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2007 | 114 | 4 | 19-34

Article title

The Bloody Dietine in Szadek prior to the Seym of 1623


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The prime dietine of the voivodeship of Sieradz, held in Szadek, was regarded as quiet and free of disturbances. In contrast to some of the other dietines in the Commonwealth, here the senators did not arrive in the company of their private detachments. Moreover, there were no representatives of strong magnates. Nonetheless, on 13 December 1622 Szadek became the site of bloody events. The course of the incident is portrayed in correspondence addressed to Primate Wawrzyniec Gembicki, kept in the Stockholm Riksarkivet. The same archive contains material about the conciliation signed by the warring sides in Piotrkow on 11 October 1623. Sources from the Swedish archive confirm, however, a bloody tumult in Szadek. Only a survey carried out in the acta castrensia of Sieradz and the acta terrestria of Szadek makes it possible to recreate the approximate course of the events. Apparently, Olbracht Staroleski, the starosta of Piotrkow, arrived in Szadek on the eve of the dietine together with some 300 men. The whole entourage occupied inns, which customarily served as accommodation for other participants of the dietine. Staroleski had recently moved to the voivodeship of Sieradz from the voivodeship of Poznan. His still unstable political position was based on the just obtained post of the starosta of Piotrkow and the fact that he was the son-in-aw of Maksymilian Przerebski, the castellan of Sieradz. On the following day, a conflict concerning the inns broke out between some members of the gentry and the starosta's men. Attempts to placate the two sides were made by the sons and nephews of Stanislaw Bykowski, the voivode of Sieradz. Shots unexpectedly fired by Staroleski's adherents took the lives of two members of the Bykowski family. The enraged nobility stormed the quarters of the starosta, killing two of his men. Staroleski was rescued by the intervention of the royal envoy and the marshal of the dietine, with the voivode of Sieradz retaining a neutral position. The bloody incident was a conflict among the adherents of the king, caused by a highly unfortunate coincidence. The ultimate conciliation between Bykowski and Staroleski was arranged by Primate Wawrzyniec Gembicki, head of the royalists in Greater Poland.










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  • E. Opalinski, Instytut Historii PAN, ul. Rynek Starego Miasta 29/31, 00-272 Warszawa, Poland


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