Encyclopedia > Region Český Krumlov > History of the Český Krumlov Region > Aristocratic Families in the Český Krumlov Region

The Švamberks

Český Krumlov Castle, Coats-of-arms corridor, seal of the Schwamberg family, foto: Lubor Mrázek The Švamberks ranked between old Czech families with an origin in the Western Bohemia at the family seat castle Krasíkov. Origins of the Švamberks family can be found already in the first half of the 13th. Century. In atmosphere of ritter fashion they named themselves by germanisation of their coat-of-arms symbol-Swan (Schwann). They penetrated the South Bohemia during the 15th and the 16th Century, when they obtained manors Zvíkov, Milevsko, Orlík and Bechyně. The greatest power influence reached the Švamberks as heirs to the Rožmerks possession.

The most of the large Rožmberks possession was supposed to (according to treaty from 1484 about mutual heritages between the Rožmberks and the Švamberks), in case that one of families dies out shall after death of Petr Vok of Rožmberk pass to friendly Švamberks family, because members of both families married often with each other. At the end of the 16th Century, when was clear that matrimony of Petr Vok and Kateřina of Ludanice will stay childless, released Jan Jiří of Švamberk his justly claims for the Rožmberks heritage and called for recognition of the mutual family agreement. But chiefly he protested against legacies and sales of some of the Rožmberks manors and relation between both families were spoilt by trials, suits disputes over validity of the possession transfers. In 1597 gave Petr Vok to his nephew Jan Zrinský of Seryn, son of count Mikuláš Zrinský and sister Eva of Rožmberk, manor and castle Rožmberk and after his death also Třeboň and Vyšší Brod, what called out number of protests from landlords of Švamberk. Mutual disputes intensified after manor Český Krumlov was sold to the Emperor Rudolf II. 1601. The heritage disputes were ended by testimony of Petr Vok of Rožmberk written in 1610 at Třeboň manor. This testimony contained confirmation of transfer of castle Rožmberk to Jan Zrinský of Seryn under condition that in case of his death shall this manor obtain Jan Jiří of Švamberk.

After connecting of the Švamberks and the Rožmberks heritages the Švamberks ranked between the richest Czech nobility, because after death of Petr Vok of Rožmberk in 1611 and unexpected death of Jan Zrinský of Seryn in 1612 they obtained manors Rožmberk, Nové Hrady, Libějovice, Borovany and Třeboň with residential chateau.

The Švamberks coat of arms After death of Jan Jiří of Švamberk in 1617 took over administration over family possession his son Petr. He enforced himself as a leader of the Czech noblemen opposition against the Emperor Ferdinand II. Although Petr of Švamberk died in 1620, possession of family was confiscated and manors Rožmberk and Nové Hrady gained Karel Bonaventura Buquoy, the Emperor´s army general.

Coat of arms description:
The central figure of the Švamberks family is a white swan (Schwann) with a golden beak (labium) on the red field. After gaining the Rožmerks heritage at the beginning of the 17th Century improve the Švamberks their coat of arms by motive from the Rožmberks crest in the right half of divided shield.

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