First English edition of the Nuremberg chronicle: being the Liber chronicarum of Dr. Hartmann Schedel…

CARINTHIA, also a mountainous country, borders on Carniola (Krain, or Crain). To the east and north is Styria; to the west and south, the Italian mountains and Friaul. The country has many valleys and hills, productive of grain; also many seas, rivers and brooks, of which the Drave (Drau) is the most important. It flows through Styria and Hungary into the Danube. The country is subject to the Austrian Duchy. Whenever a new prince is about to begin his reign, it is the custom to have a peasant mount a block of marble in a spacious valley not far from the city of St. Veit. The office is hereditary in him. To his right is placed a lean black ox, to his left a lean ill-favored horse. Round about stand the people and the entire peasantry. From the opposite side comes the prince and the nobility, the latter well clad and carrying the banner and coat of arms of the principality. The Count of Görtz, between 12 small banners, leads the procession, and the nobility follow. In this gathering no one is less conspicuous than the prince, who appears as a peasant, in coarse dress, hat and shoes, carrying the staff of a shepherd. When the peasant seated on the stone sees the prince approach, he cries out in the Wendic tongue (for the Carinthians are Wends), “Who is it that over yonder parades forth so proudly?" And the people standing about say, "The prince of the land is coming.” Then the peasant asks, “Is he also a just judge, a lover of our country’s welfare, and independent and worthy of honor? Is he also an augmenter and protector of the Christian faith?" And they all answer, "Yes, he is, and will be.” And again the peasant asks, "How, or by what right may he induce me to leave this seat?” Whereupon the Count of Görtz answers, “You will be bought off with sixty pennies, and the head of this ox and the head of this horse will be yours; and you may have the raiment of the prince, and your house shall be free and untaxable. Whereupon the peasant gives the prince a mild slap on the cheek, urging him to be a just judge. He then rises and carries off his cattle. And now the prince, his sword bared, mounts the stone, and turning hither and thither, vows fairness and impartial judgment to the people. It is also said that cold water is brought to the peasant, which he drinks out of a felt hat, as though he scorned the use of wine. Thereupon the prince proceeds to St. Peter’s church on a bill in the vicinity, and which was once a bishopric. When divine services have been completed he casts off his peasant dress and dons his princely raiment. After a brilliant entertainment with his nobles and knights, he rides back into the field, and there, seated on the judgment seat, he administers justice to those who desire it, and grants tenures to his vassals. It is said that in A.D. 790, in the time of Charlemagne, Igno, a duke of this country, provided a great entertainment for the peasantry. He caused the peasants to be seated near him, and to be served from dishes of gold and silver; but the nobles and foremost he seated far away, and they were served from earthenware. When asked what this signified, he answered, that those who live in costly palaces in large cities are not as clean as those who live in humble cottages in the country; that the peasants, after accepting the gospel and the purification of holy baptism, have beautiful souls, while the souls of the mighty are befouled and blackened with idolatry; and so he had arranged the entertainment according to the rank of the souls. Soon thereafter the nobles, in large numbers, accepted the Christian faith and received baptism from Virgilius and Arnonis, the bishops of Salzburg. Henceforth the honor of in stalling a prince was conceded to the peasantry. duke of Carinthia was game-warden of the empire, to whom were submitted the misdemeanors of the hunters; and when called upon to answer the complainants in court before the emperor, he was not obliged to do so except in the Wendic tongue. In. this country is a city called Clagenfurt (Klagenfurt), in. which hard usages were invoked against thieves; for when any man fell under the suspicion of theft, he was promptly arrested and hanged. After the expiration of three days, those of Clagenfurt investigated the theft, and if they found him guilty and deserving of death, they left the corpse of the thief hang until it was entirely wasted away; but if they found that injustice had been done to the person who was hanged, they took the corpse from the gallows, and gave the soul a public funeral. In this land lived Count Ulrich of Görtz, destroyer of men, for whom a woman awakened his immature daughter to drink with him at midnight. He had more dealings and associations with shepherds than nobles; although aged he played with the children on the ice, often lived with common women, and seldom took his meals at court. He went to the cook, and all by himself ate soup in the kitchen. He wore filthy clothes and spotted his bosom. His eyes always watered. At one time when Emperor Frederick saw the count approaching him, he asked me to come to him and said, “Aeneas, come and see this prince who is hurrying to us. If ever you have seen a cleaner and handsomer prince, say so." This count had a Hungarian wife whose greed brought him to prison. He was liberated by the help of Count Ulrich of Cilli, drove away his wife and left able sons as heirs. In good morals they resembled than their father.


STYRIA, at one time called Valeria, borders on Hun gary to the east, on Austria to the north, and on Carniola and Carinthia to the west and south. This region is also mountainous, although toward the east it is level to no small extent. The Drave (Drau) and the Mur, two noted rivers, water this re gion. The Mur flows into the Drave, and the Drave into the Danube. The people in the cities are usually German, while the peasants on this side of the Drave are Wendic. This region is subject to the Austrian house. Herein is a small town that some call Cilli, in which are many indications of antiquity, including marble tombs of Roman princes. Here ruled, in our own time, Count Frederick, who, fired with carnal passion for a concubine, with his own hand slew his lawful wife, a born countess of Croatia. Thereupon his father, in the exercise of that judgment which is the right of the mighty, drowned the concubine. And thereupon the son took wives away from their husbands, enticed the maidens to his court, reduced the country people to servitude, destroyed the estates of the church, and gathered about him counterfeiters, criminals, soothsayers and necromancers. And although, at the age of ninety, he proceeded to Rome in the year of the jubilee to obtain absolution, yet he showed no improvement after his return. When he was asked what advantage the pilgrimage to Rome had been to him, since he had not modified his old habits, he answered and said, “My cobbler, since his return from Rome, still makes boots." Upon his death he left as heir his son Ulrich, who resembled his father in some respects, but was of better address. When he was slain, 24 claimants to his estate appeared. And just as during his lifetime he had stirred up revolt and war on every hand,