View previous topic | View next topic

POLAND

Page 2 of 3
Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3  Next

suze
583050.  Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm Reply with quote

Glad you enjoyed it, jamesy! Tyskie beer is really very drinkable, I'd have to agree!

I know exactly what you mean about Auschwitz. After going there, one does - in the short term at least - form a desire to watch Tom and Jerry cartoons and eat donuts rather than anything more emotionally involving.

 
Zebra57
863168.  Wed Nov 09, 2011 5:27 am Reply with quote

QI is the colonial history of Poland and its attempts to establish overseas territories.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colonies_of_Poland

 
suze
863280.  Wed Nov 09, 2011 12:36 pm Reply with quote

Thanks Zebra, I knew very little about those not-quite-colonies.

Józef Beck, who was Poland's Foreign Minister for most of the 1930s, was rather an anti-Semite. Accordingly, his positions on establishing Israel either in Geographic Palestine or (more fancifully) in Madagascar were largely to do with wanting to send Jewish Poles somewhere far away. Lithuania really isn't very far away, so he'd never have supported Stalin's supposed plan to cede that land to be Israel.

In recent years, Russia has alleged that Beck was working for the Nazi Germans all along. Polish historians will not hear of this, although it must be said that some within Poland always considered him a bit suspect. (Mainly because he was a Protestant, which very few Poles are.)

 
chrisboote
1027431.  Tue Oct 08, 2013 2:59 am Reply with quote

Krakow (my destination this weekend) was left largely undamaged during WW2 by the local German commandant striking a surrender agreement with the local Russian commander to preserve the city from the inevitable destruction that an assault would cause

 
suze
1027636.  Tue Oct 08, 2013 10:57 am Reply with quote

Poles don't all agree about just why it was that Kraków was not destroyed in WWII.

Some say that it was as you suggest. Some say that a German commandant disobeyed a direct order from Hitler, having been told to set about destroying the city. Some say that the Pope got onto Stalin's case because the city was and is Important to RCs, and this is why the Russians largely left it alone.

Others note that the British and the Americans considered bombing Auschwitz. Auschwitz isn't very far from Kraków, and yet others say that both the Germans and the Russians were fearful of potential consequences of action in Kraków. In fact, the Allies decided against bombing Auschwitz for entirely separate reasons - but the Germans didn't necessarily know that.


There's at least one other thing that didn't happen in Kraków - it was largely unaffected by the Black Death, and no one really knows why that should have been either. Milan was the only other major European city of the time largely to escape it.

 
Zebra57
1027640.  Tue Oct 08, 2013 11:10 am Reply with quote

Kraków was the capital of Poland from 1038 to 1569 and then the short lived capital of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth until 1596 when King Zygmunt/Sigismund III Vasa moved the capital to Warsaw.

 
chrisboote
1027801.  Wed Oct 09, 2013 6:34 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:

There's at least one other thing that didn't happen in Kraków - it was largely unaffected by the Black Death, and no one really knows why that should have been either. Milan was the only other major European city of the time largely to escape it.

But at least one theory is that both of those cities had/have deep sewers* and so that rats and their fleas had less contact with humans

* Sewers for rainwater, not cloacae for effluent

 
Zebra57
1028350.  Sat Oct 12, 2013 4:05 am Reply with quote

Which other countries does the Polish national anthem mention?

Answer - Sweden and Italy (Italian land)

In the original version there were more countries mentioned.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poland_Is_Not_Yet_Lost

 
chrisboote
1029077.  Wed Oct 16, 2013 2:39 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
Poles don't all agree about just why it was that Kraków was not destroyed in WWII.

OK, I have now collected nine different reasons why Krakow was left mostly undamaged in WW2
I'm beginning to think reason #9, told to me on Sunday by a six-year-old girl, is the most likely
"Mr Dragon flew out from his hole and ate the bullets falling on Krakow"
And yes, a Polish six-year old's English is infinitely better than my Polish

 
suze
1029213.  Wed Oct 16, 2013 10:57 am Reply with quote

Even though Smok Wawelski, the Dragon of Kraków, is supposed to have exploded sometime around the year 1190?

But hey, for sure it makes as much sense as any other explanation!

 
chrisboote
1029321.  Thu Oct 17, 2013 2:47 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
Even though Smok Wawelski, the Dragon of Kraków, is supposed to have exploded sometime around the year 1190?

