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Author Topic: Polish MP demands Spain pays back 16th century debt  (Read 468 times)
Tender Branson
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« on: August 04, 2012, 12:05:36 am »

As if Spain didn't have enough debt woes, now a Polish legislator is calling in a 235m zloty (£45.5m) debt dating back to the 16th century.

At issue is a 430,000 gold ducat loan taken by King Philip II of Spain (1527-98) from Poland's Italian-born Queen Bona Sforza (1494-1557) to finance the war between Spain and France for control of the Kingdom of Naples, most of which has never been paid off.

Marek Poznanski, a 28-year-old member of parliament with the renegade left Palikot Movement parliamentary caucus, has launched a request for repayment, which Poland's foreign ministry is currently examining.

"I'm well aware my request might seem odd, but I'd like it to make politicians really think about the consequences of lending money to other countries," Mr Poznanski said on his Facebook page about his unusual initiative.

According to him, during the period in question one gold ducat weighed 3.5 grammes. Using current gold prices, the value of the debt would amount to €57.4m euros (£45.5m), this not including 400 years' worth of interest.

Poland worked for centuries to recover the debt but by the 18th century it had managed to claw back just 10pc of the total sum, AFP reported.

Some historians even believe that Queen Bona, who died in exile in Bari, Italy, was poisoned on King Philip II's orders so he could wiggle his way out of repaying the money.

In archaic Polish, the term "Neapolitan sums" was used to describe bad debts.

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« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2012, 12:29:48 pm »

Oh, my God, those Spanish Habsburgs were too spendthrift. What can the poor Spain do? It would be worse if Perú or Bolivia demand us the faboulous amount of silver that Spain stole from their mines in the colonial period. How funny and extravagant seem to be some Polish politicians.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2012, 12:34:18 pm by Gobernador Velasco »Logged
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« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2012, 05:44:25 pm »

I motion that the Federal Republic of Germany will pay Poland war reparations for all Teutonic Knights did!

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« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2012, 04:01:06 pm »

Since at the time the loans were taken out he was also Philip I of England and Ireland, maybe the UK should pay its fair share.  At least they would be able to pay something.

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