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Sunday, 27 November 2016
24 March 1702 : part 2
Topic: Diplomacy

In the afternoon Piper held another meeting, undoubtedly of more lasting consequences. The Grand Treasurer of Lithuania Benedykt Sapieha, his ally Kazimierz Michał Pac and one of his sons along with one of Hetman Sapieha's sons met with Piper, Josias Cederhielm and Georg Wachschlager, the Swedish envoy in Warsaw. After some initial pleasantries the Grand Treasurer expressed his gratitude for the assistance given to his family by Charles XII. Pac pointed out that his actions had resulted in breaking up of the recent diet in Warsaw. Piper assured him that Charles XII was well aware of it and would remember Pac's effort. Piper then asked Sapieha to list the issues he wanted to have discussed and clarified. They were:

1. What were the King's intentions? 

2. That Sapieha and the magnates he had consulted wanted a good relationship beween Sweden and the Republic. 

3. That they wanted a such a close relationship between Sweden and the Republic that the interests of the two countries would be firmly united.

4. That a suitable method for bringing this into fruition would be found. 

Benedykt Sapieha then asked: Did Charles XII still insist on having King Augustus removed from the throne? Yes, Piper replied, Charles could not change his mind on that point as he viewed the dethronisation as the only method of bringing security to Sweden as well as to the Republic. Sapieha agreed and stated the most Poles shared this view, but they had not had the resources to act. There was also uncertainty about the Swedish intentions. Some believed that Charles wanted to make large conquests from the Republic. It was, Sapieha emphasized, absolutely vital for Charles to make a firm statement about his aims. Piper replied that these were well-known and the King was a man of his word. It was unnecessary to have doubts on this point. Charles XII wanted to have Augustus removed because this was the only way to bring Sweden and the Republic together in an alliance for mutual benefit. The King's program was:

1. The removal of King Augustus

2. The election of a new Polish king with whom a good friendship could be entertained.

3. The full restitution of the Sapieha family.

The first two had long been the King's position, but the third was new. Charles XII had realized, Piper said, that he and the Sapieha family had a common interest. The Sapiehas had proved their friendship and deserved Swedish support. While Piper explained this, the Grand Treasurer got tears in his eyes and said that the Sapiehas would for the rest of their lives remain faithful to Charles. The Republic was, he assured Piper, well pleased with the King's declaration of his intentions.

(To be continued...)

Source: Riksarkivet, Diplomatica, Polonica, vol. 310

Posted by bengt_nilsson at 8:08 PM CET
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