Vilem Albrecht I. the Count Krakowsky of Kolowraty
(February 18th, 1600 – February 18th, 1688 in Prague)
Chamberlain and actual secret councilor
Governor of Prague´s New Town and Chamber councilor (1635 – 1647)
General war commissioner in Bohemia (1647)
President of the Czech chamber (March 22nd 1650 – 1656)
Chief Feudal judge of the Czech kingdom (August 20th, 1656 – 1678)
Imperial count-ship (August 25th, 1671)
Czech count-ship (November 14th, 1674)
The chief bailiff of the Czech kingdom (January 15th, 1678 – 1688)
The founder of the fideikomis for primogeniture and secundo-geniture (January 22nd, 1688).
Son of Bernard Alexander Krakowsky of Kolowraty (1592 – 1613) and of Ludmila Tyrovska of Einsiedel (1604 – 1617), who remained true to lawful catholic Habsburg dynasty during the Protestant rebellion. Although he became one of the Reformation commissioners after the victorious battle at Bila Hora (White mountain), he did not abuse his position to cheap enrichment. He married five times, has collected large estates and was hereditary ennobled.
First marriage to Anna Wiedersperg of Wiedesperg
He got married for the first time before the year 1624 to Anna Eva Wiedersperg of Wiedersperg (1624 – February 20th, 1638), daughter of Jan Wiedersperg of Wiedersperg on Tynec (Teinitzl in German) and of Alzbeta Prichovska of Prichovice. Anna inherited Tynec estate from her father (5km south of Klatovy) and in 1624 she ceded it to her husband. With judicious economic politics he raised funds to purchase number of surrounding villages and he made the restored Tynec fortress the center of quite large property to which sixteen villages belonged in mid 17th century. He and his successors continued to buy up other villages to constantly extend the property and in mid 18th century it included thirty-four villages.
For example, he bought second part of Vrhavec village (5 km south of Klatovy) from family Kousek of Sobeticky in 1628 and in 1635 he bought the last part of Mikulas Jetrich Cejka of Olbramovice, so he could add the whole village if Vrhavec to Tynec estate. But the local fortress was abandoned and falling into disrepair. It still stood in the middle of the 18th century, as evidenced by its towering building in fresco painting in Tynec castle. However, there are no traces after the fortress today.
In 1636, Sir Vilem Albert kept house number 644-51 in Prague´s New Town in Stepanska street until the year 1642, when he probably received by reference from Pribik Jenisek of Ujezd na Breznici, the Royal prosecutor, house number 933 in Old Town square. Kolowrat family members used to live there during their Prague stays until the year 1763 when it was bought by neighbour Jan Frantisek the knight of Goltz.
The first marriage of Vilem Albrecht Krakowsky of Kolowraty remained childless. When his wife died, she was buried in Church of Our lady of the Snows in Prague´s New Town and her headstone is still located on the epistle side of the St. Cross altar.
Second marriage to Anna Katerina Rozdrazovska of Rozdrazov
Vilem Albrecht remarried for the second time on June 26th, 1640. This time he married Countess Anna Katerina Rozdrazovska of Rozdrazov (1640 – April 13th, 1652), daughter of Count Vaclav Rozdrazovsky of Rozdrazov and Marie Berkova of Duba and Lipa. She was first married to Wolfgang Josef Leopold of Strahlendorf and after his death (†1638) she was also established in 1640 as a guardian of her two minor sons Friedrich Leopold and Petr Ulrich. When they died shortly after their father, she became the heir of Chlumec pod Kysperkem (Kulm) estate. Her children from second marriage, Jan Frantisek, Anna Ludmila and Katerina Barbora Krakowsky of Kolowraty inherited it after her.
In 1648, Sir Vilem Albrecht bought village Patrovice nad Uhlavou (four and half kilometers northeast of Nyrsko) of Jan Vilem Prichovsky of Prichovice. He later joined it to Desenice estate. The local fortress was not later inhabited and soon ceased to exist.
In 1650 Vilem Albrecht Krakowsky of Kolowraty bought Dvur in Unhost of Jan Jiri and Karl Gottfried, brothers Kaplirs of Sulevice for 1757 guldens and immediately he bought wood of the city for eight guldens for construction of Cerveny Mlyn (the Red Mill). In the same year he accepted two yards (Cejkovsky and Vlkovsky), that laid burned from the wartime as a guarantee for six years from Vaclav Jindrich Cejka of Olbramovice in the value of six hundred guldens. As sir Cejka was not able to repay the debt, he ceded both yards and cottage bought of Anezka Livova in hereditary possession to Vilem Albrecht Krakowsky of Kolowraty.
Sometime around this time, ie in the middle of the 17th century, he bought village Strezimer (seven kilometers southeast of Klatovy) and he added it to the Tynec estate. Jachym Griespek of Griespach, the last male member of his family line in Bohemia, died in the local fortress on December 27th, 1678. It later became desolated and eventually disappeared without a trace.
