May 3rd Constitutiondate: 2022-05-03

The Constitution of May 3rd, 1791 is considered one of the essential achievements in the history of Poland, even though its life was prematurely shortened by the final partition of Poland, which erased its ability to grow and evolve.

May 3rd Constitution is considered to be the first modern Constitution of this type in Europe. It is only a few years older than the first and oldest modern Constitution, namely the Constitution of the United States, which had time to grow and has significantly evolved over the last 200 years of jurisprudence.

The presented seminar will be organized as follows:

First, the origins of the May 3rd Constitution will be discussed; an emphasis will be put on how it came about, and how it fits into the history of Poland.

Secondly, a few selected articles of the May 3rd Constitution will be presented showcasing their merits and their problems.

Finally, the speakers will share their reflections on the achievements of the Constitution, its role in the history of Poland, and in the preservation of the Polish nation under the partition. They will showcase how this document and enlightened Polish legal thought contributed into the development of modern democratic traditions in the Western world. 


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