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Liberty, Virtue And The Chosen People: British And Polish Republicanism In The Early Eighteenth Century

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Chapter Summary

Comparisons between Great Britain and Poland-Lithuania have been made before, with similarities and differences between these two political entities having been remarked upon both by early modern contemporaries, and by historians ever since. The comparison between the two states has been explicitly a political one, and the political structures and cultures of the two states have ever since been the principal point of comparison for historians, most notably Emanuel Rostworowski and Richard Butterwick. Three principal points of comparison between British and Polish republicanism have usually been identified by modern historians, namely their concepts of liberty, of virtue and of corruption. The conviction held by republicans in both Britain and Poland- Lithuania, that they were a Chosen People uniquely selected by Divine Providence to retain their liberty, therefore, made it very hard for them to admit that the ideas to which they subscribed were so similar.

Keywords: British republicanism; Divine Providence; early Eighteenth Century; Emanuel Rostworowski; Lithuania; Polish republicanism; Richard Butterwick



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