Józef Klemens Piłsudski

(2455 words)
  • Peter Hetherington (Independent Scholar - North America)

Józef Piłsudski (1867–1935) was one of the most consequential statesmen of the twentieth century. He was the person most responsible for the establishment of an independent Polish state in the aftermath of World War I. His inspirational leadership was the determinate factor in Poland’s dramatic and improbable defeat of the Red Army in 1920, which not only preserved Poland’s sovereignty, but likely saved Europe from Bolshevik revolution.

The “Father of Polish Independence” was not born in Poland, but in the Russian Empire. “Poland” had been partitioned in 1795, her lands distributed among Russian, Prussian, and Austrian neighbors. The second son in a family of eleven children, Józef was born on December 5, …

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Hetherington, Peter. "Józef Klemens Piłsudski". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 30 April 2012
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=13104, accessed 27 November 2015.]