Walka o tron polski po śmierci Jana III Sobieskiego w świetle literatury politycznej.

Rafał Niedziela


A long interregnum period following the death of Jan III Sobieski  contributed to the development of political writings. Letters, which were written then, reflected the moods of the Polish gentry and testified to the character of the epoch. To a degree, they also madę an impact on the outcome of the struggle for the Polish throne.
The most serious candidates to succeed to the throne were Prince Jakub  Sobieski, son of the deceased ruler, and Francis Louis de Bourbon, nephew of Great Conde, Prince Conti, who was supported by the French diplomatic circles. The Polish nobility held the strong opinion that one of those  pretenders would take the highest position in the country. Conseąuently, the two were in the midst of a fierce political struggle.
His supporters presented Jakub as a son of a powerful monarch and a warranty of good relationships with Poland’s neighbours. They emphasised the fact that it had always been kings’ sons who were the successors to the Polish throne until that time. The opponents accused the candidate of striving to obtain foreign military help and of a too strong attachment
to Austria.

Prince Conti, as viewed by the supporters of France was an exquisite commander, who was in possession of great wealth and who was excellently prepared to be a ruler. Many sources, however, ąuestioned both his ruling talent and his fmancial promise. Some doubt was also expressed that the Republic of Poland would get involved in a conflict with the neighbouring states after his election on the instigation of Versailles.
The “pen struggle” about the two pretenders tumed out to be rather destructive. It exposed their merits and faults and their satirical image. The Saxon elector, Frederick August I Wettin, who unexpectedly put forward his own candidature in 1697 managed to avoid the commotion. He was almost completely unknown by the Polish nobles, which paradoxically tumed out to his advantage. Before the political stmggle reached him, thanks to his determination, military power, and support of the Republic’s neighbours he succeeded to the throne and strengthened his mle soon afterwards.

Słowa kluczowe

historia polityczna, stosunki polsko-francuskie w 2 poł. XVII w., Jan III Sobieski

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