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  4. 4. The information in this Dorling KindersleyTravel Guide is checked regularly.Every effort has been made to ensure that this book is as up-to-date aspossible at the time of going to press. Some details, however, such astelephone numbers, opening hours, prices, gallery hangingarrangements and travel information are liable to change. Thepublishers cannot accept responsibility for any consequences arisingfrom the use of this book, nor for any material on third party websites,and cannot guarantee that any website address in this book will be asuitable source of travel information.We value the views and suggestions of our readers very highly.Please write to: Publisher, DK Eyewitness Travel Guides, DorlingKindersley, 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, Great Britain.DISCOVERING POLAND8PUTTING POLANDON THE MAP 10A PORTRAIT OFPOLAND 12POLAND THROUGHTHE YEAR 32THE HISTORY OFPOLAND 36WARSAWAREA BY AREAWARSAW ATA GLANCE 58Neo-Classical rotonda in theSaxon Gardens, WarsawCONTENTSINTRODUCINGPOLANDProduced by Wydawnictwo Wiedza i Życie, WarsawCONTRIBUTORS Małgorzata Omilanowska, Jerzy S. MajewskiILLUSTRATORS Andrzej Wielgosz, Bohdan Wróblewski,Piotr Zubrzycki, Paweł MistewiczPHOTOGRAPHERS Krzysztof Chojnacki; Wojciech Czerniewicz, StanisławaJabłońska, Piotr Jamski, Euzebiusz NiemiecCARTOGRAPHERS Ewa i Jan Pachniewiczowie,Maria Wojciechowska, Dariusz Osuch (D. Osuch i spółka)EDITOR Teresa Czerniewicz-UmerRDTP DESIGNERS Paweł Kamiński, Paweł PasternakPROOFREADER Bożena LeszkowiczTECHNICAL EDITOR Anna Kożurno-KrólikowskaDESIGNER Ewa Roguska i zespółRCOVER DESIGN Paweł KamińskiTRANSLATORS Mark Cole, Marian Dragon,Teresa Levitt, Joanna Pillans, Vera RichEdited and typeset by Book Creation Services Ltd, LondonPrinted and bound by South China Printing Co. Ltd., (China)First American Edition, 200110 11 12 13 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1Published in the United States byDK Publishing, 375 Hudson Street,New York, New York 10014Reprinted with revisions 2004, 2007, 2010Copyright © 2001, 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited, LondonALL RIGHTS RESERVED. WITHOUT LIMITING THE RIGHTS UNDER COPYRIGHTRESERVED ABOVE, NO PART OF THIS PUBLICATION MAY BE REPRODUCED, STORED INOR INTRODUCED INTO A RETRIEVAL SYSTEM, OR TRANSMITTED, IN ANY FORM, OR BYANY MEANS (ELECTRONIC, MECHANICAL, PHOTOCOPYING, RECORDING, OROTHERWISE), WITHOUT THE PRIOR WRITTEN PERMISSION OF BOTH THE COPYRIGHTOWNER AND THE ABOVE PUBLISHER OF THIS BOOK.Published in Great Britain by Dorling Kindersley Limited, London.A catalog record for this book is available from the Library of Congress.ISSN 1542-1554ISBN 978-0-75666-130-4FLOORS ARE REFERRED TO THROUGHOUT IN ACCORDANCE WITHEUROPEAN USAGE; IE THE “FIRST FLOOR” IS THE FLOOR ABOVEGROUND LEVEL.The eagle, emblem of Poland, inthe Zygmunt Chapel, Cracow
  7. 7. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D8Perched between East andWest, Poland has had avaried history which hasshaped it into the beguiling,delightful and refreshinglydifferent mix of old and newthat we see today. Thechapters of this book havebeen divided into ninecolour-coded regions to reflectthe diversity of Poland. Eachregion has its own specialflavour: its own architecture,cuisine, customs and sights.The following pages aim togive a taste of these regionsand show you what there isto see and do.p130), which features manyfine examples of Gothic andRenaissance architecture. TheOld Town is overlooked bythe glorious buildings onWawel Hill (see pp138–43), asymbol of national strengthand patriotism. At the annualFestival of Jewish Culture(see p33), you can enjoymusic, art, theatre perform-ances and much more.CRACOW• Wonderful Old Town• Historic Wawel Hill• Cracow Jewish FestivalCracow’s Old Town centresaround the beautiful 13th-century market square (seeMAŁOPOLSKA• Poland’s painful past• Wieliczka’s salt mine• Winter sports at ZakopaneThe tragedy of the PolishJews can be witnessed atOświęcim (Auschwitz) (seep160) where an estimated1.1 million people died atthe hands of the Nazis.This is now a UNESCOWorld Heritage Site. Theold underground salt mineat Wieliczka (see p162)features a chapel, museumand a restaurant. A favouriteretreat for many artists andintellectuals at the turn ofthe 20th century, Poland’swinter capital Zakopane (seep164) attracts thousands ofskiers every winter.MAZOVIA AND THELUBLIN REGION• Renaissance Zamość• Chopin and Żelazowa Wola• Picturesque Vistula ValleyThe finely preserved townof Zamość (see pp124–5)was built in the 16th centuryaccording to the Renaissanceconcept of the ideal city.WARSAW• Postcard-pretty Old Town• A Socialist Realist city• Exciting nightlifeRebuilt to its original 13th-century design after beingdestroyed in World War II,Warsaw’s Old Town (seepp62–7) is truly delightful.The city’s controversial post-war Socialist Realist architec-ture, embodied by the Palaceof Culture and Science (seep89), reflects the capital’smore recent history. Be sureto visit a few of the city’svibrant bars and clubs fora taste of Warsaw’s nightlife.The picturesque square at the heart of Warsaw’s Old TownThe ski resort at Zakopane, upgraded for the 2006 OlympicsDISCOVERING POLANDCopernicus statuein WarsawThe birthplace of Chopin,Żelazowa Wola (see p114)houses a fascinating museumdedicated to the great Polishcomposer. In the idyllicVistula Valley, affluentKazimierz Dolny (seepp118–19) is the unofficialcapital of the area popularwith Poland’s New Rich.Beskid Żywiecki Mountains
  8. 8. D I S C O V E R I N G P O L A N D 9WIELKOPOLSKA• Industrial Łódź• Poznań’s beautiful churches• Kórnik’s castle islandBuilt in the 1800s by a trioof mill owners, the industrialcity of Łódź (see pp228–9)has many fascinatingmuseums and a welcomingatmosphere, yet it remainsalmost untouched bytourism. The churches inPoznań (see pp214–19) areamong the most delightful inPoland. The Gothic cathedralis the country’s oldest, andthe place where, allegedly,Poland’s first king was chris-tened. A visit to the islandcastle at Kórnik (see p211),inspired by Neo-GothicEnglish architecture and theOrient, is a splendid day out.GDAŃSK• The cradle of Solidarity• Westerplatte’s WWII legacyIn 1980 unemployed workerLech Wałęsa climbed overa fence at a shipyard inGdańsk (see pp232–49)and gave a speech thatarguably led to the end ofCommunism. The story ofWałęsa and the Solidaritymovement can be seen inGdańsk’s “Roads toFreedom” exhibition. On 1September 1939, the openingshots of World War II werefired on the tiny Westerplattepeninsula (see p249), whichis now a pilgrimage sitewith burned-out bunkers, amemorial and a museum.POMERANIA• Gothic Toruń• Summer fun in Sopot• Ethnic enclave in KashubiaFounded by the TeutonicKnights, Toruń (see pp270–73) features the second-largest ensemble of Gothicarchitecture in Poland. Thebirthplace of Nicolaus Coper-nicus, Toruń is also knownas the traditional home ofgingerbread. The seasidetown of Sopot (see p263)is the country’s unofficialsummer capital and a non-stop party venue for the threehottest months of the year.Kashubia (see p262), knownas the Polish Switzerland, isa gloriously peaceful area oflakes and rolling hills. TheKashubians are a distinctiveethnic group with their ownlanguage and culture.WARMIS, MAZURIA ANDTHE BIAŁYSTOK REGION• Fun on the Mazurian Lakes• Copernicus’s Frombork• The bison of BiałowieżaSail or canoe on LakeŚniardwy (see pp284–5) andexplore the beautiful sceneryof eastern Poland, full ofpeaceful harbours and tinyvillages. On the Baltic coastis sleepy Frombork (seep278), where the astronomerNicolaus Copernicus spentmost of his life in the town’sbeautifully preserved 14th-century Gothic cathedral.For a spectacular natureholiday, head to BiałowieżaNational Park (see p291).A landscape of rivers andcanals, where the last bisonin Europe live, it is also abird-watching paradise.The tranquil landscape of Pomerania’s Kashubia regionThe exceptionally well-preservedGothic cathedral at FromborkSILESIA• Historic Wrocław• Gold-digging in Złotoryja• Getting away from it all inthe Kłodzko ValleyAs well as a bustling OldTown, Wrocław (see pp188–97) is home to many of thecountry’s more eclecticcontemporary artists. Złotoryja(see p180) sits on the banksof the gold-rich KaczawaRiver. Try your luck, thenvisit the Gold Museum orwatch the experts at theInternational Gold PanningChampionships. The majesticKłodzko Valley (see pp200–1)is criss-crossed with hikingtrails full of ancient churchesand castles, and is famed forits mineral springs.The Kłodzko Valley, a naturalparadise for hikers
  9. 9. Poland covers an area of 312,685 sq km (120,696sq miles) and is located in the centre of Europe. Itborders Lithuania, Belarus and the Ukraine to the east,Slovakia and the Czech Republic to the south, andGermany to the west. In the north, Poland’s coastlinestretches for 528 km (330 miles) on the Baltic Sea andborders Kaliningrad, an enclave of Russia. Poland hasa population of 38.6 million, making it the eighthmost highly populated country in Europe. Thecapital, Warsaw, has over 1.6 million inhabitants.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D1 0Putting Poland on the MapPoland in EuropePoland is traversed by road and railroutes linking Western and EasternEurope. The country’s largest inter-national airport is in Warsaw; othercities also have direct air links toEuropean cities. There are ferry linksto Gdynia, Gdańsk and Świnoujście.EUROPE
  10. 10. P U T T I N G P O L A N D O N T H E M A P 1 1KEYAirportPortMotorwayMajor roadRailwayNational border0 km0 miles100100
  11. 11. Although it is situated in theplains of central Europe,Poland has a varied land-scape. Alpine scenery pre-dominates in the TatraMountains along the coun-try’s southern border, whilethe north is dominated bylakelands, which contrastwith the landscape of theBaltic coast. For those who likeunspoiled natural scenery, there areareas of primeval forests in Białowieżaand extensive marshlands along thebanks of the River Biebrza which area haven for many rare bird and plantspecies. About 30 per cent of the areaof Poland is woodland, including anumber of vast forests covering morethan 1,000 sq km (390 sq miles). Mostof these consist of coniferous treesand mixed woodland, but there arealso many forests of deciduous trees,mainly oak and hornbeam, or beech.Many areas of great naturalbeauty are protected asnational parks or reserves.Mountain lovers canmake use of the well-developed infrastructure ofhostels and other shelters,such as those found in theBeskid Sądecki or the TatraMountains; the more adven-turous can explore the unfrequentedand almost inaccessible Beskid Niskior Bieszczady. All areas have clearlymarked hiking trails and well-equipped shelters (schroniska). Thecountless lakes of Warmia andMazuria, areas known as the Land ofa Thousand Lakes (Kraina TysiącaJezior) are a haven for watersportsenthusiasts, as are the waters ofPomerania and Wielkopolska. Thelakes are popular with canoeists andin summer are dotted with rowingand sailing boats.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D 1 3A rural chapel in winterA PORTRAIT OF POLANDThe Bzura, one of Poland’s many unspoiled riversGrowing numbers of tourists visit Poland every year. Even so,it is still a relatively unknown country. To travellers crossingthe lowlands from Eastern to Western Europe, there may notappear to be the diversity in landscape and buildings seen in otherEuropean countries. The pages that follow show the visitor the varietythat Poland has to offer, in terms of its culture, history and landscape.The Polish eagle
