may have been the Union of Lublin, which finally united Poland and Lithuania into the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth — the “Republic of the Two Nations”
Sigismund II Augustus I (Polish: Zygmunt II August, Ruthenian:Żygimont III Awgust I, Belarusian: Жыгімонт Аўгуст; Lithuanian: Žygimantas III Augustas I, German: Sigismund II. August) was King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania, the only son of Sigismund I the Old, whom Sigismund II succeeded in 1548. Married three times, the last of the Jagiellons remained childless, and thus the Union of Lublin introduced an elective monarchy.
Biography From the outset of his reign, Sigismund came into collision with the Poland’s nobility, who had already begun curtailing the power of the great families. Sigismund, a Catholic, saw the introduction of the Protestant Reformation into Poland, the Commonwealth acquired Livonia (Latvia) and was an even greater statesman than the stern and majestic Sigismund I the Old.
Patronage Sigismund Augustus carried on with the development of several royal residencies including Wawel Castle, Vilnius Castle, Niepołomice Castle and the Royal Castle in Warsaw.

23. Co-incumbent Anna Jagiellon

King Anna in coronation robes on a 1576
Anna Jagiellon

Term 15 December 1575 – 1586 (10 years)  Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth King of Poland & Grand Duke of Lithuania
Coronation 1 May 1576 in Krakow
Predecessor Henry    Successor Interrex 1586–1587   Sigismund III Vasa 1587
Spouse Stephen Báthory, Prince of Transylvania (- -1586)
Dynasty Jagiellon
Father Sigismund I the Old         Mother Bona Sforza
Born 18 October 1523 Kraków, Poland
Died 9 September 1596 (aged 72) Warsaw, Poland
Burial Wawel Cathedral
Remarks: Anna Jagiellon (Polish: Anna Jagiellonka, Lithuanian: Ona Jogailaitė; 1523–1596) was queen of Poland from 1575 to 1586. She was the daughter of Poland’s King Sigismund I the Old, and the wife of Stephen Báthory. She was elected, along with her then fiance, Báthory, as co-ruler in the second election of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Anna was the last member of the Jagiellon dynasty.
Her early life was rather mundane. She embroidered church vestments, was involved in works of charity, and fulfilled her obligations as a princess. Anna remained unmarried until the age of fifty-two, her overbearing mother had taught her not only patience and calmness, but also the conviction that a woman could be as good a monarch as a man.
Anna died, during her nephew Sigismund’s reign, in her own country, as the last member of the Jagiellons.