Integration of Silesia with the Bohemian Crown as seen by Charles IV. Introduction to the discussion about silesian identity as a region and its position within the Bohemian Crown
Legal status as a part of the state had an essential meaning for each region in the process of their forming. From this point of view, a connection with the Kingdom of Bohemia between 14th and 18th centuries, had a crucial meaning for Silesia. Most of dukes already in 1327 and 1329 paid a homage to the Bohemian King, and some of duchies were even ruled directly by the royal authorities. The newly shaped whole Kingdom was named Corona regni Bohemiae by Charles IV, and was to last ‘forever’, i.e. independently from any ruling dynasty. Bohemian Kings John and Charles of Luxembourg dynasty reinforced the royal authority in Silesia, especially in duchies ruled directly. The royal administration was concentrated in Wrocław. Thanks to this the position of the city increased and it gradually became the centre not only of the royal estates, but the centre of Silesia in general. Bohemian Kings could not execute their power directly in fief estates and had to use masters of the estates. These relations were strengthened both by marriage projects (i.e. marriage between Charles IV and Anna of Schwiednitz) and presence of numerous Silesian dukes at the Bohemian court. A Luxembourgish model of medieval Bohemian state did not influenced at all the process of forming a regional identification of all its particular parts. In the same time a special network connected with the activity of the ruler and the court developed and brought integrating effects. This trend weakened, however, essentially in 15th century.