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The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

Article about: Here's mine, made by famous Wiktor Gontarczyk

  1. #1

    Default The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    Although one of the higher of Poland’s orders with a strong collector following, this decoration has not yet been discussed in any great detail on this forum. The greatest interest remains with the pre-WW2 issues, hence this threads inclusion in this section of the forum.

    By way of a very brief history (there’s plenty of detailed info available on the web that I won’t bother repeating here), the “Polonia Restituta” was formally established in 1921 and has remained a national decoration ever since, being re-adopted by the successive governments. Following WW2 it was awarded by both the exile government and also the Soviet-controlled communist regime on Polish soil.

    The Order ranks third in the Polish Order of Precedence, behind the Order of the White Eagle and the Order of Virtuti Militari.

    Most collectors refer to it simply as Polonia Restituta (Poland Restored), which is the Latin text on the center disc of both cross and the star of the order. The Polish name is Order Odrodzenia Polski, which translates most accurately as “Order of Poland Reborn”.

    The Polonia Restituta was awarded to military, civilians, and foreigners in five grades:

    1. Grand Cross (Krzyż Wielki) – 68mm cross and breast star
    2. Commander's Cross with Star (Krzyż Komandorski z Gwiazdą) – 58mm cross and breast star
    3. Commander's Cross (Krzyż Komandorski) – 58mm cross
    4. Officer's Cross (Krzyż Oficerski) – 53mm cross
    5. Knight's Cross (Krzyż Kawalerski) – 42mm cross

    Pictured below are the five classes. These are all pre-WW2 Polish 2nd Republic issues in their original presentation cases.

    Tacked onto the end in the one picture is a Star of the Order, which was occasionally coupled to a separately cased Grand Cross, and also a Commander's Cross to create a 2nd Class award of the Order.

    I encourage members to post their Polonia Restituta’s, regardless of era.

    Regards,
    Tony
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    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

  2. #2

    Default Re: The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    Here are two images of Edward Śmigły-Rydz wearing the Grand Cross sash and star on his uniform.

    Regards,
    Tony
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    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

  3. #3

    Default Re: The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    Hi Tony, I support the theme and present their

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  4. #4

    Default Re: The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    Hi Dzianis,

    Thanks for posting these pics of a Commander Class Cross and also the Star of the Order. The star is either a post war issue or a copy. At some point we’ll post pictures showing pre-war variants.

    Cheers,
    Tony
    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

  5. #5

    Default Re: The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    Hey Tony bit of an off topic but how would you pronounce Śmigły-Rydz?

    Chris.....

  6. #6

    Default Re: The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    Hi Chris, type it into here and you can listen the Polish, don't bother with the English translation!

    Google Translate

    Cheers, Ade.
    Had good advice? Saved money? Why not become a Gold Club Member, just hit the green "Join WRF Club" tab at the top of the page and help support the forum!

  7. #7

    Default Re: The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    Not a problem Chris.

    The first part is pronounced: “shmeegwy”

    The second part exactly as it is written. Pronounced like the word “bids” (as in an auction), but of course with an “R”.

    “shmeegwy-rids”

    A little bit of trivia for you. His birth name was Edward Rydz. “Śmigły” was a noms de guerre nickname given to him that ended up being tacked onto the end of his surname during his early military years during the Polish Legion era - Edward Rydz-Śmigły. After he became Marshall of Poland in 1936 the order was reversed, so the “Śmigły” now preceded his family name (see post-1936 postcard image above). I don’t quite know the reason for the switch.

    Cheers,
    Tony
    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

  8. #8

    Default Re: The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    oops - it appears I’m cross posting with Ade.

    I tried the Google audible pronouncer and it’s spot on. Never knew that feature existed!

    T.
    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

  9. #9

    Default Re: The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    Glad it is good Tony. I really would not have known.... My Polish is dreadful.

    Cheers, Ade.
    Had good advice? Saved money? Why not become a Gold Club Member, just hit the green "Join WRF Club" tab at the top of the page and help support the forum!

  10. #10

    Default Re: The Order of Poland Restored (Polonia Restituta)

    Thank you gentlemen!
    Chris.........

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