The burgrave of the Rožmberk Castle

The burgrave of the Rožmberk Castle guarded the castle itself as well as the whole Rožmberk goods. There was a very small permanent military garrison until the 16th century. During the day time two footsoldiers and a gate- keeper were in the front upper castle, two footsoldiers in the tower and four footsoldiers and a gate-keeper in the low castle. During the night four watchmen guarded in the front upper castle and six watchmen guarded in the low castle. Seven inhabitants of Babí, six inhabitants of Hořipný, five inhabitants of Březí and Hlásný, four inhabitants of Březovice, three inhabitants of Machnatce and two inhabitants of Bělá were relieving the guard at the Rožmberk Castle. Besides it the burgrave had to manage the economy and give render the lordship. A castle scribe helped him with the register. He was also in charge of the settlement round the castle and all retainers. According to the Rožmberk land and duties register other 27 communities and magistrate estates except the town of Rožmberk belonged to the Rožmberk Castle.

The Tower 'na Rožmberce', source: Hrady, zámky a tvrze české III, August Sedláček, 1994, ISBN - 80 - 85794 - 27 - 6 The burgrave had to take care of the estates economy in order to bring in a use. The Rožmberk Chamber got the yield. His other duties were to provide sustenance for the castle garrisonand surveillance. The burgrave signed the contract in which he put under an obligation to serve his duties and on the other hand the lordship to pay the determined fee. The contract was attached to one year´s time notice. The contracts were made up according to the same diagram for all Rožmberk estates. They always consisted of the sum of the money to be paid to the burgrave per year, a number of people who he had to provide sustenance for, the kind and other benifits conceded burgraves. The castle inventory was often a part of the contract.

The burgrave was responsible for not allowing any loss and doing his retainers justice. Once burgrave John of Vlsice was sitting with the aldermen in the pot-house and measuring how much beer a publican was drawing. He found out that she drew less beer than it should have been. So the burgrave punished the publican. Rožmberk burgrave Sudek had to look after a dozen of members of the Rožmberk castle garrison for only 194 Prague groschens before the year 1532. Among the members there was a scribe who was given the food and hay for his horses. As the kind the burgrave was given a tithe of eggs from the Frymburk J.P.´s, some draff from Horní Dvořiště, Rožmitál and Myšlan, a tithe of cheese, yield of villages and a yard of Metlice and its appurtenances, hare hunting and produce from the Stream Vltavice, and fire-wood from Forest Tomensperg. In the contract dating from 1556 the salary was sixty Míšeň groschens, a number of people is not mentioned. Fifty tubs of rye and one hundred tibs of oats and the yield of all castle pieces of land were added to the above mentioned kind.

Alexandr Štol of Grynperk was a burgrave at the Rožmberk Castle for a long time. He bought a manor in the town of Rožmberk where also his daughter Žofie lived. Perhaps she was very fond of gossiping. In the year 1580 she was ordered to pay a fine of one hundred groschens because she was telling stories about Lev of Kolichreit and his sister Markéta. In spite of the fact that her father was the burgrave, he could not help her. The instruction issued in 1556 determined that the burgrave was presented during the castle opening every day. It is surprising that it was at 3 o´clock a.m. in summer and at 4 o´clock a.m. in winter. The burgrave had to be also presented during the castle closing. It was at 7 o´clock p.m. in summer and at 6 o´clock p.m. in winter. He supervised the gate-keepers and watchmen. His every day duty was to pass the castle, check its state and watched over serving food to servants. He dished the meat to servants together with a chef. He could start eating after every one had been given a proper meal. He also checked whether bread was put on the table after all servants had sat at the table, and if they had been given the right quantity of wine. Nobody was allowed to bring any guests. He kept an eye on meals while being prepared, and after eating nobody was allowed to take any food left with him. Such an offence was punished. The person was put in prison into the tower. In winter he also was in charge of heating. It was not possible to heat more than it was necessary. The reason was not only in saving fire-wood but also trying to avoid fires. He watched a baker and a bread-maker. In spring, while the days were longer, the burgrave together with a hunter, a rector and a keeper of the fishpond went round the forests and decided which fire-wood would be used. They also ordered the drudgery. A miller had to inform him how much flour he ground and how much flour was taken to the castle.


Further information:
History of the Vyšší Brod Region
Rožmberk nad Vltavou
Rožmberk nad Vltavou Castle
Horní Dvořiště