Now now, this is QI
You can't bandy around worlds like "supposed" when my research comes from an actual real six-year-old girl!
8-)
Quote:
But hey, for sure it makes as much sense as any other explanation!

Ain't that the truth!

 
suze
1029339.  Thu Oct 17, 2013 3:40 am Reply with quote

The actual real six year old girl has probably not yet been told the legend the way I heard it!

As often with legends, the details vary with every telling. The date does too, but most versions go somewhere between 960 and 1190.

The story goes that the dragon lived in a cave at the bottom of a hill on the banks of the Wisła (Wiechsel / Vistula). Once a month he went into town raping and pillaging, and the only way to prevent this happening was to leave a nubile virgin at the entrance to the cave each once-a-month day.

All the peasants were keen to avoid it being their daughter who was sacrificed, and so there was a debauched period wherein the peasants paid one another to deflower their daughters.

Eventually there was only one virgin left, the King's daughter. So the King promised her hand in marriage to whomsoever could slay the dragon. A young cobbler stuffed a lamb with sulfur and left this outside the dragon's cave instead of the usual virgin. The dragon ate the lamb and became very thirsty, and after drinking half of the water in the Wisła he exploded.

The cobbler duly married Princess Wanda, and they lived happily ever after.

 
AlmondFacialBar
1029340.  Thu Oct 17, 2013 3:43 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
The actual real six year old girl has probably not yet been told the legend the way I heard it!

As often with legends, the details vary with every telling. The date does too, but most versions go somewhere between 960 and 1190.

The story goes that the dragon lived in a cave at the bottom of a hill on the banks of the Wisła (Wiechsel / Vistula). Once a month he went into town raping and pillaging, and the only way to prevent this happening was to leave a nubile virgin at the entrance to the cave each once-a-month day.

All the peasants were keen to avoid it being their daughter who was sacrificed, and so there was a debauched period wherein the peasants paid one another to deflower their daughters.

Eventually there was only one virgin left, the King's daughter. So the King promised her hand in marriage to whomsoever could slay the dragon. A young cobbler stuffed a lamb with sulfur and left this outside the dragon's cave instead of the usual virgin. The dragon ate the lamb and became very thirsty, and after drinking half of the water in the Wisła he exploded.

The cobbler duly married Princess Wanda, and they lived happily ever after.


Does it date me that as of the last sentence I picture the princess played by Jamie Lee Curtis?

:-)

AlmondFacialBar

 
Zebra57
1062005.  Fri Mar 07, 2014 6:24 pm Reply with quote

Polish concerns about a perceived Russia threat to its borders have resulted in its invoking Article 4 of NATO regulations, which allows a country to call for consultation if it feels that its security and independence are threatened.

http://www.dw.de/polish-economy-can-fend-off-russian-storm/a-17480455

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/ukraine/10679802/Ukraine-Russia-crisis-live.html

 
suze
1062009.  Fri Mar 07, 2014 7:11 pm Reply with quote

I'm hearing that some elements in Polish politics and media are scaremongering.

No one who matters seriously thinks that Russia plans to invade Poland once it's done with Ukraine, but a couple of populist politicians of the further right (think Nigel Farage but without the common sense) have mentioned the notion, mostly for the publicity.

In reality it's practically unthinkable. For a start Poland is just about the most pro-American nation in Europe these days, and one could adduce a dozen further reasons why it won't happen.

What is being mentioned more seriously is the idea that a trade embargo as between Russia and the EU could cause Russia to cease to supply oil and gas to Poland. This is still fairly unlikely, according to my favourite Polish journalist*, because Russia can't afford it. In any case Poland can reasonably easily source oil and gas from elsewhere if it comes to.

For sure, any kind of trade ban would not be welcome news in Poland and the Baltic Republic, but they'd live with it. Poland's biggest trading partner (both ways) is Germany, and there are plenty of Poles who would prefer to have no dealings at all with Moskwa.


* That'll be my third cousin once removed, who is a radio news journalist based in Gdańsk.

 

Page 2 of 3
Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3  Next

All times are GMT - 5 Hours


Display posts from previous:   

Search Search Forums

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group