  12. 12. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D1 4POPULATION AND RELIGIONPoland’s inhabitants, who numberalmost 39 million, all but constitute asingle ethnic group, with minoritiesaccounting for less than 4 per cent ofthe population. The largest minoritiesare Belarussians andUkrainians, who inhabit theeast of the country, andGermans, who are concen-trated mainly around thecity of Opole in Silesia.The vast majority of Polesare Catholic, but largeregions of the country,such as Cieszyn Silesia, havea substantial Protestant population,and followers of other denominationsare also widely dispersed.In the east of the country there aremany Orthodox Christians; here,religious denomination does notnecessarily coincide with ethnic iden-tity, although Belarussians tend tobe Orthodox while Ukrainians belongto the Greek Catholic (Uniate) Church.In the Białystok region there arevillages where Catholics,Orthodox Christians andMuslims – the descendantsof Tartar settlers – live sideby side. As in Spain andIreland, the fact that themajority of the populationis Catholic continues toexert a major influence onthe moral values of thecountry, as well as on its politicallife. An example of this is the manydebates in the Sejm (the lower houseof the Polish parliament) that havealternately limited and liberalized theright to abortion. Religion,however, is not a major fac-tor in the way that Polesvote, as election resultsshow. The political sceneis divided between thesupporters of the right andthe post-communist left.Over the last ten years thePolish electorate has shownitself to be quite unstable,with each elected govern-ment standing in oppositionto the previous one.Pump room at the spa of Polanica-ZdrójA summer’s day on a sandy Baltic beachLacemaker fromKoniakowo
  13. 13. A P O R T R A I T O F P O L A N D 1 5Religious belief is outwardly expressedby a deep reverence for religious sym-bols and rituals. Wayside crosses andshrines to the saints or the Virgin Maryadd charm to the Polish countryside.The main religious festivals –Christmas, Easter, Corpus Christi andAssumption, as well as All Saints’ Day,when almost everyone in Poland,regardless of their religious denomi-nation, visits the graves of relatives –are solemnly observed. An unusualcult surrounds the Virgin. For cen-turies, believers from all over Polandand further afield have made the pil-grimage to the image of the BlackMadonna in Częstochowa (seepp156–7). Indeed, throughout Polandthere are shrines to the Virgin, towhom miraculous powers have beenascribed. Another famous pilgrimageis made by Orthodox Christians to theholy mountain of Grabarka (see p291).Poland is also visited by Jews from allover the world who come in remem-brance of the millions who died thereduring the Holocaust under Germanoccupation of the country duringWorld War II.CULTURAL VARIETY AND SHIFTINGBORDERSMagnificent buildings bearing witnessto past splendours can be seen atalmost every step. Most of thesemonuments are in Małopolska,Lubelszczyzna, Wielkopolska andLower Silesia. Not all of them, how-ever, belong to Polish culture, sincethe country’s frontiers have changedmany times over the centuries. A par-ticularly important change came at theend of World War II, when the Alliesapproved a westward shift of Poland’sborders. As a result, the inhabitants ofthe eastern areas, lost to Poland afterthe war, were resettled, and manywere sent to the western regions,inhabited by Germans – who were inturn displaced.Corpus Christi processionRestored market square of the Old Town, Wrocław
  14. 14. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D1 6The legacy of more than 100 years ofpartition rule is still visible in Poland’scultural landscape today. Russian,Prussian and Austrian administrationleft their mark not only on rural andurban architecture but also onthe customs and mentality ofthe Polish people.DEMOCRATIC CHANGEAND ECONOMICDEVELOPMENTThe fall of communism inPoland came about largelythanks to the efforts of thetrade union Solidarity (Solidarność),which was founded in 1980 but forcedto go underground after the imposi-tion of martial law. When the democraticopposition won the elections to theSejm and the Senate in 1989, Polandagain became a country with a parlia-mentary democracy anda market economy. Thiswas important enough initself, but it had widerimplications too: bytackling its inefficient,crisis-ridden socialisteconomy, Poland had setthe standard for eco-nomic reform in Centraland Eastern Europe asa whole. Many Polishindustries were priva-tized, and the drasticreforms that were car-ried through over anumber of years accel-erated Poland’s GDPto make it the fastest-growing in Europe. Bythe end of the 1990s,the Polish economyhad become largelyresistant to crisis.The country has asubstantial foreigntrade deficit, but this isbalanced by the surplus produced byan unofficial cross-border trade. Thereare, however, negative aspects of thereforms – among them the budgetdeficit and unemployment. The lattercontinues to be high. The problemof unemployment is somewhatmitigated by the illegalemployment of workers,although this is usuallyconfined to small firms.There is an ambitious pro-gramme of privatization, butit has not yet been fullycompleted, and someenterprises are still state-owned.Heavy industry tends to be outdated,unprofitable and economically ineffi-cient. There is an ongoing systematicprogramme of coal-mine closure,and former mineworkers have beenforced to look for work elsewhere.A poster by Maria Pałasińska dedicated to SolidarityLogo of the Polishstock exchangeSession of the Sejm, the lower house of the Polish parliament
  15. 15. A P O R T R A I T O F P O L A N D 1 7Not surprisingly, this has broughtconsiderable social and economicproblems in its wake.The archaic farming system isanother candidate for restructuring.Polish farming is still based on tradi-tional family smallholdings consistingof no more than a few acres of land.It is seriously under-mechanized andrequires a disproportionate amountof manpower.A fundamental part ofthe reform process wasPoland’s drive to joinWestern military andeconomic structures. In1999, Poland became amember of NATO, andthen in 2004, it joined theEuropean Union. Thisrequired harmonizationof the Polish legal andeconomic systems withthose of the EU countries,providing a further pow-erful incentive to change.Political and economic changes havehad their impact on Poland’s townsand cities. Old buildings are beingrenovated, attention is being paid tothe environment, new shops haveappeared, and large out-of-townsupermarkets and modern petrol(gas) stations have sprung up. Newbuildings – though not always archi-tecturally distinctive – are going upeverywhere. Market squares and mainstreets in many Polish towns havebeen pedestrianized. In many of theold towns that suffered damage dur-ing World War II – including Szczecin,Kołobrzeg, Głogów and Elbląg – build-ings are now being reconstructed.Smaller towns, too – swelled bysprawling apartment housing after thewar – are now acquiring more tradi-tional buildings. Nonetheless, the vastconcrete housing developments typi-cal of the communist era still dominatemany Polish townscapes.Many new public buildings – mainlyoffice blocks – are springing up, too.Much of the new development is cen-tred on the capital, Warsaw, althoughcommercial investment is now slowlybeginning to filter through to othercities, among them Cracow, Katowice,the Baltic conurbation of Gdańsk,Sopot and Gdynia, and Wrocław,Poznań and Łódź as well.The Pazim, the tallest building in SzczecinThe privatized Zakłady Metali Lekkich Kęty SA metalworks
  16. 16. The Landscape of PolandPoland’s landscape is very varied. The south ofthe country is bounded by mountainranges which, the further north youtravel, gradually turn into areaspunctuated by hills and low-lyingancient forests. Northern Poland, anarea of great natural beauty, has beenshaped by a succession of glaciers thatmoved southwards from Scandinavia.National parks and reserves have beenestablished in many areas. The central regions ofthe country, consisting of lowlands, merge intopicturesque lakelands and coastal plains.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D1 8MOUNTAINSThe most typicalPolish wildlife –including wildboar, deer andhare – is to befound in mixedand deciduousforests. Somespecies, such asbison and capercaillie, arefound almost nowhere else inEurope. In the Carpathian andSudety mountains, bears andlynxes may be seen.The crocus(Crocus satinus)blooms in early springin mountain valleysand alpine meadows,mainly in the Tatrasand Babia Góra ranges.The great sundew(Drosera anglica), aninsect-eating plant foundin peat bogs, is a pro-tected species in Poland.The silver thistle(Carlina acaulis)is a protected plant. Itsleaves form a rosettecontaining a basket-likeflower with a covering ofdry, silvery leaves.Bog arum (Calla palustra)is a poisonous perennialplant with a characteristicwhite leaf below a globularflower. It growsin peat bogs.The Tatra Mountains (seepp164–5) are the highest inCentral Europe. Though covering asmall area, they provide breathtakingalpine scenery. The High Tatras (TatryWysokie) are mainly granite, withjagged, rocky peaks. At 2,499m (8,200 ft) above sea level,Rysy is the highest peak inPoland. The Western Tatras (Tatry Zachodnie),consisting of sedimentary rock and crystallineshale, are inhabited by such rare animals asbrown bears, marmots and chamois.The lakelands that covermuch of northern Polandconsist of picturesque morainewoodland and thousands oflakes. Largest and most scenic arethe Great Mazurian Lakes, in adistrict known as the Land of aThousand Lakes (Kraina TysiącaJezior). Abounding in forests, marshesand peat bogs, they are a havenfor many bird species: the largestconcentrationof storks inEurope, swans, grebes,cranes and cormorants.NutcrackerLAKELAND SCENERYRomansnailA cabbagewhite on ameadowflowerFAUNA OF POLANDCrane
  17. 17. A P O R T R A I T O F P O L A N D 1 9THE LOWLANDSWild boar,widespread inPoland, arethe ancestorsof the domestic pig.Deciduous and mixedforests are theirprincipal habitat.Toadflax(Linaria vulgaris)has narrow leavesand yellow-orangeflowers with acharacteristic spur.It grows in ditchesand on wasteland.The corn poppy(Papaver rhoeas)is becomingincreasingly rareas it is weeded outfrom cereal crops.Marram grass(Ammophila arenarea)has narrow grey-greenleaves, and flowersbetween June andAugust. Like lyme grass,it helps to bind the sanddunes where it grows.Deer, which live inherds, are a relativelycommon sight in Poland’sdeciduous and mixedforests. They are huntedas game animals.Marmots, rodents of thebeaver family, live inthe Tatra Mountains.They ‘whistle’ whendisturbed.Moose live in largeforests, marshes andpeat bogs, even nearlarge cities. Largepopulations of themcan be seen inKampinoski NationalPark and in theBiałystok region.The apparent monotony ofthe lowlands is broken byelevations, meandering rivers,marshes and peat bogs. Most ofthe land is under cultivation, butthere are also extensive forests.Białowieża Forest (see p291)shelters bison. Moose can beseen in the marshes andstorks in the lakes.The sandy beaches of Poland’s Balticcoast are among the finest inEurope. They are situated bysand dunes or cliffs, andwere it not for riverestuaries, it would bepossible to walk along themfor the entire length of thecoast. Narrow sandy spits formed by thecoastal currents and known as mierzejeare a characteristic feature of the shoreline.Lyme grass(Elymus arenarius)grows on thesand dunes.It has pointedleaves and itsroots bind thesandy subsoil.THE COASTHoopoeSeagull
