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Publisher: Stanislaw MAX.
Title: Mapa Polski i Krajów Osciennych - Wydanie trzecie. Opracowal Stanislaw Max. Wydani M. Arcta.
Published in: Warsaw, [H. Sklodowski], 1918
   
Size: 38.2 x 39.4 inches.
97.0 x 100.0 cm.
Colouring:

Printed colour.
Condition: Chromolithograph mounted on original linen, with original red cloth edging, with additional hand-made blue colouring. Soft folds with small tears and tiny loss of image, slightly dusty, otherwise in a good condition.
Condition Rating

‘The Birth of Modern Poland on a map’ - an excellent wall map of Poland and surrounding regions, published in Warsaw near the end of World War I, when Poland’s fate was unknown and its boundaries undefined - however, the present example is uniquely augmented with manuscript shading, defining the re-born independent Polish state with its full 1922 borders.

This fine wall map of Poland and surrounding regions was drafted by Stanislaw Max and published in Warsaw in 1918, near the end of World War I. The Polish language map provides excellent topographic detail of a vast region extending from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea, as well as labeling all major towns and roads.
As the boundaries in the region were then in state of flux, the printed map labels the approximate locations of countries and regions, but is intentionally unclear as to the locations of most international boundaries, especially that of Poland (which in 1918 was under German occupation, but would soon be liberated by wars of independence).

Importantly, the present example of the map is uniquely augmented in manuscript, in outlining and shading in green crayon, in order to showcase the territory of the Second Polish Republic, the first truly independent Polish state formed since 1795, with its borders as confirmed by treaties in 1922. In this sense, the map brilliantly showcases the birth of modern Poland.

The Rebirth of Poland: The end of World War I (1914-8) hailed the rebirth of Poland as an independent state, after generations of foreign subjugation. In 1795, following the last of the three Partitions of the once mighty Kingdom of Poland, the nation ceased to exist as an independent entity, its territory being divided between Prussia, Russia and the Austrian Hapsburg Empire. While the Prussians and Austrians more or less absorbed the parts of Poland in their possession into their empires, the Russians set up the state of Congress Poland, which in reality was only a puppet state of Russia. While a part of Poland briefly held some autonomy as a French client state, known as the Duchy of Warsaw, from 1807 to 1815, and Polish Rebellions against Russian rule in Congress Poland occurred in 1830-1 and 1863-4, Polish independence remained elusive.

To make a long story short, during World War I, Germany had the upper hand over Russia on the Eastern front, overrunning the Polish lands and extending its occupation into Russian territory beyond Minsk. The new Soviet regime in Russia sued for peace, and signed the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk (March 3, 1918) with Germany. This placed the new border between Germany and Russia along the ‘Brest-Litovsk Line’, which ran to the east of Lublin, Bialystok and Vilnius. The majority of Polish lands were thus under German control, with a portion in the south remaining under Austro-Hungarian rule.

However in the month leading up to Germany and Austria-Hungary’s final surrender to the Western Allies on November 11, 1918, Austro-German control over much the Polish lands disintegrated. Polish leaders declared their intention to declare an independent Polish state, a move that would be supported by the Western Allies at the Treaty of Versailles deliberations. However, the Polish leadership knew that this move would be hotly contested by Poland’s neighbors, and so it organized rapid and effective military conscription and mobilization. Poland would have to fight on several fronts, for both its survival and to obtain the geographical boundaries it desired, resulting in a series of relatively short, sharp wars.

In what became known as the Greater Poland Uprising (1918-1919), Poles in the former Grand Duchy of Posen (Poznan) overthrew German rule, resulting in the region becoming Polish territory. During the Polish-Ukrainian War (1918-19), Polish forces gained control of Galicia and Bukovina. Following the Poland-Czechoslovakia War (1919), the small area of Cieszyn Silesia was divided between the two belligerents.

Most importantly, during the Polish-Soviet War (1919-21), Poland fought an epic struggle against Soviet Russia, which seesawed back and forth, but ended in a Polish victory. This saw the Polish-Soviet border placed far to the east, leaving Poland in possession of large portions of modern Lithuania, Belarus and Ukraine, plus all of today’s Central and Eastern Poland. The new, internationally recognized independent Polish Republic comprised 387,000 km˛ (149,422 sq. mi.) of territory, with a population of over 27 million.

The manuscript additions of the 1922 boundaries of Poland on the present were likely added as the boundary settlement was still breaking news, and before printed maps of the new boundaries were available. Thus, the new Polish state was cartographically born upon the present map.

The printed map was designed by Stanislaw Max and although the map’s title used the pseudonym of ‘M. Arct’ for the publisher, the map is known to have been printed by the firm of H. Sklodowski in Warsaw. It is the third of five editions of the map that were printed between 1916 and 1920. The geography is based upon the best information, largely from the Polish Geographical Institute. The Max-Sklodowski series is considered to represent amongst the finest maps of Poland made during the critical period of the nation’s revival.




map Thumbnail Catalogue  book Catalogue  Category:  Europe | Poland general | Check Archive |

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Stanislaw MAX. -  Mapa Polski i Krajów Osciennych - Wydanie trzecie. Opracowal Stanislaw Max. Wydani M. Arcta.
Stanislaw MAX. - Mapa Polski i Krajów Osciennych - Wydanie trzecie. Opracowal Stanislaw Max. Wydani M. Arcta. high resolution image of old map
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Lot number: 40262

Stanislaw MAX. - Mapa Polski i Krajów Osciennych - Wydanie trzecie. Opracowal Stanislaw Max. Wydani M. Arcta.
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Price :$ 1,250
Approx. Euro 1,138  

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