Georg III Oppersdorff – life and work. Reaching a biography

Jarosław Szymański
Original title: Georg III Oppersdorff - życie i dzieło. Próba syntezy
Śląski Kwartalnik Historyczny Sobótka 2011
Abstract

Johann Georg III count von Oppersdorff (1588-1651) was one of the main personalities of the history of Silesia in the stormy first half of 17th century. Alumnus of Jesuit academies in Olomouc and Graz, he was an owner of Oberglogau, Friedek and Ratibor and had a title granted already to his grandfather: Freiherr von Aich und Friedstein. He was married three times: with Benigna Polyxsena von Promnitz (1594-1631), with Eshter Barbara von Meggau (1618-1644) and Elisabeth Konstancja von Pötting und Persing (1610-1689). As a loyal associate of Habsburgs, he was granted a title of Reichsgraf, and in 1642 a title of lord. He was a chamberlain of Bishop of Wrocław Karl Habsburg and a member of Emperor’s Council; in the years 1623-1642 he was a foreman of the Duchy of Glogau and in the years 1633-1637 chief officer for Lusatia. As an owner of Oberglogau, as well as a foreman in Glogau, Georg III conducted successfully the policy of counterreformation and reestablishing the power of Habsburgs. He became one of the key persons serving for recatholization in Silesia. Another essential element of his activity was patronage that brought lots of various foundations. He founded a palace library that was one of the most excellent of that kind in Upper Silesia. He himself wrote some literary works that became a part of the heritage of the most effective period of development of Silesian poetry. This is the proof of his erudition and high intellectual level. Two emblematic books devoted to wives who died: Theatrum Posthumi… and Monumentum amoris… are his most important works.

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