Final Act of the Congress of Vienna/Act I

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ACT, No. I — The Treaty between Russia and Austria of the 21 April, 3 May, 1815.[1][2]
The plenipotentiaries of the high powers who signed the treaty
407789ACT, No. I — The Treaty between Russia and Austria of the 21 April, 3 May, 1815.[1][2]The plenipotentiaries of the high powers who signed the treaty
In the Name of the Most Holy and Undivided Trinity.

His Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias his Majesty the Emperor of Austria, and his Majesty the King of Prussia, being equally desirous of coming to an amicable understanding upon the measures most proper to adopt for consolidating the welfare of the Polish people, in the new relations in which they are placed by the changes effected in the fate of the Duchy of Warsaw; and wishing at the same time to extend the effects of this benevolent disposition to the provinces and districts which composed the ancient kingdom of Poland, by means of such liberal arrangements as circumstances have permitted, and by placing the intercourse of the inhabitants, in respect to commerce, upon the most advantageous footing; have agreed to conclude two separate Treaties, one between Russia and Austria; and the other between the former Power and Prussia, in order to comprise therein, the general engagement's common to the three Powers, as well as the stipulations which concern them individually. Their Imperial Majesties have for this purpose named, for their separate Treaty, the following Plenipotentiaries:

His Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias, the Sieur Andrew, Count de Rasoumoffsky, his Privy Counsellor, Knight of the Orders of St. Andrew and of St. Alexander Newsky, Grand-Cross of the Order of St. Vlodimir, and his principal Plenipotentiary at the Congress.

And his Majesty the Emperor of Austria, the Sieur Clement-Venceslas-Lothaire, Prince de Metternich-Winnebourg-Ochsenhausen Knight of the Golden Fleece, Grand-Cross of the Royal Order of St. Stephen of Hungary, Knight of the Orders of St. Andrew, of St. Alexander Newsky, and of St. Anne of the First Class, Grand Cordon of the Legion of Honour, Knight of the Orders of the Elephant, of the Supreme Order of the Annunciation, of the Black Eagle and the Red Eagle, of the Seraphim, of St. Joseph of Tuscany, of the Orders of St. Hubert, of the Golden Eagle of Wurtemberg, of Fidelity of Baden, of St. John of Jerusalem, and of several others: Chancellor of the Military Order of Maria-Theresa, Curator of the Academy of the Fine Arts, Chamberlain, intimate and actual Counsellor of his Majesty the Emperor of Austria, King of Hungary and Bohemia, his Minister of State, of Conferences, and of Foreign Affairs, and his Plenipotentiary at the Congress;

Who, after having exchanged their full powers, found in due and proper form, have agreed upon, concluded, and signed the following Articles:

ART. I. His Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias cedes to his Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty, the districts which were dismembered from Eastern Galicia, in virtue of the Treaty of Vienna of 1809, from the circles of Zloczow, Bzzezan, Tarnapol, and Zalesczyk; and the frontiers on this side shall be re-established as they existed previous to the date of the said Treaty.

ART. II. His Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty shall possess, in full property and sovereignty, the salt-mines of Wieliczka, and the territory belonging to them.

ART. III. The Thalweg of the Vistula shall separate Gallicia from the territory of the free town of Cracow. It shall also form the frontier between Gallacia and that part of the ancient Duchy of Warsaw united to the dominions of his Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias, as far as the environs of the town Of Zawichost.

The land frontier from Zawichost to the Bug shall be determined by the line designated in the Treaty of Vienna of 1809, with such modifications as, by common consent, it may be thought necessary to introduce.

The frontier from the Bug, shall be re-established on this side, between the two empires, such as it was before the said Treaty.

ART. IV. The city of Cracow, as well as the territory designated in the additional Treaty, signed in common by the Courts of Russia, Austria, and Prussia, are declared free and independent.

ART. V. The Duchy of Warsaw, excepting the parts which have been otherwise disposed of, in virtue of the above Articles, and by the Treaty signed the same day between their Majesties the Emperor of Russia and the King of Prussia, is united to the empire of Russia, to which it shall be irrevocably attached by its constitution, and be possessed by his Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias, his heirs and successors, for ever. His Imperial Majesty reserves to himself the right of giving to this State, enjoying a distinct administration, such interior improvement as he shall think proper. He shall add to his other titles that of Czar, King of Poland, agreeably to the form established for the titles attached to his other possessions.

The Poles, subjects, respectively, of the High Contracting Parties, shall obtain a representation, and national institutions regulated conformably to the system of political existence that each of the governments to which they belong shall think it useful and convenient to grant them.

ART. VI. If the inhabitants and landowners of the countries separated in virtue of the present Treaty should wish to settle under another Government, they shall be allowed six years to dispose of their properly, moveable or immoveable, of whatever nature it may be, to sell it, to quit the country, and to export the produce thereof in specie, or in any other description of money, without any impediment or drawback whatever.

