No Union of Lublin-rebirth of House of Jagiellon

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Jan Olbracht, Jul 24, 2018.

  1. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    Just like first, personal Polish-Lithuanian Union, real union from 1569 also was result of fate of dynasty-this time Jagiellons were going to die out. Would Sigismund Augustus had a son, something as radical as OTL Union of Lublin would rather not happen, or would be significantly delayed. IOTL both King and nobility of Poland feared, that with the end of Dynasty ties between Poland and Lithuania would be broken. Future after death of Sigismund Augustus was uncertain, thus radical moves seemed to be necessary. In situation, when future of House of Jagiellon is secure King would be propably last person to push for real union. Jagiellons were hereditary rulers of Lithuania, when in Poland they were elective monarchs, hereditary Grand Duchy was their best guarantion to secure also their election to the Polish throne. Nobility (especially lesser/middle nobles) of Poland and, to the lesser degree, middle nobility of Lithuania, would still want union to be tightened, but without fear of totall dissolution of union after extinction of House of Jagiellon-not as much as IOTL. Lithuanian magnates obviously would oppose real union, like IOTL.
    So how would late 16th century looks like in Poland and Lithuania? Sigismund Augustus having son(s) would not ceede his hereditary rights to GDL to the Crown, for sure. Also Volhynia, Kiev and Podlasie remain in GDL. Statutes of Lithuania also could be a bit different (Sigismund would not like power of Grand Duke to be reduced). Royal election in Poland would likely change-instead of tiny clique of magnates, masses of nobility would elect king, like IOTL, but with title of Grand Duke remaining hereditary, elections would remain pure formality as long as there are male Jagiellons around. Political systems of both realms would remain distinct, but Lithuanian middle nobility would likely continue their struggle against great magnates. There is problem of Muscovite-Lithuanian war, but in 1569 situation of GDL was not as dramatic for such radical moves if dynasty is not going to die out. Poles could complain, but letting Lithuania to colapse would be purely suicidal decision, not that GDL was really on the edge of collapse in 1569 IOTL. So how would situation develop and how long could 'status quo' be maintained?
     
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  2. seraphim74 Incurable Polonocentric

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    Pretty long, I believe. From Polish POV GDL would shield Poland from the east, most of wars would be fought away from Poland with Podolia being pretty much the only exception; Poles would support GDL economically and militarilly, just to keep that shield from breaking. That might cause some anger in GDL, but not enough to alienate Poland, their most importan ally. Such a system might last a long time.
    I agree Polish magnate families would be somewhat weaker without support of their Lithuanian/Ruthenien equivalents, and middle noblemen would be stronger as the executoniste movement showed IOTL. That might last longer ITTL, there simply was not enough land in Poland, which was base of magnate's power.
    I wonder how lack of PLC might influence Poland's economy: OTL PLC exported mostly food (grain and cattle_; Poland produced a lot of it, but I think Ukraine even more; however ITTL most of Ukraine remains part of GDL.
    ANother thing. AFAIK poor and middle noblemen in GDL wanted to have the same rights and privileges as Polish noblemen, which IMO would not happen ITTL. With Polish example that might cause some resentments towards GDL magantes. If Sigismund August's heirs are smart, they might use it to gather poorer noblemen around the king (or rather the grand duke) as a loyal cadre, dependent on their ruler's grace. I think something sdimilar was done in France IOTL; but would it be enough to break magnates' power?
     
  3. BBadolato Fifth Picturewraith

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    It depends on how the Livonian War plays out. I'm toying with this particular idea myself for my TL, Sigismund has a son, although I do not know if is possible with a 1560 POD. From my wiki research on some aspects of the Polish-Lithuanian Union before, there were several prior attempts to formalize the Union and rules that seemed to go back and forth, so what could possibly the status quo of the Polish Lithuanian situation with a longer lasting Jagiellon dynasty.

    However, I feel long-term that depends on what happens with Russia, they already conquered Kazan and Astrakhan by 1558, depending on what you do with Livonian War, it has the potential to ruin it the longer it goes on like OTL, especially if Ivan gets murderous enough to leave the Rurikids in as bad a shape by his death. A Russian willing to keep going Westward could keep Lithuania under threat, but that depends on what kind of a timetable you are working with.

