Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

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Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by Futurist » 28 May 2020 23:21

Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 29 May 2020 08:36

Hi Futurist,

I thought the Allies did win WWI?

There was a regency council set up by the Central Powers late in WWI, presumably as a puppet. It was this that declared Poland's independence.

I imagine its problem was that residual hereditary claimants to the throne were all German. Prior to them, Poland's monarchy had been elective amongst its nobility, and I imagine that return to this ecvlusive, anachronistic and failed system was impractical in a more democratic age.

Sid.

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by gebhk » 29 May 2020 11:15

Depends on whether you envisage a ruling monarchy or a 'window dressing' of the sort we have in some countries today. No chance of the former, the whole world was running away from that model, absolute or constitutional, Whether what it got instead - such as the Stalins and Hitlers - was necessarily better is another matter. Poland's 'sponsors' were democracies, so there was no pressure from outside for the new state to become a monarchy, rather the opposite. As for the latter, I also think it highly unlikely: given the 150 years or so of monarchist rule by outsiders, I should think the last thing the Poles would have wanted is a return to such an 'unPolish' symbol.

That is not to say that there was no support for a monarchy (which, incidentally, remains to this day!), but it was and is confined to the eccentric/lunatic fringe. In short, I think the answer to your question Futurist, is that there was no chance because there was no significant desire or support for it in any form both internally and externally.

Incidentally, my Grandmother's claim to a Throne of Poland was as good as any. She was a Leszczynska (yes, from those Leszczynscy). I loved my grandmother dearly, but she would have been a terror as Queen. Attendance at mass on Sundays and Holy days would have been made mandatory as well as the washing of clothing on Saturdays. Iron's made from anything other than iron would have been banned - she did not do imprecision and grey areas...... :P

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by Futurist » 21 Jun 2020 08:06

Sid Guttridge wrote:
29 May 2020 08:36
Hi Futurist,

I thought the Allies did win WWI?
Yes, they did.
There was a regency council set up by the Central Powers late in WWI, presumably as a puppet. It was this that declared Poland's independence.

I imagine its problem was that residual hereditary claimants to the throne were all German. Prior to them, Poland's monarchy had been elective amongst its nobility, and I imagine that return to this ecvlusive, anachronistic and failed system was impractical in a more democratic age.

Sid.
What about if France would have had its monarchy restored in the early 1870s? (Very possible had Henri, Count of Chambord died young.) Then if WWI still occurs in the 1910s and the Allies still win WWI, might Poland actually be interested in having a hereditary Capetian King? There actually was precedent for this--albeit without the hereditary component:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_III_of_France

This example was back in the late 16th century and involved a different Capetian cadet branch (specifically the Valois), but still, it's nevertheless quite interesting. :)

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by Futurist » 21 Jun 2020 08:08

gebhk wrote:
29 May 2020 11:15
Depends on whether you envisage a ruling monarchy or a 'window dressing' of the sort we have in some countries today. No chance of the former, the whole world was running away from that model, absolute or constitutional, Whether what it got instead - such as the Stalins and Hitlers - was necessarily better is another matter. Poland's 'sponsors' were democracies, so there was no pressure from outside for the new state to become a monarchy, rather the opposite. As for the latter, I also think it highly unlikely: given the 150 years or so of monarchist rule by outsiders, I should think the last thing the Poles would have wanted is a return to such an 'unPolish' symbol.

That is not to say that there was no support for a monarchy (which, incidentally, remains to this day!), but it was and is confined to the eccentric/lunatic fringe. In short, I think the answer to your question Futurist, is that there was no chance because there was no significant desire or support for it in any form both internally and externally.

Incidentally, my Grandmother's claim to a Throne of Poland was as good as any. She was a Leszczynska (yes, from those Leszczynscy). I loved my grandmother dearly, but she would have been a terror as Queen. Attendance at mass on Sundays and Holy days would have been made mandatory as well as the washing of clothing on Saturdays. Iron's made from anything other than iron would have been banned - she did not do imprecision and grey areas...... :P
Do you think that Poland's calculations in regards to this after WWI would have been different had France still been a (British-style constitutional) monarchy during this time?