When Lady Anna Eva died on April 13th, 1652, she was buried in Prague on Mount Zion (ie. Strahov) in Church of the Virgin Mary´s Ascension of the Premonstratensian. Four children were born from this marriage - Anna Ludmila (1650 – 1718), Katerina Barbora (1650 – 1712), Anna Alzbeta (1647 – 1650) and Jan Frantisek (1650 – 1723).
Sir Vilem Albrecht is documented as the owner of Male Chysky manor close to MilevskoiIn the years 1652 – 1653.
Third marriage to Marie Alzbeta Liebsteinska of Kolowraty
Lord of Kolowraty concluded his third marriage on August 25th, 1653, when he married Marie Alzbeta Liebsteinska of Kolowraty (1646 – June 18th, 1660), daughter of udalman Ferdinand Liebsteinsky of Kolowraty and of Katerina Ludmila Krakowska of Kolowraty. She was first married on September 3rd, 1646 to udalman Maxmilan of Aldringen on Teplice and Zelechovice (†11. 6. 1650).
Vilem Albrecht of Kolowraty continued to purchase estates. In 1654 he bought village Srbice (six kilometers southeast of Klatovy) of Anna Jakobina Rosenhainerova and added it to the Tynec estate. Local fortress later disappeared. In 1655 he bought Dolni Adrspach (sixteen kilometers northeast of Trutnov) together with three villages of Count Ludvik Carraffy, Spanish colonel in the Imperial service, but he ceded this remote enclave to Liebsteinsky of Kolowraty family in 1661.
In 1657 he added to the premises of palace in Hradcany on Loretanska street 9, number 177/IV (today called Hrzansky palace) which he received as a dowry from his third wife, a plot of land at Uvoz 28 (number 296/IV). Between 1658 and 1659 he had built a rear five-story building and connecting west wing. In the space bellow the courtyard he had built extensive stables. The adjacent Imperial office complained about the construction, but its objections were rejected.
On October 30th, 1657 sir of Kolowraty bought for 15 000 sixties Meissen manor Skaly with Starkov and Bystry in Teplicke skaly of Beata Krinecka of Hodkov, who moved out of the country for religious reasons. But already on April 25th, 1662, he sold the whole estate to Matous Ferdinand Sobek of Bilenberg, O.S.B, the highest tax collecter in Bohemia, abbot of the Benedictine monastery at St. Nicholas in Prague´s Old Town and in St. Jan pod Skalou, appointed bishop of Hradec Kralove for 20 800 Rheins guldens, so he could establish new diocese. In 1658 after the family Ehiesa died out, he got Zvestovice (12 kilometers southeast of Caslav) with Sirakovice and Spytice. But the following year he sold it to Jan Detrich, Count of Ledebur and Jenikov. Finally, during this period he bought in 1659 village Sobetice (two and half kilometers southeast of Klatovy) of Jakub and Salomena Longin of Longin and added it to Tynec estate. The local fortress did not longer function as a mansion and shortly after perished.
Vilem Albrecht Krakowsky of Kolowraty had two sons from the third marriage - Ferdinand Vaclav (1654) and Maximilian Norbert (1660 – 1721), who later founded separate lineage of Krakowsky of Kolowraty.
After her death in 1660 Marie Alzbeta was laid to sleep in Franciscan Church of Our Lady of the Snows in Prague´s New Town.
Fourth marriage to Alzbeta Apolonie Tserclaes Tilly
On April 24th, 1661, Vilem Albrecht Krakowsky of Kolowraty married for the fourth time. Countess Alzbeta Apolonie Tserclaes Tilly (†18. 8. 1665), daughter of Vaclav Wermer, the Count Tilly zu Preiteneck and of Frantiska Barbora of Liechtenstein became his fourth wife. Her first husband was from June 15th, 1653 Krystof Ferdinand Popel of Lobkowicze, udalman on Bilina (†July 4th, 1658 and was buried in Loreto at Prague´s Castle). After his death, she was appointed guardian of the minor heir Vaclav Ferdinand. Before she died, she transferred her rights and obligations to her second husband Vilem Albrecht of Kolowraty. She participated on construction of seven chapels in the arcade of Loreto in Prague´s Hradcany.
In 1661, lord of Kolowraty bought Tesetin estate of Eva Polyxena Tunechodska of Robcice and Malonice and added it to the Tynec estate. In 1663 he inherited estates Zichovice and Frymburk in Susice region and in 1664 he bought in auction Chyse manor (six kilometers northeast of Zlutice) of Vilem Bedrich Michna of Vacinov who was in debt (†1664 without descendants). He bought it for his eldest daughter Anna Ludmila and he held part of the manor it for her until 1672.
