230th anniversary of the Polish-Lithuanian constitution of 1791

An allegory of the Constitution of 1791 (1793)

Today I was honoured to attend a reception at the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania in London to celebrate the 230th anniversary of the ratification of the first written constitution of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth on 3 May 1791, hosted by the ambassadors of Lithuania and Poland to the United Kingdom. Earlier in the day the Lithuanian Embassy hosted a webinar on the history of the constitution featuring leading historians of Poland-Lithuania, including Prof. Robert Frost, Dr Jolanta Karpavičienė and Prof. Karin Friedrich, which was moderated by the celebrated Lithuanian historical novelist Dr Kristina Sabaliauskaitė.

Preceded by a cello recital from Lithuanian cellist Anton Lukoszevieze, the reception was attended by the ambassadors of Lithuania, Poland, Latvia, Ukraine and Hungary and honoured the contribution of Prof. Robert Frost to public understanding of the history of Poland-Lithuania. Prof. Frost was formally invested with the insignia of a Knight of the Orders of Merit of both nations, by presidential decree. Kristina Sabaliauskaitė was then presented with the Two Nations Award in recognition of her work as a historical novelist in bringing the history of Poland-Lithuania to public attention. I was especially honoured to have the opportunity to speak to Dr Sabaliauskaitė about her work.

The reception was a wonderful occasion for historians of Poland and Lithuania based in the UK that fittingly celebrated the historic events of 3 May 1791 as well as the achievements of Prof. Frost and Dr Sabaliauskaitė.

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