ART. VII. A complete, general, and special amnesty shall be granted to all individuals, of whatever rank, sex, or condition they may be.

ART. VIII. In consequence of the preceding Article, no individual shall in future be prosecuted or disturbed, in any manner whatever, on account of his direct or indirect participation in the political, civil, or military events that have taken place in Poland at any period. All actions, prosecutions, or suits, shall be considered as at an end; sequestrations and provisional confiscations shall be taken off, and any act proceeding upon such grounds, shall not be followed up.

ART. IX. From these general regulations on the subject of confiscations are excelled all those cases in which edicts or sentences, finally pronounced, have already been fully executed, and have not been annulled by subsequent events.

ART. X. The condition of a subject of both Governments, as far as property is concerned, shall be acknowledged and maintained.

ART. XI. Every individual who possesses property under more than one Government shall be obliged, in the course of a year, dating from the day of the ratification of the present Treaty, to make the declaration of his settled abode, in writing, before the magistrate of the nearest city or town, or before the Commander of the nearest district, or before the nearest civil authority in the country that he may have chosen for his residence. This declaration, which the above Magistrate or other authority is to transmit to the superior authority of the province, renders him, as to his person and family, exclusively the subject of the sovereign in whose states he has fixed his abode.

ART. XII. With respect to minors, or other persons who are under the care of guardians, such guardians shall be obliged to make the necessary declaration at the appointed time.

ART. XIII. If any individual, possessing property under both Governments, shall have neglected, at the end of the prescribed term of a year, to make the declaration of his final abode, he shall be considered as a subject of the Power in whose States he last resided; his silence, in this case, being considered as a tacit declaration to that effect.

ART. XIV. Any individual, possessing property under both Governments, who shall nave once made a declaration of his place of abode, shall be allowed, for the period of eight years, dating from the day of the ratification of the present Treaty, to settle under another Government, by making a new declaration, and by producing the permission of the Power, under whose government he wishes to reside.

ART. XV. Any individual, possessing property under both Governments, who has made a declaration of his place of abode, or who is considered as having made it, conformably to the stipulations of Article XII, is not obliged, at any period whatever, to dispose of the possessions he may have in the dominions of a sovereign of whom he is not a subject. He shall enjoy, with respect to this property, all the rights attached to its possession. He shall be free to expend the revenues of these possessions in the country where he shall have chosen his abode, without sustaining any deduction whatever at the time of their removal. He may sell these possessions, and take the value thereof, without being subject to any drawback.

ART. XVI. The privileges specified in the preceding Article, of removing property without diminution, shall extend only to the effects of which such individuals may be possessed at the time of the ratification of the present Treaty.

ART. XVII. The same privileges are, however, attached to every acquisition made under either Government, by reason of inheritance, marriage, or gift of property, which, at the date of the ratification of the present Treaty, belonged lastly to a proprietor under both Governments.

ART. XVIII. Should any individual, having property under one of the two Governments only, whether by inheritance, legacy, gift, or marriage, become possessed of property under the other Government, he shall be considered as a proprietor under both Governments, and, as such, obliged to make, within the prescribed time, the declaration of his fixed abode. This term of a year shall date from the day on which he shall have produced the legal proof of his acquisition.

ART. XIX. An individual possessing property under both Governments, or his agent, shall be allowed at all times to pass from one of his possessions to the other; for which purpose it is the pleasure of the two Courts that the Governor of the nearest province shall give the necessary passports, on the application of the parties. These passports shall be deemed a sufficient protection, from «ne Government to the other, and shall be equally respected on both sides.

ART. XX. Possessors having estates divided by the frontier shall be treated, in respect to those possessions, according to the most liberal principles.

Individuals whose property is thus circumstanced, their servants and tenants, shall have the privilege of passing and repassing from one part of the possession, so divided by the frontier, to the other, with their implements of husbandry, their cattle, tools, &c. the difference of sovereignty being no impediment thereto. They may also remove, from one place to the other, theirs crops, all articles of growth, their cattle, and every article of manufacture, without passports, molestation, rent or impost whatever.

This privilege is, however, limited to articles the produce of the soil, or of industry, in the territory thus divided by the line of demarcation. It likewise extends to such lands only as belong to the same person, in the fixed distance of one mile (fifteen to the degree) on both sides, and which may have been divided by the line of frontier.

ART. XXI. The shepherds and drovers, subjects of both Powers, shall continue to enjoy the rights, immunities, and privileges, which have hitherto been granted to them; and no obstacle shall prevent the daily intercourse on the frontiers between the neighbouring people. (In German, Gränzverkehr).

