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ALi 
AT 
LOS ANGELES 
LIBRARY 



WINCENTY LUTOSLAWSKI 



LITHUANIA 



AND 



WHITE RUTHENIA 



Parts 1919 



,TT < 



WINCENTY LUTOSLAWSK] 



LITHUANIA 



AND 



WHITE RUTHENIA 



Paris I9i9 



1145N2 



. iU 



6L9 

LITHUANIA 

AND 

WHITE RUTHENIA 



LIMITS OF HISTORIC LITHUANIA 

Lithuania is the name of an old State, which corresponds 
roughly to the six actual provinces of Grodno, Kowno, Wilno, 
Witebsk, Minsk and Mohylow, and throughout this report the 
name of Lithuania is used to indicate these six provinces. 
Historic Lithuania, as it existed in 1772 before the partition 
of Poland, included besides almost the whole of the province 
of Suwalki (except one sixth of the district of Augustow), 
the district of Biala, one half of the district of Wlodawa, 
one fourth of the district of Konstantynow in the province of 
Siedlce, and the town of Polaga with surroundings in the 
■ province of Kurland. But the districts of Dynaburg, Lucyn, 
i Rzezyca in the province of Witebsk, and the districts of 
Bialystok Sokolka and Bielsk in the province of Grodno, did not 
belong to the historical Grand Duchy of Lithuania, which 
had an area of 298.825 sq. km., while the six provinces 
lsually identified with it cover an area of 304.356 sq. km. 

DISCOVERY OF WHITE RUTHENIANS 

The name of White Ruthenia was formerly applied only to 
the present provinces of Witebsk and Mohylow, as inhabited 
chiefly by White Ruthenians. In the ethnographic atlas of 
Woszczynin, published in 1848, White Ruthenians are indi- 
cated only in these two provinces. In the atlas of Ekert, 
published in 1863, White Ruthenians are found also in the 
provinces of Minsk, Grodno and Wilno, and in 1889 Mitrofan 
Zapolskij recognizes their existence also in the province of 
Smolensk. In Polish literature, *the name of White Ruthenia 
(Bialorus) is usually applied to those parts of historic Lithua- 



— 4 — 



„;, which are chiefly inhabited by White Ruthenians, a popu- 

J , "I \i , ethJgraphically is intermediate between he 

p„e and the Muscovites. The language spoken by the 

, ,' Ruthenians is akin to the Ruthenian but perm* ed 

, ' the influence of Polish: it is easier understood by the 

> .1 h v he Russians, while the White Ruthemans gen- 

e ra Uv understand Polish, and many of them, especially the 

Catholics, who are numerous, speak it. 

WHITE RUTHEIS IANS AND POLAND 

The White Ruthenians have never formed a State of their 

wn as they are almost exclusively a rural population 

" • '- are pedants). The majority of the White Ruthemans 

am e early under Polish rule, and only a small part belonged 

Muscovy The White Ruthenians of Lithuania arc nation- 
ally undlvelopped, and, unlike the Lithuanians they had 

,1 the war scarcely any political aspirations of their own. 

a f th t ey d "TSSSS iXttem thttmbol of n el^ion and 
higher education became generally foles oi mil. 

tional character chiery heman5 who came u „der the 

l^f the T ar of Muscovy before the partitions of Poland, 
hteten mme or It assimilated, and have become Musco- 
vites, or as they arc called now, Russians. 

ETHNOGRAPHIC LITHUANIA 

The ethnographic territory of Lithuania is much «JJer 
than the boundaries of historic Lithuania. It comp uses the 
province of Kowno, a narrow strip of the province of Wilno 

1 t + ^f +V^ -nrovince of Suwaiki, ana tne mum 
the northern part of the pov mce > Uthuanians numbe r 



Polish. This city has only two per cenl Lithuanians among 
its inhabitants, and the whole country around the old capital 
of Lithuania is completely outside the area in which the 
Lithuanian language prevails. 

POLES IN LITHUANIA 

It is evident thai an ethnographic Lithuania would be too 
small a State to maintain its political and economic inde- 
pendence of Germany. Thus the Lithuanians insist on 
their historic frontiers, as they wish !<> form a really 
independent Slate. Bu1 within those historic frontiers of 
Lithuania there are more than three million Poles, and the 
hell which is chiefly Polish, extending from Bialystok to 
Grodno, Wilno and beyond Dynaburg, separates Lithuania 
proper from the predominantly W hite Ruthenian part of 
historic Lithuania. Moreover the Poles are disseminated in 
the whole of historic Lithuania, and where they are numerically 
inferior. they occupy the most influential positions. for they form 
principally the educated classes, while 85 °/ of the Lithuanians 
and 93 ° /o of the White Ruthenians are uneducated peasants. 
It is a great mistake to believe that the Poles in Lithuania 
are only the upper classes, as large numbers of the most 
successful small farmers are Poles also, and without them 
the percentage of Poles could never be as considerable as it 
actually is. 

UNIQUE CONDITIONS 

This mixture of different ethnographic elements in the same 
country is a result of historic and natural conditions which 
are unique of th< ir kind, and cannot be easily understood by 
those who are accustomed to the clearly cut ethnographic 
delimitation vailing in Western Europe. It is sary 

to gointoman; the unprecedented con- 

ditions now existing in Lithuania, and to judge of the possible 
alternatives open for its political organization in the future. 

CONFLICTING CLAIMS 

Lithuania was a part of the Polish Republic, and its history 
since the XlVth century is closely related to the destinies 



— 6 — 

of Poland. Without a clear conception of Poland's geogra- 
phical position and historic mission in Europe, there is no 
possibility of judging the conflicting Polish and Lithuanian 
claims. It is therefore necessary here to state briefly what 
seems to be the explanation of the singular relation between 
Poland and Europe. 

POLAND, EUROPE, AND ASIA 

Geographically, the continent of Europe is a large peninsula 
with three smaller peninsulas in the South. The chief body 
of the European peninsula has been in history the field of the 
growth of the German Empire, which is separated from the 
plateau of Great Russia by a very characteristic isthmus, 
containing the basins of seven great rivers : the Oder, the 
Vistula, the Niemen, the Duna, the Dniester, the Boh and the 
Dnieper. This isthmus between Western and Eastern Europe 
is one geographical whole, very different in every respect from 
the country farther east. There is a smaller difference in 
climate between Breslau and Kieff, than between KiefT and 
Moscow, and also in every other respect the country west of 
the Dnieper has belonged for centuries to Western Europe, 
while beyond the Dnieper began already Asia with its despotic 
political formations, where the subject populations have no 
active participation in the decisions of their rulers. 

OUTCOME OF WESTERN CIVILISATION 

The peculiar development of Western civilisation, which 
originated in Greece, consisted in multifarious internal 
struggles between different classes of the population in each 
country, and between the neighbouring states. It led finally 
to the formation of such well defined national states as 
England, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Switzerland, Holland, 
Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway, which at last gave up 
ao-orressive warfare amongst each other, and devoted all the 
energies of their national life to the perfecting of mutual 
relations between individuals and classes within each national 
State. The long historic growth which led to this end, 
required safety from Asiatic invasions for Western Europe, 
in order to ensure the peaceful internal development of 
Western nations. 



WATCHMAN OF El.' ROPE 

The enormous contrast between Western Europe and Asia 
implied inevitable conflicts il the isthmus situated between 
the Oder, the Carpathian mountains, and the Dniester on one 
side, and the Duna and Dnieper on the other side was not 
firmly held by a nation thoroughly impregnated with Western 
political ideals, and able to stop the incursions of Asiatic 
conquerors. 

M ISSION OF THE POLES 

This was the peculiar mission of the Poles. They united 
the other inhabitants of the Polish isthmus, the Lithuanians, 
Celts, White Ruthenians and Ruthenians into one common- 
wealth which for nearly three centuries extended from sea to 
sea, and ensured for its citizens a much higher degree of poli- 
tical liberty than was known east of the basin of the Dnieper, 
or between the Oder and the Rhine. 

