Jadwiga – King of Poland

I have been reading a book on the Polish Kings. I have currently read up to Władysław II Jagiełło.The one king that stood out to me was King Jadwiga – (Yad-veega) . This king stood out to me because she was a female.

Jadwiga was born in the year 1374, she was the youngest of three. Her father was Louis I of Hungary, and her mother was Elizabeth of Bosnia. Her elder sister Mary, became Queen of Hungary after their father’s death. While Jadwiga became King of Poland at the age of ten. She had her coronation on the 16th October 1384, at Wawel Cathedral in Kraków.

Jadwiga was taught to read and write, and she was able to speak at least six languages. (I think that is a great achievement, I have trouble learning two languages!) She was able to speak Bosnian, Latin, Polish, Serbian, Hungarian and German. (I’m learning Polish, I can say “Hello!” in German and a few other things, and I’ve always been interested in Latin. The reason I’ve been interested in Latin, is because I’m interested in the royal family from any country, but my heritage is a mixture of Polish, Irish and English, so I   am mainly interested the British royal family. Anyway, every British royal family member I’ve read about has learned Latin, so that has sparked a desire in me to learn Latin.)

Jadwiga was crowned a King to show that she wasn’t a queen consort, and that she ruled by herself. In 1386 she married Władysław II Jagiełło, who was the Grand Duke of Lithuania. At the time of their marriage he was 26 years old, and she was 12 years old. This marriage led to the creation of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, which happened a number of years afterwards in 1569. Though it was the marriage between Jadwiga and Władysław II Jagiełło which began this friendship between the two countries.

Kraków Academy went through a period of time with little funding, until King Jadwiga and King Władysław II restored it in 1399. Jadwiga gave her Crown Jewellery to the Kraków Academy to help it with its restoration process. Kraków Academy is now known as the Jagiellonian University. Jadwiga would attend cultural and charitable activities throughout Poland, and chose to donate her personal wealth to many different charities.

I personally think Jadwiga was a wonderful and thoughtful woman. The amount of devotion she had towards this country that wasn’t even her own, I believe is amazing. Jadwiga is now a saint, she was canonized on the 8th June 1997, in Kraków by Pope John Paul II.

Jadwiga gave birth to a baby girl at the age of 26, whose name was Elizabeth Bonifacia of Poland. A month later both the mother and daughter had passed away. They are both buried together.

We Are Going To Poland!

Today we have 50 days until our trip to Poland. All four of us are going to Poland now, Mama, Tata, Nik and I. We are all getting very excited over this! We are looking forward to experience a different culture, different food, a different way of life, in fact we are looking forward to enjoying everything Poland has to offer!

Mama, Nik, and I are also looking forward to all the photographic opportunities Poland will hold for us. The beautiful scenery, the beautiful and historic buildings, even the normal everyday things I am sure we will find amazing.

What is the one thing we are looking forward to doing in Poland the most? Meeting our Polish relatives, and friends, for the first time. It will be such an amazing experience for us to meet our Polish relatives. We regularly talk to them over Skype, but meeting them will be a whole new experience. Personally, this is the thing that gets me the most excited when I think about being able to go to Poland! Everything in Poland will be amazing, I know for sure, but I think there will be nothing like meeting the people that live there.

Unfortunately, Tata will only be able to stay three weeks in Poland with us. Mama, Nik and I stay for a total of something around seven and a half weeks. We have bought our tickets, bought our suitcases, and everyone has received their passports! Everyday we get closer to Poland, is a day we get more prepared for Poland!

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Our Passports!

A lot of the people we are staying with speak English, though some only speak Polish. For the first three weeks Tata is with us, this will not be a problem. He will be able to translate for us, and we will have very little problems, if any at all. What about the weeks after he goes home? Well, some of the places we are staying at have children who speak English, but their parents only speak Polish, so it will be relatively easy for us to communicate. Their kids will translate the English for them, and the Polish for us. But when these kids are at school? We will have to find other ways of translating what we wish to say to them! I think it will be quite fun to have to find other ways to get our message across. How are we going to do it? Who knows! We might have to draw, we might have to act it out, or we might have to put it in an online translator and have it translate for us. We will not know for sure until we get to Poland and are in that situation! But I know that I am very curious to find out what we will have to do!

Two months ago Nik and I started going to Polish school, to learn Polish before we go to Poland. We also use a program called Rosetta Stone, which helps quite a bit. Since we started going to Polish school, we have learned many, many, new things. Same with Rosetta Stone, it has taught us many new words. I believe this will help us quite a bit in the weeks that Tata is not with us. We should, by the time we get to Poland, be able to communicate with the relatives that only speak Polish, even if it is only to tell them our basic needs. I am hoping that by the time I get to Poland I will be able to talk about many different things, I am hoping to be able to have a number of conversations with our relatives.

I am looking forward to everything Poland has to offer for us. Photographic opportunities, meeting relatives, visiting places, experiencing the different culture, trying the different foods, these are all things we are looking forward to experiencing. I am sure that we won’t be disappointed! :)