Rozmieszczenie wsi zagrodowych i drobnoszlacheckich w powiecie gnieźnieńskim na przełomie XV i XVI wieku

Joanna Karczewska



The location of farmsteads and petty gentry villages in the poviat of Gniezno at the turn of the 15th century


The farmsteads and petty gentry villages of the poviat of Gniezno situated in Kalisz voivodeship are concentrated in three main areas. The first and, at the same time, the largest such concentration was found in the territory located south of Gniezno – on a strip between Gniezno, Witkowo and Czerniejewo. The second was situated in the west of the poviat (Popowo, Łubowo parishes), whereas the last, small, complex comprised several villages in the parish of Trląg. The chronological scope of the study covered the years from the turn of the 15th century, while the source base was constituted by court records regarding the lands of Greater Poland (Wielkopolska), as well as the “Liber beneficiorum of
the archidiosece of Gniezno” by Jan Łaski and – for comparative purposes – the 16th-century tax registers. The villages were divided into parts, each provided with a binomial name – the first component being the proper name of the village, whereas the second was derived from a nickname or a name of its owner – heir. The farmstead villages inhabited by yeomen included: Grzybowo (initially an independent parish, later belonging to the parish in Gozdowo) consisting in the 15th century of 13 divisions, Małachowo – sources inform of 6 existing divisions of this village; Jelitowo – with 2 divisions; Żółcz with 2 divisions; Cielmowo 5 divisions; Mikołajewice – 3 divisions; Drachowo – 5 divisions; and Bojenice, Skiereszewo and Gurowo. Nearby the above enlisted farmstead villages one could also encounter petty gentry villages managed by single peasants (e.g. Gulczewo). Local heirs often were owners of divisions in the neighbouring villages. The petty gentry and farmstead villages in the poviat of Gniezno were inhabited by noblemen of various coats of arms, with the only exception of Strzyżewo, where the landowners were the noblemen of the Poraj coat of arms. In the vicinity of Gniezno it is possible to come across numerous names of no longer existing settlements. It is a direct result of partition of those villages – quite commonly the source name of a village was constituted by the name of a division absorbed in time by its mother village. The 15th and 16th centuries constituted the period of the most intense division of petty gentry and farmstead villages in the poviat of Gniezno.

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