Nordic Journal of Renaissance Studies 16 • 2019

Barbara Milewska-Waźbińska
The Attitude Towards the Turks in Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth under the Reign of Jan III Sobieski

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Polish texts in Latin about the relations of Poland to the Ottoman Empire reveal certain characteristic ambiguities of these relations. Even if Poland was regarded as a Bulwark of Christendom there was opposition to the idea of a crusade that could be taken advantage of by the Habsburgs. In the religious context the main concern was the Reformation. In various respects Poland was in between the East and the West and Oriental culture was influential. The idea of an Eastern – 'Sarmatian' – origin of the Polish aristocracy prompted the image of Jan III Sobieski as Sarmatian king, yet he was also seen as a new Godfrey of Bouillon, the hero of Tasso's Gerusalemme liberata.