RAPID GROWTH OF POLAND AND LITHUANIA 

The actual unity of the territory situated between Germany 
and Eastern Europe can be seen from two historical facts. 
Poland under Mieszko 1 in 962 had an area of about 100.000 sq. 
km., and under his son, Roleslaw I, it had grown suddenly to 
415.000 sq. km. Lithuania under Mendog (1240-63; had 80.000 
sij. km. and in the next century under Olgierd (1345-77) 
had rapidly grown to 625.000 sq. km. Such rapid growth of 
tli, two chief States of the Polish isthmus could not have 
le if the geographical conditions had not made one 
natural whole of the territory thus brought under one rule. 
The basin of the Vistula is in such close connexion with the 
basins of the Oder, the Niemen, the Dnieper and the Dniester, 
that there is no separation whatever between these basins : 
canals unite all Polish rivers, while there is no such communi- 
cation between the Dnieper or the Duna and the great rivers 
flowing further east. The Polish isthmus from the Baltic 
to the Black sea, with its seven great rivers, forms one natural 
whole which lias the essential conditions for the greatest 
economic prosperity, if t his nut uial unity is not split by political 
divisions. 



- POLISH REPUBLIC ISTHMUS STATE 

1 1 was this territorial unity of the Polish isthmus which led 
to the union Lei ween Poland and Lithuania and to the for- 
mation <d' the Polish Republic. It fulfilled for four centu- 
ries its mission of defending European liberty against the 
Eastern despotism of Muscovites, Tartars and Turk--. The 
destruction of this bulwark of political liberty was due chiefly 
to the creation of a centre of Eastern despotism in Prussia, 
which, in alliance with Muscovy, soon displaced the frontier 
of Western Europe from the Dnieper to the Rhine, and since 
1871 beyond the Rhine. 



AN ISTHMUS STATE NECESSARY 

Whoever investigates impartially the facts of history and 
geography, must admit that even if Poland had not existed, 
the formation of a strong and free State filling the isthmus 
between the Baltic and the Black Sea would remain a necessity 
for European politics as long as the principles of Western 
civilisation had not spread to the whole of Eastern Europe 
and to Western Asia. 



MERIT OF THE LITHUANIAN PRINCES 

Towards the existence of such a State the Lithuanian 
princes have contributed more even than the Poles, by unit- 
ing under their rule all those Ruthenian and White Ruthenian 
populations which inhabited the great isthmus, without being 
able to form by themselves durable States. But the Lithua- 
nian State, in the XlVth century, was a despotic eastern State, 
and could not be expected to defend European liberty against 
eastern invasions. On the contrary it might have threatened 
Europe, if it had extended its conquests further East and 
increased its military power. 

TRANSFORMATION OF LITHUANIA 

The union with Poland in 1386 totally transformed Lithua- 
nia. This union was at first a dynastic union, created by 



— 9 — 

the marriage of the Lithuanian prince Jagiello with the Polish 
Queen Jadwiga. But already in 1401 the Lithuanian boyars 
took part in the deliberations and decisions which 
purposed establishing a closer link between the two States. 
As further steps towards this goal were taken, in L413, 1432- 
34, 1499, 1501, the importance of^the boyars increased, and 
one of the chief motives which linked the Lithuanians with 
Poland was the wish to share the greater liberties won by the 
Poles from their Kings. 

ORIGINAL CHARACTER OF LITHUANIA 

Before the union'with Poland the Lithuanians had no politi- 
cal rights, and their prince was as absolute a ruler, as a Khan 
of the Tartars, or a Tsar of Muscovy. They had no personal 
property in land, but received from the prince revocable 
grants of land as rewards for military service and under the 
obligation of continuing such service. They could be deprived 
by the prince of the land they cultivated; they had to give 
to him a part of their harvests, and to supply workmen 
to the princely estates. They could not even give their daugh- 
ters in marriage without the prince's consent. 

SCHOOL OF LIBERTY 

All this was rapidly changed underPolish influence, and they 
gradually obtained the same liberties as had been won by the 
Poles. Most of them became Poles in fact, and were proud 
of it. The Polish law " Neminem captivabimus nisi jure vic- 
turrC was soon extended to Lithuania, and gave to Lithuanians 
such a personal independence and security as was totally 
unknown east of the Dnieper in Muscovy, Tartaria of other 
eastern Slates. The Lithuanian throne, which was originally 
hereditary, became elective, and I lie lasl heredil iry privileges 
of the kings were abolished in L564, before the definitive 
union of Lithuania with Poland, at the same line' when in 
Muscovy the absolute power of lie tsars was modelled on 
Tartarian standards. 



— 10 — 

LITHUANIAN BOYARS AND PEASANTS 

Before the union of Lithuania with Poland, there were great 
differences of rank between the families of boyars and various 
magnates. The close union with Poland abolished these 
differences, and introduced into Lithuania the same democratic 
equality of a very numerous nobility which had been the ripe 
fruit of a long political development in Poland. Also the con- 
dition of peasants in Lithuania has gradually improved after 
Polish patterns. This deep social transformation of Lithuania 
led to the final union of Lithuania and Poland in the act of 
July 1 st , 1569, with one common Diet, and the common election 
of one king for both States. The distinction of the high 
offices in Lithuania and Poland was preserved, and Lithuania 
had a separate Treasury, as well as a separate Army, but 
the whole social and political structure of Lithuania became 
essentially Polish. All this happened quite spontaneously, 
without any use of force. 

LITHUANIA BECOMING A WESTERN COUNTRY 

Until the middle of the XVIth century, elections were 
unknown in Lithuania, and the representatives of the 
boyars were nominated to the Diet. Since 1565 Lithua- 
nia has obtained local councils (sejmiki) which have elected 
delegates to the Central Diet, as in Poland. The Polish 
offices of Wojewoda and Kasztelan had already been intro- 
duced into Lithuania in the XVth century, and from 1569 
all the Polish offices had their equivalents in Lithuania. Since 
the end of the XVIth century, in Lithuania as well as in 
Poland, the candidates to some offices have been elected 
by the local dietines, [the King retaining the privilege 
of nomination from among the proposed candidates. Also 
the administration of justice was totally changed by the union 
with Poland. While in old Lithuania many individuals of 
prominent families were above the law, from 1569 the Polish 
conception of justice prevailed, and was introduced into 
Lithuania. The Lithuanian statutes of 1566 and 1589 were 
permeated with the Polish spirit of law. All the vestiges 
of oriental or byzantine influence gradually disappeared in 
the whole of Lithuania, and Lithuania became a really West- 
ern country. 



— II — 

POLONISATION OF RUTHENIA AND LITHUANIA 

The Ruthenian southern part of Lithuania, corresponding 
to the present provinces of Podolia, Volhynia and Kiefl was 
finally incorporated into Poland, so that the State of Lithuania 
was relieved from the difficulties connected with the unruly 
population of the southern steppes, and had only to defend 
the northern and northeastern frontiers of the common 
Republic. The Polish language spread rapidly in Lithuania. 
The cities first became Polish, and then wide tracts of 
land were colonised by the Poles, chiefly from Masovia, so 
that now the old capital of Lithuania, Wilno, is one of the 
chief Polish towns, and is surrounded by a predominantly 
Polish territory, peopled to a great extent by small Polish 
farmers. The city of Wilno since its beginnings has never 
been Lithuanian. 

POLISH SCHOOLS AND TRIBUNALS 

In 1568 the Jesuits founded a College in Wilno, which in 
1579 became an Academy. In 1580 a college at Polock was 
founded. Many eminent Lithuanians went to the University of 
Cracow, where they received a Polish education and brought 
back to Lithuania the Polish conception of public life, a pas- 
sionate love of political liberty and individual independence. 
Towards the end of the XVI Ith century, the Polish language 
became the official language of the Lithuanian courts, and this 
did not happen under official pressure of any kind, but simply 
because the judges and parties were accustomed to speak 
Polish, and considered themselves as Poles. The Lithuanian 
statute, which had been published in 1588 in the White Ru- 
thenian language, had many Polish editions, and since it 
has been translated into Polish in 1613, not a single White 
Ruthenian edition, while it has never been published in 
Lithuanian. 

NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL GROWTH OF STATES 

The polonisation of Lithuania was a spontaneous proc 
like the extension of the British Empire over the earth, 
not an artificial growth, like the extension of Prussian rule o^ er 
Germany. Lithuania at the time of her firsl union with 
Poland was more than three times larger than Poland, and it 



— 12 — 

is something unique in history that such a huge despotic 
State, with a great military past, could have been so thoroughly 
converted not only to Christianity, but to Western civilisation 
by a much smaller State which in the pursuit of civic liberty 
had greatly neglected military efficiency. 

GROWTH OF POLISH INFLUENCE 

The best proof of this intense Polish influence is the peaceful 
incorporation of Ruthenia with Poland in 1569 by the will 
of its representatives, without any serious protest of the Lithua- 
nians, who had conquered Ruthenia and could consider it 
as their own. The intensity of this Polish civilising work 
in Lithuania may be also seen from the fact that between the 
XVth and XYIIIth centuries the population of Lithuania 
increased by 700 " ,, and that of Poland proper only by 300 " , 
which shows the enormous colonizing movement from Poland 
into Lithuania. 

VIOLENT INTERRUPTION OF A NATURAL PROCESS 

This historical process, which led gradually to the creation 
of a powerful national State between theBaltic and the Black 
Sea, could not be brought to a similar natural conclusion as 
in the western national States for several reasons : 

1. The Tsars of Muscovy, helped by England* and Germany 
since the NVIth century, by Prussia since the XVIIIth cen- 
tury, and by France since the latter part of the X IXth century. 
created an oriental despotic empire, incompatible with the 
existence on its borders of a free Polish Republic. 

2. The Princes of Brandenburg, having obtained from Poland 
in 1618 their succession in Prussia, as vassals of the Polish 
King, betrayed their Sovereign on many occasions and created 
by treachery, with the help of the Swedes in 1657, an indepen- 
dent despotic State of Prussia, which has grown into another 
mighty Empire, equally incompatible with the Tree Polish 
Republic 

* England since the discovery of the sea way to Archangel in the XYIth 
century supplied Muscovy with skilled workmen, guns and munitions. 
In vain the Polish King warned Queen Elizabeth that such help given to 
barbarians would imperil European civilisation. 



— 13 — 

3. The Poles having, all or the death of their king Sobieski 
in 1696, greatly neglected the military deferfce of I he Republic, 
were unable in the XVIIIth Century to uphold their law- 
fully elect I'd king, Leszczynski, an ally of France, ami tole- 
rated the reign of two Germans, Augustus of Saxony and his 
son, usurpers of the. Polish throne, who were elected 1>\ ,i 
minority with the assistance of Muscovy. 

GERMAN PROMISES NEVER KEPT 

The natural process of the polonisation of Lithuania and 
Ruthenia, very similar to the unification of Spain and France, 
was thus arrested by the violence of an unprecedented crime, 
the partitioning of Poland. The partitioning powers did not 
deny the Polish character of the whole Polish Republic, includ- 
ing Lithuania and Ruthenia, and in the Congress of Vienna 
they promised an untrammelled national life to all the inhabi- 
tants of Lithuania and Poland. But they could not keep such 
promises without imperilling the existence of their own despo- 
i ic States. 

RUSSIFICATIOIN OF LITHUANIA 

And then began for Lithuania a process of russification, 
very unlike the preceding polonisation. While the poloni- 
sation was quite voluntary and spontaneous, withoul any 
violence or betrayal, the russification proceeded by violence 
and treachery, by falsifications of history, misrepresentations 
of truth and by every imaginable kind of persecution. This 
russification of a country in which the Poles were the brains, 
paralyzed the whole economic life, subordinating the most 
obvious needs of the inhabitants to the absurd undertaking 
of changing Lithuanians and While Ruthenians into Musco- 
vites. 

MUSCOVITE SPIRIT OF DESTRUCTION 

Alter the partitions, the cruelty of Muscovite officials in 
Lithuania was even worse than in other parts of the old Repub- 
lic. In 1781 began in White Ruthenia the sale of peasants as 
slaves, a practice unknown in Poland. From L793 the confis- 
cation oi Polish property and I lie expulsion ol Poles from 



— 14 — 

Lithuania began, and a succession of arbitrary measures made 
life very unsafe in Lithuania for the Poles. And the inhabi- 
tants of Lithuania, despite this persecution, took such an 
active share in the Polish revolution of 1831, that after 
that date 2.889 estates were confiscated in Lithuania. The 
Polish University at Wilno, the Polish lyceum at Krzemie- 
niec and the Polish agricultural school at Horki (province 
of Mohylow) were closed. The Russian language was intro- 
duced in 1840 in the courts of justice and in the schools. 

RELIGIOUS PERSECUTION 

A religious persecution also began. The catholic bishops 
were forbidden to correspond with the Pope and most of them 
were exiled ; the priests were forbidden to travel and to preach 
without submitting their sermons to the censor. Out of 
291 monasteries, 202 were closed and their property confiscated. 
Many churches were also closed and parishes were abolished. 
Conversion to the Roman faith was treated as a crime, and 
punished with the utmost severity. Children of mixed mar- 
riages were condemned to be brought up in the orthodox 
faith, and often educated by the State to become enemies of 
their own families. Those who could be suspected of Polish 
feelings were mostly exiled to Russia or Siberia. The religious 
union between the Greek and Roman churches was abolished 
in 1839, and all the Uniats considered as orthodox were obliged 
to go to Russian churches and to confess to Russian popes under 
the greatest penalties. 

INCREASING LOVE OF POLAND 

This system did not succeed in eliminating the Polish in- 
fluence from Lithuania, and in 1863 again great numbers of 
Lithuanians and White Ruthenians participated in the revol- 
ution against the Tsar. Even in the province of Mohylow, 
which had not participated in the rising of Kosciuszko, de- 
tachments were formed which fought for Poland in 1863. The 
bloodthirsty governor of Wilno, Muraviev, knew it and he 
condemned whole villages to be exterminated, and the 
inhabitants to be exiled to Siberia. Thus were destroyed 
Ibiany in Zmudz, Uzusul near Kowno, Uszpol near Poniewiez, 



— 15 — 

Pokierty in the district of Troki, and Jaworowka in the district 
of Rialystok. Such vengeances prove the participation of 
the peasants in Lithuania in the last great national movement 
of the Poles. 

NEW DEVICES OF TYRANNY 

The persecution increased. Great numbers of (stales were 
again confiscated. In 1865 it was forbidden for Poles to buy 
land, the confiscated estates being given to faithful servants 
of the Tsar; it was forbidden to preach in churches other ser- 
mons than those published in censured books ; the Polish 
language was forbidden not only in schools and offices but 
even in the streets, many churches were closed and catholic 
parishes abolished, and a special income tax, amounting to ten 
per cent of the estimated income was imposed upon the Poles. 
The total amount of this tax was lixed in 1863 and divided 
among the Polish landowners, without regard to their decreas- 
ing numbers. Arbitrary fines imposed on the Poles under 
various pretexts increased the difficulty of their economic 
condition, and everything has been done to make life in Lithua- 
nia intolerable to them. 

Nowhere has there been such an accumulation of 
measures directed against the educated classes of a country 
by an external enemy. And this immense effort of the govern- 
ment of the Tsar did not attain its object, but had quite other 
results, not foreseen by the instigators of the whole undertak- 
ing. 

