THREE BROTHERS: A POLISH ROYAL MYTH
Written at the end of the Thirteenth Century/beginning of the Fourteenth, the ‘Wielkopolska Chronicle’ is archival – its original name and authorships unknown – and supposedly records the history of Poland up to the year 1273AD. It references three Slavic brothers in a myth colloquially known as ‘Lech, Czech and Rus’. (Prince Lechus, d.740, was the first King of Poland.)
The three had parted company during the melee of a great hunt and settled-down where they each ended-up, Czech in the West, Rus in the East and Lech in the North where he founded the city Gnesna/Gniezno near the nest of the eagle that he had been pursuing.
On his demise he left no known heirs and so the nation of Poland initiated its recurrent system of governing ‘palatines’ for each of its twelve provinces, a stop-gap followed by the kingship of wealthy Cracus for whom Cracovia/Cracow was named. Youngest son Lechus II then succeeded to the throne by way of secretly murdering his older brother. But the truth will out and he was eventually banished in favour of his sister Wenda in 750AD.
The childless Queen Wenda refused marriage, even to German Prince Rigiderus who used arms and the law to make her his wife but to no avail. He killed hisself for shame. Distressed Wenda threw herself to her death off Cracovia’s bridge. The 12 palatines stepped up again to fill the hiatus.
The next kings were equal eccentrics; Lescus (d.815) a supreme strategist of great humility who left no heir and Popielus a man full of hubris who poisoned his children for political purposes and was eaten alive by rodents in 830.
The story of the palatines is in Sebastian Munster’s ‘Cosmographia’ of 1554, the story of Poland’s early royals is in Moses Pitt’s ‘Atlas’ of 1681, and the whole is available from the Dean and Chapter of Worcester Cathedral Library at
(Thanks to ‘Oog en Hand’ of the strikingly prolific and eclectic https://oogenhand.wordpress.com for highlighting this annal.)
France grew close to Poland in many ways and it seems to me that Michel de Nostredame probably knew these stories well as we may find their shadows and echoes around his great legacy, ‘The Centuries’.
(Also see the Nostradamus Quatrains I 26 IX 36 V 50 VIII 17 II 95 THE BROTHERS and V 15, III 72 and III 36 THE HERMIT PRISONER POPE and the Article EPISTLE TO THE KING otherwise A PRAGMATIC EPIGRAM THAT IS NOT TO HAVE ONLY ONE SENSE OR A SOLE SIGN)
NIGELRAYMONDOFFORD © 2015