The House of Gediminid or simply the Gediminids (Lithuanian: Gediminaičiai, Samogitian: Gedėmėnātē, Belarusian: Гедзімінавічы, Polish: Giedyminowicze, Ukrainian: Гедиміновичі;) were a dynasty of monarchs in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania that reigned from the 14th to the 16th century.[1] A cadet branch of this family, known as the Jagiellonian dynasty, reigned also in the Kingdom of Poland, Kingdom of Hungary and Kingdom of Bohemia.[2] Several other branches ranked among the leading aristocratic dynasties of Russia and Poland into recent times.[1]

(Гедзімінавічы, Гедымінавічы, Gediminaičiai, Gedėmėnātē, Giedyminowicze, Гедиміновичі, Гедиминовичи)
Recueil d'armoiries polonaises - Columns of Gediminas.svg
Parent housePalemonid dynasty
CountryGrand Duchy of Lithuania
Founded1315 or 1316
Final rulerSigismund II of Poland
TitlesKing/Grand Duke of Lithuania
Cadet branchesJagiellonian dynasty
Trubetskoy family
House of Golitsyn

The Gediminas' Cap was used during the inaugurations of Gediminids as Lithuanian monarchs in the Vilnius Cathedral and symbolized the dynasty's continuity.[3][4][5]

Their monarchical title in Lithuanian primarily was, by some folkloristic data, kunigų kunigas ("Duke of Dukes"), and later on, didysis kunigas ("Great/High Duke") or, in a simple manner, karalius or kunigaikštis.[citation needed] In the 18th century, the latter form was changed into tautological didysis kunigaikštis, which nevertheless would be translated as "Grand Duke" (for its etymology, see Grand Prince).


The origin of Gediminas himself is much debated. Some sources say he was Vytenis' ostler, others that he was of peasant stock. Some historians consider him as the son or grandson of Lithuanian or Yatvingian King/duke Skalmantas. Most scholars agree, however, that Gediminas was Vytenis' brother (the parentage of Vytenis is explained differently in various fake genealogies, compiled from the 16th century onwards; according to the latest Polish research, his parentage cannot be established).[6]

Confirmed Gediminid rulersEdit

Branches of the dynastyEdit

The Gediminid symbol in Rambynas Hill, Lithuania

The Eastern Orthodox branches of the family were mostly Ruthenian, which also was one of the two main languages of their established state. Some of these families (e.g., Czartoryski) later converted to Roman Catholicism and became Polonized. Others (e.g., Galitzine) moved to Muscovy and became thoroughly Russified.

In Poland, most Gediminid families (such as Olelkowicz-Słucki, Wiśniowiecki, Zbaraski) are extinct, but at least some families survive to the present: Chowański, Czartoryski, Sanguszko, Siesicki (Dowmont-Siesicki, Szeszycki) and Koriatowicz-Kurcewicz.[citation needed].

The Russian Gediminid families include Bulgakov, Golitsin, Kurakin, Khovansky, Troubetzkoy, Mstislavsky, Belsky, and Volynsky.[citation needed] Some of these families also survive as of 2020.

Gediminid descendantsEdit

I. The descendants of *Bujwid Vytianis Rex. King Lithuania.

  1. Dukes Prince of Bujwid

I. The descendants of Narimantas:

  1. Dukes of Pinsky (nobility) [ru] (faded at the end of the 15th century)
    1. Dukes of Kurcewicze [pl]
      1. Dukes of Buremscy [pl]
  2. Dukes of Patrikeyev [ru]
    1. Dukes of Bulgakov (nobility) [ru]
    2. Dukes of Kurcewicze [pl]
      1. Dukes of Golitsyn
      2. Dukes of Kurakin
    3. Dukes of Schentyatev (nobility) [ru]
    4. Dukes of Khovansky (nobility) [ru]
  3. Dukes of Korecki
    1. Dukes of Ruzhinsky (nobility) [ru]

II. The descendants of Algirdas:

  1. Duke Andrei of Polotsk
    1. Dukes of Polubinsky (nobility) [ru]
    2. Dukes of Lukomsky (nobility) [ru]
  2. Dmitrijus Algirdaitis
    1. Dukes of Trubetskoy (Trubchevsk)
  3. Konstantinas Algirdaitis [ru]
    1. Dukes of Czartoryski
  4. Vladimiras Algirdaitis
    1. Olelkaičiai (descendants of Aleksandras Olelka [ru])
      1. Dukes of Slutsky (nobility) [ru] (faded at the end of the 16th century)
    2. Dukes of Belsky
  5. The descendants of Kaributas
    1. Dukes of Zbarazhsky (nobility) [ru]
      1. Dukes of Wiśniowiecki
      2. Dukes of Voronetsky (nobility) [ru]
      3. Dukes of Nesvisky [pl]
      4. Dukes of Porytskie (nobility) [ru]
  6. The descendants of Fiodoras Algirdaitis [ru]
    1. Dukes of Hurkowicze (nobility) [pl]
    2. Dukes of Kobryn
    3. Dukes of Sanguszko
  7. The Jagiellons
  8. The descendants of Lengvenis
    1. Dukes of Mstislavsky

III. The descendants of Kęstutis

  1. Patrikas Kęstutaitis
  2. Vaidotas Kęstutaitis
  3. Butautas Kęstutaitis
  4. Vytautas the Great
  5. Tautvilas Kęstutaitis
  6. Žygimantas Kęstutaitis

IV. The descendants of Jaunutis:

  1. Dukes of Zaslavsky
    1. Dukes of Mstislavsky

V. The descendants of Liubartas (faded in the first half of the 15th century)

VI. Koriatowicz [uk], descended from Karijotas

  1. Dukes of Podilskyi (nobility)
  2. Dukes of Volynsky (nobility) [ru]

Family treeEdit

Butegeidis Bujwid
(? – c. 1292)
King/G. Duke of Lith., c. 1285 – c. 1292
Budvydas-Pukuveras Bujwid
(? – c. 1296)
King/G. Duke of Lith., c. 1292 – c. 1296
Vytenis Bujwid
(? – 1316)
King/G. Duke of Lith., c. 1296–1316
(c. 1275–1341)
King/G. Duke of Lith., 1316–1341
G. Duke of Lith., 1341–1345
(c. 1296–1377)
King/G. Duke of Lith., 1345–1377
Ladislaus (Jogaila)
(c. 1351–1434)
King/G. Duke of Lith., 1377–1401
King of Poland, 1386–1434
(c. 1370–1452)
King/G. Duke of Lith., 1430–1432
King/G. Duke of Lith., 1401–1430
Žygimantas Kęstutaitis
(? – 1440)
King/G. Duke of Lith., 1432–1440
Jagiellon branch

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "Gediminaičiai". Visuotinė lietuvių enciklopedija (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 16 February 2023.
  2. ^ Kiaupa, Zigmantas. "Jogailaičiai". Visuotinė lietuvių enciklopedija (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 16 February 2023.
  3. ^ Gudavičius, Edvardas. "Gedimino kepurė" [Gediminas' Cap]. Visuotinė lietuvių enciklopedija (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 10 April 2023.
  4. ^ Gudavičius, Edvardas. "Inauguracija". Visuotinė lietuvių enciklopedija (in Lithuanian). Retrieved 10 April 2023.
  5. ^ Mickūnaitė, Giedrė. (2006). Making a great ruler: Grand Duke Vytautas of Lithuania. Budapest: Central European University Press. p. 149. ISBN 9637326588. Retrieved 10 April 2023.
  6. ^ Jan Tęgowski, "Pierwsze pokolenia Gedyminowiczów", 1999

External linksEdit