DECREASE OF EDUCATION 

Lithuania, which under Polish rule had a high standard of 
popular education, has entirely lost this superiority, since the 
Poles were forbidden to teach and to speak their language 
in this country. In 1808 the high schools of the curatorship 
of Wilno had 7.422 pupils and the other parts of Russia only 
5.415 pupils. In 1861 there were only 4.125 pupils of pub- 
lic schools and among them 3.301 Poles ; in 1868 only 2.578 
pupils and among them L453 Poles. This decrease of the 
number of pupils, the closing of many schools, the prohib- 
ition of books printed in the Polish, Lithuanian and 
White Ruthenian languages (except in Russian char- 
acters which the people could not read, being 



— 16 — 

accustomed to the Latin alphabel reduced the population 
of Lithuania to a condition of greal helplessness in every 
respect. In the six provinces of Lithuania not even one fourth 
of the children of school age went to elementary schools 
before the war. In the vast area of Lithuania there was no 
university, no higher school of any kind. 

COST OF PERSECUTION 

This negled of education had its repercussion on the eco- 
nomic life of Lithuania. The Russian State has spent regu- 
larly on this province much more than the income drawn 
from it, despite all extortions and special contributions. One 
third of the area is covered by forests, one sixth is pastures, 
one sixlli is entirely uncultivated and only one third is under 
cultivation. The production of the six provinces is about 
4.400.000 tons of wheat and rye, 212.000 tons of hamp and 
flax, 5.305.000 of potatoes, and 5.000.000 tons of hay. This 
production is very inferior to that obtained on a much 
smaller area in Congress Poland, where more than half of the 
total area is cultivated. One hectare produces in Lithuania 
7,3 quintals of rye, while in Congress Poland the production 
is 10,7 quintals, in Posnania 19,3 quintals. In fact the produc- 
tion is insufficient to maintain the population. The State ex- 
penses in Lithuania amounted to 140 million roubles in 1913, 
while the State income was 100 million roubles. Every year 
from 1868-1890 the State had to add a considerable sum to 
it s revenue from Lithuania in order to pay the expenses. Fj * - 
quently the population suffered famines and was brought to 
the greatest misery. 

ANORMAL CONDITIONS 

These results were inevitable, as for centuries the Poles wo e 
the chief agents of production in Lithuania, and the Russian 
government was totally unable to replace them. The 
importation of Russian officials brought no wealth to 
the country, as these officials could only live by the help of 
the State, and had for their aim the destruction of all free 
initiative. The Russian government did not understand 
that the normal life of a nation requires the cooperation of 



all classes of the p >pulation, and the persecution of Pules who 
formed the educated i hampered in every \\; \ he eco- 

nomic and educational developmenl of the people. 

PERSISTANCE OF POLISH [NFLUENCE 

But the most astonishing thing is. that alter more Mian 
one century of this concentration of all the forces of a large 
empire tow a i ussification of I ithuania, historic Lil huania 

remains a Polish country and contains more Poles than Lithua- 
nians. When in 1897 a general census was taken in Russia, 
every effort was made to Falsify the results. Poles were count- 
ed as White Ruthenians or Russians ■ gainst their exp 
declarations. Thus the Poles almost disappeared on paper, 
but not in reality. Soon the truth came to be known, for 
in 1909, when the Russian prime minister Stolypin intro- 
duced his project of local autonomy in Lithuania into the 
Duma, he admitted the existenceof a very considerable number 
of Poles. Thus for instance in the Lithuanian province of 
Kowno, the number *of Polish electors from small and large 
property was estimated, at 3.286, while the Lithuanian 
electors wsre supposed to be 3.312. Stolypin admitted 
35 °/ of catholic's in Lithi while the census of 1897 
gave only 19 °/ , and after different attempts to 
invent such rules for th i the local ziemstwos 
which would exclude a majority of Poles, the western provinces 
of Grodno, Wilno and Kowno were excluded finally from 
the benefit of local autonomy", as it became evident that no 
system of elections could exclude the Poles. In the other 
provinces of Lithuania and Ruthenia the number of Poles 
was artificially limited by special privileges given to the Rus- 
sians. 

POLISH CHARACTER OF LITHUANIA 

The same method was applied to the legislative elections 
to the Duma. Whenin the lirst Duma of 1905 a greal number 
of Poles from Lithuania were elected, the electoral law was 
modified in 1907, so thai the number of Polish deputieswas 
considerably reduced. These exceptional laws testify to the 
Polish character of Lithuania. This Polish character is seen 
also in the financial conditions of the country. The hanks 

2 



— 18 — 

are Polish, and the banking business is conducted by Poles. The 
short bills of exchange payable after three months prevail 
in Lithuania (66 % of the total of bills), as in Poland (85 %),. 
while they are much less frequent in Russia (30-40 %). 
The average amount for which such bills are drawn has been 
from 1907 to 1909 in Lithuania 232 roubles, in Congress Poland 
195 roubles, and in other provinces of Russia between 500 and 
1.000 roubles, in two provinces above 1.000 roubles. 

HELPLESSNESS OF THE RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT 

The Russian government, after having eliminated the Poles 
from most offices, was often obliged to nominate Poles in 
Lithuania for responsible posts in the local administration 
of the ziemstwo, because Russians fit to carry out the work 
efficiently could not be found. Polish property, after 
all the confiscations, despite all methods used to ruin the 
landowners, remains a considerable asset in the whole of 
Lithuania, and the Poles remain about 50 ° / more numerous 
than the Lithuanians, even if we idistmguish them from the 
While Rutlienians who mostly understand Polish, use Polish 
prayer books, and have assimilated in their dialect a great 
number of Polish words. 

LIRERATION OF LITHUANIA 

In 1916 the Germans found in the district of Wilno not I 
than 75 ° of Poles. In 1914 the Poles owned in the pro- 
vince of Wilno 60 °/ of the total cultivated area, in the pro- 
vince of Kowno 63%, in the province of Grodno 50 % and 
only in the provinces of Minsk, Mohylow and Witebsk less 
than 50 %. In the 6 provinces of Lithuania the number 
of Poles who owned properties entitling them to be electors 
to the local ziemstwo was 2.285 as against 937 Russians. 
After all tin- efforts of the Russian government to clet-: 
Polish traditions in Lithuania, a great number of Polish 
schools \\ ounded in 1917 with >, it any assistance from the 

State, chiefly by the contributions of small Polish farmers and 
workmen. In the province of Minsk alone in 1917-18 
not less than 243 Polish schools were created, and among 
them high schools in Minsk, Borysow, Human, Bobrujsk, 



— lift — 

Stuck, NieswieZj Mozyrz,and Dokszyee. The number of new 
Polish schools in Lithuania is estimated at 1.500, and in this 
number there are 36 higher schools preparatory to- universities. 

FRONTIER OF 1772 STILL ALIVE 

The Great Russians who have settled in Lithuania at an 
enormous expense to the State, have left the country in great 
numbers, and are not likely to return. The link between 
the soil and its permanent inhabitants is not accidental 1 , 
and arbitrary decisions of oriental despots cannot change the 
coins,' of history. As soon as the people of Lithuania is free 
to decide on its late, if the whole population of the six provin- 
ces will vote in full liberty, there can be no doubt as to the 
issue, the Poles in Lithuania being the best organized, the 
mosl widely spread, and the most educated class of the 
population. Lithuania was one whole when united with 
Poland, and has remained one whole under Muscovite 
oppression. The frontier of 1772 is still alive in the con- 
sciousness of the inhabitants, and those While Ruthenians 
whose ancestors have been for four centuries in relation 
with or in dependence upon Poland are different in their 
language, in their traditions, in their customs from the 
White Ruthenians of Muscovy. 

