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  • 1 Universität Wien, Institut für Klassische Philologie, Mittel- und Neulatein A-1010 Wien, Dr.-Karl-Lueger-Ring 1.
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The myths about the birth of Matthias Corvinus - though varied in contents - were written with the view to his legality as king. Even after the coronation his authorization was called into question by many Hungarian aristocrats, because his father János Hunyadi, the celebrated fighter against the Turks, was a homo novus. Although the royal propaganda led back the family Hunyadi, bearing the raven (corvus) in the coat of arms, to the famous Roman Corvini, a widespread myth about the aition of this raven - a story which made János Hunyadi a natural son of king Sigismund - still circulated and was used against Matthias. Examination of this story makes quite sure that it was not invented by Matthias' enemies; the invention was rather an attempt made by his father János to prepare the basis for his and his children's influence and power.