  18. 18. GOTHIC ARCHITECTUREGothic elements began to appear in late Romanesquearchitecture in the early 13th century; this transitional style canbe seen in the abbeys at Wąchock, Sulejów and Koprzywnica.By the end of the century, the Gothic style was prevalentthroughout Polish architecture. Many fortified castles werebuilt at this time, more than 80 being founded by Kazimierzthe Great. Notableexamples are those atBędzin, Ogrodzieniec andBobolice (see pp158–9).Gothic churches andmonasteries were also builtthroughout the country,fine examples surviving inCracow and Wrocław. Theoldest surviving woodenchurches, such as that atDębno, date from the sameperiod. In Polish provincialarchitecture, the Gothicstyle persisted until theearly 17th century.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D2 0Renaissance courtyard atWawel Royal CastleOver the centuries, and particularly duringWorld War II, Poland lost a great deal of itsarchitectural heritage. However, majorefforts on the part of both privateindividuals and the government have meantthat many important buildings have beenrestored, and in some cases completelyrebuilt. Royal and aristocratic palaces,churches, castles and entire streets of old towns can thusbe admired today. Traditional wooden buildings areanother interesting feature of Polish architecture.Early Polish ArchitectureThe doorway of the early15th-century Church of StCatherine in Cracow has anornamental stepped frame.The collegiate church at Tum nearŁęczyca, dating from the mid-12thcentury, is Poland’s largest survivingRomanesque religious building.Triforium with decorativecolumnsSemicircularpresbyteryNarrow windows that alsoserved defensive purposesROMANESQUEARCHITECTUREThe Romanesque styleof architecture seen inPolish cathedrals, palacechapels and monasteriesflourished largely as aresult of the country’sconversion to Christianityin the 10th century.Unfortunately, fewRomanesque buildingshave survived intact.Among those that haveare the collegiate churchat Tum near Łęczyca(see p229) and themonastery at Czerwińsk(see p114), both of whichare decorated with stonecarvings. The Roman-esque style reachedits apogee during the12th century.This 12th-centuryRomanesque doorway isfrom the Cathedral of StMary Magdalene (see p190).The 15th-century church atDębno (see p165) is one of theoldest surviving wooden churchesin Poland.A Romanesquecapital
  19. 19. A P O R T R A I T O F P O L A N D 2 1The Florian Gate in Cracow(see p134), a surviving city watchtower withGothic fortifications, dates from the 13thto 15th centuries.Decorative ceilings such as those in the churches ofLubelszczyzna and Kalisz illustrate provincialinterpretations of Renaissance and Mannerist forms.The Zygmunt Chapel (see p143) is one ofthe finest examples of Renaissancearchitecture in Poland.Leszczyński Castle in Baranów Sandomierski(see p153) is one of the few surviving lateRenaissance buildings in Poland.THE RENAISSANCE AND MANNERISMRenaissance architecture was introduced to Polandin the early 16th century by the Italian architectBartolomeo Berrecci, who designed Wawel RoyalCastle and the Zygmunt Chapel in Cracow. Many ofthe churches in Mazovia (as at Pułtusk and Płock)were influenced by the Italian Renaissance, as werethe town halls in Poznań and Sandomierz. From themid-16th century onwards, buildings in Pomeraniawere designed in the northern Mannerist style.Upper lookoutgalleryMachicolationBas-relief depictingSt FlorianGateWoodendefencegalleriesreconstructedafter WorldWar IIThe imposing bulk of the Upper Castle, part ofthe Malbork Castle complexCentral gateways leading toa courtyard surroundedby cloistersCornerlookoutturretRichly ornamented atticconcealing sunken roofsARCHITECTURE OF THE AGE OFTHE TEUTONIC KNIGHTSThe Teutonic Knights, who ruled EasternPomerania and Prussia in the 13th and 14thcenturies, left impressive brick-built Gothicbuildings. The knights built defensive castles(such as those at Malbork, Gniew andBytów) and city walls (as at Chełmno andToruń), and founded numerous churches.
  20. 20. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D2 2Baroque cartouche withthe emblem of PolandBuildings dating from the Baroque era are quite acommon sight in Polish towns and cities. Manydistinctive 19th-century residences and architecturalensembles are also noteworthy, as in Łódź;. Around1900, at a period coinciding with that of Art Nouveau,attempts to build in a Polish national style producedparticularly felicitous results. Folk architecture isanother area of great interest. The best way toexplore it is to visit the skansens (open-air museums)which exist in each region of the country.Later Polish ArchitectureThis country house in Koszuty (see p211) is atypical example of an aristocrat’s country seatin the Baroque style.Kodeń Church, with its brokenfaçade, is typical of the lateBaroque period.Edena House in Gdańskis a fine example of theMannerist style.High gable framedby volutesPediment decorated withcoat of armsBay window with adecorative gableSteep brokenroofBAROQUE ARCHITECTUREIn the first half of the 17thcentury, architects of Italiandescent started to introduce theearly Baroque style to Poland.Nobles built imposing residences,chief among them KrzyżtopórCastle in Ujazd (see pp44–5 andp152), in the Mannerist style,and the fortified early Baroquepalace in Łańcut (see pp172–3).Italian architects were alsocommissioned to design theRoyal Palace in Warsaw, thecountry’s new capital. Thedestruction wrought during thePolish-Swedish war was followedby a period of building in thelate Baroque style. In Warsaw,the renowned Dutch architectTylman van Gameren designeda large number of buildings,alongside Italian architects.During the rule of the Saxonkings in Poland, architects fromDresden designed many newbuildings in Warsaw, as wellas palaces like the one atBiałystok (see p290).CornerturretsPorch in front ofmain entrance
  21. 21. A P O R T R A I T O F P O L A N D 2 3Neo-ClassicalporticoLubostroń Palace (see p221) is a fine exampleof Palladianism, a refined Neo-Classical styleimitating the work of the Italian Renaissancearchitect Andrea Palladio – in this case, hisVilla Rotonda at Vicenza.The town hall in Łowicz is an example of small-town public buildings in the Neo-Classical styleof the early 19th century.The wooden chapel atJaszczurówka is an exampleof a building in the Polishnational style.The Warsaw School ofEconomics combinesmodern features andtraditional elements.NEO-CLASSICISMNeo-Classicism appeared in Poland after therule of Stanisław August Poniatowski, thecountry’s last king. The Royal Palace andŁazienki Palace in Warsaw were built in theNeo-Classical style, as were many othersincluding those at Lubostroń and Śmiełów.Features included landscaped gardens inthe English manner.Dome seton a tambourin the exactcentre ofthe buildingPainted interior of a peasant dwellingin ZalipieWindmill at the skansen (open-airmuseum) in Wdzydze KiszewskieHISTORICISM ANDMODERNISMThe second half of the 19thcentury saw a proliferation ofNeo-Gothic, Neo-Renaissanceand Neo-Baroque buildings.In the 1880s there was amovement towards creatingan architecture in the Polishnational style, which gaverise to some very picturesquestructures. Art Nouveau wasshort-lived in Poland,although it did leave anumber of attractivebuildings, primarily in Łódź.Beehive inhuman formTRADITIONAL ARCHITECTUREFine examples of wooden architecture canbe found today at most skansens. Log cabins,often with thatched roofs, can still be seenin many villages in Poland.
  22. 22. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D2 4POLISH CINEMAThe first Polish feature film was made as early as 1902, butit was not until after World War II that Polish film-makersachieved international renown. The best-known Polish filmdirectors include Andrzej Wajda, whose Man of Iron wonthe Palme d’Or at the 1981 Cannes Film Festival, KrzysztofZanussi, Krzysztof Kieślowski (Decalogue, Three Colours– Blue/White/Red)and Roman Polański(Chinatown), whohas spent many yearsmaking films in theUSA and France.THE MIDDLE AGESPolish writing originates inthe 11th century. The earliestworks were in Latin, oftenwritten by people fromother regions who copiedhagiographies and holychronicles. The oldest Polishchronicle, by the Benedictinemonk Gall Anonim, datesfrom the beginning of the12th century. Native Polishwriters soon appeared, andPolish literature expanded intoall the literary forms known inEurope at the time. The firstwork in the Polish languagewas written in the secondhalf of the 13th century.The earliest religious songin Polish, The Mother of God(Bogurodzica), was probablywritten at the end of the13th century, although it isnot found in manuscriptuntil the 15th century. ThePolish Holy Cross Sermons(Kazania świętokrzyskie)date from around 1450.RENAISSANCE ANDBAROQUEThe Renaissance is regardedas the Golden Age of Polishliterature, when both proseand poetry flourished.Mikołaj Rej (1505–69), thefirst significant writer in thePolish language, is generallyregarded as the father ofPolish literature. The mostprominent poet of the timewas Jan Kochanowski(1530–84), who wrote thefirst Polish tragedy, entitledThe Dismissal of the GreekEnvoys (Odprawa posłówgreckich). He was also theauthor of the humorousTrifles (Fraszki) and thesorrowful Laments (Treny),a lament in the form of acycle of 19 poems. Othernotable figures amongPoland’s early poets areMikołaj Sęp Szarzyński(1550–81) and SzymonSzymonowic (1558–1629).The ancient Sarmatianculture had a great influenceon Polish Baroque literature.The greatest works of theperiod are by JanChryzostom Pasek(1636–1701), who wrotehighly colourful accountsboth of great historicalevents and of the everydaylife of the Polish nobility inthe reign of Jan III Sobieski.THE ENLIGHTENMENTAND THE 19TH CENTURYThe Enlightenment, andparticularly the reignof the last king of Poland,Stanisław August Poniatowski,was an important period inthe development of Polishliterature. The first Polishnovel, The Adventures ofMikołaj Doświadczyński(Mikołaja Doświadczyńskiegoprzypadki), was written byBishop Ignacy Krasicki(1735–1801), a moralistand satirical poet.Polish literature has always been inextricablylinked to the historical development ofthe country, as the political situation,particularly over the last two centuries, hasnot always favoured freedom of speech.Many writers were forced to emigrate,while those who remained were oftenobliged to publish their works in othercountries. Poland boasts four winners of the NobelPrize for Literature: Henryk Sienkiewicz, WładysławS. Reymont, Czesław Miłosz and Wisława Szymborska.The Literature of PolandStanisławWyspiańskiRomantic poet Adam Mickiewiczby Walenty WańkowiczJan Kochanowski writing Treny, alament for his daughter’s deathScene from J. Hoffman’sfilm Colonel Michael
