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Kings and Dukes of Poland Posted by on May 19, 2011 in Culture, History

I recently visited Museum Of American History in Washington DC. I liked how all the presidents were listed chronologically. This gave me an idea for today’s blog. I will talk about Polish dukes and kings (king – król, kings – królowie) today and next time we will be talking about Polish presidents.

Before 1320 the Polish rulers were with a few exceptions not kings. They had instead the title “książę”, which can be translated to either prince or duke. In 1138 Poland was divided between different branches of the ruling dynasty into several autonomous principalities (autonomiczne księstwa). But the principality of Krakow would always belong to the senior member of each generation, who had supremacy (zwierzchnictwo) over all other principalities. This arrangement disintegrated (rozpadło się) in the period of 1180-1227 and the principality of Krakow became thereafter hereditary (później dziedzicznym), although its prince still retained nominal supremacy (nominalne zwierzchnictwo) over the other dukes.

Poland and Lithuania were 1569 united in a union with weak central power, its name (Rzeczpospolita) can be translated to either “the republic” or “the commonwealth”. This state could not defend itself when it was partitioned between Russia, Austria and Prussia 1772-1795. A Polish state was restored during the Napoleonic wars but it was transformed to Congress Poland 1815, which was in reality an autonomous part of the Russian empire. It was only after the First World War a really independent Polish state was created.


960-992 – Mieszko I (Duke of Poland)

1025-1025 – Bolesław I Chrobry (who was crowned in 1025, although he had been a duke since 992)

1025-1031 – Mieszko II

1076-1079 – Bolesław II Szczodry

1295-1296 – Przemysł II


1300-1305 – Wacław II

1305-1306 – Wacław III


1320-1333 – Władysław I Łokietek

1333-1370 – Kazimierz III Wielki

House of Anjou (Andegawenowie)

1370-1382 – Ludwik Węgierski

1384-1399 – Jadwiga Andegaweńska


1386-1434 – Władysław II Jagiełło

1434-1444 – Władysław III Warneńczyk

1447-1492 – Kazimierz IV Jagiellończyk

1492-1501 – Jan Olbracht

1501-1506 – Aleksander Jagiellończyk

1506-1548 – Zygmunt I Stary

1530-1572 – Zygmunt II August

Free election

1574-1575 – Henryk Walezy

1575-1596 – Anna Jagiellonka

1576-1586 – Stefan Batory

1587-1632 – Zygmunt III Waza (House of Vasa (Wazowie))

1632-1648 – Władysław IV Waza (House of Vasa)

1648-1668 – Jan II Kazimierz Waza (House of Vasa)

1669-1673 – Michał Korybut Wiśniowiecki

1674-1696 – Jan III Sobieski

1697-1706 – August II Mocny (House of Wettin (Wettynowie))

1706-1712 – Stanisław Leszczyński

1709-1733 – August II Mocny (House of Wettin)

1733-1736 – Stanisław Leszczyński

1734-1763 – August III Sas (House of Wettin)

1764-1795 – Stanisław August Poniatowski

During 1795-1918, after the partitions of Poland state doesn’t exist and title haven’t been used.

1916-1918 – Regency Council

In 1918 Regency Council gave control on the Poland to Józef Piłsudski. Since this moment Poland is a republic.

You have to check out this very interesting video:


Do następnego razu… (Till next time…)




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About the Author:Kasia

My name is Kasia Scontsas. I grew up in Lublin, Poland and moved to Warsaw to study International Business. I have passion for languages: any languages! Currently I live in New Hampshire. I enjoy skiing, kayaking, biking and paddle boarding. My husband speaks a little Polish, but our daughters are fluent in it! I wanted to make sure that they can communicate with their Polish relatives in our native language. Teaching them Polish since they were born was the best thing I could have given them! I have been writing about learning Polish language and culture for Transparent Language’s Polish Blog since 2010.


  1. Walter Kloc:

    Graet e-mail and vidio.

    Where I can purchase the vidio for the Polish Genealogy Society of New York State?

  2. Henryk Kedron:

    Great JOB


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