The uprising of peasants in Harju and Läänemaa

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September 1560

In autumn 1560 the Russians plundered also Harju and Läänemaa in addition to the surrounding of Viljandi and Järvamaa. Therefore the peasants there also occurred in the difficult situation who could not be protected by the masters.

Thus the uprising of the peasants broke out which involved the parishes of Märjamaa, Hageri and Kullamaa. The peasants chose a smith as their king whom they drove in the carriage and put two hats with the branches stuck through them on the head as a crown.

It is hard to tell anything about the political statements of the peasants, but it seems that foremost they expected, just as during the uprising of Jüriöö, the support of Sweden. They also asked unsuccessfully help from Tallinn town council. Thereafter 300 peasants started to siege Koluvere stronghold, but the troop of Christoph von Münchhausen, stift bailiff of Läänemaa, smashed their troop.

They had namely taken along some peasants from Lihula whom they pushed in front of them by giving an impression just as the besiegers will get some help. When they noticed their error, it was too late. The "king" of the peasants was captured and executed.

Mati Laur. Eesti ajalugu varasel uusajal 1550-1800. Tallinn: Eesti Entsüklopeediakirjastus, 1999.


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