Family and parents
The Chodkiewiczs were a 15th–18th-century Lithuanian magnate family. Jan Karol became its most famous member. His father was Jan Hieronimowicz (circa 1537‒1579-08-04), who held the positions of the Elder of Samogitia, Governor of Livonia and Castellan of Vilnius. His mother was Krystyna Zborowska (d. 1588), daughter of the Castellan of Cracow. Jan Karol was married twice. His first wife was Zofia Mielecka (1566 or 1567‒1618-11). With her, Jan Karol had two sons: Jan Hieronim Chryzostom (1598-07-15‒1613-07-02) and Kazimierz, and daughter Anna (d. 1625). After Zofia died, Jan Karol married Princess Anna Alojza Ostrogska (d. 1654-01-27).
Lenkijos nacionalinis muziejus. Čartoriskių biblioteka (Krokuva) 44 III Cim
“The Nest of Virtue” by the Polish and Czech heraldist, writer and poet B. Paprocki (1543–1614) is one of the most important examples of Polish and Lithuanian Renaissance heraldry. The book separately describes Polish and Lithuanian coats of arms and introduces the most important families and their most prominent members.
Lenkijos nacionalinis muziejus. Čartoriskių biblioteka (Krokuva) Rkps. 1352 IV, p. 43
“The Nomenclator or the Holy Book of Names of Families and Coats of Arms in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and Its Provinces” by Vilnius University professor, historian and heraldist Albertas Kojalavičius-Vijūkas (1609–1677) is the most comprehensive and most important treatise on heraldry of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.
LMAVB RSS G3-633/1
Austrijos nacionalinė biblioteka (Viena) 40.E.45
Collected poems by Joannes Mylius entitled “Victory over the Muscovites, achieved by Supreme Commander Lord Chodkiewicz, Castellan of Vilnius, Elder of Grodno, under the reign of Sigismund Augustus by the Grace of God King of Poland, Grand Duke of Lithuania etc.” is a monument to courageous Lithuanian military commanders and their regiments, who defeated a several times larger Moscow army in the battle at Ula on January 26, 1564.
Austrijos nacionalinė biblioteka (Viena) 40.E.45
Collected poems by Joannes Mylius entitled “Victory over the Muscovites, achieved by Supreme Commander of the recruited army Lord Chodkiewicz, Castellan of Vilnius, Elder of Grodno, under the reign of Sigismund Augustus by the Grace of God King of Poland, Grand Duke of Lithuania etc.” is a monument to courageous Lithuanian military commanders and their regiments, who defeated a several times larger Moscow army in the battle at Ula on January 26, 1564.
Jan Hieronimowicz Chodkiewicz (circa 1537‒1579-08-04) is a Grand Duchy statesman, a participant in the battle of Ula. In 1547, he enrolled into Königsberg University, in 1550, into Leipzig University, and later, into the University of Wittenberg. He learned military science on the battlefield, when he fought for Emperor Charles V against King Francis I. In 1555, he returned to Lithuania. In 1559, Jan Chodkiewicz became Pantler of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, and in late 1563 or early 1564, Elder of Samogitia. On August 2, 1566, Sigismund Augustus appointed him Governor of Livonia. In 1574, he became Castellan of Vilnius. In 1559 at the earliest, he married Krystyna Zborowska, daughter of the Castellan of Cracow. This elegy is based on the facts of his pre-1565 biography.
LMAVB RS F37-10643, lap. 1r–1v
A warning letter from Jan Hieronimowicz Chodkiewicz, the Elder of Samogitia, to a Gondinga county nobleman, Valentinas Jonavičius, with an original Chodkiewicz seal.
LMAVB RS F264-1263, lap. 1r, 5v
The testament of Zofia Mielecka Chodkiewicz with her original signature.
VUB III 10847
“Seven Chodkiewicz heroes, commanders of the Lithuanian Army, congratulate the Vilnius Palatine etc., Krzysztof Chodkiewicz, on his entering Vilnius” by Petras Kazimieras Lackis (Petrus Casimirus Lacki, circa 1620 – circa 1666) is a collection of panegyric pieces (prose eulogies and odes), which was published by Vilnius Jesuit Academy in honor of the new Vilnius Voivode, Krzysztof Chodkiewicz (d. 1652-10-03; appointed Voivode before 1642-07-13), on the occasion of his ceremonious entry into Vilnius.
LMAVB RS F1-175
Letter from Sigismund Augustus, Grand Duke of Lithuania, in which he gifts Jan Chodkiewicz the large Grūstė county in Samogitia for his special virtues, war services and to reimburse him for the expenses made in the first decade of the Livonian war recruiting soldiers and defending castles. The letter lists more than 70 villages and the town of Bareikiai.
LNM N 483
Silver half mark minted in Livonia during the rule of Jan Karol’s father, Jan Hieronimowicz Chodkiewicz (1573).
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“Brief commentary on the history of Poland after the death of Sigismund Augustus in July of 1572 in Knyszyn” was published in 1647, in Gdańsk, by the Archbishop of Lvov, secretary to Sigismund Augustus and Stephen Batory, Jan Dymitr Solikowski (1539–1603). This work mentions Jan Chodkiewicz and his contribution to approving the establishment of Vilnius Jesuit Academy.