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Three Twigs of King Svatopluk

Great Moravian king Svatopluk had three sons who quarrelled who will scceed their father as a king of Great Moravia. According to traditions, the eldes son was the heir of the throne, however all Svatopluk’s sons wanted to rule the country.

Svatopluk asked his sons to come to him before his death. The sons were surprised because Svatopluk asked them to bring three twigs with them. He gave a twig to each of the son and asked them to break it. The young noblemen could easily break it. Then he asked them to tie together three twigs and asked them to break them again. However, the sons could not do that.

Then the king Svatopluk told his sons: “My sons, if you are united and help each other, you will be strong and no enemy will defeat you, just as you could not break the three twigs. However, if you quarrel, you will be defeated and your kingdom will be taken by your enemies.” Svatopluks sons stopped quarrelling and the king appointed his eldest sons the heir to the throne.

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