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The political history of the small territory of Dobrzyń Land became much more complex at the beginning of Władysław Jagiełło’s rule (1386–1434). Władysław of Opole pledged part of Dobrzyń Land (the castle of Złotoria, 1391) to the Teutonic Knights. Then in 1392, after a short war against the king of Poland, Władysław of Opole pawned the entirety of Dobrzyń Land to the Teutonic knights. Neither King Władysław Jagiełło nor the Polish political elite recognized the legality of the pledge. However, the rule of the Teutonic Knights in Dobrzyń Land led to the polarization of political attitudes among the local noblemen. A faction of local noble elites, the so-called Teutonic party, accepted the rule of the Order and collaborated eagerly with the temporary rulers of the land. Another faction, the so-called the royal party, did not agree to the rule of the Order and chose to emigrate to territories ruled directly by Władysław Jagiełło. Their domains in Dobrzyń Land were confiscated by the Order. The Polish king in response gave them temporary possessions within the territory of the kingdom. The situation reversed in 1405 when Dobrzyń Land was redeemed by Władysław Jagiełło. As a consequence, the refugees returned and redeemed land confiscated by the Order. Repression in turn by the Polish ruler induced some of the Teutonic party to seek the protection of the Order in Prussia. A few years later, as a result of the Polish-Lithuanian–Teutonic war (1409–1411), Dobrzyń Land was again occupied by the Teutonic Knights. Once more, some of the nobles fled from their homeland to territories unoccupied by the Teutonic Knights, while some of the Teutonic party returned to Dobrzyń Land. In the end, as a result of the Teutonic Knights’s defeat at the Battle of Grunwald (1410) and decisions of the First Peace of Toruń (1411), Dobrzyń Land came again under the long-term rule of Polish kings. That meant the return of refugees from the royal party and again forced the Teutonic Knights’ supporters to go into exile. In the end, some of the latter reconciled with the Polish king and came back to their homeland. Some, however, remained in the Teutonic State, where they were given domains.

In: East Central Europe