Jaunutis (literally young man, Ruthenian: Jewnut, Polish: Jawnuta, Belarusian: Jaunut (Яўнут), baptized: Iwan; ca. 1300 – after 1366) was the Grand Duke of Lithuania from his father Gediminas' death in 1341 until he was deposed by his elder brothers Algirdas and Kęstutis in 1345. There are many theories why Gediminas chose Jaunutis, a middle son, as his successor. Some suggested that he was an acceptable compromise between pagan (Algirdas and Kęstutis) and Orthodox (Narimantas, Karijotas, Liubartas) sons of Gediminas. Others claimed that Jaunutis was the eldest son of Gediminas' second wife; thus the tradition that Gediminas was married twice: to a pagan and Orthodox duchess. Jaunutis is not mentioned in any written sources prior to Gediminas' death.

Very little is known about years when Jaunutis ruled. Those were quite peaceful years, as the Teutonic Knights were led by ineffective Ludolf König. His brothers were much more active: Algirdas attacked Mozhaysk, Livonian Order, defended Pskov, Kęstutis was helping Liubartas in succession disputes in Halych-Volhynia. The Bychowiec Chronicle mentions that Jaunutis was supported by Jewna, presumed wife of Gediminas and mother of his children. She died ca. 1344 and soon after Jaunutis lost his throne. If he was indeed protected by his mother, then it would be an interesting example of influence held by queen mother in pagan Lithuania. However, a concrete stimulus might have been a major reise planned by the Teutonic Knights in 1345. Jaunutis was supported by his brother Narimantas, who traveled to Jani Beg, Khan of the Golden Horde, to form an alliance against Algirdas and Kęstutis. Jaunutis was imprisoned in Vilnius, but managed to escape and went to his brother-in-law Simeon of Russia in Moscow. There Jaunutis was baptized as Iwan or Ioann, but failed to solicit help (possibly because his sister Aigusta, wife of Simeon, died the same year). Both Jaunutis and Narimantas had to reconcile with Algirdas. Jaunutis became the Duke of Zasłaŭje. He is presumed to have died ca. 1366 because he is mentioned for the last time in a treaty with Poland in 1366, and not mentioned in a treaty with Livonia in 1367. He had twos sons, Symeon Zaslawski and Michal Zaslawski. Michal ruled Zasłaŭje until his death on August 12 1399.


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