When Alzbeta Apolonie died, she was buried in Franciscan Church of Our Lady of the Snows in Prague´s New Town and Vilem Albrecht took over the patronage of the Prague´s Loreto. No children came from this marriage.
Fifth marriage to Ludmila Eva Frantiska, born Hieserlova of Chodov
On January 25th, 1667, lord Vilem Albrecht married for the fifth and last time. He married Ludmila Eva Frantiska, born Hieserlova of Chodov (1616 – May 28th, 1695), daughter of Bernard Hieserle of Chodov and of Anezka Robenhauptova of Sucha. It was her third marriage. First she was married to Ferdinand se Couriers (†1646), second to Zikmund, Count Wolkenstein (†1663). This marriage was childless, just as the fourth.
In the same year 1667, sir Vilem Albrecht bought part of the Kouskova Lhota estate (6 kilometers south of Klatovy). He bought the rest of the estate in 1687 from Albrecht Hynek Kousek´s widow and added the whole estate with accessories to the Tynec estate. The abandoned fortress eventually perished.
In 1669 Jan Jiri Cejka of Olbramovice sold the Veseli manor (8 kilometers southwest of Klatovi) to sir Vilem Albrecht, who later added it to the Janovice estate.
In 1671 he let a desolate area in Unhost to Metropolitan chapter and in Exchange the chapter was obliged to serve a sung Mass at the main altar and three masses at the altar of St. Kliment for the Krakowsky of Kolowraty family.
On August 25th, the same year 1671, Vilem Albrecht Krakowsky of Kolowraty was ennobled by the Emperor Leopold I to the imperial state, by which he became the Count of Holy Roman Empire (Sancti Romani Imperii Comes).
After the year 1673 he took over the Dolany manor (between Svihov castle and Klatovy), but he did not hold it for long. The manor later became part of the assets of Society of Jesus in Klatovy.
On November 14th, 1674, the Imperial Count Vilem Albrecht Krakowsky of Kolowraty was ennobled by the same emperor Leopold I as the Bohemian king, to hereditary order of Bohemian Count.
In 1678 Maxmiliana Frantiska Kotzova of Dobrse sold the fortress, yard and village Besiny (10 kilometers south of Klatovy) with the right to fill in the pastor and then yards Hubenov and Ulch with villages Hubenov, Ulch, Javori, Rajsky, Zahradka and Tvrdoslav to Count Krakowsky who later added these to the Tynec estate.
As a deeply religious man dedicated to Holy Church of Rome as well as wealthy, influential and leading aristocrat of his time, Vilem Albrecht Count Krakowsky of Kolowraty was involved in unique project of construction of forty-four chapels on the pilgrimage (called Via Sancta, ie. Holy path) from Prague to Stara Boleslav, to the place, where the main patron of the country, St. Wenceslas was murdered and to the Palladium of Czech lands. Only twenty-nine of these chapels are preserved to this day, and without the interior decorations. He became a benefactor of the fortieth chapel, which was dedicated to the invocation of Queen of the Apostles. It depicted St. Weneslas, who appeared to ill Moravian Margrave Jindrich and urged him to pilgrimage to Maria Zell. Donators main estate and patronage Tynec was pictured in the chapel as a local pilgrimage point, with the love statue of Madonna from the 16th century. The fresco was completed with his coat of arms, which was undoubtedly portrayed by mistake with double-headed eagle instead of one-headed female eagle. This chapel was built sometime after January 1678.
The Count did not forget about his patronage duties in Tynec. He had made tinny font with Kolowrats and Hieslerls of Chodov alliance sign (shields under common crown), which is dated 1678 for the local parish church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary.
Count Vilem Albrecht has donated painting of St. Sebastian (one of main patrons against plague) by an unknown artist to the church of St. Havel in Prague´s Old Town out of the gratitude for surviving the terrible plague in 1680. Today the painting is located in southern tower of the same cathedral on the altar of St. Sebastian.
His portrait is preserved in Rychnov nad Kneznou Chateau picture gallery, it is oil on canvas by an unknown artist, which is dated 1682.
A year later (1683) he bought manor Janovice nad Uhlavou (seven and half kilometers southwest of Klatovy), which was later added to Desenice (two and half kilometers southeast of Nyrsko), which he purchased in 1686.
When the Count Kolowrat felt approaching death, on January 22nd, 1688 he did a testament, in which with imperial permission dated October 5th, 1681, established two fideikomis for his off-springs. For primogeniture the fideikomis was cash to the amount of 138 500 guldens and for secundo-geniture was fideikomis composed of yards with option to be sold, such as Tynec, Besin, Srbice, Marvalova Lhota, Desenice and Janovice.