    I have a theory a shorter Livonian War would lead to a comparatively less paranoid Ivan the Terrible, and no Oprichnina, and at least a longer lasting Rurikid, without the Time of Troubles as a sore point between Lithuania and Russia, but whether or not more positive relations can be achieved is difficult to say, as a later period Rurikid Russia could have a much more fundamentally different character than OTL.
     
  4. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    In 1571 Crimean Khan burned Moscow, so Lithuanians would have moment to take a breath. Crimean Tatars are another force, that would not want Grand Duchy of Lithuania to collapse.
     
  5. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    Childless death of Sigismund Augustus resulted not only in tightening the union, political structure also changed significantly. ITTL there is no long interregnum with nobility taking full power in both Poland and Lithuania and dictating their terms, also next king, unlike first elected monarchs of PLC, is i
    not foreigner unfamiliar with political landscape of Poland and Lithuania, so worse opportunities for people like Jan Zamoyski to take the reins.
     
  6. BBadolato Fifth Picturewraith

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    Oddly enough it did not appear to be much, most of Russia was already under Ivan the Terrible Oprichnina who ravaged the land and terrorized and extorted those not apart of the Oprichnina, when Moscow was sacked and burned, Novgorod was already ravaged by Ivan's own hand in 1570. Despite this, the Russians did beat the Crimeans in 1572, when they tried again. The Livonian War still dragged on for eleven years after the fact, ending with just Russian ambitions in Livonian and the loss of Polotsk, there would have to be the possibility of a more diplomatic solution, so Lithuania can remain an equal partner. That or like the Livonian War a long-term alliance against Russia must be made.

    Could a marriage similar to Alexander of Poland and Elena of Muscovy, that actually bears children work out as a path to somewhat longer lasting peace? Regardless no Union of Lubin means no Noble's Democracy in Poland, at least for the foreseeable future?
     
  7. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    Second Elena of Moscow is unlikely, IOTL Alexander had troubles because of his Orthodox wife, Queen Mother and Church hierarchs despised her and urged King to divorce (which didn't happen because despite religious differences Alexander and Elena really loved each other). OTOH Ivan the Terrible wanted Catherine, Sigismund II's youngest sister, even after she married John of Sweden (that marriage could happen, but would not bring anything good-when John and Catherine were imprisoned by Eric XIV in Gripsholm Castle, Ivan negotiated with Eric, Ivan wanted Swedish King to send Catherine to Moscow. Fortunately for John and Catherine Eric XIV was still interested in marriage with Elizabeth Tudor. Elizabeth (who met John Vasa personally when he was send to London by Eric to negotiate Swedish-English royal marriage) was concerned about fate of John and Catherine, her letters to Eric possibly saved John from execution and Catherine from marriage with Ivan.
    And about noble democracy-it would not spread to Lithuania, in Poland also situation would be different from OTL. Last Jagiellons (Sigismund I and II) ruled Poland roughly like Charles I of England during his 'tyranny'-so they didn't called sejm for years if they didn't liked to do it.
     
  8. Augenis Latvia isn't real Banned

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    Noble democracy had already spread to Lithuania before the Union of Lublin, the 16th century saw a gradual concentration of power in the Sejm of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania - the process was obviously considerably slower and delayed than in Poland, but it was happening. 1566, the year of the ratification of the Second Statute of Lithuania, was the year when the conversion from an oligarchy controlled by the Council of Lords into a noble democracy was complete, as the Second Statute finally granted the Sejm legislative lawmaking powers, reformed the Council of Lords into the upper house of the Sejm (Senate), and established regional sejmiks modelled after the Polish ones.
     
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  9. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    Statues of Lithuania also would be affected by the fact, that House of Jagiellon is goning to survive, 1566 is two years after Sigismund Augustus ceeded his hereditary rights to Lithuanian throne to the Crown IOTL, something he will never do if he had a heir. IOTL at this point Sigismund Augustus predicted, that his Dynasty is going meet its end, he attempted to make Lithuanian political system closer to the Polish one to make unification easier.
     
