Thursday, January 31, 2013


We have been influenced by many cultures and we have influenced many. Listen please to this Japanese song:
This is a Polish song, precisely it comes from Silesia. Its original title is "Szła dzieweczka do laseczka".

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Poland in 1928

I have a nice German atlas from the 1928 (Meyers Geographischer Handatlas), and I wanted to show you the map of Poland from that time:
I have also found an interesting link with some translations from Polish:

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Józef Szafranek

I like the old books. My most precious one is "Gedanken und Erinnerungen" of Otto von Bismarck. I wanted to point out an interesting information.

In the middle you will find the text:

"Schaffranek wurde dort in den Landtag gewählt, der uns das Sprichwort von der Unmöglichkeit der Verbruederung der Deutschen und der Polen in polnischer Sprache als Parlamentsredner entgegenhielt."

Which means:

There was Schafranek elected to the Landtag there (in Silesia), who was holding as a parliament deputy in Polish language a speech that brotherhood between Germans and Poles was impossible".

My point is that this man, Józef Szafranek, a Catholic priest, was supposed to look after the Silesian interests rather than do anti-German provocations. In the Polish Wikipedia you will read he was opposing the germanization. Well, he chose an unusual way to oppose it. In my opinion he was asking for troubles. Most probably he did not care about the consequences for the Polish people, even worse, considered any bad consequences good, since politically it would strike the Germans if they persecute the Poles. And this really happened. I am sure his motivation was exactly the same as the Pope's one when declaring the infallibility dogma in the 1870. It was an anti-German provocation and it was so understood by Otto von Bismarck. This was the begin of Kulturkampf in Germany.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The doctor Spaniard

Jan Kochanowski was one of our greatest poets. He was writing both in Latin and in Polish. Below is my translation of one of his poems:

"The doctor Spaniard"

Our good doctor is going to sleep already
Does not even want to wait for the diner
„Let him go! W'll find him in the bed
And ourselves let us be joyful”
After the dinner – „Let's go to the Spaniard
Let's go, sure, but not without a jug
Let us in, our dear comrade doctor!”
Doctor did not let in, but the door did
„One cup wouldn't hurt, God bless you”
„Be it only one cup!” Says the doctor
From one it ended up with nine ones
And the doctor's brain is rocking
„It's difficult with these lords”
„I went to sleep sober, I will get up drunk!”

Here you can find the original. The doctor really existed, his name was Roysius and he was the court doctor of the king Sigismund II Augustus. You know - my favourite Polish king, the one who was in love with Barbara Radziwiłłówna. Kochanowski wrote also for example Jezda do Moskwy (A journey to Moscow), it is about the Russo-Polish war called Livonian Campaign. This was a good fight, we were attacked by Ivan the Terrible and we stroke back. Our king at that time was Stephen Batory. He was related with the crazy and cruel Elisabeth Batory, that you may have heard of (he was her uncle). But he was an excellent king. Being Catholic himself, he was tolerant in the religious matters.

There was another Russo-Polish war (1605-1618), which was a shame, since we attacked them. A stupid idea. As you might expect strongly supported by the Pope and Sigismund III Vasa:

A citation from the Wiki:
He viewed it as an excellent opportunity to expand the Commonwealth's territory and sphere of influence, with hopes that the eventual outcome of the war would Catholicize Orthodox Russia (in this he was strongly supported by the Pope) and enable him to defeat Sweden.

I do not like this guy (Sigismund III Vasa). I told you that already. The wars against Sweden and Russia were greatly motivated by the religion. Catholicism.

BTW. I have created a page on Facebook for this blog, it is

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Les Adieux a la Patrie

"Farewell to the Homeland" - is a polonaise written by Michal Kleofas Oginski. Polonaise is a kind of old Polish dance, it is relatively slow ("chodzony" - walked).

Here are the notes for the initial piece (piano):

Saturday, January 26, 2013

January Uprising

150 years ago, in the 1863 we did an uprising against the Imperial Russia, the so called January Uprising. Because I write about the Catholic Church I wanted to tell you about the last uprising partisan, Stanisław Brzóska. He was a priest and a commander. He was hunged for the participation in the Uprising. I respect his sacrifice, but I consider the Uprising a mistake. I prefer much more the Finnish way - to wait patiently and to have good relationships even with the occupants. Earlier we had an autonomy under the Tsar's rule, and after these uprisings we lost it all. I want to say an interesting thing - most peasants did not take a part in this uprising, because it was the Tsar who gave them freedom and land. Our noblemen were reluctunt to do it. I am a Polish peasant myself, and therefore I can understand the attitude.

Secondly I regret about the Uprising simply because I like Russia. It has jeopardized our relationships, unfortunately. Below you can see an Artur Grottger's painting: "The Battle" dedicated to the Uprising.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Jan Chryzostom Pasek

In his diaries Jan Chryzostom Pasek writes a funny anecdote. He was sent somewhere in Denmark (from Aarhusen) with an order to fetch money for the military. He went there and expected to have no language difficulties, since even peasants (he says) could speak Latin there. But he made a joke. They were asking him whether he could speak German, Italian, French, but he answered every question with a single word ("Gielt" - Germ. "money"). They knew he was Polish so they tried Latin, but he pretended not to understand. They were desperate and thought that he did not understand any language at all. Next day they brought him some food and a cup of coins. Once he saw it he said in Latin: "Iste est interpres meorum et vestorum desideriorum" ("These are the translators of my and your desires."). They were laughing and later always when they spoke about money they called them "interpres" (translators).