ART. XXII. The Domiciliary Court shall also decide the differences between individuals which are brought forward by the Governor of these territories. But the Court of the territory, in which the property in litigation is situated, shall cause the sentence to be put into execution. This arrangement shall be in force for the term of ten years, at the end of which the two High Courts reserve to themselves the right of making any other regulation that may be necessary.

ART. XXIII. The sovereignty of the mills, manufactories, or foundaries established in the course of a river forming the frontier, shall be exercised by the Sovereign in whose territory the village or place is situated, to which these establishments belong.

Should they constitute private property, the commission charged with the demarcation of the land frontiers, shall determine, according to the principles of equity and their local situation, what shall be proper with respect to the sovereignty.

It is understood that new establishments of this description shall not be formed without the consent of the governments of the respective states, bordering on the river.

ART. XXIV. The navigation of all the rivers and canals throughout the whole extent of the ancient kingdom of Poland, (as it existed before the year 1773) to their mouths, as well in ascending as in descending, shall be free, so as not to be interdicted to any inhabitant of the Polish provinces, subject to other the Russian or Austrian government.

The same liberty of passage and navigation is reciprocally permitted upon the streams or rivers which, not being navigable at present, may become so in future, as well as upon canals which may hereafter be cut.

The same principles shall be adopted in favour of the above-mentioned subjects, in regard to their frequenting ports at which they may arrive by the navigation of the said rivers and canals.

ART. XXV. The tonnage and towage duties shall be alike on both rivers; the watermen shall nevertheless be obliged to conform to the regulations of the existing Police with regard to the mode of internal navigation.

ART. XXVI. In order to secure still further this liberty of navigation, and to remove every obstacle for the future, the two High Contracting Parties have agreed to establish only one kind of duty on shipping, proportioned to the burthen or tonnage of the vessel, or its lading. Commissioners shall he named on both sides to regulate the duty, which shall be at a moderate rate, and be solely applied to maintaining the rivers and canals in question, in a navigable state. This duty, once approved of by the two Courts, shall be changed only by common consent.

The same rule shall be observed with regard to, the Boards which shall regulate the collection of the said duty.

If, however, either of the two Contracting Powers should, at His own expense, establish a new canal, the subjects of his Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias shall never be subjected to higher duties on navigation than those of his Majesty the Emperor of Austria. In this respect each party shall be considered on a perfect equality.

ART. XXVII. The Commissioners who shall be charged with the arrangements determined in the above Articles, shall be named without delay. Their labours shall be finished, examined, and approved, within six months at the latest, dating from the day of the ratification of the present Treaty.

ART. XXVIII. The two High Contracting Parties, with the view of giving greater scope to the commercial relations, especially between Brody and Odessa, and vice versa, have agreed to grant the most perfect liberty in favour of the transit of merchandize, throughout all parts of ancient Poland. The duties to be collected on this account shall be as moderate as possible, and such as are levied on the merchants, or subjects of the most favoured nations.

ART. XXIX, With the view also of encouraging the import and export trade between the said provinces which constituted the ancient kingdom of Poland, it has been mutually agreed that the two Courts shall name Commissioners, who are to be charged with examining the regulations and tarifs now in force, to present plans, tending to regulate whatever is relative to this commerce, and especially to prevent all kinds of abuse, or undue interference on the part of the customs.

ART. XXX. His Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty having issued from his general fund of state debts, (universal Stadts Schuldencassa) bonds for a sum equal to the quota of the old debts of the King and the Republic of Poland, with which he had been burthened, in consequence of the Convention of the 15th (26th) January 1797,[4][5] and as these bonds are henceforth to remain at his charge, with all the arrears of, and present interest; it is agreed between the High Contracting Parties, that the government of the duchy of Warsaw, under the guarantee of his Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias, shall be bound, on this account, to make good to the Court of Vienna, by way of a settlement in full, the sum of four millions of Polish florins.

ART. XXXI. On the other hand, his Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty fully renounces every other pretension relative to loans and debts, of whatsoever nature they may be, which have been, or which might be either assigned to, mortgaged upon, or registered against the ceded territory.

ART. XXXII. The four millions of Polish florins, stipulated in Article 30, as a settlement in full on the part of the government of the duchy of Warsaw, shall be paid by that government to the Austrian Imperial treasury, in specie, and in eight equal annual instalments of 500,000 Polish florins each; the first of these annual payments shall become due the 12th (24th) June 1816,[4] and the last on the same day in 1824. Having, however, taken into consideration the actual state of affairs, and the new exertions which circumstances may require, the High Contracting Parties have agreed, that if peace is not re-established at the precise time of the first payment becoming due, such first payment is to be deferred, and consequently the others progressively, so that the first payment shall take place six months after the ratification of the definitive Treaty of Peace.

ART. XXXIII. With respect to the new debts, which bear date since the erection of the duchy of Warsaw, his Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty undertakes to provide for them, in the proportion of one ninth part; it being understood that the Court of Vienna shall participate in the interest resulting from their liquidation, in the same proportion.