  23. 23. A P O R T R A I T O F P O L A N D 2 520TH-CENTURYLITERATUREFrom 1900 onwards YoungPoland (Młoda Polska), amodern trend in Polishliterature particularlyPolish Romantic poetryplayed an important role inkeeping nationalist sentimentalive. The outstanding writersof that time, AdamMickiewicz, Juliusz Słowackiand Zygmunt Krasiński,wrote outside Poland. To thisday, their work forms thecanon of patriotic literature,whose jewel in the crown isMickiewicz’s Pan Tadeusz,which is both a nostalgicevocation of the vanishingtraditions of the nobility anda vision of the emergence ofmore modern social attitudes.Also notable at this time wasthe comedy writerAleksander Fredro, whoseworks include Revenge(Zemsta) and Husbandand Wife (Mąż i Żona).Another writer who holdsa prominent place inthe history of PolishRomantic literatureis Cyprian KamilNorwid, regardedas the precursor ofmodernism. ElizaOrzeszkowa(1840–1910) andBolesław Prus(1847–1912) arethe principalfigures in thenext phase of thedevelopment ofthe Polish novel.Another majorwriter of this time wasHenryk Sienkiewicz(1846–1916), best knownin Poland for his trilogy ofhistorical novels describingevents in 17th-century Polandand The Teutonic Knights(Krzyżacy), which is devotedto the late 14th and early 15thcenturies. Outside Poland,Sienkiewicz is better knownfor Quo Vadis?, which dealswith the beginnings ofChristianity and for whichhe was awarded the NobelPrize for Literature in 1905.associated with theartistic communityof Cracow, beganto emerge. A keyrole in this wasplayed by StanisławWyspiański(1869–1907), authorof the Symbolistplay The Wedding(Wesele), which wasmade into a filmby Andrzej Wajda70 years later.Also influentialin Young Polandwas a Bohemiangroup surroundingStanisławPrzybyszewski, afriend of HenrikIbsen and EdvardMunch.Another Nobel laureatewas Władysław Reymont(1865–1925), who wrotesociety novels. Hewas awarded theNobel Prize in 1924for The Peasants(Chłopi), whichdescribes the livesof the inhabitantsof a village nearŁowicz. Betweenthe wars, avant-garde writerssuch asStanisław IgnacyWitkiewicz(called Witkacy,1885–1939), Bruno Schulz(1893–1942) and WitoldGombrowicz (1904–69)came to prominence.Polish literature after WorldWar II spawned many famouswriters, several of whomwrote from abroad for politi-cal reasons. Stanisław Lem(1921–2006) wrote philoso-phical science fiction, whichhas been translated into manylanguages. His Solaris wasmade into a film twice – in1972 by Andrei Tarkovskyand in 2002 by Steven Soder-bergh. Tadeusz Różewicz, alsowell known as a poet, andSławomir Mrożek are promi-nent playwrights. HannaKrall and Ryszard Kapuściński(1932–2007) are known fortheir documentary-writing.Andrzej Szczypiorski, whowrote A Mass for Arras (Mszaza miasto Arras) and TheBeginning (Początek),has also achieved inter-national recognition.Contemporary poetryhas a special placein Polish literature.Apart from TadeuszRóżewicz, its mainexponents are Zbig-niew Herbert, RyszardKrynicki and StanisławBarańczak. The bestillustration of theachievements of con-temporary Polish writ-ers is the award oftwo Nobel Prizes: in1980 to CzesławMiłosz and in 1996 tothe Cracow poetessWisława Szymborska.Wisława Szymborska receiving the NobelPrize for LiteratureNobel Prize winner Czesław MiłoszMonument to AleksanderFredro in Wrocław
  24. 24. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D2 6Poland has made a major contribution to theinternational music scene, as much through the worksof great composers as through its renowned jazzmusicians and colourful folk music. Polish classicalcomposers such as Fryderyk Chopin (1810–49),Stanisław Moniuszko (1819–72), Karol Szymanowski(1882–1937) and Wojciech Kilar (born 1932) haveoften been inspired by folk music, as have modernjazz and rock musicians. Poland has also given theworld such outstanding musical performers as thetenor Jan Kiepura and the pianists Artur Rubinsteinand Witold Małcużyński.regarded as the father of thePolish national opera. Hismost famous operas areHalka, inspired by highlandfolklore, and The HauntedHouse (Straszny dwór),which evokes the traditionsof the Polish nobility.In the second half of the19th century, the violinistHenryk Wieniawski and thepianist Ignacy Paderewskiachieved world renown. Thelatter was also prominent inpolitics, serving for a time asPrime Minister of Poland.Before World War I, thetown of Zakopane was amajor centre of Polishculture. It drew not onlyartists but also composerswho sought inspiration fromthe landscape of the TatraMountains and the colourfulfolklore of the highlanddwellers. Amongcomposers associatedwith Zakopane isMieczysławKarłowicz(1876–1909), notedespecially for hissymphonies.Karłowicz perishedtragically in anavalanche in theTatras at theyoung age of33. Anotherfrequent visitorto Zakopanewas KarolSzymanowski,whose fascinationwith the folk musicof the regioninspired him toThe Music of PolandJAN KIEPURA(1902–1966)Jan Kiepura achievedinternational renownas an opera singer.He performed on theworld’s greatest stages,and from 1938 waswith the MetropolitanOpera of New York.He gained popularitythrough his appearancesin operettas andmusicals, where heperformed together withhis wife, Marta Eggerth.THE 19TH AND 20THCENTURIESThe most prominent Polishcomposer of the Romantic erawas undoubtedly FryderykChopin (1810–49), whocomposed almost exclusivelyfor the piano. Chopincontributed to theestablishment of a Polishnational style in music, andexerted a great influenceon the development ofEuropean piano music.During his short lifehe composed a largenumber of preludes,mazurkas,polonaises, waltzes,études and otherpieces. Many ofChopin’s workscontain elementsof folk music. TheChopin PianoCompetition, held inWarsaw, has been aregular event since1927, and award-winners have goneon to become world-famous pianists.StanisławMoniuszko isFryderyk Chopin in a portrait byEugène DelacroixEARLY MUSICAlthough they are notwidely known, there ismuch of interest in the worksof early Polish composers.Mikołaj z Radomia, a com-poser of the first half of the15th century, produced bothreligious and secular works.In the Renaissance,composers such as Wacławof Szamotuły and MikołajGomółka brought Polishmusic into the Europeanmainstream. The first Polishopera stage was set up in the17th century at the court ofWładysław IV. Court andreligious music flourished atthat time, and the works ofsuch composers as AdamJarzębski, Stanisław S.Szarzyński and MarcinMielczewski are still widelyperformed by Polishmusicians today.Stanisław Moniuszko
  25. 25. A P O R T R A I T O F P O L A N D 2 7compose a number of works,including the ballet Harnasie.One of the best-knownmodern composers isKrzysztof Penderecki(b. 1933), whose oeuvreincludes epic symphonies,oratorios and operas. Hisopera The Devils of Loudun(Diabły z Loudun) has beenperformed all over the world.Other prominent composersof international standing areAndrzej Panufnik (1914–91),Witold Lutosławski (1913–94)and Henryk Górecki(b. 1933), whose worksinclude the outstandingSymphony No. 3, which hastopped the classical musiccharts for years. Other majorcomposers of symphonicmusic are Wojciech Kilar (b.1932) and Zbigniew Preisner(b. 1955), most widelyknown for their film music.prominence, including AdamMakowicz, Tomasz Stańkoand Michał Urbaniak. Jazzclubs opened throughout thecountry, and the WarsawJazz Jamboree, first held in1958, became the world’sbiggest jazz festival. Anotherrenowned festival is Jazz onthe Oder, held in Wrocław.Many jazz musicians cameto public recognition in the1970s and 1980s, amongthem the pianist andsaxophonist WłodzimierzNahorny, the saxophonistsZbigniew Namysłowski andJanusz Muniak, and thepianist Sławomir Kulpowicz.instruments, the mainone being the fiddle,and sometimes bagpipesor drums and basses.Depending on the regionthese instruments aresupplemented by clarinets,horns, accordions andoccasionally dulcimers.The best way of getting toknow and enjoy Polish folkmusic is to attend some ofthe concerts traditionally heldduring the summer months,such as the Kazimierz orZakopane festivals. Herethere is a chance to listen tolive music being played andto watch the dance groupsthat perform in colourfulfolk costumes.Polish vocal and dancegroups have broughtworldwide popularity toPolish folk music. TheMazowsze group, forexample, gives stageperformances that areinspired by the folktraditions of various regions.The Warsaw Jazz JamboreeThe composer and conductorKrzysztof PendereckiFolk band outside the Cloth Hall (Sukiennica) in CracowJAZZJazz traditions in Poland goback to the time of theSecond Republic. After WorldWar II, jazz was deemed bythe authorities to be “alien tothe working class”, and itwas not until 1956 that jazzcould be performed inpublic. An important jazzmusician of that time was thepianist and composerKrzysztof Komeda (1931–69),who wrote the popularlullaby for Roman Polański’sfilm, Rosemary’s Baby.During the 1960s, otherjazz musicians came toFOLK MUSICPolish folk music isunusually colourful. Everyregion has its own specifictradition, and the music ofthe Tatra Mountains isunique. Folk bands playquite a basic range of
  26. 26. The Traditional NobilityThe tradition of the Polish nobility was dominatedby the idea of Sarmatism, which was based on themyth that the Polish aristocracy were descendedfrom a warrior people called the Sarmatians.Sarmatism was influential in shaping the ideologyof the ruling class, as well as its customs andlifestyle. A Sarmatian embraced the old order,was patriotic and Catholic, and at the sametime valued freedom and privilege, lived lifeas a landowner and upheld family traditions.Sarmatism played an important part in artand literature, particularly memoirs.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D2 8A TRADITIONAL BEVERAGEMead was a favourite drink of thePolish aristocracy. It ismade by fermentingwort, a solution ofhoney and water thathas been flavouredwith herbs. The mostpopular type of meadis trójniak, in whichhoney makes upone-third of thetotal wort. Therarest is póltorak,with two partshoney and one partwater. Althoughmead is no longerwidely drunk, it isstill produced today.Headpiecewith heronfeathersKontuszin the stylewornby ladiesWyloty – slitsleeves rolledback and overthe shoulderTurbanA kulawka was aspecial toasting gobletfor drinking “bottomsup”, as it could only beset down on its rim.StolnikmeadNoblemen’s houses were typically single-storey buildings fronted byan imposing colonnade. Rooms flanked the central entrance hall.Aristocraticfigurine inporcelain
  27. 27. A P O R T R A I T O F P O L A N D 2 9COATS OF ARMSThe coats of arms of aristocraticfamilies in Poland number nomore than about 200. They wereheld in common by membersof clans with different names.Aristocratic titles were not usedat the time of the Republic (withthe exception of the titles ofLithuanian princes), whilemagnate families looked toforeign rulers for titles. Polishheraldic symbols usually had theirorigins in individual symbols;they were therefore relativelysimple and differed from thoseof Western Europe.POLISHNATIONAL DRESSRequired attire of thenobility in the Baroque era,its main elements were theżupan (a kind of shirt) andthe kontusz (an outergarment tied with a waist-band). Headgear took theform of either a kołpak(fur hat) or a square-bottomed rogatywka.Men wore their hairshort and sported amoustache, andsometimes a beard.Silk sashes known as kontusze werean indispensable part of a nobleman’sattire. Several yards in length, they wereworn wrapped around the waist andtied in a decorative knot, allowing thetassels to hang downwards.The kontusz wasan outer garmentwith cutout sleeves,which were thrownover the shoulders.CielątkowaŁodzia SzreniawaCoffin portraits of thedeceased werepainted in oils onmetal plates cut tothe shape of thecross-section of acoffin, to which theywere attachedduring funerals.The karabela was atraditional sword thathad a single-sided bladeand a highly ornamentedhandle, often with inlaidprecious stones.KołpakŻupanWylotyKontusz sashAn election gathering, at which the nobility elected theking, is portrayed here. This was one of the greatestprivileges exercised by the gentry.
