Voyages et ambassades by Guillebert de Lannoy (1421): A Critical Analysis of the Information about the Grand Duchy of Lithuania

  • Vladislavas Gulevičius
Keywords: Guillebert de Lannoy, Vytautas, Jogaila, Jurgis Gedgaudas, Kachubeev (Khadjibey) castle


The article provides a comprehensive analysis of the reliability of the historical events described by Guillebert de Lannoy in connection with the mention of the construc­ tion of a castle during his passage through the lands of Galicia, Podolia, Moldavia, and the Crimean Khanate (1421). Gedgaudas, the headman (starosta) of Podolia, arranged it by the order of Vytautas, Grand Duke of Lithuania. It is considered in historiography that it was either the castle in Belgorod (Ackerman) or Kachubeev (Khadjibey) castle. The author reconstructed de Lannoy’s route: the means of trans­ port, the speed, the circumstances of his journey, and the accuracy of the description of his meetings with Jogaila, King of Poland, Vytautas, Grand Duke of Lithuania, Gedgaudas, the headman (starosta) of Podolia, and Alexander, the Moldavian ruler. The author concludes that many of the testimonies are unreliable because they are memoirs and not travel records. Moreover, he proves that the mention of the cons­ truction of the castle by Gedgaudas was erroneously attributed to another territory: it was built not in Belgorod or Kachubeev but in Lithuanian Podolia, on the left bank of the Dniester near Kamenets.