..With the nobility honour is the most important thing. How was Poland torn to pieces? Every nobleman wanted to be king. In the Sejm when one nobleman said it was Sunday, another screamed it was Monday. When the Cossacks attacked Poland and slaughtered whole villages, the squires remained drunk in their castles, intriguing against one another. When the enemy approached, the squires twirled their moustaches, dressed up as for a ball in sable furs, put on swords each of which weighed a ton, and even wore gold chains around their necks. The horses were fat and lazy. The squire would ride to war with his retinue blowing on trumpets. The Cossack was as light as a feather and his horse ran like an arrow from a bow. He moved like a demon, chopped off the squire’s head, and carried it on his spear. This is how Poland fell apart.
(IB Singer: The Blizzard)