  28. 28. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D3 0Although the majority of the Polishpopulation today is Roman Catholic, in thecourse of the country’s history its inhabitantshave adhered to a variety of faiths. BesidesRoman Catholics, there have been OrthodoxChristians, Uniates and Jews (most of whomlost their lives in World War II), and, sincethe 16th century, Lutheran and CalvinistProtestants. When the Polish borders wereredrawn after World War II, a large sectionof the Eastern Orthodox population founditself in Belarus or the Ukraine. At the sametime, the western border moved further westwards,incorporating many German Protestant churches. Thewide variety of Poland’s ecclesiastical architecturebears witness to the many cultures and religionsthat have existed there.The Convent of the OldBelievers at Wojnowo is oneof the few places where this reli-gious group can still be found.The Different Religionsof PolandThe Evangelical ReformChurch in Warsaw wasbuilt after the Reformationand used by the smallgroup of Calvinistbelievers in Poland.Orthodox Christians today are found mainly in theeastern parts of the country, where many of their historicchurches still stand.The Basilica of the HolyCross and the Birth ofthe Holy Mother(Bazylika Krzyża Świętegoi Narodzenia Matki Boskiej)has the tallest churchtower in Poland.The cemetery atKruszyniany, one of thefew Muslim burial groundsin Poland, is used bypeople of Tartar descent.Roadsideshrine
  29. 29. A P O R T R A I T O F P O L A N D 3 1The picturesque wooden churches of theUkrainian Uniates, or Greek Catholics, builtfor the Lemk and the Boyk minorities,survive in the Carpathian Mountains. Theircongregations were resettled in other areasduring Operation Vistula after World War II.CZĘSTOCHOWA PILGRIMAGEThe Monastery of Jasna Góra in Częstochowa isthe most important Catholic shrine in Poland –and one of the greatest in the Christian world.The image of Our Lady of Częstochowa, alsoknown as the Black Madonna, draws pilgrims allyear round. The main pilgrimage, which attractshundreds of thousands of believers from Polandand beyond, is held in the meadows at the footof the monastery on 15 August each year.The ‘Church ofPeace’ (KościółPokoju) atŚwidnica wasone of threechurches to bebuilt specificallyfor SilesianProtestants afterthe Thirty Years’War, whichended in 1648.Judaicartifacts inmuseumsare poignant vestigesof the synagogues thatwere once sonumerous in Poland.As a result of theHolocaust and theensuing communistera, there are fewJews in Poland today.PaulinemonasteryOpen-airaltarOTHERDENOMINATIONSSome of Poland’s historic churcheshave changed denomination overthe years – for instance, whenPolish Catholics took over disusedProtestant churches. Although theoriginal interiors have generallynot survived, the exteriors haveoften been carefully conserved.Some religious denominationsno longer have followers inPoland, although their places ofworship remain. An example isthe Mennonite chapel in Gdańsk.Old Mennonite chapel in Gdańsk
  30. 30. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D3 2Tourists tend to visitPoland in the summer,between June and Sep-tember. During that period, themost popular tourist spots arecrowded, and a variety of open-airevents, from street theatre festi-vals to re-enactments of medievaltournaments, take place through-out the country. The main music anddrama festivals are held in spring andautumn. The best way ofspending winter in Poland isskiing in the mountains. Asthe majority of Poles areCatholics, traditional Catholicfeast days are the most importantholidays. The celebrations thattake place at Christmas, Easter,and Corpus Christi as well asother local church festivals areinteresting spectacles for tourists.POLAND THROUGH THE YEARSPRINGThe official beginning ofspring, 21 March, is anunofficial day of truancyamong young people inPoland. The tourist seasonbegins with the first warmdays of spring.MARCHTopienie Marzanny(23 Mar) is the day when, inmany areas, children throwsmall dolls – symbolizingwinter – into rivers.The International PosterBiennial (even-numberedyears), Warsaw.Festival of Stage Songs,Wrocław. Polish and inter-national performers take part.International Dance GroupPresentation, Kalisz.International Festivalof Alternative Theatre,Cracow.APRILPalm Sunday (the Sundaybefore Easter) is the day when“palms” are blessed in thechurches. The most colourfulcelebrations take place invillages in Kurpie andMałopolska – in particularRabka, Lipnica Murowana andTokarnia. During Holy Week(the week leading up toEaster), mystery plays areperformed in churches aroundthe country. The oldest andbest-known spectacle isChwalebne Misterium Pańskie,a passion play which hasbeen performed in KalwariaZebrzydowska (see p161)since the 17th century. OnHoly Saturday, Easter food istaken to church in basketsand blessed. Visits are alsomade to symbolic sepulchresin churches.Easter Sunday is themost important Catholicholiday, when the grandestmass is held tomark theResurrection.Easter Monday(Śmigus-dyngus) ismarked by thecustom of peoplethrowing water overone another.GdańskInternationalGuitar Festival(every other year),Gdańsk.InternationalFestival of Filmsfor Childrenand Youth,Poznań.Paka CabaretReview, Cracow.Festival ofTheatre Schools, ŁódźMAYInternational Labour Day(1 May).3 May The most importantpublic holiday, marking theadoption of the first Polishconstitution of 1791.Festival of Student Song,Cracow. Performances by thebest student vocalists andaccompanists.Chamber Music Days(first 2 weeks in May),Łańcut. This is aninternational event.International Book Fair(last 2 weeks in May),Warsaw. One of the largestevents of its kind in Europe.Kontakt Theatre Festival(last 2 weeks in May),Toruń.Jazz on the Oder, Wrocław.Renowned jazz festival.Poznań Jazz Fair, Poznań.Short Film Festival,Cracow. The oldest filmfestival in the country.Ginger-bread heartPassion play in Kalwaria ZebrzydowskaPerformance at the CracowFestival of Student Song
  31. 31. 129630P O L A N D T H R O U G H T H E Y E A R 3 3SUMMERFrom the end of June to thebeginning of September,open-air events are held allover the country. Theatricallife in the towns and cities,by contrast, tends to slowdown. Most open-air eventsare held in tourist areas.Summer Film Festival(late Jun), Łagów.Festival of Folk Bands andSingers (late Jun),Kazimierz Dolny.Jewish Culture Festival(Jun/Jul), Cracow.JULYFestival of Film Stars,Międzyzdroje.Viking Festival, Wolin.Viking battles. Most of theboats arrive from Scandinavia.International StreetTheatre Festival (mid-Jul),Jelenia Góra. There is alsostreet theatre in JedlniaZdrój, Szczawno Zdrój andWałbrzych in Lower Silesia,and in the cities of Gdańsk,Toruń, Cracow and Warsaw.International OrganFestival (mid-Jul), KamieńPomorski.Singing Poetry Festival(mid-Jul), Olsztyn Castle.Summer Jazz Days, Gdynia.FAMA (mid-Jul), Świnoujście.Student arts festival.Piknik Country (end of Jul),Mrągowo. Internationalcountry music festival.AUGUSTBeskid Culture Week(early Aug), Beskid region.Dominican Fair (first2 weeks in Aug), Gdańsk.Chopin Festival(second week in Aug),Duszniki Zdrój.Złota Tarka TraditionalJazz Festival (mid-Aug),Iława.Feast of the Assumption(15 Aug). This is a religiousholiday, but it is also the dayon which Poles com-memorate their victory overthe Bolsheviks in 1920.International SongFestival (late Aug), Sopot.Sunny daysThe period from Mayto September has thegreatest number ofdays of sunshine.April and Septemberare often also sunny,while December hasthe least sunshine.AVERAGE HOURS OF SUNSHINE PER DAYStreet performers at theDominican Fair in GdańskHoursFebJan Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov DecJUNECorpus Christi (variable).Solemn processions are heldthroughout the country.Midsummer’s Night(23 Jun).Fishermen’s Sea Pilgrim-age (29 Jun). Decoratedfishing boats sail into theport of Puck across the bay.Festival of Polish Song(late Jun), Opole.Mozart Festival (lateJun–early Jul), Warsaw.Malta – InternationalTheatre Festival(late Jun), Poznań.Corpus Christi processionin SpicimierzFishermen’s sea pilgrimage in the bay of Puck
  32. 32. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D3 4AUTUMNFine weather continues inPoland to the end ofOctober. Autumn comessoonest in Pomerania,Warmia and Mazuria, as wellas Suwalszczyna. Thetransition from September toOctober – when fallen leavescreate a riot of colour – isknown as the “golden Polishautumn”. It is also a timewhen major cultural eventstake place, as well as thebeginning of the newacademic year.SEPTEMBERFestival of Polish PianoMusic (early Sep), Słupsk.Warsaw Autumn (mid-Sep),Warsaw. Contemporary music.Wratislavia Cantans(early Sep), Wrocław.Oratorio and cantata festival.Laser and fireworkdisplays(around 10 Sep), Olsztynnear Częstochowa.Festival of Science(last 2 weeks in Sep),Warsaw.Days of Julian Tuwim,Łódź. Various events,including poetry readings.Archaeology gala,Biskupin.OCTOBERBorderlands TheatreFestival (first weekin Oct), Cieszyn.Konfrontacje TheatreFestival, Lublin.Lemk CulturalFestival, GorzówWielkopolski.Warsaw FilmFestival, Warsaw.Jazz Jamboree (thirdweek in Oct), Warsaw.The Jazz Jamboree isone of Europe’s majorjazz festivals.Festival of EarlyMusic (late Oct). Aninternational festivalwith venues inWarsaw, Cracow and othercities.Polish Feature FilmFestival (end Oct). Gdynia.Lithuanian All Saints’ Day,Puńsk. Poetry and music inmemory of the dead.NOVEMBERAll Saints’ Day (1 Nov).People visit the gravesof their relatives andlight candles there.All Saints’ Day JazzFestival, Cracow. Thefirst jazz festival in post-communist Europe.“Etiuda” InternationalFilm Festival (early Nov),Cracow.Independence Day(11 Nov). The biggestceremonies in honour ofPolish independence in1918 take place in Warsaw.St Martin’s Day(11 Nov). In Wielkopolskaand Eastern Pomeraniapeople traditionally cooka goose and bake pretzelsand croissants on St Martin’sDay. The holiday is markedby major ceremonies inPoznań, where St Martinis the patron saint.Głogów Jazz Meeting,Głogów.Rainfall and snowAlthough autumnshowers are the mostunpleasant, theheaviest rainfalloccurs in summer.Heavy snow is usualin winter.Candles lit at a cemetery onAll Saints’ DayAVERAGE PRECIPITATIONMM806040200FebJan Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec32½1½¾0InchesProgramme for the PolishFeature Film FestivalInauguration of the academic year
  33. 33. P O L A N D T H R O U G H T H E Y E A R 3 5WINTERThe first snow can fall inNovember, althoughsnowless winters are becom-ing increasingly common.Subzero temperatures andhard frosts are not unusual.The coldest part of thecountry is Suwalszczyna, inthe northeast corner.DECEMBERChristmas CribCompetitions (first weekin Dec), held in Cracowmarket square.Christmas Eve (24 Dec).The beginning of Christmasis marked with a celebratorymeat-free dinner andmidnight mass.Christmas (25 and 26 Dec).Public holidays, with massesheld in all churches.New Year’s Eve (31 Dec).Throughout Poland, peoplesee in the New Year at ballsand parties, and atcelebrations in the mainsquares of most towns.JANUARYNew Year (1 Jan). Publicholiday. A carnival beginsand the season of ballsopens.Orthodox Church MusicFestival (mid-Jan), Cracow.FEBRUARYFeast of St MaryGromniczna (2 Feb). Waxcandles known as gromniceare lit in churches.End of Carnival The lastThursday before Lent ismarked by eating doughnutsor other fried delicaciesknown as faworki. Splendidballs, concerts and shows areput on throughout thecountry to mark the lastSaturday of the carnival.International Festival ofSea Shanties, Cracow.TemperaturesTemperatures arehighest in thesummer, when theycan exceed 30° C(86° F). In winter,temperatures can fallbelow zero (32° F),although this isusually short-lived.Cribs being brought to Cracow’s Christmas Crib Competitions866850322414AVERAGE TEMPERATURESFebJan Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec°C3020100-10-20°FPUBLIC HOLIDAYSNew Year’s Day(1 January)Easter Monday(variable)May Day(1 May)Constitution Day(3 May)Corpus Christi(variable)Feast of theAssumption (15 August)All Saints’ Day(1 November)Independence Day(11 November)Christmas (25 and26 December)Winter cityscape, Gdańsk