With the death of Vilem Albrecht Count Krakowsky of Kolowraty, rich and extraordinary life journey of a person who managed to elevate himself and his progeny to the level of Czech aristocracy elite, has ended. Besides the wealth that he could gather during his life, he left extensive work accomplished in top municipal offices, where he showed the state and the sovereign valid services that have been deservedly valued by his ennoblement to hereditary count status. He was buried at the Capuchins in Prague at Hradcany.
The widowed Countess Ludmila Eva Frantiska Krakowska of Kolowraty died on May 28th, 1695. She devoted the rest of her life to charitable activities and cultivation of her beloved Loreto at Hradcany. There she was in 1691 responsible for the construction of the St. Joseph Chapel in northeast corner of the cloister. She was one of the most important benefactors and patrons of this sacred place and she is commemorated in a painting next door to the treasury, where she is pictured in a wedding dress jeweled with more than 6500 diamonds. This dress she willed in her testament dated April 20th, 1695 to the Loreto treasure.
Between 1696 – 1699, the famous Diamond Monstrance (also known as the Sun Ray monstrance or Prague Sun), the most interesting artefact of the Loreto treasure, was created from diamonds in the Viennese court goldsmith’s workshop of Johann Baptiste Känischbauer and jeweler Matthias Stegner. The designer of the concept was the Viennese architect Johann Bernard Fischer von Erlach. The monstrance contains 6,580 diamonds and has 54 gold rays. It is 89.5 cm tall, 70–72 cm wide and weighs over twelve kilograms. It was commissioned by the patron of the Loreto, Václav Ferdinand Count Lobkowicz (†8. 10. 1697) and his wife, countess Marie Sophie, nee Dietrichstein. It was Marie Sophie who decided that the priceless monstrance will be made in Vienna. It was thanks to the influence of her brother, Filip Count Dietrichstein, that Fischer von Erlach was called on to design the monstrance. The work had to be transported from Vienna to Prague accompanied by an escort of armed soldiers.
Countess Ludmila Eva Františka, as a great donor of the Prague Loreto, was buried directly in Santa Case, in the very "Heart of the Loreto". She is buried under the pavement of the chapel, that is, above the vault of the crypt, as evidenced by the Loreto Archives. The crypt itself was designated as the final resting place for members of the Lobkowicz patronage family.
Parish church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary
Sir Vilem Albrecht was not only the owner of Tynec, but also one of the patrons of parish Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary of which he took care exemplary. He had built tower with sacristy and oratory above it by the presbytery. In 1674 he had windows in the oratorio completed with carved wood paneling and in the center of the framing there was a sign Stant CoLoVrateo bIna / oratorIa Voto / Ne tarDas BInIs faVtor / a Desse Deus (Stands here as a devout gift from Kolowrat the double oratory, so you God did not hesitate to be protector of the two - ie probably Vilem Albrecht and his wife, Ludmila Eva Frantiska). Even later the alliance coat of arms of Kolowrats and Counts Wrbna was added.
As a patron, he took care of two church bells as well. The first (height 0,68m), dedicated to St. Sebastian, the patron saint against the plague, has a sign around its crown: PER INTERCESSIONEM TVAM. O SANCTE SABASTIANE LIBERA NOS A PESTE + A.D. 1667 (ie. At your intervention, save us from plague + L.P. 1667). On the shell there is Czech inscription: Wysocze Vrozeny Pan Pan Wylem Albrecht Krakowsky z Kolowrat Pan na Teynczy, Chlumczy a Zychowiczych G.M.C. Rada, Komornik, Krakowsky Mistodtziczy a Neyvyzssy SVdi Zemsky w Kralowstwy Czeskem Tento Zwon Keczti a Chwale Bozi a Swatemv Šebestyanovi. Patronv Proti Morv na Wlastni Naklad. Vdelati Sati Gest Raczil Letha Panie 1667 (meaning Highly noble sir Vilem Albrecht Krakowsky of Kolowraty, lord of Tynec, Chlumec, Zichovice, councilor, chamberlain, Royal governor and the provincial supreme judge in the Czech Kingdom. This bell to honor and praise God and St. Sebastian, patron saint against the plague had made at his own expense in the year of our Lord 1667). There is the Kolowrat´s coat of arms on the bell.
The second bell is smaller (height 0,62m) and on the east side of the shell there is the inscription: SENTIANT OMN / ES TVVM / IVVAMEN QVICV / NQVE CELE / BRANT TVAM / SANCTAM / ANNVNCIATIONEM / TV KOLOWRATAE OS / PROTEGE VIRGO TVOS /,
meaning let all feel your help, all who celebrate your holy annunciation, the remains of Kolowrat, Virgin, protect your worshipers.
Beneath the sign there is the alliance coat of arms of Vilem Albrecht Krakowsky of Kolowraty and Ludmila Eva Frantiska Heislerlova of Chodov.