Three Emperors' Corner (Polish : Trójkąt Trzech Cesarzy, German : Dreikaisereck, Russian : Угол трёх императоров) is a former tripoint at the confluence of the Black and White Przemsza rivers, near the towns of Mysłowice, Sosnowiec and Jaworzno in the present-day Silesian Voivodeship of Poland. During the Partitions of Poland, from 1871 to 1918, it marked the place at which the borders of three empires that had divided Poland – the Russian Empire, Austria-Hungary and the German Empire – met.
It developed in the aftermath of the Partitions of Poland as a result of the border shifts and regime changes in the 19th century, including the annexation of the Free City of Kraków by the Austrian Empire after the unsuccessful Kraków Uprising in 1846. The left bank of the White Przemsza now belonged to the Austrian Grand Duchy of Cracow (part of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy from 1867). While the Upper Silesian right bank of the Black Przemsza had been annexed by Prussia already in 1742, the land between the two tributaries was part of Congress Poland, a de facto protectorate of the Russian Empire according to the Final Act of the 1815 Vienna Congress. However, the spot did not become a Three Emperors' Corner until the Kingdom of Prussia merged into the newly created German Empire in 1871. It remained as such till the dissolution of all three empires in the aftermath of World War I and the establishment of the Second Polish Republic in 1918.
A less famous tripoint of those three powers had already existed near the village of Niemirów following the 1795 Third Partition of Poland, which ended the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. Here the Prussian province of New East Prussia and Austrian West Galicia bordered on Russia. The creation of the Duchy of Warsaw on former Prussian territory by Napoleon I in 1807 erased it, and the Duchy's transformation into Congress Poland and the condominium of Kraków in 1815 led to a more stable tripoint at a new location, which lasted for over a century. The Congress Kingdom of Poland would however lose most of its autonomy after the November Uprising in 1830/31 and the January Uprising in 1863/64, later becoming incorporated as Russian Vistula Land (Privislinsky Krai). Finally, until the creation of the German Empire in 1871, the spot was known as the Three Countries' Corner (German : Dreiländereck).
From 1871 it assumed its most famous name: the Three Emperors' Corner. 22 m (72 ft)-high Bismarck tower erected on the Przemsza shore according to the standard Götterdämmerung design by Wilhelm Kreis. As reported in contemporary newspapers, between 3,000 and 8,000 people visited the spot every week.Until World War I, the tripoint was a popular tourist spot, particularly from the German Empire. Two riverboats toured its vicinity, and in 1907, the German authorities had a
The tripoint was abolished with the establishment of the Polish voivodeships of Kraków and Kielce on the former Austro-Hungarian and Russian territory in 1919. The German territory also fell to the Polish Silesian Voivodeship upon the Upper Silesian plebiscite in 1921. The Bismarck tower survived for a little over a decade, and was briefly renamed the Freedom Tower, before Silesian voivode Michał Grażyński had it demolished from 1933 onwards; the stones were used to build the Cathedral of Christ the King in Katowice.
Currently located in an industrial area, the tripoint is a minor tourist attraction in Poland. Since 2004, it was marked by a memorial plaque, which—slightly incorrectly—referred to the spot as where three territories annexed in the Partitions of Poland met. A new plaque was amended in 2012.
Between 1774 and 1877, a similar imperial tripoint existed by the city of Novoselytsia on the Prut River: the one between the Austrian (in Bukovina), Russian (in Bessarabia) and Ottoman (in the United Principalities) empires.
The Partitions of Poland were three partitions of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth that took place toward the end of the 18th century and ended the existence of the state, resulting in the elimination of sovereign Poland and Lithuania for 123 years. The partitions were conducted by Habsburg Austria, the Kingdom of Prussia, and the Russian Empire, which divided up the Commonwealth lands among themselves progressively in the process of territorial seizures and annexations.
Sosnowiec is an industrial city county in the Dąbrowa Basin of southern Poland, in the Silesian Voivodeship, which is also part of the Silesian Metropolis municipal association. Located in the eastern part of the Upper Silesian Industrial Region, Sosnowiec is one of the cities of the Katowice urban area, which is a conurbation with the overall population of 2.7 million people; as well as the greater Upper Silesian metropolitan area populated by about 5.3 million people. The population of the city is 202,036 as of December 2018.
The Kingdom of Prussia was a German kingdom that constituted the state of Prussia between 1701 and 1918. It was the driving force behind the unification of Germany in 1871 and was the leading state of the German Empire until its dissolution in 1918. Although it took its name from the region called Prussia, it was based in the Margraviate of Brandenburg, where its capital was Berlin.
The Duchy of Warsaw was a Polish state established by Napoleon I in 1807 from the Polish lands ceded by the Kingdom of Prussia under the terms of the Treaties of Tilsit. The duchy was held in personal union by one of Napoleon's allies, King Frederick Augustus I of Saxony. Following Napoleon's failed invasion of Russia, the duchy was occupied by Prussian and Russian troops until 1815, when it was formally partitioned between the two countries at the Congress of Vienna. It covered the central and eastern part of present Poland and minor parts of present Lithuania and Belarus.
Prussia was a historically prominent German state that originated in 1525 with a duchy centered on the region of Prussia on the southeast coast of the Baltic Sea. It was de facto dissolved by an emergency decree transferring powers of the Prussian government to German Chancellor Franz von Papen in 1932 and de jure by an Allied decree in 1947. For centuries, the House of Hohenzollern ruled Prussia, successfully expanding its size by way of an unusually well-organised and effective army. Prussia, with its capital first in Königsberg and then, in 1701, in Berlin, decisively shaped the history of Germany.
The Province of Silesia was a province of Prussia from 1815 to 1919. The Silesia region was part of the Prussian realm since 1740 and established as an official province in 1815, then became part of the German Empire in 1871. In 1919, as part of the Free State of Prussia within Weimar Germany, Silesia was divided into the provinces of Upper Silesia and Lower Silesia. Silesia was reunified briefly from 1938 to 1941 as a province of Nazi Germany before being divided back into Upper Silesia and Lower Silesia.
Mysłowice is a city in Silesia in southern Poland, near Katowice. The population of the city as of 2018 is 74,586.
Jaworzno is a city in southern Poland, near Katowice. It lies in the Silesian Highlands, on the Przemsza river. Jaworzno belongs to the historic province of Lesser Poland. The city is situated in the Silesian Voivodeship since its formation in 1999, previously (1975–1999) it was in Katowice Voivodeship. Jaworzno is one of the cities of the 2,7 million conurbation – Katowice urban area and within a greater Silesian metropolitan area populated by about 5,294,000 people. The population of the city is 91,563 (2018).
South Prussia was a province of the Kingdom of Prussia from 1793 to 1807.
The Free, Independent, and Strictly Neutral City of Cracow with its Territory, more commonly known as either the Free City of Cracow or Republic of Cracow, was a city republic created by the Congress of Vienna in 1815, which included the city of Kraków and its surrounding areas.
New Silesia was a small province of the Kingdom of Prussia from 1795 to 1807, created after the Third Partition of Poland. It was located northwest of Kraków and southeast of Częstochowa, in the lands that had been part of the Duchy of Siewierz and the adjacent Polish historical province of Lesser Poland, including the towns of Żarki, Pilica, Będzin, and Sławków.
The Third Partition of Poland (1795) was the last in a series of the Partitions of Poland and the land of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth among Prussia, the Austrian Empire, and the Russian Empire which effectively ended Polish–Lithuanian national sovereignty until 1918. The partition was followed by a number Polish uprisings during the period.
Przemsza is a river in the south of Poland, a tributary of the Vistula. According to one theory, it originates at the confluence of the Black Przemsza and White (Biała) Przemsza, between the cities of Mysłowice and Jaworzno. For about 24 km (15 mi) it flows southwards to its Vistula mouth at Czarnuchowice. Another theory stipulates that it has the length of 88 kilometers, and begins at the source of the Black Przemsza.
New Galicia or West Galicia was an administrative region of the Habsburg Monarchy, constituted from the territory annexed in the course of the Third Partition of Poland in 1795.
Following three consecutive partitions of Poland carried out between 1772 and 1795, the sovereign state known as the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth disappeared from the map of Europe. In 1918 following the end of World War One, the territories of the former state re-emerged as the states of Poland and Lithuania among others. In the intervening period, the territory of the former Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth was split between the Austrian Empire, the Kingdom of Prussia and the Russian Empire. These powers subdivided the territories that they gained and created new toponyms for the territories conquered. The subdivisions created were complicated by changes within those empires as well as by the periodic establishment of other forms of the quasi-Polish provinces led by a foreign head of state.
The Austrian Partition comprise the former territories of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth acquired by the Habsburg Monarchy during the Partitions of Poland in the late 18th century. The three partitions were conducted jointly by the Russian Empire, the Kingdom of Prussia and Habsburg Austria, resulting in the complete elimination of the Polish Crown. Austria acquired Polish lands during the First Partition of 1772, and Third Partition of Poland in 1795. In the end, the Austrian sector encompassed the second-largest share of the Commonwealth's population after Russia; over 2.65 million people living on 128,900 km2 of land constituting formerly south-central part of the Republic.
The Prussian Partition, or Prussian Poland, refers to the former territories of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth acquired during the Partitions of Poland, in the late 18th century by the Kingdom of Prussia. The Prussian acquisition amounted to 141,400 km2 of land constituting formerly western territory of the Commonwealth. The first partitioning led by imperial Russia with Prussian participation took place in 1772; the second in 1793, and the third in 1795, resulting in Poland's elimination as a state for the next 123 years.
The Russian Partition constituted the former territories of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth that were annexed by the Russian Empire in the course of late-18th-century Partitions of Poland. The Russian acquisition encompassed the largest share of Poland's population, living on 463,200 km2 of land constituting the eastern and central territory of the previous commonwealth. The first partitioning led by imperial Russia took place in 1772; the next one in 1793, and the final one in 1795, resulting in Poland's elimination for the next 123 years.
The First Partition of Poland took place in 1772 as the first of three partitions that ended the existence of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth by 1795. Growth in the Russian Empire's power, threatening the Kingdom of Prussia and the Habsburg Monarchy, was the primary motive behind this first partition.
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