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11. století

The destiny of Duke Jaromir

The unhappy life of the Premyslid offspring, persecuted by his destiny
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Jaromir was the second son of Boleslav II and he had two bothers. His grandfather, Boleslav I, murdered his own brother Wenceslas, who was soon canonized. His older brother, Boleslav III, was a very cruel and ill-tempered man who liked strong drinks. He enjoyed inviting his rivals to peace banquets, where he and his companions would murder the unarmed men on the tables full of food and drink. His younger brother was the quite capable Ulrich, a man without scruples. After the death of their father, the ducal throne went to Boleslav III - called the red-haired. His short reign was marked by malicious cruelty and eccentricity where he provoked most of the country’s magnates against him, including the powerful Vrsovetz family. After some time his paranoia got to him and he decided that it was necessary to murder both his brothers, who were a threat to him. Ulrich fled to Bavaria, but Jaromir didn’t make it and Boleslav ordered his castration. The Vrsovetz family launched an uprising and Boleslav had to flee to the powerful King of Poland Bolesław the Great. The Polish king appointed his kinsman, Vladivoj of the Premyslid dynasty, to the ducal throne, but being a notorious alcoholic, he didn’t last long and soon drank himself to death. With the help of the King of Poland, Boleslav III returned to the throne with the promise of impunity for his opponents.

broke this promise of course and ordered the slaughter of the Vrsovetz family, during which he personally murdered his own son-in-law. At that point the patience of the Polish king had run out and he deposed Boleslav, made him blind and imprisoned him for over thirty years; Boleslav never walked out of prison.
Jaromir became Duke, but after a few years he was overthrown by his brother Ulrich and so he sought support from the Roman Emperor. The Emperor, however, had little sympathy for him and locked him up for 21 years in a dungeon in Utrecht. In a game of fate, Jaromir was released after this long and arduous time and was supposed to replace his brother, the long-reigning Ulrich. In the end, the situation for the old, fallen man developed in such a way that he was to become co-ruler with his powerful brother. As soon as the Empire’s army had left the country, Ulrich acted according to his nature and ordered Jaromir to be blinded and imprisoned. Fortunately, Ulrich soon died and Jaromir was released. He relinquished all claims to the throne as the eldest member of the lineage and went into retirement.
Fate, however, had little pity for the old broken man. Blind and castrated he was ruthlessly murdered by a Vrsovetz assassin, who struck him with a spear in the groin when Jaromir was carrying out his nightly needs. How great the irony of fate can be.


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