Wincenty Kadłubek

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Wincenty Kadłubek
Wincenty Kadłubek.png
Wincenty Kadłubek
Bishop of Cracow, Blessed
Born 1161
Karwów, Poland
Died 8 March 1223(1223-03-08)
Jędrzejów, Poland
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Beatified 18 February 1764 by Clement XIII
Feast 8 March
Patronage Sandomierz

Blessed Wincenty Kadłubek (1161 – 8 March 1223), also known as Vincentius de Cracovia, Vincent Kadlubek, Vincent Kadlubo, Vincent Kadlubko, Vincent of Kraków, Master Vincentius, was a thirteenth-century Bishop of Cracow and historian of Poland.


Vincentius was born in Karwów near Opatów and studied in France and/or Bologna. Upon the death of Fulk, Bishop of Kraków (Cracow), on 11 September 1207, Vincentius was elected to the office. Innocent III approved the election, and Kadłubek was consecrated by Henry Kielicz, Archbishop of Gniezno.

He followed Gallus Anonymus in further developing the idea of the Latin proverb vox populi vox dei ("the voice of the people is the voice of god") and argued that the ruler (king) should always follow a council that includes bishops and representatives of clans, since not the ruler but the council has higher authority originating from the laws of God. He also claimed that the ruler should be elected by the council and rulers abusing their power should be removed.

In 1215 Vincentius participated in the Fourth Council of the Lateran.

In 1218, Vincentius resigned and entered the monastery of Jędrzejów. He became the first Pole to join the Cistercians. He was buried before the high altar of the abbey church. In 1682, king Jan III Sobieski petitioned the Holy See for his beatification. A similar request was made in 1699 by the General Chapter of the Order of Cîteaux. On 18 February 1764 Vincentius was beatified by Clement XIII.


Painting in Sandomierz Cathedral
Relics of Wincenty Kadłubek in Jędrzejów monastery

Vincentius' best-known work, Chronica seu originale regum et principum Poloniae (Chronicles of the Kings and Princes of Poland), is a history of Poland in four volumes. The first three volumes take the form of a dialogue between Archbishop John of Gniezno (1149–after 1167) and Matthew, Bishop of Kraków (1143–1166). The first volume's sources are legends, the second is based on the chronicle of Gallus, and the last two are based upon Kadłubek's own experiences.

This work had a huge impact on the Polish political doctrine of the 14th and 15th centuries as created by Stanisław of Skarbimierz and others, as well as on the 16th century works of Wawrzyniec Grzymała Goślicki. These ideas led to the Nobles' Democracy in Poland, for it is in his works, that for the first time the terms res publica (see Commonwealth and Rzeczpospolita) were used in the context of Poland.

Some say the book was written at the request of Prince Casimir II; others, that it was made at the request of Prince Leszek, while Vincentius was bishop; and still others claim that it was not written until after his retirement to the monastery.


Preceded by
Bishop of Kraków
Succeeded by
Iwo Odrowąż

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainHerbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "article name needed". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton.