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Tsar Nicholas I: Imperial Manifesto on Poland, March 25, 1832

By the grace of God, Nicholas, Tsar of all the Russias, King of Poland, etc., When, by Our Manifesto of January 2, last year, We announced to Our faithful subjects the march of Our troops into the kingdom of Poland, which was momentarily snatched from the lawful authority, We at the same time informed them of Our intention to fix the future fate of this country on a durable basis, suited to its wants, and calculated to promote the welfare of Our whole empire. Now that an end has been put by force of arms to the rebellion in Poland, and that nation, led away by agitators, has returned to its duty, and is restored to tranquillity, We deem it right to carry into execution our plan with regard to the introduction of the new order of things, whereby the tranquillity and union of the two nations, which Providence has entrusted to Our care, may be forever guarded against new attempts. Poland, conquered in the year 1815 by the victorious arms of Russia, obtained by the magnanimity of Our illustrious predecessor, the Tsar Alexander, not only its national existence, but also special laws sanctioned by a Constitutional Charter.

These favors, however, would not satisfy the eternal enemies of order and lawful power. Obstinately persevering in their culpable projects, they ceased not one moment to dream of a separation between the two nations subject to our scepter, and in their presumption they dared to abuse the favors of the restorer of their country, by employing for the destruction of his noble work the very laws and liberties which his mighty arm had generously granted them. Bloodshed was the consequence of this crime. The tranquility and happiness which the kingdom of Poland had enjoyed to a degree till then unknown, vanished in the midst of civil war and a general devastation.

All these evils are now passed. The kingdom of Poland, again subject to Our scepter, will regain tranquility, and again flourish in the bosom of peace, restored to it under the auspices of a vigilant government. Hence, We consider it one of Our most sacred duties to watch with paternal care over the welfare of Our faithful subjects, and to use every means in our power to prevent the recurrence of similar catastrophes, by taking from the ill-disposed the power of disturbing public tranquility. As it is, moreover, Our wish to secure to the inhabitants of Poland the continuance of all the essential requisites for the happiness of individuals, and of the country in general, namely, security of persons and property, liberty of conscience, and all the laws and privileges of towns and communes, so that the kingdom of Poland, with a separate administration adapted to its wants, may not cease to form an integral part of Our empire and that the inhabitants of this country may henceforward constitute a nation united with the Russians by sympathy and fraternal sentiments, We have, according to these principles, ordained and resolved this day, by a new organic statute, to introduce a new form and order in the administration of Our kingdom of Poland.


St. Petersburg, February 26, 1832


From: Josef Hordynacki, History of the Late Polish Revolution and the Events of the Campaign, (Boston, 1833), pp. 424-428

Scanned by: J. S. Arkenberg, Dept. of History, Cal. State Fullerton. Prof. Arkenberg has modernized the text.

This text is part of the Internet Modern History Sourcebook. The Sourcebook is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted texts for introductory level classes in modern European and World history.

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