  10. Augenis Latvia isn't real Banned

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    Indeed, SigII having heirs would probably delay the Second and Third Statutes, as there would be a lack of need to maintain Lithuanian autonomy through those laws, but I would imagine that the Lithuanian transition to a noble democracy would eventually happen regardless. It was not something achieved in a vacuum - the rising powers of the Lithuanian Sejm were supported by much of the lower nobility (who also supported the Union of Lublin), and this process was also endorsed by the Jagiellons as a way to counterbalance the autonomy-minded and sometimes outright independentist Council of Lords.
     
  11. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    Union of Lublin was a bit experimental with many decisions made in hurry, so do you think that with Union delayed/ butterflied away Jagiellon realms would be more stable?
     
  12. Jefferson Lee Roosevelt I'm Mr Brightside

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    for one thing, no Pacta Conventa and Henrician Articles, which basically undermined the King's authority in favour of the Szlachta. and of course no dynastic interaction with the Vasas, so no Potop and stuff like that. still many problem could arise, but i reckon that a surviving Jagiellon dynasty would have continued to rule the not-Commonwealth easily for the next centuries. the link between poland and lithuania, forged by the dynasty, could become stronger and offer major resistance to outside intervention, which was made difficult in the next two centuries by the ineffective government system that the "constitution" of the Commonwealth provided to create. Lithuanian nobility was already getting some privileges in that period and surely the Magnate families of Hetmans would have had more problems to arise in power and basically rule Lithuania with a Jagiellon on the throne. Still, the situation of PLC was geographically dangerous and the outside dangers (basically Russia and Habsburg Monarchy) would have occurred anyway. But a more centralized and less hand-tied PLC could have avoided the rise of Prussia somehow, if not plagued with Swedish wars and stuff like that.
     
  13. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    If Bona has not insisted on coronation of her son, when her husband was still alive (something, that was completly unnecessary-Sigismund Augustus was only son of his father and already made Grand Duke of Lithuania, having hereditary Grand Duchy Jagiellons were able to inthronise their heirs there, securing their succession in Poland), method of election would likely also remain unchanged-election viritim (done by whole nobility instead of tiny clique of magnates) was prize she paid for it. Generally at this point Poland-Lithuania resembled Denmark-Norway (union of elective realm with hereditary one).
     
  14. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    That's my plan for Jagiellon survival with late POD: whatever made Sigismund Augustus sterile (maybe it was his relationship with Diana di Cordona?) doesn't happen, while his OTL epileptic first wife, Elizabeth of Austria, dies aged 10 killed by disease or unfortunate epileptic attack. Thus Ferdinand I would offer his second daughter to Sigmundus Augustus instead-Anna, OTL Duchess of Bavaria, who was healthier than older sister. IOTL she had 7 kids in 7 years. They'll marry a bit later (one year perhaps) than Sigismund Augustus and Elizabeth IOTL. Problems faced by her sister IOTL (lack of husband's attention and Bona's general hatred towards Habsburgs) would largely disappear after birth of male heir. Sigismund II's marriage with Barbara Radziwiłłówna and his conflict with mother also would be butterflied away, alongside Union of Lublin and PLC. With less stress Sigismund Augustus may live longer, just like Bona, who, not being conflicted with son, would not need to leave Poland and could avoid poison, that killed her IOTL, Bona's daughter also are going to marry earlier.

    So there is family of Zygmunt August and Anna:

    Sigismund II Augustus (1520-1574) Grand Duke of Lithuania 1529-1574, King of Poland 1530-1574, m. 1544 Anna of Austria (1528-1590)
    1) Sigismund III Ferdinand (b. 1546) King of Poland, Grand Duke of Lithuania
    2) Vladislaus (b. 1547), likely would inherit his grandmother's Italian lands in Bari and Rossano
    3) Hedwig (b. 1549)
    4) Isabella (b. 1551)
    5) Sophia (1552-1553)
    6) Alexander (b. 1554), likely would join clergy

    Hedwig and Isabella could marry either John III Vasa (but later than their aunt IOTL, when John is King of Sweden already), one of Maximilian II's sons, Henry III of France or John Sigismund Zapolya.
     
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