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Destructions of Poland thoughout centuries


pawian 161 | 9,968
26 Dec 2012  #1
Guys, I hope you don`t mind my starting a new historical thread which I have fancied for some time.

The first major destruction took place in 1655 during Swedish invasion called the Deluge. That was the blow that permanently weakened Poland.

You know fine well that it is URL + 100 words.
kcharlie 2 | 165
26 Dec 2012  #2
Those are insane population losses. Are they credible?
gumishu 11 | 5,015
26 Dec 2012  #3
the war brought famine and partisan warfare
kcharlie 2 | 165
26 Dec 2012  #4
Fascinating and tragic.
Sofflock - | 5
26 Dec 2012  #5
As a Swede now living in Poland.... I'm sorry I had no idea.
gumishu 11 | 5,015
26 Dec 2012  #6
there is no need to be sorry - it was so long ago

actually it was our leadership that was responsible for wars with Sweden namely the Vasa dynasty who ruled Poland
OP pawian 161 | 9,968
26 Dec 2012  #8
Those are insane population losses. Are they credible?

Yes, because that was the typical result of contemporary wars. Check out 30 Years` War which caused even greater destruction:

So great was the devastation brought about by the war that estimates put the reduction of population in the German states at about 25% to 40%.[53] Some regions were affected much more than others.[54] For example, Württemberg lost three-quarters of its population during the war.[55] In the territory of Brandenburg, the losses had amounted to half, while in some areas an estimated two-thirds of the population died.[56] The male population of the German states was reduced by almost half.[57] The population of the Czech lands declined by a third due to war, disease, famine and the expulsion of Protestant Czechs.[58][59] Much of the destruction of civilian lives and property was caused by the cruelty and greed of mercenary soldiers.[60] Villages were especially easy prey to the marauding armies. Those that survived, like the small village of Drais near Mainz, would take almost a hundred years to recover. The Swedish armies alone may have destroyed up to 2,000 castles, 18,000 villages and 1,500 towns in Germany, one-third of all German towns.[61]

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thirty_Years%27_War#Casualties_and_disease
kcharlie 2 | 165
26 Dec 2012  #9
Thanks, pawian. Interesting.
OP pawian 161 | 9,968
26 Dec 2012  #10
Fascinating and tragic.

As a Swede now living in Poland.... I'm sorry I had no idea.

Read another short article about it, with maps, by American historian: conflicts.rem33.com/images/Poland/Deluge.htm

Its introduction:

Despite the improbable survival of the commonwealth in the face of the potop, one of the most dramatic instances of the Poles' knack for prevailing in adversity, the episode inflicted irremediable damage and contributed heavily to the ultimate demise of the state. When Jan II Kaziemierz abdicated in 1668, the population of the commonwealth had been nearly halved by war and disease. War had destroyed the economic base of the cities and raised a religious fervor that ended Poland's policy of religious tolerance. Henceforth, the commonwealth would be on the strategic defensive facing hostile neighbors. Never again would Poland compete with Russia as a military equal.

actually it was our leadership that was responsible for wars with Sweden namely the Vasa dynasty who ruled Poland

Yes, royals on both sides had a bone to pick but it was mainly Polish and Lithuanian gentry who detrayed Poland and surrendered to Swedes in the initial phase of the conflict.

Two columns of Swedish troops made their way across Poland. The first one, under the command of Marshal Wittenberg, marched in the direction of Greater Poland, where on the 25th of July, 1655, the Polish nobles and magnates placed themselves under Swedish protection without a fight. The second column under the command of Pontus de la Gardie, occupied Lithuania, where also without a fight, on the 8th of September, the Lithuanian Prince, Janusz Radziwiłł, Grand Hetman of Lithuania, i.e. the Commander in Chief of the Polish forces in Lithuania, broke the Union with Poland and surrenderead the suzerainty of Lithuania to Carl Gustav, the Swedish King. The nobility of sequentially occupied lands also recognized the suzerainty of Carl Gustav, and even the Royal Polish troops of Hetman Koniecpolski followed suit. In September, again without a fight, Warsaw found itself in Swedish hands, and in October Krakow, defended by Czarniecki fell. The will to fight was absent among the nobility and this in great part decided the initial success of Carl Gustav's strategy.

It is honest to say that Poles can blame themselves.
kcharlie 2 | 165
26 Dec 2012  #11
It is honest to say that Poles can blame themselves.

Or maybe rather their disloyal aristocracy, who would betray Poland again and again in the years to come.
gumishu 11 | 5,015
26 Dec 2012  #12
Yes, royals on both sides had a bone to pick but it was mainly Polish and Lithuanian gentry who detrayed Poland and surrendered to Swedes in the initial phase of the conflict.

you forget about another deluge that was ongoin while the Swedes struck - it was the Polish-Russian war and the Russian troops went very far west (including Wilno) - and that's why Poland was devoid of defences
OP pawian 161 | 9,968
26 Dec 2012  #13
Or maybe rather their disloyal aristocracy, who would betray Poland again and again in the years to come.

Aristocracy and gentry in the Polish part of the Commonwealth were all Polish. Not Jewish, not Russian, not German, not fekking Martian. They were Polish.

and that's why Poland was devoid of defences

Wrong! Poland had an army which could put up initial resistance and save time to build up better defences.

