The Crown of Boleslaw I the Brave, who was the first Polish monarch, became the coronation crown of all the monarchs in Poland.
According to a legend, Boleslaw received his crown from the Holy Roman Emperor Otto III at the Congress of Gniezno in the year 1000 AD. He also received a replica of the Holy Lance, also known as Saint Maurice’s Spear. This relic had a vexillum attached to it which was a symbol of King Boleslaw’s rule, but it remains unknown what was painted on it.
The Polish monarchy remained crownless until 1320 because the crown of Boleslaw was lost and a new crown was made for King Ladislaus the Short’s coronation.
There are speculations that the crown was taken to Germany and was carried by the Queen of Poland in 1036. Because the crown was lost only after one generation, the new crown that was crafted was also called the crown of Boleslaw the Brave. In the 14th century, it was carried off by Louis I of Hungary, but 30 years later it was returned to the Wawel castle.
In the 17th century, the crown was hidden away in the Spiš region because Poland was invaded and occupied during the Swedish Deluge. It moved around again in the 18th century. Only three years after it was returned to Wawel Castle and taken again to Warsaw. After that, it was taken to the Pauline Jasna Gora Monastery, and it remained there until 1736.
The crown was moved for the last time from Krakow to Warsaw on the coronation of Stanislaw August Poniatowski in 1764, and after the ceremony, it stayed in the Wawel castle until it was stolen. In 1794, the crown treasury was plundered, and the royal insignia was robbed when the Prussian army sized Krakow. The whole treasury was melted down and out of the gold, and numerous coins were made for the Prussian King.
Today, the sword Szczerbiec is the only preserved piece of the entire Polish crown regalia. The original crown and the replica were similar in their dimensions, but the second crown was decorated more with emeralds. sapphires, many gems, garnets, and rubies.
In 2001, a restoration of the crown was made out of Prussian gold, rubies, emeralds, and pearls. It is kept in the Wawel Castle together with the sword Szczerbiec, which was owned by a series of Western European collectors during the 19th-century and it was returned to Poland in 1928 by the Soviet Union.