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Title: The genesis of the 1715 Vilnius Confederation of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania in 1710-1715
Author: Šapoka, Mindaugas
ISNI:       0000 0004 5350 7585
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2014
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This thesis focuses on the effects of sustained warfare on the consensual Polish-Lithuanian political system with particular attention to the 1715 crisis in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, when the Vilnius Confederation was formed to oppose the Polish king Augustus II's policies. Although the Confederation was stopped by the king in its early stage, it induced the Polish nobility to proclaim the Confederation of Tarnogród in November of 1715. This thesis offers a synthesis of economic, social, and political questions in Lithuania in the period preceding the Confederations of Tarnogród and Vilnius. The dissertation demonstrates that, because of the long-established tendency to neglect Lithuanian political history in favor of studies that focus on Poland, existing scholarship fails to reflect the reality of Lithuanian political culture in the first quarter of the eighteenth century. This study shows that, despite conventionally held beliefs which emphasise chaos and underdevelopment, Lithuania's economy and political system were functioning fairly well during this era. The thesis also disproves deep-rooted myths which portray the Lithuanian nobility as largely subservient to the magnates, and the Lithuanian magnates as entirely subservient to the Russian tsar Peter I. This thesis argues that the genesis of the Vilnius Confederation can rather be associated with the ignorant policy of Augustus who failed to engage in constructive dialogue with his subordinates most of whom suspected Augustus of planning a plot to transform his kingship into an absolute one.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Lithuanian Academy of Science in the USA ; Lithuanian Foundation ; Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies ; University of Aberdeen ; Dr. J.R. Colley Scholarship
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Lithuania (Grand Duchy)