ART. XXXIV. Immediately after the signature of the present Treaty, a Commission shall be named, which shall assemble at Warsaw. It shall he composed of a proper number of commissioners and assistants: its object shall be;

1. To prepare an exact balance of what is due by foreign governments.

2. To regulate, reciprocally, between the Contracting Parties, the accounts of their respective claims.

3. To settle the claims of subjects against their governments. In short, to adjust whatever relates to subjects of this nature.

ART. XXXV. As soon as the Commission mentioned in the preceding Article shall have entered upon its duties, it shall appoint a committee, for the purpose of proceeding immediately to the necessary arrangement for the restitution of all securities, whether consisting of money, or of deeds and documents', which the subjects of one of the Contracting Parties may have given, and which may be found in the states of the other. The same rule shall be observed in all judiciary depôts which may have been transferred from one province to the other. They shall be restored to the jurisdictions of the governments to which they belong.

ART. XXXVI. All documents, plans, maps or deeds whatever, which may be found in the archives of either of the Contracting Parties, shall be mutually restored to the power whose territory they concern.

If a document of this kind he of common interest, the party who is in possession of it shall keep it, but a certified and legalized copy shall be given to the other.

ART. XXXVII. The acts of administration shall be separated: each of the Contracting Parties shall receive the part which concerns his states. The same rule shall be observed with regard to mortgage books and deeds. In the case provided for in the preceding Article, a legalized copy shall be given.

ART. XXXVIII. A military and civil Commission shall be immediately appointed, to construct an exact map of the new frontier, annexing the topographical description thereto, to place the boundary posts, and describe the angles of its situation, so that in no case the least doubt, dispute or difficulty may arise, if, in the course of time, it should be wished to replace a boundary mark, destroyed by any accident.

ART. XXXIX. It is agreed between the two High Contracting Parties, that the contract for the purchase of 500,000 quintals of salt, shall be mutually binding, for the term of five years; at the end of which period it may be renewed, on the conditions which shall then be agreed upon.

ART. XL. Immediately after the ratification of the present Treaty, the necessary orders shall be sent to the commanders of troops, and the competent authorities, for the evacuation of the provinces which are restored to his Majesty the Emperor of Austria, and for the restitution of the country, to Commissioners, who shall be appointed for this purpose; and this evacuation shall be effected so that it may be completed in six weeks, dating from the day of the exchange of the ratifications of the present Treaty.

ART. XLI. The present Treaty shall be ratified, and the ratifications exchanged in six days.

In faith of which the respective Plenipotentiaries have signed it, and have affixed thereunto the seals of their arms.

Done at Vienna the 21st April, (3d May) 1815.[4]


(L. S.) The Count de Rasumoffsky.
(L. S.) The Prince de Metternich.


  1. Hansard, The Parliamentary Debates from the Year 1803 to the Present Time ..., Volume 32. 1 February to 6 March 1816, T.C. Hansard, 1816. pp. 114 131
  2. By a Russian Manifesto of 26th (14th Old Style) February, 1832, the Kingdom of Poland was declared to be perpetually united to the Russian Empire, and to form an integral part thereof. The British Government protested against this Manifesto on the 3rd July, 1832, as being an infraction of the Vienna Congress Treaty. (Hertslet (No.12) p.94)
  3. British Foreign Office British and Foreign State Papers. 1814—1815 Volume II. Compiled by the librarian and keeper of the papers, Foreign Office-London: James Rigway and Sons, Piccadilly, H.M.S.O., 1839. pp. 56–63. (Annex I)—TRAITE entre la Russie l'Autriche, relatif à la Pologne — Signé à l'Vienne, le 21 Avril/3 Mai, 1815.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 The Russian Empire was still using the Julian calendar, the date in brackets is the Gregorian Calendar used by Western Europe including Britain (see Old Style and New Style dates)
  5. Martins Recueil des principaux traites d'Alliance, de Paix, de Trêve, de Neutralité, de Commerce, de Limites, d'Echange etc. conclus par les puissances de l'Europe. Vol. 6 Page 707 (British Foreign Office p.61).


  • British Foreign Office British and Foreign State Papers. 1814—1815 Volume II. Compiled by the librarian and keeper of the papers, Foreign Office-London: James Rigway and Sons, Piccadilly, H.M.S.O., 1839. pp. 56–63. Original French. The additional formatting of this treaty from this document.
  • Hansard, The Parliamentary Debates from the Year 1803 to the Present Time ..., Volume 32. 1 February to 6 March 1816, T.C. Hansard, 1816. pp. 114 131. The translation is from this document.
  • Hertslet, Edward (1875). The map of Europe by treaty; showing the various political and territorial changes which have taken place since the general peace of 1814, London, Butterworths. (No. 12) pp. 95–104