Read about the Battle of Uscie where 14500 Polish troops surrendered to 17000 Swedes almost without fight.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Uj%C5%9Bcie
wjtk - | 29
26 Dec 2012  #14
Polish Army at Ujscie was just bunch of local nobles(mass movement), not regular forces(0 Winged Hussars, 0 "Pancerni", 0 Dragoons/Reitars, 0 professional infantry, 0 royal artillery). They were no match for Swedish professional veterans. All Polish regular units were engaged on the east in fights against Russians and Cossacs, besides Poland suffered massive loses in 1652 after Battle of Batoh when Cossacs slaughtered few thousands Polish prisoners(all were experienced soldiers, core of our army).
OP pawian 161 | 9,968
26 Dec 2012  #15
Polish Army at Ujscie was just bunch of local nobles(mass movement), not regular forces

Yes, that is true, that is why I wrote:

Poland had an army which could put up initial resistance and save time to build up better defences.

gumishu 11 | 5,015
26 Dec 2012  #16
Wrong! Poland had an army which could put up initial resistance and save time to build up better defences.

no pawian, it was only pospolite ruszenie - these were not experienced soldiers - and their leaders betrayed Poland
OP pawian 161 | 9,968
26 Dec 2012  #17
Both gentry soldiers and their leaders were Polish. And they surrendered. Shame!
gumishu 11 | 5,015
26 Dec 2012  #18
Potop one of the best military films in history
OP pawian 161 | 9,968
26 Dec 2012  #19
You know fine well that it is URL + 100 words.

Yes, I know. Sorry for that.

But I also know that people tend to be lazy and they don`t click on links to search for more info.

And I know you also know it. :):):)

I promise I will try to improve.
wjtk - | 29
26 Dec 2012  #20
pawian:
Poland had an army which could put up initial resistance and save time to build up better defences.

I cant agree with you, you underestimate psychological impact Swedish invasion had on morale of Polish population. Since XV century until 1655 not a single enemy soldier entered Polish mainlands! All wars were fought at borderlands - Pomerania, Prussia, Livonia, southern border, eastern border or at enemy territory. Most of this war were succesful for us. Now lets think about political and military position of Poland n 1655:

- all armies are on the east
- civil war against cossacs and then against Russians lasts for 7 years. In 1654 Russia invaded Poland with army of ~100 000 soldiers.
- Polish nobility had to to pay additional taxes for massive armies and serve in military
- i mentioned Battle of Batoh 1652 and POW killing. Just three years before Swedish invasion, due to commanders failure Poland lost all best units, officer corps, experienced and well-trained soldiers.

I'm not suprised we couldnt fight back in 1655. However after Poland re-deployed its armies it took less than two years to drive Swedes back(despite Brandenburgia and Transilvania invasions in 1655 and1656), in 1657 Poland was even able to send expeditionary corps to aid Denmark in war against Sweden but still - Poland was ruined and depopulated.
OP pawian 161 | 9,968
27 Dec 2012  #21
But they could at least try at Uscie!!! Fekking cowards! Today I dislike all those nobility/gentry idiots for a good reason. They greatly contributed to Poland`s fall.

OK, you convinced me.
David_18 68 | 982
27 Dec 2012  #22
Aristocracy and gentry in the Polish part of the Commonwealth were all Polish. Not Jewish, not Russian, not German, not fekking Martian. They were Polish.

Excuse me?

They greatly contributed to Poland`s fall.

They also contributed to Poland's rise.
kcharlie 2 | 165
27 Dec 2012  #23
Aristocracy and gentry in the Polish part of the Commonwealth were all Polish. Not Jewish, not Russian, not German, not fekking Martian. They were Polish.

Right. But they weren't particularly loyal to their country, were they?

In fact, I'd much rather they had been Jewish, Russian or German, or Martian, as long as they were loyal to the Polish state.

Historically, there have been many Polish Jews, Polish Lithuanians or Polish Ukrainians, for example, who were also Polish patriots. And that's wonderful.
OP pawian 161 | 9,968
27 Dec 2012  #24
Right. But they weren't particularly loyal to their country, were they?

I am afraid we don`t understand each other now. Read carefully a few of my posts above.
hague1cmaeron 14 | 1,377
27 Dec 2012  #25
You should have started with the Mongol invasions Pawian. The 2nd Swedish invasion during the Northern War was almost just as destructive, from a political point of view even more so, because it meant that Poland became a Russian puppet afterwards.
kcharlie 2 | 165
27 Dec 2012  #26
I am afraid we don`t understand each other now. Read carefully a few of my posts above.

I think we both agree that the Polish nobility was at fault.

My point was to stress that it was the nobility and not necessarily the populace at large.
OP pawian 161 | 9,968
27 Dec 2012  #27
I think we both agree that the Polish nobility was at fault.

Yes! Stinkers! :):):) Remind me of Scottish nobles who traded their country`s independence for titles and lands from British kings! Polish gentry in 1655 were also promised rewards for changing sides and dropping the Polish king.

My point was to stress that it was the nobility and not necessarily the populace at large.

Polish nobility was the pure representation of the Polish society. They were Poles and as such bring the blame on all Poles. You can`t excuse historical facts pointing at leaders. As if a Nazi German tried to excuse himself that he only carried out orders and that his Fuhrers are to blame. Come on.

You should have started with the Mongol invasions Pawian.

Hey, I could also easily start with German invasions in 11 century.

Come on, there must be some limit to this madness!!! :):):):)

The 2nd Swedish invasion during the Northern War was almost just as destructive, from a political point of view even more so, because it meant that Poland became a Russian puppet afterwards.

Yes! It is going to be my next historical contribution here. Be patient! We still haven`t finished with the first invasion!! :):):):)
kcharlie 2 | 165
27 Dec 2012  #28
Polish nobility was the pure representation of the Polish society. They were Poles and as such bring the blame on all Poles.

We could argue about how representative it really was of the population, but yes, I guess you could put it that way.
David_18 68 | 982
27 Dec 2012  #29
Destructions of Poland thoughout centuries.

21st century, this forum.
polonius 54 | 420
27 Dec 2012  #30
Have swedish film-makers or novelists ever tackled the Deluge? Is it well known to today's Swedish popular culture?


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