  34. 34. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D 3 7Mieszko I, the first historicprince of this line, convertedto Christianity in 966, bringinghis kingdom into ChristianEurope. The Piast dynasty ruledPoland with variable fortune andembroiled the nation in domes-tic quarrels for 150 years. Afterthis dynasty died out, the greatLithuanian prince Jagiełło tookthe Polish throne and founded a newdynasty. The treaty with Lithuaniasigned at Krewo in 1385 initiatedthe long process of consolidationbetween these nations, culminatingin 1569 with the signing of the Unionof Lublin. In the 15th century theJagiellonians achieved many militarysuccesses, forming the powerfulRepublic of Two Nations (Rzeczpos-polita Obojga Narodów). After theJagiellonian dynasty died out in 1572,the authorities introduced electivekings, with the nobility having theright to vote. Poland’s political andmilitary weakness led to itspartitioning by Russia, Prussiaand Austria. In 1795 Polandwas wiped off the map ofEurope for more than 100years. Attempts to wrest inde-pendence by insurrection wereunsuccessful, and Poland didnot regain its sovereignty until1918. The arduous process ofrebuilding and uniting the nation wasstill incomplete when, at the outbreakof World War II, a six-year period ofGerman and Soviet occupation began.The price that Poland paid was veryhigh: millions were murdered, includ-ing virtually its entire Jewish popula-tion. The country suffered devastationand there were huge territorial losses,which were only partly compensatedby the Allies’ decision to move theborder westwards. After the war,Poland was subjugated by the SovietUnion and did not become a fullydemocratic nation until 1989.THE HISTORY OF POLANDMap of the Republic of Two Nations (Rzeczpospolita Obojga Narodów) in the 17th centuryPoland’s borders have changed almost continuously with thecourse of history. The origins of the Polish nation go back tothe 10th century, when Slav tribes living in the area ofGniezno united together under the Piast dynasty, which then ruledPoland until 1370.The PolisheagleStanisław August Poniatowski, the last king of Poland
  35. 35. During the 6th century AD, Slavtribes began migrating from the eastto what is today Polish territory. TheVistulanians (Wiślanie) settled aroundCracow, and the Poles (Polanie) aroundGniezno. The Polanie united under therule of the Piast dynasty in the 10thcentury, and the conversion of Mieszko I(c. 960–92) to Christianity in 966 led tothe formation of the Polish state. AfterMieszko, Bolesław the Brave (992–1025) acquiredsignificant new territories. Later Piast rulers reignedwith variable fortune. On the death of Bolesław theWry-Mouthed (1107–38), the nation was divided into dis-tricts, not to be reunified until the reign of Władysławthe Elbow-High (1306–33). The country flourished underthe rule of his son, Kazimierz the Great (1333–70).I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D3 8TIMELINE997 Martyrdom ofBishop Wojciechwhile on amission to Prussia966 Adoptionof ChristianityCoin minted in the reignof Bolesław the Brave1079 Martyrdomof BishopStanisław ofSzczepanów1124–1128 Bolesław theWry-Mouthed initiates theconversion of WesternPomerania to Christianity1025 Coronation ofBolesław the Brave,first king of Poland1000 Congress at Gniezno; convocationof the Polish church metropolisCrown ofKazimierzthe GreatPrayer at the graveof St WojciechThe Czech bishopWojciech, whowas martyredwhile on a missionto Prussia in997, was the firstPolish saint.Tomb of Henry IVThe Silesian princeHenry IV, the Good(Henryk IV Probus,1288–90) tried tounite Poland butdied, probably bypoisoning. Histomb is a fineexample of early14th-centuryGothic sculpture.MARTYRDOM OFST STANISŁAWAn embroidery of 1504 fromthe chasuble in Kmita depictsthe murder of Bishop Stani-sław of Szczepanów in 1079.Bishop Stanisław ofSzczepanów1138 Beginningof the divisionof PolandPOLAND IN THE YEARS1090–1127Polish territory1150110010501000950Poland under the Piast Dynasty
  36. 36. T H E H I S T O R Y O F P O L A N D 3 91226 KonradMazowieckiinvites the TeutonicOrder to Masovia1350The initials of Kazimierzthe Great on the door ofWawel Cathedral1241 Defeat atthe Battle ofLegnica againstthe Mongols1320 Coronationof Władisławthe Elbow-Highand the unificationof the Polish state1340–1366Kazimierz theGreat conquerswestern Ruthenia(Ruś Halicko-Wołyńska)1370 Louis ofHungary (LudwikWęgierski)seizes the PolishcrownCoronation sword ofBolesław the BraveVESTIGES OF THEPIAST DYNASTYThe Piast dynasty witnessedthe development of Roman-esque and early Gothicarchitecture. Romanesquechurches have survived inTum (see p229), Czerwińsk(see p114) and Tyniec (seep145). The abbeys inSulejów, Wąchock (see p152)and Koprzywnica date fromthe 13th century. Some ofthe Gothic castles ofKazimierz the Great can beseen in the Jura region – forexample at Będzin, Olsztynand Bobolice (see pp158–9).The Crypt of St Leonard isa vestige of the Romanesquecathedral at Wawel RoyalCastle in Cracow (see pp138–9).Founding Documentof the Cracovian AcademyFounded in 1364, the CracovianAcademy was the seconduniversity (after Prague) to beestablished in Central Europe.Bolesławthe BoldVistulanianPlateThisRomanesquefloor laid withplaster c.1170,preserved inthe collegiatechurch inWiślica, depictsa scene ofadoration.The castle at Będzin is thebest-preserved of all the Gothiccastles built by Kazimierz theGreat (see p205).Kazimierz the GreatThis 14th-centurysculpture from thecollection in the CollegiumMaius in Cracow depictsKazimierz the Great,who “found Polandof wood, and left itin stone”.130012501200
  37. 37. Poland under the JagielloniansThe treaty signed in Krewo in 1385uniting the Polish and the Lithuanian statesproved to be a decisive moment in thehistory of Central Europe. The Grand Dukeof Lithuania Władysław Jagiełło receivedthe hand of Jadwiga, the young and beau-tiful ruler of Poland, and was crownedking of Poland. Jadwiga died in 1399, butthe relationship between Poland and Lithuania establishedby the Union of Krewo was gradually strengthened.Jagiełło founded the Jagiellonian dynasty and, by thereign of Kazimierz the Jagiellonian in the mid-15thcentury, Poland and Lithuania had come to be thegreatest power in central Europe. The Jagielloniankings also ruled the Czech nations and Hungary.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D4 0QueenJadwiga’ssceptreTIMELINE1399 Death ofQueen Jadwiga1385 Union ofKrewo joins Polandand Lithuania1410 Battleof Grunwald1415 At the Council of Constanz,Paweł Włodkowic proclaims thetheory of the sovereignty of allChristian and non-Christian peoples1440 Formation of thePrussian Union, inopposition to theTeutonic Knights1413 Treaty of Horodło,strengthening the bondbetween Poland and Lithuania1385 1415 14301411 First Treatyof Toruń,establishing peacewith the TeutonicKnights1400Jagielloniancoat of armsSecond Treatyof ToruńSigned in 1466, thetreaty concluded theThirteen Years’ Warwith the TeutonicKnights, who lostnearly half theirterritory to Poland.Chapel at Lublin CastleRuthenian paintings inthe Catholic Chapel of theHoly Trinity founded byWładysław Jagiełło reflectthe multicultural nature ofthe Polish-Lithuanian state.Plate showingFilippo BuonaccorsiThis sculpture commemoratingthe Italian humanist andeducator of the young royals, whodied in 1496, is by the eminentlate Medieval sculptor Veit Stoss.Ulryk vonJungingen,Grand Master ofthe TeutonicOrderREPUBLIC OF TWO NATIONSIN THE YEARS 1386–1434Poland LithuaniaFeudal territories
  38. 38. T H E H I S T O R Y O F P O L A N D 4 11444 Władysław of Varnadies at the Battle of Varna,fought against the Turks1445 1460 1475 14901466 SecondTreaty of Toruń1454 Act incorpor-ating Prussia into theCrown of Poland1473 Birth ofNicolausCopernicus1496 PiotrkowskiStatute restrictsthe rights ofcommoners toacquire land1492 Death of Kazimierzthe Jagiellonian. Firstgeneral Sejm (parliament)Figure of St John by Veit Stoss, from the altarin the Church of St Mary, CracowGOTHIC ARCHITECTUREMany late Gothic buildingshave survived in Poland.Among the most importantare the Collegium Maiusand the Barbican in Cracow(see p133). After theformation of Royal Prussia,many parish churcheswere built in the townslying within its territory,the largest being theChurch of St Mary inGdańsk (see pp238–9).The imposing twin-towerfaçade of the Church ofSt Mary reflects Cracow’sformer status (see p132).BATTLE OF GRUNWALDIn one of the greatest medieval battles, on15 July 1410, Poland and Lithuania, withtheir Ruthenian allies, routed the armies ofthe Teutonic Knights, who never regainedtheir former might. The scene is depictedin this painting by Jan Matejko of 1878.Witold, the GrandDuke of LithuaniaDeposition fromChomraniceThis Deposition ofChrist (c.1450) isheld to be the apogeeof Polish Gothic art.Gothic PaxThe skill of medievalgoldsmiths can beseen in this finelycrafted cross.Virgin from KrużlowaThis statue, of around1400, is a masterpiece oflate Gothic sculpture.
  39. 39. Poland’s Golden AgeIn the 16th century the Republic ofTwo Nations (Rzeczpospolita) formedby Poland and Lithuania was one of thelargest European powers. In the westernterritories of the Polish Crown there waspeace, relative prosperity and – rareelsewhere – religious tolerance. Underthe Jagiellonians, and later under thefirst elective kings, art, education andthe economy flourished. In the political spherethere was a significant movement to improve theRepublic and institute reforms.The so-called real union between Poland andLithuania was concluded in Lublin in 1569. At thattime, in terms of language, nationality and religion,the Republic was the most diverse state in Europe.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D4 21518 Bona Sforzaarrives in Poland andmarries Zygmunt theOld (Zygmunt Stary)TIMELINE1500 1520 15401505 Adoptionof the constitut-ional law ofNihil Novi1520 Adoption ofthe Statute ofToruń,introducingserfdom1525 Secularization of the defeatedTeutonic Order. The elector AlbrechtHohenzollern, Duke of Prussia, makesan oath of fealty to the Polish king,Zygmunt the Old, in Cracow1543Copernicus’sfamous treatiseis published1521 The Polish army occupiesTeutonic Prussia in the final warwith the Teutonic KnightsRenaissance oven tileEmblematiccockerelREPUBLIC OF TWO NATIONS,EARLY 16TH CENTURYPoland LithuaniaFeudal territoriesNicolaus Copernicus (1473–1543)This Polish astronomer and humanist showedthat the Earth revolves around the Sun.Codex BehemThis illuminatedmanuscript of1505 byBaltazar Behem,a writer andnotary ofCracow, lists thecity’s privileges,statutes, and theguild laws.OPATÓW LAMENTThe Renaissance tomb of ChancellorKrzysztof Szydłowiecki in thecollegiate church at Opatów features abas-relief sculpture depicting themourning of the deceased, installedafter 1532 (see p152). Around thetable are friends of the Chancellor,humanists attached to the royalcourt and foreigners.Representativesof the peoples ofthe East and WestNobleman whobrought thenews ofthe Chancellor’sdeath
  40. 40. T H E H I S T O R Y O F P O L A N D 4 31560 1580 16001557 Outbreakof the warwith Russiaover Livonia1563 Split of Polish Calvinists andisolation of the Polish Brethren, anextreme group of Reformationists1564 Jesuits arrivein Poland1587 Zygmunt IIIVasa iselected kingof Poland Grotesque maskfrom BaranówSandomierski1596 The capital ismoved from Cracowto Warsaw1579 The capture of Połockmarks the start of StefanBatory’s victory in the waragainst Russia1569 Union ofLublin1561Secularization ofthe LivonianBranch of theTeutonic Orderand incorpor-ation of LivoniaTomb ofStefan BatoryDespite his shortreign, Batory wasone of the mostillustrious of theelective monarchs.16TH-CENTURYARCHITECTUREThe first instance of theRenaissance style in Polanddates from 1502. Oftenimitated but never equalled,the most splendid earlyRenaissance building wasthe Zygmunt Chapel inWawel Cathedral (see p143),completed in 1533.This castle in Książ Wielki,built by Santi Gucci between1585 and 1589, is the mostsplendid example of ItalianMannerism in Poland.The collegiate church inPułtusk (see p113), built c.1560by the architect Gianbattista ofVenice, has barrel vaulting.Union of LublinThe federation of Poland andLithuania established underthe Union of Lublin in 1569provided for a joint Sejm(parliament), king and foreignpolicy. However, each countryhad its own government, army,treasury and judiciary.Zygmuntthe OldVice-chancellorPiotr TomickiDogs, symbolizingthe loyalty of thedead man’s friendsJan Tarnowski,the deceased’sson-in-lawTapestry with SatyrsThe collection of tapestries atWawel Royal Castle (see p140)comprises over 160 splendidpieces. They were brought tothe castle in the 16th century.
