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Warsaw Confederation

From Academic Kids

The Warsaw Confederation (January 28, 1573) was an important event in the history of Poland, and is considered as the beginning of religious freedom in Poland

The religious tolerance in Poland had much longer tradition and was de facto policy during the reign of the recently deceased king Sigismund II of Poland. However, the articles signed by the confederation gave official sanction for what was earlier simply custom. In that sense, it may be considered either the peak of Polish tolerance, or as the beginning of it.

After the childless death of the last king from the dynasty of Jagiellons, Polish nobles gathered in Warsaw and signed a document, in which representatives of each major religion promised each other support and tolerance. This act is remarkable, in that it wasn't imposed by a government or as a result of war, but rather as a result of good will between members of society.

The people most associated with the preparation of the articles were Mikolaj Sienicki (leader of execution movement), Jan Firlej and Jan Zborowski.

The articles of the Warsaw Confederacy were later included in the Henrician Articles, becoming part of the first Polish constitution.

There is some debate about whether religious freedom was intended only for nobility, or for peasants and others as well; generally most historians favor the universal sense.


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