POLISH INFLANTY 

North of historic Lithuania there is a small country named 
Polish Inflanty, inhabited by Catholic Letts who call them- 
selves Lettgalians, and ought to be distinguished from Letts 
and Lithuanians. Polish Inflanty comprises three districts 
of the actual province of Witebsk, the districts of Dynaburg 
I izezyca, and Lucyn, which were united with Poland in I 561 by 
the tree decision of the legitimate representatives of the popu- 
lation of Livonia. After L62! Poland lost to Sweden the great- 
part of Livonia excepl this small country of Inflanty, 
colonised by Poles and inhabited chiefly by Lettgalians. 
There are about 500.000 Lettgalians in Inflanty and the neigh- 
bouring districts, mixed with about 87.000 Poles. In the 
adjoining distrid ol' lllukszta (belonging to the province of 
Kurlaud), south of the Duna, the Poles are a relative majority, 
being more numerous than any otker nationality and number- 



— 20 — 

ing32% of the population, while the Lettgalians are 28' , 
( >n the east of Inflanty in the district of Dryssa, north of the 
I )una, there arc 35 <» of Poles. 

POLISH REVIVAL IX INFLANTY 

These districts on both sides of the Duna, together with 
Inflanty, Eorm the furthest extension of Polish colonisation 
towards theNorth, and the Polish influence in these districts 
may be measured by the fact that during the war a Polish 
gymnasium was created in Dynaburg, a Polish progymnasium 
in Rzezyca, over 60 Polish schools in Inflanty. besides twenty 
Polish organisations for social work of all kinds. Though 
the small province of Inflanty did not belong to historic 
Lithuania, it has shared all the destinies of Lithuania 
during the four centuries of Polish rule, when the liberty of 
the inhabitants was growing, and also during the century of 
persecution since the partitions of Poland. In recent times 
there is a movement among the Lettgalians for political 
union with the Letts, but neither of these small peoples can 
enjoy real freedom without a close union with Lithuania, 
which means also union with Poland. 

POLISH POLESIE 

Lithuania is separated from Polish Ruthenia by a very 
-Mange region named Polesie, the wood country, extending 
over parts of the provinces of Grodno, Minsk, Mohylow and 
Volhynia. If we draw a line from Brest to Mohylow in a 
north easterly direction, and another line south east towards 
KiefT, these two lines would include nearly the whole marshes 
of Polesie, which comprises chiefly the basin of the Pripet 
and some neighbouring rivers. The population of Polesie is 
intermediate between the White Ruthenians and the Ruthe- 
nians, and is to a great extent of Polish origin, because 
the Mazurs of Masovia came in great numbers into the woody 
marshes of Polesie as foresters, charcoal burners and 
pitchdistillers. 

POLES IN POLESIE 

Polesie has an area of more than 100.000' sq. 
km., with a population of less than 4.000.000 inhab- 
itants, among whom the Poles, though numerically 



inferior, occupy the most important place in agricul- 
ture, commerce, industry and in the liberal professions. 
The density of the population in Polesie is ex1 remely low, being 
mostly 16-25 inhabitants to a square km. and risingin a few dis- 
tricts above 40 inhabitants 1<> a sq. km. Tin' uatural inert 
of the population is very considerable, and the excess of births 
over deaths oscillates in different <!ishieis between J5 ami 
25 °/ per thousand inhabitants. 

WATERWAYS IN POLESIE 

Polesie in crossed by several important canals built in 
1783-84 by the old Polish government, such as the Kin us- canal 
connecting- the Pripet through the Pina with I he Bug and the 
Vistula, and the canal of Oginski leadingfrom the Pripet to the 
Niemen. These canals, connecting Polesie with Poland, are 
very important for the exportation of wood and cattle, the 
chid products of Polesie,. There are no waterways from this 
region to Russia, and whereas Poland undertook in 1778-84 
to transform the extensive swamps into cultivated land, 
Russia has utterly neglected this vast area which may 
he 1 1 ansformed by skilful draining, according to the competent 
opinions of experts, into a very fertile country. The only hope 
of agricultural improvement for Polesie is its reunion with 
Poland, because Russia has no interest in developping this 
swampy. country, nor does she possess the skilled experts to 
carry out such vast improvements. Poland alone could fur- 
nish Polesie with the necessary machines and industrial 
products, in exchange for wood and cattle, which can be 
brought cheaply by water to Poland. 

ECONOMIC NEEDS OF LITHUANIA 

Lithuania in general needs coal, machines, chemical products, 
textile materials, agricultural and foreshy experts, all of which 
can be furnished only by her old ally Poland. The exportation 
of Lithuania, consisting chiefly in agricultural products, cattle, 
\\uod,andskins,goesnaturallytoPoland. We know thai in 1911 
Poland imported from Lithuania about 10.000 horses ami near- 
ly 30.000 pigs, but this trade will necessarily increase when 
both countries are liberated from I he Russian officials, who 
extracted their pay from Polish taxes and one of whose chief 



22 

ad-ms was to paralyze the economic life in Lithuania by political 
oppression of the Poles. An industry which is likely to grow 
considerably in Lilhuania and especially in Polesie, and 
which will find its chief consumption in Poland, is the fabri- 
cation of paper from wood. 

IMPORTANCE Oh WATERWAYS I.N LITHUANIA 

Lilhuania has an exceptionally developped net of waterway s, 
amounting to 22.320 km. or 7,3 km. to 100 sq. km. TJvs 
wealth of cheap communications leads to Poland only, and 
nowhere to Russia. If we take into account the extreme 
scarcity of railways in Lithuania, which only amount to 2 km. 
for 100 sq. km., and are partly destroyed by the war, the 
importance of these waterways is so much the greater, as 
the chief exports are not heavy materials, but bulky wares, 
which are very expensive to transport »by rail. And the 
fact that the river system of Lithuania is connected with 
the basin of the Vistula, but not with the rivers east of the 
Dnieper, explains why the chief commercial relations of 
Lithuania were with Poland and not with Russia, despite all 
the efforts of the Russian government to the contrary. 

COOPERATION OF POLAND AND LITHUANIA 

This argument for a close union or alliance between Lithua- 
nia and Poland is Aery decisive after a war which has ruined 
both countries. Their mutual interdependence has increased 
by the destruction of forests in Poland by the Germans, and 
the destruction of houses and factories in Lithuania by 
the bolshevists. Great intensity of work is needed to restore 
prosperity in both countries, and Lithuania cannot afford 
any longer to be deprived of the active cooperation of the Poles 
in the development of its agriculture and forestry. Even 
the Russian government recognized the industrial unity 
of Poland and Lilhuania, when it formed one industrial district 
of both under one general inspection. 

POLISH AND LITHUANIAN AGRICULTURE 

How much Lithuania has i<> Lain from Polish a'-iieullural. 
experts can be seen if we compare the area under 



cultivation in both countries, and the crops on the 
same area. Thus in Congress Poland 17 % and in Lithua- 
nia only 10 % of the total area is under rye, but a hundred 
hectares produced in Poland 107 tons, and in Lithuania only 
73 tons. A similar relation prevails for other products. 
Thus in Congress Poland 8,5 % and in Lithuania only 
2,7 % of the total area produces potatoes, and the crop 
from 100 hectares is 970 tons in Poland, against only 644 tons 
in Lithuania. The difference is not due to any great difference 
in the fertility of the soil, but to expert knowledge which 
was artificially banished from Lithuania by the political 
persecution of the Poles. Agricultural lectures and associa- 
tions were forbidden, land confiscated from Poles was 
given to Russians who did not stay in the country, and neglected 
their too easily acquired properties, and the government did 
nothing to encourage agriculture, while every thing was done 
to ruin the chief landowners who were Poles. 

Before the war Lithuania had only about 66.000 industrial 
workers, each earning on an average 232 roubles yearly, while 
Congress Poland had over 316.000 workingmen, each earning 
on an average 303 roubles yearly. A closer political con- 
nection between a free Lithuania and a free Poland will 
raise the wages of the Lithuanian workingmen, just as the old 
union between the two countries increased the liberty and 
independence of Lithuanian boyars. 

