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Lineage, War, Family – Michel von Ehenheim (1462/63-1518)

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Item, in this year [1491] on the day of St. Michael the Archangel [29 September], the Roman king [Maximilian] set out from Vienna for Stuhlweissenburg with a finely outfitted army on horseback and foot and a finely outfitted wagon train. On the road before Vienna we, the Franconian and Swabian troop of [The League with] St. George’s Shield, and I, too, was mustered, along with Christoph von Limpurg. And I stayed with the king for nearly one year. We Franconians nominated Sir Ewolt von Lichtenstein as our captain and Wilhelm Shiroldingen as our ensign. And the Swabians nominated Sir Wilhelm von Knoringen as captain, but the ensign’s name I don’t know. The troop of St. George comprised nearly one hundred horses, and, according to custom, we Franconians and Swabians were placed in the van. [ . . . ] [There followed a dispute over who should have the leading place on the march.] But when the king understood it, he gave the van entirely to us, just as our forefathers had with emperors and kings, as they expended their goods and gave their blood with the troop of St. George. Therefore, you Franconians and Swabians, tread in the footsteps of your ancestors and stick to this company! [ . . . ]


In 1481, shortly after the water receded following the great flood on the Rhine, a tournament was held at Mainz. Jörg von Ehenheim sent me and his squire, Michel Gabler, to Mainz for the tourney. It was the first tournament in which I took part.

Shortly thereafter there was a tourney at Heidelberg, one in the morning and another in the afternoon. I, Michael von Ehenheim, traveled there with my gracious lord, Margrave Frederick of Brandenburg, in whose service I then was. My brother, Ludwig von Ehenheim, who was at that time in the service of the bishop of Eichstätt came, too, and we both participated. Elector Palatine Philip and Duke George of Bavaria took part in the other tournament. [ . . . ]

Item, shortly thereafter a tournament was held at Onolzbach. It was organized by Margrave Albert (3), elector of Brandenburg, and held in the open field. There was fencing, and on the fence planks, which were placed crosswise, Elector Albert of Brandenburg stood with his ladies and other ladies from the four lands (4). [ . . . ] This was the fourth tournament in which I, Michael von Ehenheim, took part. [ . . . ]

The first tournament was held at Würzburg, when I, Michael von Ehenheim, was young. Although it is called “the first,” many had been held earlier. The last had been held at Ingolstadt thirty years before Würzburg, where the Franconians revived it. The old Count William of Henneberg was there at Würzburg with many knights and squires and 200 horses, plus the ladies, and he paid their costs. This tournament was held on the Tuesday or Wednesday after [12-13 January] 1479. From then until now, 1516, 36 years have gone by. Thereafter came the tournament at Mainz. [ . . . ]


Item, I, Michael von Ehenheim, was dubbed knight after Margrave Sigismund took Neunhofen in the Low Countries during the campaign to Ghent. [ . . . ]

(3) Elector Albert (r. 1470-86), called “Achilles” and known as “the German fox” – trans.
(4) Bavaria, Swabia, Franconia, Rhineland – trans.

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