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Poland’s Last King and English Culture$
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Richard Butterwick

Print publication date: 1993

Print ISBN-13: 9780198207016

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198207016.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
Poland’s Last King and English Culture

Butterwick Richard

Oxford University Press

On 14 February 1995, after almost two centuries, King Stanislaw August Poniatowski has been laid to rest in the Cathedral of St John the Baptist in Warsaw. By failing to throw himself on his sword or a Muscovite bayonet when Russia invaded in 1792, and by ignominiously abdicating in 1795, he had forfeited his right to an honourable funeral in Cracow or Warsaw. To the minds of the ‘colonels’ of Józef Pilsudski then, Stanislaw August was a morally degenerate coward, if not a traitor. The source materials for this study are: the correspondence of Stanislaw August; his Mémoires, the opinions of English diplomats and travellers about him; and documents describing the royal library, collections, etc which assist in the evaluation of English literary and artistic influence upon him.

Keywords:   Stanislaw August Poniatowski, Józef Pilsudski, Russian invasion, abdication, Mémoires, English literature

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