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by gebhk » 21 Jun 2020 10:50

Hi Futurist

Given that the idea never arose seriously, we are talking about what ifs of what ifs of what ifs.

With that in mind, my thoughts of my Grandparents area that they were proud of the parliamentary democracy in Poland's history. Having experienced then Russian version of autocracy, they would have had none of it. Their view of the monarchy in the UK (in which they lived in for almost half their lives) was that it was a meaningless waste of public money and a vulgar glorification of inherited and unearned privilege. I don't think they were particularly unique in this view of life among their peers.

At the end of the day, you have to have drivers for social change. There were none, that I can discern, to push Poland towards a monarchy of any sort.

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by Futurist » 21 Jun 2020 19:02

gebhk wrote:
21 Jun 2020 10:50
Hi Futurist

Given that the idea never arose seriously, we are talking about what ifs of what ifs of what ifs.
Which idea are you talking about here? Because there actually was a serious movement to make France a monarchy in the early 1870s and it likely would have succeeded had Henri, Count of Chambord died earlier due to the fact that monarchists were a majority in the French parliament back then.
With that in mind, my thoughts of my Grandparents area that they were proud of the parliamentary democracy in Poland's history. Having experienced then Russian version of autocracy, they would have had none of it. Their view of the monarchy in the UK (in which they lived in for almost half their lives) was that it was a meaningless waste of public money and a vulgar glorification of inherited and unearned privilege. I don't think they were particularly unique in this view of life among their peers.

At the end of the day, you have to have drivers for social change. There were none, that I can discern, to push Poland towards a monarchy of any sort.
Makes sense. :)

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by wm » 21 Jun 2020 21:39

At the beginning of the 20th century, Polish politics were thoroughly modern. There were the socialists and the nationalists, and both groups wouldn't accept any monarchy.

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by Futurist » 21 Jun 2020 21:39

wm wrote:
21 Jun 2020 21:39
At the beginning of the 20th century, Polish politics were thoroughly modern. There were the socialists and the nationalists, and both groups wouldn't accept any monarchy.
Not even if France was still a monarchy during this time?

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by wm » 21 Jun 2020 21:48

Really?

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by Futurist » 21 Jun 2020 21:51

wm wrote:
21 Jun 2020 21:48
Really?
Yes, this is a serious question. After all, there was a very real possibility of France's monarchy being restored in the early 1870s. It would have very likely happened had Henri, Count of Chambord died a decade or more earlier than he did in real life.

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by wm » 22 Jun 2020 20:10

But till the 1870s the French had a monarchy (or even better an empire with a real emperor), an empire that failed them miserably.
Who was going to vote for another loser?

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by Futurist » 22 Jun 2020 20:14

wm wrote:
22 Jun 2020 20:10
But till the 1870s the French had a monarchy (or even better an empire with a real emperor), an empire that failed them miserably.
Who was going to vote for another loser?
Monarchists actually controlled a majority of seats in the French parliament in the early 1870s. The reason for this is that they ran on a pro-peace platform and this platform was really popular during and right after the Franco-Prussian War.

The reason that a monarchical restoration in France didn't occur in the early 1870s is because Henri, Count of Chambord refused to accept the French tricolor flag. Had Henri died by the early 1870s, though, then his claim to the French throne would have passed to the Orleanists, who would have had no problem accepting the tricolor flag and thus getting the French monarchy restored.

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by Futurist » 22 Jun 2020 20:23

Some reading for you about this topic, wm:

https://www.google.com/books/edition/Hi ... frontcover

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Re: Was there any realistic way for Poland to have a monarchy after WWI if the Entente/Allies win WWI?

Post by wm » 22 Jun 2020 23:50

Well, all the European monarchies didn't make through the WW1, there were abolished or reduced to political decorations. It's hard to believe that a monarchy had any future in one of the most politically advanced countries in Europe.

Piłsudski's brother together with Lenin's brother took part in a plot to assassinate Alexander III of Russia in 1887. So it's obvious such far-left folks liked their kings dead.

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