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Free City of Cracow

The Free and Strictly Neutral City of Cracow with its Territory, more known as either the Free City of Cracow or Republic of Cracow, was a city republic created by the Congress of Vienna in 1815, which included the city of Kraków and its surrounding areas. It was jointly controlled by its three neighbours, was a centre of agitation for an independent Poland. In 1846, in the aftermath of the unsuccessful Kraków Uprising, the Free City of Cracow was annexed by the Austrian Empire, it was a remnant of the Duchy of Warsaw, partitioned between the three states in 1815. The Free City of Cracow was an overwhelmingly Polish-speaking city-state; the city of Kraków itself had a Jewish population reaching nearly 40%, while the rest were exclusively Polish-speaking Catholics. The Free City was approved and guaranteed by Article VII of the Treaty between Austria and Russia of 3 May 1815; the statelet received an initial constitution at the same time and expanded in 1818, establishing significant autonomy for the city.

The Jagiellonian University could accept students from the partitioned territory of Poland. The Free City thus became a centre of Polish political activity on the territories of partitioned Poland. During the November Uprising of 1830–31, Kraków was a base for the smuggling of arms into the Russian-controlled Kingdom of Poland. After the end of the uprising the autonomy of the Free City was restricted; the police were controlled by Austria and the election of the president had to be approved by all three powers. Kraków was subsequently occupied by the Austrian army from 1836 to 1841. After the unsuccessful Kraków uprising of 1846, the Free City was annexed by Austria on November 16, 1846 as the Grand Duchy of Cracow; the Free City of Cracow was created from the southwest part of the Duchy of Warsaw. The territory of the city was at its least 1164–1234 km², it bordered the Kingdom of Prussia and the Austrian Empire. It comprised the city of its environs. In 1815 its population was 95,000. 85% of them were Catholics, 14% Jews, while other religions comprised 1%.

The most notable szlachta family was the Potocki family of magnates, who had a mansion in Krzeszowice. The Free City was a duty-free area, allowed to trade with Russia and Austria. In addition to no duties, it had low taxes, various economic privileges were granted by the neighbouring powers; as such, it became one of the European centres of economic liberalism and supporters of laissez-faire, attracting new enterprises and immigrants, which resulted in impressive growth of the city. Weavers from Prussian Silesia had used the Free City as a contraband outlet to avoid tariff barriers along the borders of Austria and the Kingdom of Poland, but with Austria's annexation of the Free City came a significant drop in Prussian textile exports; the statelet received an initial constitution in 1815, devised by Prince Adam Jerzy Czartoryski. The constitution was expanded in 1818, establishing significant autonomy for the city. Legislative power was vested in the Assembly of Representatives, the executive power was given to a Governing Senate.

In 1833, in the aftermath of the November Uprising and the foiled plan by some Polish activists to start an uprising in Kraków, the partitioning powers issued a new, much more restrictive constitution: the number of senators and deputies was lowered and their competences limited, while the commissars of the partitioning powers had their competences expanded. Freedom of the press was curtailed. In 1835 a secret treaty between the three partitioning powers presented a plan in which in case of additional Polish unrest, Austria was given the right to occupy and annex the city; that would take place after the Kraków Uprising of 1846. The law was based on criminal law; the official language was Polish. In 1836 the local police force was replaced by Austrian police; the Free City of Kraków was the first purely republican government in the history of Poland. History of Poland Former countries in Europe after 1815 Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria Grand Duchy of Krakow Galician slaughter Degan, Vladimir Đuro, Developments in International Law: Sources of Internat'l, Developments in International Law Series, 27, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, p. 378, ISBN 9789041104212 Feuchtwanger, E. J. Prussia: Myth and Reality, Chicago: Henry Regnery Company, p. 262, ISBN 0-85496-108-9 Hertslet, Edward, "No.15", The map of Europe by treaty.

P. 127 Media related to Free City of Kraków at Wikimedia Commons EB staff, "Republic of Cracow", Encyclopædia Britannica online, retrieved 12 December 2012

George Thomas Kottukapally

George Thomas Kottukapally of Palai, India, was a Member of Parliament, one of South India's largest plantation owners, public intellectual, an Indian independence activist and a member of the Indian National Congress including having taken part in the Indian Independence Movement through the Non co-operation movement in 1921. Post India's Independence in 1947, Kottukapally was elected as the Municipal Chairman, a position equivalent to that of a Mayor for the municipal township of Palai, Kerala which he held between 1948 and 1953. Further, he was elected as an Indian Member of Parliament representing the Indian National Congress party in the 1st Lok Sabha and the 2nd Lok Sabha from 1953 till 1962 for the erst-while constituency of Muvattupuzha which consisted of the whole of Idukki, parts of Kottayam and Chalakudy, he was India's representative to the United Nations in Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's Delegation in 1958. According to the local church's records and the family held manuscripts, the Kottukapally family's origin lies in the traditionally held belief in which their ancestry is traced to a Brahmin family "Kottakkavu" from 52 AD, wherein members of the family converted and become members of the Kottakkavu Mar Thoma Syro-Malabar Pilgrim Church, North Paravur, one among the seven Churches acknowledged as to be founded Thomas the Apostle, one of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ.

