• Faithful to my Homeland, the Republic of Poland
  • NEWS

  • 2 May 2019

    This well-attended public seminar organised by the Polish Embassy in Dublin in cooperation with the French Embassy in Ireland, the Alliance Francaise Dublin, Rathmines College of Further Education, TU Dublin, Dublin City Council, and Europe House was held on Tuesday 30th April to commemorate an extraordinary event in European history, where the daring granddaughter of the Polish hero-king, John III, aided by a company of Irish men and a French woman successfully counteracted King George I of Great Britain and Ireland’s attempts to thwart the marriage of Maria Clementina and the exiled James Stuart III.

    The educated, handsome, strong willed, having connections with courts across Catholic Europe and in possession of massive dowry Maria Clementina Sobieska eventually was betrothed to James Stuart III whose court in exile was based in Rome.

    James's rival, King George I of Britain and Ireland put pressure on his ally, Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI to obstruct this high profile match for the Stuart pretender, and Clementina was detained and confined in Innsbruck, Austria, in September 1718. Hence James turned to his loyal adherent, Charles Wogan of Rathcoffey Kildare, to make an attempt to rescue Clementina.

    On the night of the 27th April 1719, a rescue party comprised by a couple of Rishmena and a French woman snook into Innsbruck with false identities and transported Clementina over the Alps as best they could, enduring ferocious weather, cliff-edge carriage rides, misplaced royal jewels, broken axel shafts, all the while pursued by the emperor's forces. Clementina reached safety on 30th April and received a heroine's welcome to Rome on 15th May. She later married James Stuart III on 2nd September 1719.

    Paper-presenters were Professor Edward Corp, Dr Declan Downey, Dr Jaroslaw Pietrzak, Dr Eamonn Ó Ciardha, Dr Aneta Markuszewska, Mr Richard Maher and Ms Estelle Gittins. Proceedings were chaired by Professor Marian Lyons of NUI Maynooth.




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