LITHUANIA AND POLAND 

Under a free democratic Government which would not 
interfere with the natural movements of the population, the 
stream of emigration from the densely populated and industrial 
Congress Poland into the much less populated and less indus- 
trially developped Lithuania, will necessarily grow, as enter- 
prising Poles are sure to start new undertakings in Lithuania, 
which will require skilled workmen from Poland. Thus 
the same process of polonisation which went on for four cen- 
turies in Lithuania, and which was incompletely interrup led by 
l he partitions of Poland, will go on, for reasons similar to those 
which made the Transvaal a 1 British colony, with the difference 
that Poland never used force against Lithuania. 



•■', 



OR GERMANISATION 

The natural unity of historic Lithuania was no1 weakened, 
but strengthened by the persecution of Poles and Catholics 
during the XlXth century. There is no good reason now for 
a partition oi' Lithuania in the name of the principle of 
self-determination of nations, as the real Lithuanians inhabit 
only a small part of Lithuania, and if purely ethnographic 
considerations should prevail, the Lithuanian Slate would be 
deprived of its capital, Hi" Polish city ofWilno. Suehasmall 
State could not be really independenl under presenl conditions, 
and, if not allied to Poland, would inevitably come under 
German influence, increasing the German power which 
lineal ens the peaceful development of democratic Europe. 

LITHUANIAN SEPARATISM NOT ONLY NATIONAL 

The evidence as lo the existence of a Lithuanian national 
movemenl which apparently would make a continuation of 
I he union with Poland impossible, cannot lie fairly judged 
as long as the Lithuanians remain under a foreign influence. 
This separatism, as advocated abroad by certain Lithuanians, 
who totally misr< present the historic relations between Poland 
and Lithuania, is not really a national tendency, and would 
certainly never he supported by a legitimate representa- 
tion of the rural population, nor by the nobility and middle 
classes in Lithuania, which have become completely Polish. 
A similar thing hapj^ened in Bohemia, where the nobility 
became German. But in Bohemia the germanisation was 
backed by force, whilst in Lithuania the polonisation of the 
upper classes was spontaneous. The Lithuanian boyars became 
Polish nobles because they liked Polish liberty and disliked 
i lie traditional despotism of their princes. 

ANOTHER POLISH CORRIDOR 

As things now stand, only a very small pari of I he Lithuanian 
people can judge for themselves what political independence 
means, how ii differs from local national autonomy, and what 
advantages or disavantages may result from theseparate poli- 
tical existence of ethnographic Lithuania. The most ardent 



defenders of Lithuanian independence do no1 claim the whole 
territory of historic Lithuania, in which are no\s settled more 
Poles than Lithuanians. II' a national frontier between Poland 
and ethnographic Lithuania had to be established,we should 
sec on the future map of Europe a Polish corridor running 
north to the Duna, and imitating ona widerscale the Polish 
corridor towards the Baltic sea at Gdansk. 



FAIR CLAIM OF THE POLES 

The historic frontier of Poland was no1 accidental, bu1 
was the result of long wars between Poland and .Muscovy and 
of very considerable concessions made by the Poles. It' we 
disregard this natural growth, and if Europe confirms again, 
as in 1815, the crime of the partitions of Poland, then il is 
at least fair to ask that the frontier of Poland should be drawn 
so as to include the bulk of the Polish population in Lithuania, 
which is not less numerous, nor less nationally developped 
than the Lithuanian population. 

The official claim of the Poles at the Conference of Pi 
is based on such considerations as leave several million 
Polish White Ruthenians, and a greal number of Poles, 
outside Poland. To ignore the rights of the Poles in Lithu- 
ania, where they have been settled for more than five centuries 
and where, according to different evaluations, their number is 
between three and four millions, would be very much the 
same as to incorporate the whole of Holland or Switzerland 
with Germany. This could only be done by violence, and 
against the will of the inhabitants, and such an injustice 
could not last under a democratic form of government. 

LITHUANIA NEEDS ITS POLES 

Whenever I here are different nations inhabiting one terri- 
tory, the relative importance of each nation does no1 dep 
only on its numbers, bu1 also on the intellectual and s< 
level of its representatives. The Poles in historic Lithu; 
are not only numerically superior to the Lithuanians, hut 
also more indispensable to the normal political life of this 
country, because they alone could furnish the neces n\ num- 



— 26 — 

ber of officials, professional men and skilled workmen, which 
is necessary for a modern State. Uneducated peasants 
may be elected to the Diet, but they cannot be set up as heads 
of different government departments, nor even as chiefs of the 
local administration in districts of mixed population, where 
much knowledge and tact is needed in order to conciliate many 
conflicting interests and claims. 

THEIR HIGHER EDUCATION 

As the Poles, as well as the Lithuanians and White Ruthe- 
nians, were excluded for more than a century from any par- 
ticipation in the government of their country, there are no 
clear indications given in past experience which could allow 
us to judge what proportion of each of these populations is 
able to fulfil responsible government duties. But if we admit 
that a certain degree of general education is a necessary condi- 
tion for the proper discharge of such obligations, it becomes evi- 
dent that an independent State of Lithuania would need itsPoles 
as very useful citizens, and that the prosperity of the country 
would depend on their active participation in its social life. 

FOREIGN INFLUENCES 

However much the Lithuanian separatism may be a natu- 
ral growth, similar to the Irish separatism in Great Britain, 
(though the Poles have never oppressed the Lithuanians), 
there have been so many active foreign influences to encourage 
this growth, that we cannot judge impartially what the 
Lithuanians want, and what 1 hey need, as long as these 
foreign influences continue. 

OLD AND NEW LINKS 

The union of Lithuania with Poland was a natural outcome 
of their hist ory. and this union grew more andm ore intimate from 
1386 until 1791; nor was the process entirely interrupted by 
the partitions of Poland, as the common persecutions endured 
by Poles and Lithuanians from 1793 until 1918 have consolidated 
in many instances old links and have created new connexions 
which cannot be fully known nor understood by those emi- 
grants who speak abroad most loudly in the name of Lith- 
m. 



li 



THE "WILL OF THE LITHUANIAN PEOPLE 

The will of the people remains a mystery in a land which 
has never had any popular representation nor free public 
discussion of ils national interests. This will remains conceal- 
ed in the depths of I he Lithuanian souls, which are known to 
he very unexnressive and reserved. After several generations 
of persecul ion amounting to slavery, il is necessary for the whole 
territory of the old Polish Republic to enjoy freedom at least 
lor one generation, before a reed and genuine public opinion 
can arise among the different populations which enjoyed their 
liberty under Polish rule. During the centuries of this common 
public life, Lithuania never complained, never revolted, and 
the last solemn public expression of the national will of Lithua- 
nia was the unanimous acceptance by the legitimate repre- 
sentatives of Lithuania and Poland of the constitution which 
in 1791 abolished every separation between the two coun- 
tries, and united them into one Slate. 

ITS LATEST CONFIRMATIONS 

This complete incorporation of Lithuania into the Polish 
Republic, has been confirmed by the participation of many 
Lithuanians and White Ruthenians in the Polish struggles 

liberty in 1831 and L863-65. The separatist tender 
among Lithuanians are of a very recent origin, and although 
they have been very much encouraged by the Germans durum- 
the war, they have not prevented a powerful movement in 
favour of Polish schools in Lithuania, which again confirms 
I he old union id' both countries. 

EUROPE NEEDS A POWERFUL POLAND 

The historic need of one isthmus State between the Baltic 
and the Black sea, well understood by those Lithuanians who 
on many solemn occasions confirmed their union with Poland, 
may now appear as no longer essential, because Europe has 
grown strong enough to defend herself, and is no longer afraid 
of any yellow peril*. Bui the bolshevisl revolution, penetra- 
ting into Hungary and Germany, has thrown a new light oil 
the historic mission of a Polish isthmus State between a free 
Europe ami an unsettled Russia. 