The family name "Kottukapally" is traced as a derivative from the Brahmin family name "Kottakkavu" given that members from the Kottakkavu Illam converted to Christianity from the evangelical activity undertaken by Thomas the Apostle. The Kottukapally family ties with the township of Palai started in the 18th century, with the family having moved to Palai to start the trading market in pepper under the invitation of the Kartha, a local chieftain equivalent to that of a Duke, of Meenachil; as historical evidence, the family still has a part of their 280-year-old famed ancestral home or known as the Kottukapally Tharavad under the custodianship of George Thomas Kottukapally's youngest son John Thomas Kottukapally located in the heartland of Palai. Thereby, in founding a pepper trading market, the Kottukapally family is considered as one of the founding families of modern Palai, of what is known as'Angadi' Palai. With this lineage, George Thomas Kottukapally's past and future were both inextricably linked such that his political and economic vision for Palai led him to be elected as the Chairman, a position equivalent to that of a Mayor, for the Municipality of Palai which he held between 1948 and 1953..

The Kottukapally family of Palai held a strong-hold in the political landscape of Palai wherein George Thomas Kottukapally's elder brother George Joseph Kottukapally was an Indian independence activist and was twice elected as a Member of the Sree Moolam Popular Assembly, the equivalent of being a Member of Parliament in the erst-while Kingdom of Travancore under the Maharaja of Travancore. Post George Thomas Kottukapally's demise, the next generation continued with his eldest son Joseph Thomas Kottukapally having stepped into providing leadership to the township of Palai by being the Municipal Chairman of Palai, an elected position which he held onto for 16-years. George Thomas Kottukapally's contributions as one of Kerala's earliest and leading philanthropist, educationalist and a social contributor was highlighted by the former President of India A. P. J. Abdul Kalam in his speech while inaugurating the 62nd foundation day celebrations of St. Thomas College, Pala as well as to mark the 111th birth anniversary..

Y of George Thomas Kottukappally in 2012 by stating "People of Kottayam are grateful to the gesture of'Father' George Thomas Kottukapally in providing acres of land for the creation of this college in 1950s". George Thomas Kottukapally's family ancestry and lineage, being a son of an ancient and prominent Syro-Malabar Saint Thomas Christian aristocratic Kottukapally family of Palai had influenced his life, leading him to be a prominent supporter and as a key financial benefactor of the Saint Thomas Christian Syro-Malabar Catholic Church in Palai and the State of Kerala. George Thomas Kottukapally's contributions in a personal capacity include having financially supported as well as in having provided the land for the establishment of the Bishop's House, Palai leading to the formal establishment of the Syro-Malabar Eparchy of Palai, he provided his personal land as well as the financing for the establishment of a set of Kerala's well-known university-level colleges which include St. Thomas College, Palai founded in 1950, Alphonsa College, Palai founded in 1964 and St. Thomas Teacher's Training College, Palai founded in 1957.

According to K. P. S. Menon, India's first foreign secretary under Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, in a public foreword about Kottukapally's contributions, he acknowledged that Kottukapally as the Municipal Chairman from 1948 till 1953 was a'key architect' and was one of the'founding fathers' of the post-Independent Indian township of Palai stating that, "Not only Palai but all Kerala is indebted to Mr. Kottukapally for his services in the agricultural and banking fields, it was due to him and his tirelessly advocacy and his intercession with men at the top that the magnificent hydro-electric project in Idukki materialised". Economic-wise, the township and the region of Palai is ranked as one of the richest and most prosperous Syro-Malabar Saint Thomas Christian belt in the State of Kerala. In the field of banking, George Thomas Kottukapally held the position of being the President of the important and pow

Seán Óg De Paor

Seán Óg de Paor is a former inter-county footballer for Galway. De Paor comes from An Cheathrú Rua in the Connemara Gaeltacht, where he attended the local national school, Scoil Mhic Dara, it was there he started playing Gaelic football, he captained the team that won Corn Uí Chonaire - a competition between Gaeltacht national schools in Galway - two years running, in 1982 and 1983. From there he went on to secondary school in St. Jarlath's College in Tuam, where he further developed his Gaelic-footballing skills, he went on to attend University College Galway, captaining its 1992 Sigerson Cup-winning side. Throughout this period, he was regularly playing football for his club, An Cheathrú Rua, he was on the team, promoted to senior status in 1987, he played a vital role when the club won the Senior County Championship in 1996 and Comórtas Peile na Gaeltachta in 1997, but it was as an intercounty player. Seán Óg played a key role in Galway’s winning the All-Ireland in 1998 and 2001, he appeared in another All-Ireland final against Kerry in 2000, although they were beaten that time around.

Seán Óg played for his country against Australia in the International Rules series in four successive years, between 1998 and 2001. In 2004, De Paor suffered a cruciate ligament injury and missed all of the 2004 Championship as a result, he struggled to shake off the injury the following, restricting his involvement in the 2005 Championship. In December of that year, he decided to retire from inter-county football In January 2008, De Paor released his autobiography, Lá An Phaoraigh, written in Irish with the assistance of his sister Aoife de Paor, published by Cló Iar-Chonnachta