Many a time the worst things happen on a deed made with the best intentions. A nation gets broken up for centuries over a will, ushering an era dominated by foreign rulers.

Story in the evening ...
Bolesław was born in 1086 to Władysław Herman, Duke of Poland and Judith of Bohemia. He also had an illegitimate half brother, Zbigniew. Władysław had become Duke after his elder brother, Bolesław, was deposed in 1079 by the nobles and the clergy. 1/10
The senior Bolesław and his predecessors had taken an expansionist view for Poland, becoming a regional power player. In 1076, Bolesław was crowned King, but was seen by the nobles and the clergy as becoming too powerful. 2/10
Władysław Herman was a weak ruler, dominated by those who made him ruler. But one of them, Sieciech, wrested most of the control for himself, perhaps causing the death of the initial heir, Mieszko, son of Bolesław. But the opposition to Sieciech also grew in the court. 3/10
In 1097, Władysław made Zbigniew and Bolesław commanders of the army. The two brothers joined forces and got rid off Sieciech and sought a division of power with their father. The elder Zbigniew received Greater Poland, while the legitimate Bolesław Lesser Poland. 4/10
But the death of their father in 1102 led to a division of powers, Zbigniew getting the northern half, while Bolesław the southern half. The initial years as co-rulers were spend in conflict with each other, as Bolesław raided Pomerania in the north and Moravia in the south. 5/10
By 1107, Bolesław had control of the whole of Poland, with some help from Bohemia, and exiled Zbigniew. But in 1109, a German force attacked Poland, ostensibly to support Zbigniew. But Bolesław held on, sending the Germans back. 6/10
Zbigniew would be allowed to return, but Bolesław would soon accuse him of treason and have him killed. With his hold on rule clear, he headed north to conquer Pomerania. It would take him a decade to pacify Eastern Pomerania and make its ruler, Wartislaw, his tributary. 7/10
It took till 1135 for Bolesław to gain control on Western Pomerania, after swearing fealty to the Holy Roman Emperor. But he had more pressing thoughts in his mind. Having experienced the fight with his brother in his younger days, he wished to avoid that for the future. 8/10
Before his death in 1138, Bolesław willed division of Poland among his sons. The eldest, Władysław, was given the ducal title and the largest portion, while the rest were allocated parts as subordinates. But it didn't take long for the brothers to fight amongst themselves. 9/10
After further divisions and wars, Poland was reunited in a smaller form in 1320. In 1370, it was inherited by French Capet-Anjou followed by Lithuanian Gediminids. This ended with an elective monarchy of Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, the most populous country in Europe. 10/10

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