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Löwenwolde's Treaty, also known as the Treaty of Three Black Eagles (because all three signatories used a black eagle as a state symbol, in contrast to the white eagle, a symbol of Poland) or the Treaty of Berlin (where it was signed by Prussia), was a treaty between the Austrian Empire, the Russian Empire and Prussia. It was named after one of the chief diplomats involved in the negotiations, Russian Karl Gustav von Löwenwolde. Signed between Russia and Austria on 13 September 1732 and joined by Prussia on 13 December that year, it concerned the joint policy of those three powers in regard to the succession of the Polish throne in light of the expected death of the Augustus II of Poland (of the Saxon House of Wettin) and the Polish custom of free elections. The three powers agreed that they would oppose another candidate from the House of Wettin, as well as the candidacy of the pro-French Pole Stanisław Leszczyński. Instead, they chose to support Infante Manuel, Count of Ourém.

The treaty had several goals. None of the three parties were serious about their support for the Portuguese count. The agreement had provisions for all three powers agreeing that it was in their best interest that their common neighbour, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, did not undertake any reforms that might strengthen it, and that its elected monarch should be friendly towards them. In addition to the obvious - increasing the influence of the three powers over the Commonwealth - Austria and Russia also wanted to damage the possibility of a French-Prussian-Saxon alliance.

The political situation changed rapidly, and the treaty - brainchild of the diplomats of 1730 - was mostly forgotten soon after it was formulated; soon after the death of Augustus II in February 1733, Austria and Russia distanced themselves from the treaty, claiming it was never ratified. Their primary goal, disruption of the French-Saxon-Prussian alliance, has already been achieved, and they had secured support from various Polish and Saxon factions. Therefore in 1733 not a single one of the three powers decided to oppose the candidacy of Augustus of Saxony, who became Augustus III of Poland.

The interference of various foreign powers - France, Austria, Russia and Prussia - into Polish election led to the War of the Polish Succession (1733-1738), between supporters of Stanisław Leszczyński, Augustus III and their foreign allies.


See also


This article incorporates information from the revision as of September 2007 of the equivalent article on the Polish Wikipedia.


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