— -28 — 

TO RESIST BOLSHEVISM 

This bolshevisl revolution is the natural outcome of a 
tern of oppression and despotic centralisation, which was com- 
mon to the three Powers which partitioned Poland. There 
is no other nation between the Rhine and the Dnieper with 
such old traditions of liberty as the Poles. The Pules have 
preserved Europe in olden times from the Asiatic invasions 
of Tatars, Turks and Muscovites which threatened the exis- 
tence of European civilisation. Now they are the bulwark 
againsl oriental bolshevism, which isavery< angerous contag- 
ion ;i\id threatens also European civilisation. 



RHINE OR DNIEPER FRONTIER 

ll becomes a serious question whether the Rhine or the 
Dnieper will be the frontier of Western Europe. Withoul 
the Poles and Lithuanians, the Russian contagion will reach 
the Rhine, and destroy the work of centuries on its way. 
With a strong Poland, united with Lithuania, the frontier 
of Western Europe will again reach the Dnieper and the Duna, 
as was the ease in past centuries. Lithuanians anindispensable 
part of a strong isthmus State between the two seas, and Great 
Russia has not been able to take the place of this old State, 
as the defender of Western civilisation. 



POLISH EXPERIENCE 

This mission can be fulfilled only by a highly civilised nation, 
and true civilisation cannot be improvised. The Poles have 
had their important share in the building of European liberty, 
and I hey. if they are helped and trusted by the Allies, 
can do as much towards the conversion of Germans to the 
ideals of western civilisation, as any of the western nations. 
They are the only nation between the Rhine and the 
Dnieper with an old parliamentary tradition, and with 
a wide experience as to the means which lead many different 
populations to join in one free commonwealth without com- 
pulsion, without arbitrary exceptional laws, and without 
persecution of any kind. 



29 — 



PRECEDENT OF THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS 

The union of Poland with Lithuania, Ruthenia, Prussia and 
Kurland,was the firsl great political experiment of a mutual 
insurance between several States againsl external aggression. 
In fact it was the only successful precedent of a greal Les 
of nations. We may consider (his experiment as successful 
despite its apparent failure, because it, secured internal peace 
for several centuries to a vast: area in Europe, and limited 
considerably the possibility of external wars. This greal 
undertaking of a pacific isthmus State, has only been arrested 
for a century and a half by three despotic ueighbours, bu1 the 
partitions of Poland have not destroyed the Polish nation, 
nor the links existing between this nation, and the Lithua- 
nians, ih;' Pel Is. the White Ruthenians and the Ruthenians. 



UNEXPECTED RESULTS 

The partition* of Poland have led indirectly to the triumph 
oi the Polishidealof aleagueof nations, because they increas- 
ed the power of oriental despotism in Germany, Austria 
end Russia to such an extent that a greal European war 
became inevitable, in order to decide whether the Polish ideals 
of federation and political liberty should be left anywhere in 
Europe, or whether German imperialism, disguised as Pan- 
germanism or Panslavism should predominate everywh 

MEANING OF TUP WORLD WAR 

The world war and the great alliance of free nations 
spoilt in the beginning by the participation on the right side 
of i lie autocratic government of the Tsar. It looked as if the 
\\-i'i- nations were fighting for the aggrandizement of Russia. 
It was forbidden by the censure in France and England to 
speak of the independence of Poland, or of the greal historic 
mission of the old isthmus State. Put since the placeofR 
in the great alliance has been taken by the United Si 
of America, il has become evidenl that the war was a war for 
the old Polish and Lithuanian ideals, againsl German despo- 
tism, and thai it must lead i<» I he reconstruction of Poland. 



— 3.0 — 

MODERATION OF THE POLES 

The Poles themselves did not claim all that was due 
to them, and to the nations with whom they had been united 
since the XlVth century. Theywcre not supported even in 
their most legitimate claims at the Conference of Peace. 
They were deprived of Elbing, and threatened to remain 
without Gdansk and Teschen. the mouth and sources of 
their national river. 

THEY DO NOT CLAIM LITHUANIA 

I low could they under these circumstances claim the whole 
of Lithuania ? They were obliged to compromise, and asked 
for an arbitrary frontier, leaving a great pari of White Ruthe- 
nia to the enemy. But the sudden growth of bolshevism on 
the ruins of the Russian empire, has shown that the Muscovites 
are not ripe for a liberal and democratic government, and 
while peace has come to Western Europe, the Poles are left alone 
in their struggle for Western civilization against a new form 
of oriental despotism. 

POLISH ARMY FIGHTS FOR LITHUANIA 

In this struggle the Poles are helped by the Lithuanians 
and White Ruthenians, and the need for a peaceful isthmus State 
becomes more and more evident to everybody who investi- 
gates impartially the German-made Ukrainian governments, 
and compares them with the Polish national government. 
The hope for a full rcconstitulion of the Polish Republic is 
growing, and this implies also -he hope for a redeemed Lithua- 
nia, for which the Polish army is fighting in the marshes and 
swamps of Polesie against the Bolshevist armies. The fact 
that this war had to cross the Polish ethnographic frontiers 
into Polesie, conJiiins once more the* natural union between 
Poland, Lithuania and White Ruthenia. 



CONCLUSIONS 



I. — The word Lithuania is used in several different senses : 

1) The historic Grand Duchy of Lithuania, corresponding 
roughly, but not exactly, to the actual sixprovinces of Wilno, 
Grodno, Kowno, Minsk, Witebsk, Mohylow. Until 1569 it 
included also Ruthenia, which actually forms the provinces 
of Kieff, Volhynia and Podolia. 

2) The said six provinces, as approximatively equivalent to 
the historic Grand Duchy. 

3) Ethnographic Lithuania, or the territory in which the 
Lithuanian language prevails, namely the province of Kowno 
and small neighbouring districts in the provinces of Wilno 
and Suwalki. 

4) In recent times the three western provinces of Grodno, 
Kowno and Wilno, inhabited chiefly by Poles and Lithua- 
nians, and deprived for that reason of local autonomy, are 
often called Lithuania, and distinguished from White 
Ruthenia, or the three eastern provinces of Minsk. Mohylow 
and Witebsk, which have obtained local autonomy. This 
distinction was artificially created by the Russian Govern- 
ment, and wasneither justified by history nor by ethnography. 

II. — The conquest of White Ruthenia and Ruthenia by 
the Lithuanians in the XlVth century, as well as the extension 
of Poland in the Xlth century over Ruthenian territory, was 
greatly favoured by geographical conditions. The basins of 
seven great rivers, the Osier, the Vistula, the Niemen, the 
Duna, the Dniester, the Boh and the Dnieper form one natural 
whole, making a large isthmus between Western and Eastern 
Europe. This country differs widely from the territories 
situated farther east or north, and bad to become one State 
for the full utilization of its natural ressources. The history 
of Poland was a succession of efforts to form this isthmus 
State, necessary for the protection of Europe againsl Asiatic 
invasions. This task of the Polish nation was fulfilled bom 
the XlVth to theXVIIIth century, and was on!\ interrupted 



— 32 — 

by the partitions oJ Poland, which made Eastern despotism 
temporarily l riumphanl over Wes1 ern civilisation. 

III. The union of Poland with Lithuania and Ruthenia, 
effectuated in L386, was confirmed by many free derisions of 
the legitimate representatives ol these countries, in 1413, 1432, 
L434, 1499 and L501. It led to the pad of Lublin in 1569, in 
which both countries decided to have one common Diet, and to 
eled one king. Finally in 1791 every separation between 
Poland and Lithuania was abolished, and the unity of the 
Polish Republic was solemnly reasserted. 

The participation of numerous Lithuanians, Ruthenians and 
White Ruthenians in the Polish struggles for independence in 
L794, 1830-31, 1863-65 has confirmed this historic unity of 
Lithuania and Poland. The creation of over L.500 Polish 
schools throughout historic Lithuania during the war, when 
the Russian Government could no longer hinder that move- 
ment, is the mosl r cenl confirmation of the Polish character 
of historic I ithuania. 

