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Jozef Poniatowski

Article Index
Jozef Poniatowski
Early years
Defender of the Constitution
Kosciuszko Insurrection of 1794
Duchy of Warsaw
The legacy - part one
Napoleon's Russian Campaign of 1812
Joining Napoleon's 1813 Campaign
Assessment and Polish historical context
All Pages


Born May 7, 1763 in Vienna, died October 19, 1813 near Leipzig. Polish patriot and statesman, general and army chief, national leader and military hero of the independence wars period. He fought under Napoleon and became a marshal of France.

Poniatowski was a Pole by choice rather than necessity, but became Poland's most glamorous warrior. "An archetypal Polish military-Romantic hero... one of the most brilliant military commanders of the day... Cornered by the Prussians and Russians near Leipzig, Poniatowski refused to surrender, preferring to lead his troops to a heroic, suicidal defeat. The choice faced by Poniatowski encapsulated the nation's hopeless plight, and his act of self-sacrifice was to serve as a potent symbol to Polish patriots for the rest of the century".

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