The humanities and social science

2021 Issue №2

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Equipment of Prussian lieges in the State of Teutonic Order in the second half of the XIIIth — XIV centuries (on written sources)



The key aspect of incorporation of Prussians, who inhabited the South-East of Baltic region, into the social system of the State of Teutonic Order in the second half of the XIIIth—XIVth centuries was the distribution among them of land estates in exchange of military service and/or taxes. The military duties of Prussians involving defense of lands and participating in the campaigns against political rivals of Order raised the issue of the composition of their weapons which indicated either preserving or changing their current life-style, an important part of which were military affairs. This issue dates back to 1255—1370 and studied on the acts, chronicles and hagiography of wi­der period of the XIth—XVth centuries. The methodology relies on typo­lo­gi­cal and comparative-historical analysis which defines the kinds and types of Prus­sian weapons and their subsequent comparison. The research established links between the arsenal of Prussian lieges and politics of the Order and church, who sought to unify both defensive and offensive weapons of Prussian by involving it in the terms «light weapons» and «service by armour» that were regulated by the norms of Kulm charter. This unification identified the functions of Prussians in the Order’s army (defense of borders, reconnais­san­ce, etc.) and became one of the basis aspects of their incorporation in the new social system.