IV. — ■ The union with Poland introduced western liberty 
into the despotic State of Lithuania. It brought an increased 
freedom to the Lithuanian boyars who had no political rights 
in the XlVth century. They received, without any effort of 
their own, all the privileges which/the Polish nobles had obtained 
from their kings after long struggles. Close economic rela- 
tions between these countries will increase the wages of the 
Lithuanian and White Ruthenian working men, favour 
agricultural production, and develop the industry of Lithuania 
which needs the help of Polish experts and the support of 
Polish capital. 

The waterways of Lithuania lead to Poland, and nowhere to 
Russia. As the railways have been to a great extent destroyed, 
the vast net of Lithuanian waterways acquires an increased 
importance, and unites Lithuania closely with Poland. 

V. - The polii ical and religious persecution of Poles, I jthua- 
nians and White Ru1 henians ih the XIXl hcenl ury,consolida1 ed 
the links which were formed in the \l\lh century between 
Lithuania and Poland. The Russian administration has great- 
ly impoverished the country, and despite the most unjusti- 
fiable exactions, could not raise a revenue sufficient lor its 



— 33 — 

expenses, so that the deficit reached before the war 40 million 
roubles. The Russian Government has also deprived Lithua- 
nia of the high standard of her public education which she 
enjoyed under Polish rule. Hatred and contempt for l h<* 
Muscovites are so general throughout historic Lithuania, thai 
a Russian government could no1 be tolerated anywhere in this 
country. The historic frontier of 1772 is fully alive in the 
memory ant! consciousness of White Ruthenians, and could not 
be obliterated by over a century of russification. 

VI. - If a Lithuanian State is created apart from the Polish 
State, ethnographic Lithuania is too small to maintain its real 
independance. Such a State could not pretend to the historic 
capital of Lithuania, Wilno, which is situated in Polish terri- 
tory. It would inevitabliy have to depend on Germany or 
Poland. German influence in Lithuania would use this pro- 
vince as a bridge between Germany and Russia, and this would 
increase the German power in Russia, already so conspicuous 
under the tsarist as well as under the bolshevist regime. 
German control of the vast resources of Russia, in men, in 
agricultural and in industrial wealth, would imperil not only 
Poland but the peace of Europe. Therefore the maintenance 
of the old union between Poland and Lithuania, so many times 
confirmed in past centuries, is the essential condition for the 
true political and economic independence of both countries. 

VII. - - The Poles are sure to respect the national rights of 
the Lithuanians, as they have always done in the past, but 
they must also defend their own national rights in historic 
Lithuania, where they are more numerous, and in many ways 
more efficiently active than the Lithuanians. 



CONTENTS 



INTRODUCTION : 1,; 

Limits of historic Lithuania — its area — discovery of White Ruthe- 3 

nians - Woszczynin - Ekert — Zapolskj language of White Ru- 4 

thenians — their history and present condition — ethnographic Lithua- I 

nia does not reach Wilno — Poles in Lithuania - their number and 5 

importance unique conditions — conflicting claims 6 

GEOGRAPHIC POSITION AND HISTORIC MISSION OF POLAND : 6-8 

The land of seven rivers - Dnieper as houndary - formation of ti 

national states requires safety from invasions — Polish commonwealth 6 

— causes of the rapid growth of Poland and Lithuania their inevitable 7 

union — frontiers of Western Europe displaced — merit of Lithuanians. 8 

LITHUANIA TRANSFORMED BY HER UNION WITH POLAND : S-12 

Dynastic union led to union of peoples — new liberties won - Li- 9 

thuanians proud to be Poles — democratic equality of nobles — fate of 10 

the peasants — Polish offices introduced — administration of justice 10 

Lithuania becoming a Western country — incorporation of Ruthenia 11 

into Poland — Polish colonisation -- Polish schools and tribunals 11 

Lithuanian Statute never published in Lithuanian -- Polonisation of 11 

Lithuania a natural process — unique in history - intensity of Polish 12 

civilising work — violent interruption of a natural process — its reasons. 12 

VAIN EFFORTS TO RUSSIFY LITHUANIA : 13-19 

Germans made Polish kings by .Muscovy — partitions of Poland 13 

German promises given to Poles and Lithuanians — difference between 1.3 

russification and polonisation — an absurd undertaking — spirit of des- 13 

truction arbitrary measures — confiscation of estates, closingof schools 1 I 

-religious persecution - Lithuanians join the Polish revolutions 15 

extermination of villages Polish language forbidden decrease of 1(5 

education — repercussion on economic life — Slate expenses misery 10 

of population — importation of Russian officials impoverishes Lithua- 10 

nia — persistance of Polish influence — artificial rules for elections - 17 

financial conditions — local autonomy needs Poles liberation of Li- 18 

thuania -- Polish schools founded throughout Lithuania - frontier 19 

of 1772 still alive —Polish White Huthenians. 10 

INFLANTY AND POLESIE : 19-21 

Free union of Inflanty with Poland Poles and Leltgalians Po 10 

lish schools founded during the war Polesie colonised by Poles its 20 

waterways — lead to Poland need of agricultural improvement. 21 

ECONOMIC NEEDS OF LITHUANIA: 21-23 

Polish imports - Fabrication of paper in Lithuania ■ importance of 22 



- 3(3 - 

waterways — connected with the Vistula— interdependence of Poland 22 

and Lithuania — recognized by the Russian govemmenl Lithuanian 22 

agriculture has much to learn from the Poles — Lithuanian industry. 23 

PROSPECTS OF LITHUANIA : 23-27 

Probable Polish emigration to Lithuania - why Transvaal became 2:; 

a British colony ? danger of germanisation Lithuanian separatism 21 

not a national movement Lithuania and Bohemia — Polish corridors 2 1 

- fair claim of the Poles — their rights cannot be ignored — Lithua- 25 

nia needs its Poles - foreign influences spoil a natural friendship — 26 

old and new links between Poland and Lithuania - True will of the 26 

Lithuanians — conditions for a genuine expression of public opinion — 27 

Political testament of Lithuania — confirmed by many facts. 27 

EUROPE NEEDS A STRONG POLAND : 27-30 

Bolshevists worse than any Asiatic conquerors — only Poland can 27 

resist this dangerous contagion — Which may reach the Rhine and cross 28 

it — Russia has not been able to take the place of Poland — Europe can 2§ 

be defended only by a highly civilised nation — Parliamentary expe- 28 

rience of the Poles -- precedent of the League of nations -- pacific 29 

isthmus State — eonsecpiences of the partitions of Poland — meaning 29 

of the world war — Legitimate Polish claims discarded — Poles do not 30 

claim Lithuania — they fight for western civilisation — and also for 30 

the liberty of Lithuania - they are helped by the Lithuanians and 30 

White Ruthenians. 30 

CONCLUSIONS : 31-33 

I. Different meanings of the name Lithuania. 31 

II. Formation of the Polish-Lithuanian State 31 

III. Confirmations of the Union of Poland and Lithuania 32 

IV. Consequences of this Union. 32 

V. Consequences of Russian persecutions. 32 
VI. Consequences of Lithuanian separatism 33 

VII. Consequences of Polish-Lithuanian friendship. 33 



The author, in writing the above report, utilized the 
papers of the following scholars : I ; . Bujak, Chodyniecki, 
Czjekanowski, Dubieeki, Halecki, [waszkiewicz, Kamieniecki, 
Kamieiiski, Keller, Kulwiec, Kutrzeba, Maliszewski, Jan 
Natanson, Romer, Jerzy Smoleriski, and Sobolewski. Proofs 
were corrected by Halecki, Konopczynski, Kutrzeba, Nitsch, 
and Romer. 



PARIS. — IMPRIMERIE LEVE. ROE DE RENNES, 71. 



1145N2 



LITHUANIA AND WHITE RUTHENIA 



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