Michael Szécsényi

Michael Szécsényi (Hungarian: Szécsényi Mihály; 1317–1377) was a Hungarian prelate in the 14th century, who served as Bishop of Vác from 1342 to 1362, then Bishop of Eger from 1362 (or 1363) until his death.

Michael Szécsényi
Bishop of Eger
Szécsényi Mihály seal.jpg
Seal of Michael Szécsényi
Term ended1377
PredecessorNicholas Dörögdi
SuccessorEmeric Cudar
Other post(s)Bishop of Vác
by Pope John XXII
Consecration8 July 1342
by Pope Clement VI
Personal details
ParentsThomas Szécsényi
N Visontai


Szécsényi came from the powerful and prestigious Szécsényi noble family. He was born in 1317,[1] as the second son of Thomas Szécsényi, Voivode of Transylvania and his first wife, an unidentified daughter of landowner Paul Visontai. One of his brothers was Kónya Szécsényi, Ban of Croatia.[2] Michael was blind in his left eye due to a childhood-related cataract throughout his life, according to a contemporary document.[1]

As a younger son of his family, Szécsényi entered ecclesiastical career, which rapidly progressed due to his father's influence, who also became a relative to the Angevin dynasty after his second marriage to Anne, Duchess of Auschwitz. At the age of 15, Michael was made Canon of Esztergom by Pope John XXII in 1332. In the following year, he was elected Provost of Pressburg (today Bratislava, Slovakia), when he still was in "puberty age", as a document recorded. Consequently, a certain Thomas the Red served as "administrator" of the provostry beside him. Szécsényi remained in his position until 1342. He frequently resided in his manor at Visegrád, near the royal court.[1] Subsequently, he was also elected a member of the collegiate chapter of Székesfehérvár. During his minority, Szécsényi's two tutors were John, a canon of Pressburg and Nicholas Zalai, a canon of Székesfehérvár.[3]

Szécsényi was elected Bishop of Vác on 11 October 1341, replacing Dominican friar Rudolph, who died in office. His election was confirmed by the newly elected Pope Clement VI on 8 July 1342.[4] The pope permitted his consecration by every bishop in his papal breve on 15 November 1343.[5] Szécsényi held the bishopric for more than twenty years. At the end of 1362 or early 1363, he was transferred to the Diocese of Eger. He first appeared as Bishop of Eger on 19 February 1363. His election was confirmed by Pope Urban V on 28 November 1363.[6]

In April 1363, Szécsényi acquired the village of Demjén and its mill from the Eger Chapter, in exchange for the tithe of Göncruszka.[1] In the following years, he had several conflicts with the chapter. For instance, he unlawfully occupied the half of ecclesiastical estates in the eastern side of the Eger valley, for which the chapter protested against him on 3 March 1365. In the next year, King Louis I made it possible for the realm's nobles to designate the Diocese of Eger as heirs in their last wills. In 1367, Szécsényi handed over the Makovica Castle (today Zborov in Slovakia) to baron Peter Cudar for 200 gold ducats per year. In December 1371, Szécsényi held a three-day synod in his diocese, dedicated to its patron saint John the Apostle. Under his bishopric, the construction of the cathedral continued, as a letter from Pope Gregory XI proved it in 1372. In the same year, he acquired the village of Bátor, Heves County from the Báthory family on the occasion of a lawsuit.[7] In 1375, Nicholas, Bishop of Milkovia styled himself as a subordinate to the Diocese of Eger.[8] Szécsényi was last mentioned as a living person on 13 March 1377.[4] He died before 2 October 1377.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d Sugár 1984, p. 117.
  2. ^ a b Engel: Genealógia (Genus Kacsics, 4. Szécsényi branch)
  3. ^ Galla 1970, p. 124.
  4. ^ a b Engel 1996, p. 75.
  5. ^ Galla 1970, p. 123.
  6. ^ Engel 1996, p. 68.
  7. ^ Sugár 1984, p. 118.
  8. ^ Sugár 1984, p. 119.


  • Engel, Pál (1996). Magyarország világi archontológiája, 1301–1457, I. [Secular Archontology of Hungary, 1301–1457, Volume I] (in Hungarian). História, MTA Történettudományi Intézete. ISBN 963-8312-44-0.
  • Galla, Ferenc (1970). "A váci egyházmegye püspökei [The Bishops of the Diocese of Vác]". In Bánk, József (ed.). Váci egyházmegyei almanach Szent István millénium évében (in Hungarian). Roman Catholic Diocese of Vác. pp. 103–201.
  • Sugár, István (1984). Az egri püspökök története [The History of the Bishops of Eger] (in Hungarian). Szent István Társulat. ISBN 963-360-392-7.
Born: 1317  Died: 1377
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by Bishop of Vác
Succeeded by
Preceded by Bishop of Eger
Succeeded by