  41. 41. The “Silver” 17th CenturyI N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D4 4TIMELINE1600 1620 1640REPUBLIC OF TWO NATIONSIN THE YEARS 1582–1648Poland LithuaniaFeudal territoriesNobleman in a Dancewith DeathThe figure of a commonPolish yeoman intraditional dressdecorates theChapel of theOleśnicki familyin Tarłów.Siege of Jasna Góra, theLuminous MountainThe run of Swedish victoriesended in 1655 with the heroicPolish defence of the PaulineMonastery in Częstochowa.KRZYŻTOPOR CASTLEIn the first half of the 17th century,dazzling residences were built in theRepublic of Two Nations. The most splendid wasthe eccentric castle in Ujazd. Built at great expense, itstood for barely 11 years. It was demolished in 1655 bythe Swedes and remains in ruins to this day (see p152).A rebus on the main gatespells out “Krzyżtopór”with a cross (Krzyż) andan axe (Topór).The 17th century was dominated by the warsthat the Republic of Two Nations wagedagainst the Swedes, Russia and the OttomanEmpire. An uprising in the Ukraine in 1648marked the beginning of a series ofcatastrophes. In 1655 the Republic ofTwo Nations was invaded and largelyoccupied by the Swedes. Althoughit was short-lived, the Swedishoccupation – known as the Deluge(Potop) – wreaked havoc. The finaltriumph of the Republic of Two Nations was the victoryagainst the Turks at the Battle of Vienna in 1683, duringthe reign of Jan III Sobieski. The country eventuallyemerged from the warswithout major territoriallosses, but it was consider-ably weakened and itsdominance was over.Moat1601Outbreak ofNorthern Warwith Sweden1620 Battleagainst theTurks and Tatarsat Cecora1632 Death ofZygmunt IIIVasa1648 Death ofWładysław IV,start of theChmielnicki Uprisingin the Ukraine1606 ZebrzydowskiRebellion1604 FirstMoscowexpedition of thefalse Demetrius1634 WładysławIV’s victory overRussia, and peacein PolanówZygmunt III Vasa1629 Trucewith Swedenin Altmark1655Beginning ofthe SwedishDelugeStatue ofJan III Sobieski
  42. 42. T H E H I S T O R Y O F P O L A N D 4 51660 1680 1700Baroque MonstranceThis monstrance, at PelplinCathedral in Pomerania,dates from 1646.Shrine ofSt StanisławRelics of the patronsaint of Polandare preserved ina shrine that wasinstalled inWawelCathedralbetween1626and1629.HusariaCharges by the famous Hussars,the best heavy cavalry in Europe,decided the outcome of many battles.Their greatest victory was against theTurks at the Battle of Vienna (1683).The cloister walls aroundthe courtyard are paintedwith real and legendaryancestors of theOssoliński family.The Royal Chapel (see p239) inGdańsk, commissioned by Jan IIISobieski, was built by Tylmanvan Gameren and AndreasSchlüter in the Baroque style.The Bishops’ Palace inKielce (see p150) is the best-preserved early Baroqueresidence.Bastions17TH-CENTURYARCHITECTUREMany magnificent buildingsin the late Mannerist and earlyBaroque styles were erectedin the first half of the 17thcentury, during the reign ofthe Vasa dynasty. After thedestruction wrought by theSwedish Deluge, there was nofurther artistic flowering untilthe reign of Jan III Sobieski.The early Baroque castles –for example, the Royal Palacein Warsaw (see pp64–5) – aswell as numerous churches, ofwhich the most impressive arethe Jesuit churches in Cracow,Warsaw and Poznań, are allsplendid examples of thearchitecture of this period.1658Polish Brethrenexiled fromPoland1683 Jan IIISobieski’s victoryover the Turks at theBattle of Vienna1668Abdicationof JanKazimierz1699 Peace ofKarłowicewith Turkey1686 Signing of thePerpetual Peacewith Russia1660 Peacetreaty signed inOliwa ends thePolish-SwedishWar1667 Turksinvade thesoutheasternborderlandsManneristwindow framePair ofcherubs
  43. 43. Poland in the 18th CenturyIn the first half of the 18th century, Polandwas ruled by the Wettin dynasty ofSaxony. Polish interests were graduallysubordinated to those of neighbouringpowers, and the election of StanisławAugust Poniatowski as king, supported bythe Tsarina Catherine the Great, sealed thenation’s fate. Attempts to counteractRussian influence came to an end withthe First Partition of Poland in 1772. Theefforts of the patriotic faction and the achievements of theFour-Year Sejm changed little. The SecondPartition followed in 1793, and when theuprising led by Tadeusz Kościuszko –the final attempt to save the country –was quashed, Poland lost itsstatehood for over 100 years.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D4 61700 1720 17401700Outbreak ofNorthern War1709 August II,the Strongreturns to thethrone1733 StanisławLeszczyński isre-elected king1717 “Dumb Sejm”1721 End ofNorthern War1733 Electionof August III1740Opening ofCollegiumNobilium,Warsaw1697 Coronation ofAugust II, the Strong1704 Coronation of StanisławLeszczyński, supported bythe king of SwedenCasing of a grenadier’s capRococo SecretaireThis deskincorporates a clockcabinet and is decor-ated with paintedpanels depictingmythological scenes.Rococo Statuefrom LvovIn southeasternPoland, originalaltar statuesby sculptorsof the LvovSchool can stillbe admired.Portrait of Maria LeszczyńskaAfter the Polish king StanisławLeszczyński lost the throne, hisdaughter Maria settled in Nancyand married Louis XV of France.Stanisław AugustPoniatowskiTIMELINEOrder of MilitaryVirtue REPUBLIC OF TWO NATIONSBEFORE THE PARTITIONSPoland Lithuania
  44. 44. T H E H I S T O R Y O F P O L A N D 4 71760 17801791 Adoption of theConstitution of 3 May1793 SecondPartition ofPoland1772 FirstPartition ofPoland1756 Outbreak ofthe Seven-Year War1788–1792Deliberations of theFour-Year Sejm1795ThirdPartitionof Poland1773 Convocationof National Educa-tion Commission1794 Insurrectionagainst the Russians1764 Coronationof StanisławAugustPoniatowski Coat of arms ofStanisław AugustPoniatowski18TH-CENTURYARCHITECTUREDuring the 18th century –the era of the late Baroqueand Rococo – artists andarchitects from Saxonyjoined those who hadalready come to Poland fromItaly. Many palaces, includ-ing Radziwiłł, were built inWarsaw and the provinces,such as Białystok (see p290).Thanks to the patronage ofStanisław August Poniatowski,many Neo-Classical buildingswere created, among themŁazienki in Warsaw.Prince JózefPoniatowskiTadeusz KościuszkoThis man fought in theAmerican War ofIndependence and ledthe insurrection againstthe Russians in 1794.August IIIThis Saxon kingof the Wettindynasty wasan ardent loverof porcelain.His likenesswas reproducedin Meissen.Hugo KołłątajA leading intellectual ofthe Polish Enlightenment,Kołłątaj collaborated onthe Constitution of 3 May.HugoKołłątajThe Palace on the Water (seepp94–5) in Warsaw was theroyal summer residence.StanisławMałachowski,Speaker ofthe SejmCONSTITUTION OF 3 MAYThe Constitution of 3 May 1791 was a radical experimentin democracy and reform – the first such in Europe. Itwas, however, soon annulled as a result of the Federationof Targowica and the Russo-Polish war. Jan Matejko’spainting shows members of the Sejm (parliament)marching on Warsaw Cathedral to swear allegiance.1800
  45. 45. Poland under the PartitionsDeprived of its independence, Polandbecame a territory for exploitation asthough it were a colony. The hopes vestedin Napoleon proved illusory. The transitoryGrand Duchy of Warsaw lasted onlyeight years. The failure of the successiveNovember and January insurrections(1830 and 1863) led to further restrictionsby the tsarist rulers: landed property wasconfiscated and cultural and educational institutionsdissolved. Many Poles tried to help the country fromabroad. The collapse of the partitioning empires in WorldWar I enabled Poland to regain its independence in 1918.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D4 8EmperorFranz Josefenjoying theloyalty of hissubjects.Beggarwaiting for almsHenryk Sienkiewicz’s House in OblęgorekThe small palace was given to the Nobel laureateHenryk Sienkiewicz in 1900 to mark theoccasion of 25 years of his work as a writer.EclecticdetailPatrol of InsurgentsThis painting by Maksymilian Gierymski of around1873 shows a scene from the January Insurrection.Several insurgents are patrolling the land.1797 Formationof the PolishLegions in Italy1815 Dissolutionof Grand Duchyof Warsaw at theCongress ofVienna1848 Uprising inWielkopolska(Greater Poland)1807 GrandDuchy of Warsawestablished1830 Outbreak ofthe NovemberInsurrection1845–1848Construction offirst Warsaw-Vienna railway line1846Peasants’uprisingTIMELINE1795 1820 1845Post-uprising mourning jewelleryREPUBLIC OF TWO NATIONSUNDER THE PARTITIONSRussian partitionPrussian partitionAustrian partition
  46. 46. T H E H I S T O R Y O F P O L A N D 4 9THE GREATEMIGRATIONIn the 30 years followingthe November Insurrection,nearly 20,000 Poles left thecountry, the majority going toFrance. An important groupof émigrés gathered aroundPrince Adam Czartoryski inParis. Famous Poles in exileincluded the composerFryderyk Chopin and poetsAdam Mickiewicz, ZygmuntKrasiński, Juliusz Słowackiand Cyprian Kamil Norwid.EMPEROR FRANZ JOSEFENTERS CRACOWJuliusz Kossak produced a series ofpaintings to commemorate the emperor’svisit to Cracow in 1880. The city’s inhabit-ants received him with great enthusiasm.Theinhabitantsof Cracowgreet theemperorStained-glass WindowThe stained-glass windowsdesigned by StanisławWyspiański for the FranciscanChurch in Cracow are amongthe most beautiful works ofSecessionist art in Poland.Prince Adam Czartoryski, anexile in Paris, was consideredthe uncrowned king of Poland.Prince JózefPoniatowskiBertel Thorvaldsendesigned thismonumentto Prince JózefPoniatowski, whodied in 1813.Poniatowski wasconsidered a Polishnationalhero.FryderykChopinThis genius ofa composerand pianistwas born inŻelazowaWola and leftPoland for-ever in 1830.1915 Russiantroops leaveWarsaw1864 Final abolitionof serfdom1863 Start of the JanuaryInsurrection1903 Marie Curie(Maria Skłodowska-Curie) receives theNobel Prize forPhysics1905 Henryk Sienkiewiczreceives the Nobel Prizefor Literature1873 Founding ofthe Academy ofSciences in Cracow1861 Foundingof the NationalSejm in GaliciaSecessionistwallpainting1870 1895
