The Nobility as Bearers of Regional Identity in Fourteenth Century Transylvania


This article seeks to apply some theoretical definitions of regional identity, as refined in the field of social sciences, to the behaviour of one segment of the inhabitants of Transylvanian in the fourteenth century, namely the nobility. The analysis sought to identify those cases and examples of activities pertaining to what was called the “factual” or “instrumental” elements of the regional identity, which materialized in actions carried out by the community of Transylvanian nobles. The investigation of the primary sources has identified several examples of the community of nobles of Transylvania who planned and executed various projects, consisting in petitions for redressing grievances, which contributed to the consolidation of the group’s position within Transylvania and in relation with the local ecclesiastical and lay authorities. The collective charters of privilege issued by the kings of Hungary, the voivodes of Transylvania, and the bishop of Transylvania in 1324, 1335, 1342, 1344, 1355,1365,1366 at the requests of the Transylvanian nobility represent instances of “instrumental” or “factual” regional identity.

regional identity, nobility, collective privileges, Transylvania.