John IV, Duke of Saxe-Lauenburg

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John IV
Duke of Saxe-Lauenburg

(joint rule with Eric IV – till 1412 – and Eric V)
Reign1401–1412
PredecessorEric IV of Saxe-Lauenburg
SuccessorEric V of Saxe-Lauenburg
Died1414
HouseHouse of Ascania
FatherEric IV of Saxe-Lauenburg
MotherSophia of Brunswick-Lüneburg
ReligionRoman Catholic

John IV of Saxe-Lauenburg[1] (*?–1414*) was a son of Duke Eric IV of Saxe-Lauenburg and Sophia of Brunswick-Lüneburg.

Life[edit]

When Eric III of Saxe-Bergedorf-Mölln had died in 1401, John's father, Eric IV, inherited the branch duchy of the deceased. Subsequently, he shared the reign in the reunited duchy of Saxe-Lauenburg with John and his brother Eric V. However, most of Saxe-Bergedorf-Mölln had been alienated, such as the Herrschaft of Mölln (sold to Lübeck in 1359 under a repurchase agreement) and the Herrschaft of Bergedorf, the Vierlande, half the Saxon Wood and Geesthacht, all of which Eric III had pawned to the city of Lübeck in 1370.[2]

Eric III had entitled Lübeck to take possession of these areas, once he had deceased, until his heirs would repay the credit and thus redeem them and simultaneously exercise their right to repurchase Mölln, requiring together a total sum of 26,000 Lübeck marks. In 1401 Eric IV, supported by his sons Eric V and John IV, forcefully captured the pawned areas without any repayment, before Lübeck could take possession of them. Lübeck acquiesced.[3]

John had due debts with burghers of Hamburg. On a visit there under safe conduct granted by the Hamburg's senate (the city government), his creditor Heyne Brandes [de] (later in standard German also: Hein Brand[t]) took the defaulting duke to task and dunned him in a way the duke considered insulting.[4] The duke complained to the senate. The senate cited Brandes, who admitted the dunning, and arrested him.[4] This caused a civic uproar of Hamburgers, electing from each of the then four parishes 12 representatives, the Council of the Forty-Eighters (die Achtuntvierziger), who on Saint Lawrence Day (10 August) stipulated with the senate the Recess of 1410 (considered Hamburg's oldest constitutional act), denying the senate's privilege to arrest without a prior judicial hearing.[5] The Forty-Eighters, in 1687 extended to the Council of the Sixty (die Sechziger), persisted and developed into the first permanent representation of the citizens of Hamburg, the nucleus of the Hamburg Parliament.[5]

In 1411 John IV and his brother Eric V and their father Eric IV pawned their share in the Vogtei over the Bailiwick of Bederkesa and in the Bederkesa Castle [de] to the Senate of Bremen including all "they have in the jurisdictions in the Frisian Land of Wursten and in Lehe [de], which belongs to the afore-mentioned castle and Vogtei".[6] Their share in jurisdiction, Vogtei and castle had been acquired from the plague-stricken Knights of Bederkesa,[6] who had dropped into decline after 1349/1350. Eric V ended his joint reign with John IV after their father Eric IV had deceased in 1412. After John IV died in 1414 without an heir.

Ancestry[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Some genealogies do not list and count John IV, since he was only co-ruling and died without children. So then they count John IV's nephew John V as John IV. John V's son John was counted IV as prince-bishop of Hildesheim. Thus the three are sometimes confused.
  2. ^ Elisabeth Raiser, Städtische Territorialpolitik im Mittelalter: eine vergleichende Untersuchung ihrer verschiedenen Formen am Beispiel Lübecks und Zürichs, Lübeck and Hamburg: Matthiesen, 1969, (Historische Studien; 406), p. 90, simultaneously: Hamburg, Univ., Diss., 1969.
  3. ^ Elisabeth Raiser, Städtische Territorialpolitik im Mittelalter: eine vergleichende Untersuchung ihrer verschiedenen Formen am Beispiel Lübecks und Zürichs, Lübeck and Hamburg: Matthiesen, 1969, (Historische Studien; 406), p. 137, simultaneously: Hamburg, Univ., Diss., 1969.
  4. ^ a b Tim Albrecht and Stephan Michaelsen, Entwicklung des Hamburger Stadtrechts Archived 21 December 2013 at the Wayback Machine, note 36, retrieved on 14 May 2013.
  5. ^ a b Tim Albrecht and Stephan Michaelsen, Entwicklung des Hamburger Stadtrechts Archived 21 December 2013 at the Wayback Machine, retrieved on 14 May 2013.
  6. ^ a b In the Middle Low German original: „wes zee hebben an gherichte in Vreslande . . . unde an Lee, dat to deme vorscrevenen slote unde voghedie höret", here after Bernd Ulrich Hucker, „Die landgemeindliche Entwicklung in Landwürden, Kirchspiel Lehe und Kirchspiel Midlum im Mittelalter“ (first presented in 1972 as a lecture at a conference of the historical work study association of the northern Lower Saxon Landschaftsverbände held at Oldenburg in Oldenburg), in: Oldenburger Jahrbuch, vol. 72 (1972), pp. 1—22, here p. 13.
John IV, Duke of Saxe-Lauenburg
 Died: 1414
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Eric IV
Dukes of Saxe-Lauenburg
1401–1412
with Eric IV (father) (1368–1412)
Eric V (brother) (1401–1435)
Succeeded by
Eric V