  47. 47. Poland from 1918 to 1945Poland regained its independence in1918, but for several years afterwardsbattles raged over its borders. In 1920,independence was again threatened bythe Red Army. Despite domestic conflicts,Poland made considerable economicprogress. The territories of the threeareas previously held by Russia, Austriaand Prussia were consolidated. Thecountry’s brief period of independence ended in 1939with the German and Soviet invasions. Poland wasoccupied and its population persecuted, terrorized andpartially exterminated. About 6 million Poles were killed,including 3 million Polish Jews (see p160). Anunderground state operated, with the HomeArmy answering to the government in exile.Polish soldiers fought the Germans on all fronts.I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D5 01924 Złoty intro-duced to replaceGerman Mark1922 Murder ofthe president,GabrielNarutowicz1919 Start ofthe firstSilesian uprising1929 Start ofthe GreatDepression1920 Miracle on the Vistula.Second Silesian uprising1921 Germano-Polishplebiscite in Upper Silesia.Third Silesian uprising1918 Uprising againstthe Germans inGreater Poland.Warsaw is liberatedfrom Germanoccupation1925 Start of the German-Polish trade war1926 May CoupMagazine cover featuring the NationalUniversal Exhibition in Poznań1915 1920 1925 1930MIRACLE ON THE VISTULAThis was the name given to MarshalJózef Piłsudski’s victory at the Battle ofWarsaw on 13–16 August 1920, whichhalted the Soviet march westwards andshattered the Bolshevik hope of a pro-letarian revolution throughout Europe.Volunteers fightingalongside the soldiersGdyniaAlthough Poland gained access to the sea, ithad no port. Work on the construction of anew port at Gdynia began in 1922.Interior of theSilesian SejmThe industrializedregion of Silesiahad its ownparliament inthe interwaryears, a sign ofits importance.Eagle – emblem ofthe reborn PolandTIMELINEPOLAND IN 1938Polish territory
  48. 48. WARSAW UPRISINGOn 1 August 1944 theunderground Home Army(Armia Krajowa) launched anuprising in Warsaw againstthe occupying Germans. Itsaim was to liberate thecapital before the arrival ofthe Red Army. The Russianswere waiting on the left bankof the river, allowing theGermans to suppress theoutburst. The uprising lastedover two months and led tothe complete destruction ofthe city as well as the lossof tens of thousands of lives.T H E H I S T O R Y O F P O L A N D 5 11939 Outbreak of World War II.German troops enter Poland,followed by Soviet forces. ThePolish army is defeated and thecountry occupied1944 Polish soldiers take themonastery at Monte Cassino, Italy.Warsaw Uprising. Formation of apro-Soviet, Communist governmentin Lublin1940 The Russiansmurder Polish officerswho were taken prisonerin Katyń1942 Home Armyformed. Anders’ armyevacuated from USSR1943 GhettoUprising,Warsaw1935 Deathof MarshalPiłsudskiOccupyingforces demo-lish the stat-ue of AdamMickiewicz1935 1940 19451936 Start ofthe constructionof the CentralIndustrialRegion1938 Poland annexes territoryto the west of the River OlzaFather Ignacy Skorupkaleads soldiersinto attackBolshevik soldiers fleethe battlefieldHanka OrdonównaShe was one of the most popularactresses between the wars.Monument to Those Fallenand Murdered in the EastThis monument honoursall the Poles who werekilled or deported after theSoviet invasion in 1939.Józef PiłsudskiJózef Piłsudski led thelegions which wereset up in the Austriansector then dispersed.In 1918 he becamethe first leader of anindependent Poland.Plaque to theVictims ofExecutionOne of manyplaques in Warsawmarking places ofexecution duringWorld War II.In his film Kanał, the directorAndrzej Wajda showed theinsurgents struggling throughsewers beneath German-occupied districts of Warsaw.
  49. 49. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D5 2Modern PolandIn 1945 the allies agreed that Poland shouldbe included in the Soviet zone of influence.The Big Three (Britain, the USA and the SovietUnion) also decided to alter Poland’s borders.After rigged elections in 1947, the Communiststook complete control. Despite successes inrebuilding the country, the socialist economyproved ineffective. The formation of Solidarity(Solidarność) in 1980 accelerated the pace ofchange, which was completed when Polandregained its freedom after the 1989 elections.1970 Bloody suppression of a strikeand workers’ demonstrations on thecoast. Edward Gierek becomes FirstSecretary of the Central Committeeof the Polish United Workers’ Party1946Riggedreferendumon abolishingthe Senate,introducingagriculturalreforms,nationalizingindustry andthe westernborder1957Premiereof Kanał,directedby AndrzejWajda, oneof the firstfilms ofthe PolishSchool1958First InternationalJazz Jamboreein Warsaw1953Height of thepersecution of theCatholic Church,trial of priests ofthe metropolitancuria of Cracow;Cardinal StefanWyszyński, Primateof Poland, is arrested1968Polish forces takepart in the armedintervention inCzechoslovakia1956In June, a workers’revolt in Poznań isbloodily suppressed.In October,after moredemonstrations bystudents andworkers, Sovietintervention isthreatened.Władysław Gomułkabecomes FirstSecretary of theCentral Committeeof the Polish UnitedWorkers’ Party1968 In March,conflicts occurbetween studentsand securityforces. Theauthoritiesprovoke incidentsof an anti-Semiticand anti-intellectual nature1966Celebrationsmarking themillennium ofChristianity inPoland,organizedseparately byChurch andState1945 After the terrible devastationof the war, the country is hauledout of the ruins by the effort ofthe whole nation1947Communists falsify theresults of elections to theSejm (parliament)195530,000 delegates from114 countries take partin the World Festivalof Youth in Warsaw.This is the first timethat the Iron Curtainhas been briefly lifted1945End ofWorldWar II1976Demonstrationsagainst price rises,by workers inRadom and Ursus,are quashed. Theopposition formsthe Workers’DefenceCommittee. At the21st Olympics inMontreal, IrenaKirszenstein-Szewińska winsgold for trackand field sportsfor the third time19451945195019501955195519601960196519651970197019751975
  50. 50. T H E H I S T O R Y O F P O L A N D 5 32000Cracow isEuropeanCity ofCulture2004Polandjoinsthe EU2005 Death ofJohn Paul II, the“Polish Pope”1979 First visit of John Paul II, the“Polish Pope”, to his homeland.Both a religious and a politicalevent, it rekindles Polish hopesof regaining freedom1981 Under the leader-ship of GeneralWojciech Jaruzelski, theCommunist authoritiesintroduce martial law.Solidarity goesunderground1980 Agreements signed inGdańsk on 31 August end thestrikes and allow the formation ofthe first Independent AutonomousTrades Unions. Lech Wałęsabecomes their leader1997 On a visit to Warsaw, US presidentBill Clinton announces that Poland is tojoin NATO1984Assassinationof Father JerzyPopiełuszko,Solidarity’spastor1990 Lech Wałęsa elected president of Poland1990Official end of thePolish People’sRepublic, adoption ofLeszek Balcerowicz’sradical market reforms2002Poland formally invitedto join EU in 20041997The worst floodin a centurydevastates largeareas ofsouthern Poland2005 LechKaczyńskielectedpresidentof Poland1989 At round-tabletalks, the oppositionnegotiates with theauthorities aboutlegalizing Solidarityand calling an election,in which the “civicsociety” then wins alandslide victory1999PolandjoinsNATO19801980201520151985198519901990199519952000200020052005201020102007 Poland joinsthe Schengen Area2012 Poland andUkraine set to hostthe UEFA FootballChampionship –Euro 2012
  51. 51. I N T R O D U C I N G P O L A N D5 4The Rulers of PolandAt the time of its formation in 966, the Polish nation wasruled by the Piast dynasty. Bolesław the Brave, son ofMieszko I, was the first king of Poland. During the Periodof Disunity from 1138, rulers bore only the title of prince.The first prince to be crowned king of Poland wasPrzemysław II. After the death of Kazimierz the Great,the Polish crown passed to Louis of Hungary of theAngevin dynasty. The marriage of his daughter Jadwigato the Lithuanian duke Jagiełło in 1384 established theJagiellonian dynasty. From 1572 the Republic of TwoNations was ruled by elective kings with no hereditaryrights. The last king was Stanisław August Poniatowski.1386–1434Władysław IIJagiełło1243–1279Bolesław V, theBashful1034–1058Kazimierzthe Restorer1210–1211 Mieszko the Stumbler1288–1290 Henry IV,the Good1290–1291Przemysław II1291–1305Wacław II of Boh-emia (from 1300)1305–1306Wacław IIIof Bohemia1333–1370Kazimierz III,the Great1306–1333WładysławI, theElbow-High1279–1288Leszek theBlack1025–1034 Mieszko II1058–1079 Bolesław II1146–1173Bolesław IV,the Curly1079–1102 Władysław Herman1173–1177 and1194–1202Mieszko III, the Elder1177–1194 KazimierzII, the Just1194–1210and 1211–1227Leszek the White1107–1138Bolesław III1102–1107ZbigniewandBolesław III1031 DukeBezprym1138–1146Władysław II,the Exile1232–1238 Henry the Bearded1238–1241 Henry the Piousc.960–992Mieszko I992–1025Bolesławthe Brave(BolesławChrobry),crowned10251370–1382Louis of Hungary1384–1399Jadwiga1434–1444 Władysław IIIof Varna1447–1492 Kazimierz IV,the Jagiellonian1492–1501 Jan I Olbracht1202 and 1228–1229Władysław III,Spindleshanks1229–1232 and 1241–1243Konrad I Mazowiecki900PIAST DYNASTY1000100011001100PERIOD OF DISUNITY120012001300130014001400JAGIELLONIAN900
  52. 52. T H E H I S T O R Y O F P O L A N D 5 51648–1668Jan IIKazimierzVasa1674–1696 JanIII Sobieski1704–1709 and1733–1736 StanisławLeszczyński1922–1926StanisławWojciechowski1947–1956Bolesław Bierut1989–1990WojciechJaruzelski9–16 December 1922Gabriel Narutowicz1697–1706and 1709–1733 AugustII, the Strong1576–1586 Stefan Batory1548–1572 Zygmunt II August1501–1506 Alexander the Jagiellonian1506–1548 Zygmunt I, the Elder1573–1575 Henry de Valois1587–1632Zygmunt IIIVasa1632–1648Władysław IVVasa1669–1673MichałKorybutWiśniowiecki1990–1995 Lech Wałęsa1764–1795 StanisławAugust Poniatowski1918–1922Józef Piłsudski,head of state2005–Lech Kaczyński1995–2005AleksanderKwaśniewski1926–1939Ignacy Mościcki1733–1763August IIIDYNASTY ELECTIVE KINGS PRESIDENTS150015001600160017001700180018001900190020002000INVASIONS