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Fragments—Scattered Evidence

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Chapter Summary

Apart from the few narratives that present a vision of the past of the Polish ruling dynasty, this chapter has a group of sources in which parts of that history are preserved like individual snapshots. It is in the document known as "Dagome Iudex" that we find the first trace of the deliberate creation by the Piasts. For more than a century, the "Chronicon" of Thietmar of Merseburg has served as a primary source for the history of Poland. An analysis of the majority of the written sources presented in this chapter suggests that the Piast family tradition which was alive in the court of the Early Medieval Polish rulers was constructed on the basis of a contrast between the relatively well-remembered history of the closest family of the ruler and the extremely generalized recollections of his ancestors and predecessors.

Keywords: Chronicon; Early Medieval Polish rulers; Piasts; Poland; Polish ruling dynasty; Thietmar of Merseburg



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