Sigismund II

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Sigismund II


Sigismund Augustus,

1520–72, king of Poland (1548–72). Crowned in 1530 to assure his succession, he assumed the royal functions at the death of his father, Sigismund ISigismund I,
1467–1548, king of Poland (1506–48), son of Casimir IV. Elected to succeed his brother, Alexander I, Sigismund faced the problem of consolidating his domestic power in order successfully to counter external threats to Poland.
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. By the Union of Lublin (1569) he transferred his hereditary grand duchy of LithuaniaLithuania
, Lithuanian Lietuva, officially Republic of Lithuania, republic (2005 est. pop. 3,597,000), 25,174 sq mi (65,201 sq km), N central Europe. Lithuania borders on the Baltic Sea in the west, Latvia in the north, Belarus in the east and southeast, Poland in the
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 to the Polish crown, creating the unified Polish-Lithuanian state. His great diplomatic skill enabled him to conciliate the dissident elements both in Poland and among the Lithuanian magnates who opposed the fusion. Upon the dissolution (1561) of the Livonian Brothers of the SwordLivonian Brothers of the Sword
or Livonian Knights
, German military and religious order, founded in 1202 by Bishop Albert of Livonia for the purpose of conquest and Christianization in the Baltic lands.
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, Sigismund gained control over Courland, Latgale, and other parts of LivoniaLivonia
, region and former Russian province, comprising present Estonia and parts of Latvia (Vidzeme and Latgale). It borders on the Baltic Sea and its arms, the Gulf of Riga and the Gulf of Finland, in the west and the north and extends E to Lake Peipus (Chudskoye) and the
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. Opposed in this claim by Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand IFerdinand I,
1503–64, Holy Roman emperor (1558–64), king of Bohemia (1526–64) and of Hungary (1526–64), younger brother of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V.
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, Sigismund granted (1562) the elector of Brandenburg hereditary succession in the duchy of Prussia in exchange for diplomatic support. The widened frontiers brought Sigismund into conflict with Ivan IVIvan IV
or Ivan the Terrible,
1530–84, grand duke of Moscow (1533–84), the first Russian ruler to assume formally the title of czar. Early Reign

Ivan succeeded his father Vasily III, who died in 1533, under the regency of his mother.
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 of Russia, who took (1563) Polotsk. The Polish Reformation reached its height during Sigismund's reign; in 1570 most of the Protestant sects formed a union to strengthen their cause. An open-minded, tolerant monarch and a loyal Roman Catholic, Sigismund sought peacefully to counteract the Reformation; he abolished (1562) ecclesiastic courts but introduced (1565) the Society of Jesus (see Jesus, Society ofJesus, Society of,
religious order of the Roman Catholic Church. Its members are called Jesuits. St. Ignatius of Loyola, its founder, named it Compañia de Jesús [Span.,=(military) company of Jesus]; in Latin it is Societas Jesu (abbr. S.J.).
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), which successfully preached the Counter Reformation. The Renaissance flowered at this time (see also Polish literaturePolish literature,
the literary works of Poland. Early History

The early literature of Poland was written in Latin: its chief figures included the historians Martin Gallus (12th cent.
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), and Sigismund was an accomplished humanist and theologian. The last of the JagielloJagiello
or Jagello
, dynasty that ruled Poland and Lithuania from 1386 to 1572, Hungary from 1440 to 1444 and again from 1490 to 1526, and Bohemia from 1471 to 1526.
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 dynasty to rule Poland, Sigismund died childless. After an interregnum and the brief rule of Henry of Valois (later Henry IIIHenry III,
1551–89, king of France (1574–89); son of King Henry II and Catherine de' Medici. He succeeded his brother, Charles IX. As a leader of the royal army in the Wars of Religion (see Religion, Wars of) against the French Protestants, or Huguenots, Henry, then
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 of France), Stephen BáthoryBáthory
, Pol. Batory, Hungarian noble family. Stephen Báthory, 1477–1534, a loyal adherent of John I of Hungary (John Zápolya), was made (1529) voivode [governor] of Transylvania.
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 was elected (1575) king.
References in periodicals archive ?
In 1563 King Frederick II and King Sigismund II Augustus entered into an alliance agreement against Sweden.
To Kettler they offered the throne of Livonia, yet the Duke who had been subjected to the supervision of Poland-Lithuania did not even bother to respond (according to his chancellor-chronicler Salomon Henning), and forwarded the letters to King Sigismund II Augustus instead.
He had several reasons for hesitation: Frederick II had failed to unequivocally commit to the project; the whole undertaking was costly; the Toompea castle takeover was still under way; in 1569-1570 Magnus had been receiving messages from Kettler (from Sigismund II Augustus in a roundabout way, in fact), admonishing him to avoid making any deals with Ivan the Terrible; also Sigismund II Augustus sent him a letter in similar vein on December 3, 1569 (55); the administrator of Livonia proper Chodkiewicz threatened him with military intervention, and was indeed preparing for an occupation of the Courland Bishopric; alarming news came from Russia about the horrifying acts of violence committed by the massive punitive expedition of the oprichnina in the Novgorod and Pskov regions.
Frederick had received a letter from Sigismund II Augustus earlier in March ultimatively demanding to know whether the actions of Duke Magnus were in line with the King's will.
As for the Tsar, [after the death of Sigismund II Augustus] he will leave the whole of the Polish Kingdom together with Prussia to the Holy Roman Empire, and would not have any other neighbour [except for the Emperor]; and he is ready to enter into an alliance [with the Emperor] against the common enemy, the Turk.
The manifest defection of Sigismund II Augustus' nephew and potential heir, the popular Janos II Zsigmond Zapolya (72) into the Sultan's camp further aggravated the rift.
However, there were no immediate results--at the Stettin Peace Congress convened to terminate the Northern Seven Years' War the imperial delegation adopted a hostile attitude towards Russia, possibly evoked by some or all of these factors: the diplomatic legacy of earlier attempts to solve the Livonia problem; the shock caused by the appearance of Muscovy-sponsored corsairs on the Baltic Sea; pressure from Poland-Lithuania; the fact that Sigismund II Augustus, who had married two Habsburg princesses, was still alive, and after his death the imperial house would be claiming the right to the whole of Poland-Lithuania, etc.
aastal Taani ning Poola-Leedu vahel solmitud traktaadi kohaselt pidigi Uus-Parnu Taanile kuuluma, ja aastail 1565-1568 noutasid nad Sigismund II Augustilt korduvalt, ehkki tulemusteta, linna uleandmist.
Ehk kolbab seletuseks hoopis asjaolu, et parast Erik XIV kukutamist ja Sigismund II Augusti oemehe Johan III trooniletousu 1568.
Johani sammudest tulenenud paratamatu konflikt orduga ei tahendanud automaatselt soda Poola-Leeduga, sest Sigismund II August oli Liivimaa jagamisega sisuliselt nous.
Juhtumisi oli aga just Leetu joudnud Poola-Leedu kuninga Sigismund II Augusti kasul varvatud arvukas saksa palgavagi, mis nurjas koik liitlaste kavatsused.