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Alembek family. Those who made Lviv great and European

Yevhen Huliuk


Noble origin and respected status in society, education at the best universities of his time and awareness of the leading trends in world development, real estate in the centre of Lviv and high public activity, participation in the political life of the city and concern not only for one's well-being but also for the peace and safety of the city, the health of those around...

An ideal image and collective portrait of representatives of the Alembek family looks like this somewhere. Several hundred years ago, they created the face of Lviv and determined the main course and specific directions of the city's development.

Alembeks treated the king, representatives of his entourage, saved Lviv residents from epidemics and fought against politicians who wanted to usurp power; one of the Alembeks is the author of the first description of Lviv for a European audience, and therefore also one of the first popularizers of the city.

The Alembeks lived in a tenement house on Rynok Square, but how often do we hear about them today?

Valerian. Physician of the royal court

In 1653, Valerian Alembek returned to his native Lviv.

In 1634, he received a bachelor's degree in Krakow and, a few years later, a master's degree. Valerian Alembek became a professor of mathematics and philosophy in Zamość, and in 1646-1648 he was in Padua, where he obtained a doctor of medicine degree.

For several years, he worked as a rector of the academy in Zamość, after which he returned to Lviv. Here he performed the functions of adviser and leader, was part of the delegation of negotiators with Bohdan Khmelnytskyi, and was the owner of the most private library in the city. He had very influential debtors.

He was also interested in the king of the Commonwealth of Nations. Mykhailo Korybut Vyshnevetskyi, the son of Yarema Vyshnevetskyi, who was born in the area of Bilyi Kamin in the modern Lviv region, appointed Valerian Alembek as a court physician.


Jan. Save Lviv and tell the world about it

Jan Alembek was one of the most educated figures of his time, a supporter of the ideas of humanism; he loved poetry and wrote himself. This figure repeatedly saved the city from many threats and contributed to the fact that, for the first time in history, people could learn about the city in different parts of the world.   Despite everything, Jan Alembek was twice in prison and was deprived of city citizenship.

He studied as a pharmacist in Wroclaw, and after a short practice in Lviv, he deepened his knowledge in Padua. So, he returned to Lviv, and in 1602 supported the burghers in the fight against the patricians, who wanted to usurp power.

Everything ended for him in prison and deprivation of city rights, long trials. The dispute was resolved only after the intervention of the king.

Jan Alembek was a long-time mayor and even the burgomaster of Lviv. His name is associated with the process of developing suburban areas, improving the roads and streets of Lviv, protecting the surrounding forests and providing city amenities.

However, Alembek was a professional doctor who made efforts to save the Lviv residents from the plague in 1623.

Jan Alembek wrote a lot. In particular, he prepared the text "Topographia civitatis Leopolitane". It is the first historical description of Lviv, which was included in the encyclopedic edition of Georg Braun, a geographer from Dortmund.

This edition also contained the first printed image of the city - Hogenberg-Passarotti's panorama.

підпис Яна Алембека

Our flower. Saxony and the emperor, distant England

The biography of Ludwik, the son of Valerian Alembek, seems to have been written by a not-too-conscientious student who simply copied the main formulations from an already existing text about his father.

Ludwik Alembek also studied in Krakow and became a doctor of medicine. He, no less than his father, can talk about what communication with high officials looked like and what diseases they suffered from because he was the physician of the king of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and the winner of the Battle of Vienna (1683), a native of Olesko Castle, Jan III Sobieski. Ludvik Alembek was also a resident of the hospital at the monastery of the Bonifrats in Lychakiv.

It can be assumed that Ludvik Alembek is the last known representative of the family. It all started with Jan Alembek (who died in 1588), who came to Lviv in the second half of the 16th century from German Freiburg.

Jan Alembek was a creative person, but he named his son Jan. The second Jan Alembek was even more creative - he settled in Lviv, was the son-in-law of the influential merchant Wolfovych and used different spellings of his surname.

Despite all this, he also named his son Jan. It is good that the others - Frederik and Marcin. Among the brothers, Jan Alembek (the third) was the most remembered - he saved the city from the plague, which was mentioned above.

Whether he had a son Jan is unknown! Instead, his son Frederick became a doctor of theology, and Valerian an apothecary and doctor - he was already mentioned above.

Frederiсk and Marcin, Jan Alembek's brothers, studied in Lviv to become goldsmiths and then left the city. Marcin moved to Saxony, where he fulfilled orders even for the emperor, and Frederick - to England. Such were the Alembeks.

  By the way, they were the owners of the Renaissance tenement house No. 13 on Rynok Square in Lviv. Therefore, when you are nearby, you can remember what unusual personalities lived in this house.


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