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Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / The fourteenth and fifteenth centuries
(1975)

XVII: The Crusades Against the Hussites,   pp. 586-646 ff. PDF (24.0 MB)


Page 611

Ch. XVII THE CRUSADES AGAINST THE HUSSITES 611 
important clash between Hussites was the battle of Malesov (June 7, 1424),
in which Zizka destroyed a fairly strong army based on a coalition of Praguers,
mainly of the Old Town, and some more or less counter-revolutionary members
of the nobility.65 By this victory Zizka established, more solidly than before,
his leading role in the Orebite brotherhood, which soon joined up again with
Tábor. The dominating position of the two brotherhoods, based on a
large number of Czech-Hussite cities, was by and large maintained for the
next ten years. No radical change resulted from the return in June 1424 of
prince Korybut, who had been recalled by Vitold early in 
1423, nor even from the death of Zizka from the plague on October 
11, 1424. 
 The most gifted and influential of the political and military leaders of
this new phase was a Taborite priest called Prokop the Great (or the Bald),
a worthy successor to Zizka who changed the strategy of the Hussites.66 From
the earlier, essentially defensive actions against the invaders he moved
toward a policy of invading the neighboring territories from which previous
crusading campaigns had started. 
 While on the Catholic side the activity of king Sigismund as well as of
the German electors and princes was weaker than before, the holy see tried
hard to keep the struggle against the "heretics" going. Cardinal Branda had
done his best, but the pope felt that even this was not good enough, especially
as the legate, at seventy-five, was beginning to weaken physically. In his
place Martin V appointed, after a short interim filled by cardinal Jordan
Orsini, a man whom he had quite recently (in May 1427) raised to the rank
of cardinal: 
Henry Beaufort, a half-brother of the late king Henry IV of England. The
new legate tried to revive the crusading movement by being present at the
diets and eventually also in the field. But before there was an effective
reawakening of the movement the Czech Hussites and their German neighbors
fought a climactic battle which was not technically part of the crusades,
the battle of UstI.67 
 This city, together with a few other places in northern Bohemia, had been
pledged by Sigismund to Frederick of Wettin, since 1423 
 65. Heymann, Zizka, pp. 409—415, and Frankenberger, Nase velká
armada, II, 79ff. 
 66. See on him Urbánek, Lipany; Macek, Prokop Veliky; Bartos, Prokop
Veliky (Brno, 
1934); and briefly, in English, Heymann, Zizka, pp. 457—471. 
 67. Probably no other battle of this war has received so much attention
and literary treatment. We shall name only H. Ermisch, "Zur Geschichte der
Schlacht bei Aussig," in Neues Archiv für Sachsische Geschichte und
Altertumskunde, XLVII (1926), 5—34; E. Kroker, "Sachsen und die Hussitenkriege,"
ibid., XXI (1900), 1—28; Bezold, König Sig mund, II, 81—86;
R. Jecht, "Der Oberlausitzer Hussitenkrieg," Neues Lausitzer Magazin, LXXVI
(1910), 138 ff.; O. Frankenberger, Nase velkd armada, II, 115—130;
and J. Durdik, Husitské vojenstvi, pp. 152—156. 


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