From 1918 to 1939, a diplomatic partnership between the Holy See and Poland appeared extremely likely. Since 1870 the Vatican had sought to restore the temporal status it had lost during Italian unification. The Lateran accords of 1929 resolved the Roman question and confirmed the disputed sovereignty of the papal enclave. This achievement, however, was only part of the Apostolic See's determined efforts to fortify its international standing in a continent dominated by Protestant, anticlerical, or atheist states. The Vatican seemed to be a natural match for revived Poland, a nation renowned for its fealty to Rome and menaced by Germany and Russia, traditional antagonists of the papacy and champions of totalitarian doctrines that the church regarded as inimical.
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