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26 April 1134 – First mention of the name Zagreb

Zagreb

On this day back in 1134, the name Zagreb was first recorded. 

Today the Croatian capital, Zagreb was first recorded in reference to the foundation of the settlement at Kaptol, the seat of the Roman Catholic archbishop in the Upper Town, in 1094. 

On April 26, 1134, the Archbishop of Ostrogon issued the most important historical document of Zagreb, the so-called Felician’s Latin Document.

This was a lawsuit between the bishop of Zagreb, Macilin, and the mayor of Komodo, Adalbert, in which the diocese of Zagreb was ordered to be unfairly stripped of the forest.

The contents of that document would be just one of many court records in Zagreb if there were not two important pieces of information, in fact, crucial facts to shed light on Zagreb’s oldest history. There is no older and more authentic document that tells how King Ladislav Arpadovic founded the diocese of Zagreb, brought in the first bishop, a Slovak named ‘Spirit’, and assigned priests who were proficient in Slavic language as his assistants.

Another unique bit of information in this document is that for the first time in history the name of this city is explicitly mentioned: “zabrabienzem konstituit episkopatum”, translated: for the reigns of the noblest King Ladislav… the said king, inspired by the grace of God, founded the diocese of Zagreb on the advice of those and other nobles.

Former Chaplain of the Bishop of the Spirit, Fancica, now in the service of the Archdiocese of Backa, testified before Bishop Feliciano. Since the disputed forest was alienated during Fancic’s diocese in Zagreb, he, as a credible witness, most likely assisted Archbishop Felicianian in drafting the introductory text of the charter, which discusses the establishment of the diocese of Zagreb.

It is surprising that Fancica did not state the exact year the diocese was founded, though he had personally participated in the act, 40 years before that.

The omission of the most important and crucial year for the founding of the diocese for Zagreb can only be interpreted in two ways: either the document was available and known to everyone at that time, and it was not necessary to enter into the details of its contents – or, in other words, the charter for the establishment of the diocese was never issued.

Kaptol (Photo: Roberta F./CC License)

It is known from history that King Ladislav failed to obtain from Pope Urban II. permission to do so, he had already obtained it from the Countess of Clement III, while only in 1227 did Rome bless the act as a finished matter. Therefore, there is no Zagreb baptismal charter, a charter for the establishment of a diocese, because it never existed.

It is known from history that King Ladislav failed to obtain from Pope Urban II. permission to do so, he had already obtained it from the Countess of Clement III, while only in 1227 did Rome bless the act as a finished matter. Therefore, there is no Zagreb baptismal charter, a charter for the establishment of a diocese, because it never existed.

Source: HRT 

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