Thursday, January 24, 2013


I was a little complained about the Catholic Church concerning the Latin and our lost chance to write in our own language, wasn't I. Well, there is an exception, as always. There is a beautiful Catholic song, the first Polish anthem, "Bogurodzica" (phon. Bogoorodzeetzah). It is written in archaic Polish, here is the translation:

The-one-having-born-the-God, the Virgin
Gloried by the God - Mary
By thy son, the Lord
Mother, Mary
Thou givest us, grantest us
Kyrie eleison (Greek: Lord, have mercy upon us)

Of thy deal, the Baptist, son of God
Hear the voices, fill the human thoughts
Hear the pray, we are spelling it
He will grant us, we are begging him
In the world a pious stay
After the life a stay in paradise
Kyrie eleison (Lord, have mercy upon us)

The language comes from the XVth century, here you can find the original text. So, even though I complain about Latin, I am happy they kept at least a little of our old language.

"I am not the king of your concious"

Sigismund II Augustus was very tolerant concerning the religion. He is famous for his phrase "I am not the king of your conscious" (Pol. "Nie jestem królem waszych sumień") meaning he would not enforce any religion as a ruler. This was his response to the cuius regio eius religio policy in the Holy Roman Empire. At that time we had many Protestants and many Orthodox people, apart from the Catholics. Also quite many Jews and Polish Tatars (Muslim).

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Love story

There was an unusual love story in the XVI century in Poland. Our king Sigismund II Augustus married secretly a lady, Barbara Radziwiłł. His mother, the queen Bona Sforza hated her, and also the noblesmen were opposing this marriage, since a marriage of a king was a political matter. The king's first wife Elżbieta Habsburżanka died early and the king wanted his second marriage to be acknowledged. He was fighting for years for his love. Finally he succeeded and Barbara was crowned to be the polish queen. However she was seriously ill and several months later she died. This is a tragic and beautiful story. Moreover it really happened. I remember I was reading somewhere that the king was personally looking after her, he was so afraid for her not to be poisoned that he ordered the pot with water for her should be locked. Barbara wanted to be buried in Vilnius, while she died in Kraków. The king did observe her will. The legend says he was walking after her coffin all the way.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Paweł Włodkowic

There was another Catholic I am really proud of: Paweł Włodkowic. He was a Catholic scholar in the XIV-XVth century. He is famous for his thesis about the peaceful coexistance of Christians and pagans. In his time Poland was a relative tolerant country, which changed only during the Vasa dynasty reign.

BTW. Once, I remember, I needed a kind of nickname to distinguish myself from other people having the same name (there are several Pawel Biernackis). Wlodkowic has influenced me a little, so that I chose a similar form to be my nickname - Fadzeyovic. It is a patronymic derived from the Russian form of my father's name, just like Wlodkowic was in his case. Such forms are not used in the contemporary Polish any more. My father's name was Tadeusz (Greek Thadeios, Russian Fadey) and I was trying to figure out how it would sound if we were influenced by the Byzantine Empire rather than Rome. We do not have the soft "d" sound in Polish, instead it is usually "dz", therefore "Fadzeyovic" rather than "Fadeyevich".

As you might expect I regret a little that we were not under the Bizantine influence. The Greeks would have allowed us to write in our own language, unlike Rome. And they would probably allow both orthodox and catholic religions (just as it was in Great Moravia), which would greatly facilitate our relationships with the Belarussians and the Ukrainians. As far I know we did nasty things due to the catholic influence, for example burning the orthodox churches and persecuting the minorities. And this happened long after Wlodkowic's death.

Monday, January 21, 2013

His Excellency Ignacy Krasicki

As you may have noticed I am quite critical against the Catholic Church concerning our history. However there are few exceptions. There is for example a Catholic bishop I just adore - Ignacy Krasicki. He was a polish poet. One of his works is Monachomachia ("the war of monks"), it is quite funny. Here is my translation of one of his short poems:

A lamb and wolves

Who wishes to find an excuse, he could,
Two wolves have captured a lamb in a wood,
Were about to eat him, he asks: "What's your right?"
"You're tasty, weak, in a wood" - said the wolf before bite.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Pagan reaction

An interesting Wikipedia link - Pagan_reaction_in_Poland. It was our first revolt against the Catholic Church, in the XI century. Unfortunately we lost.

BTW. We, Polish, use Latin alphabet, unfortunately. There are some special polish letters, like "ą" or "ć". I regret very much that the Great Moravia was destroyed and we could not use the Glagolitic script to write in our own language. Due to the Rome domination it was written only in Latin, for 500 years. This way we lost any clue about how our language looked like after the Xth century.

And there was a chance for us, a chance that we lost. There was a written slavic language already in the IXth century, the so called Old Church Slavonic. Unfortunately it was banned by the Pope.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Sigismund III Vasa

One of the polish kings I really do not like was Sigismund III Vasa. This guy was under strong influence of the Counterreformation and it was his idea to attack Russia (1605-1618), mainly because Russia was orthodox and so independent from the Pope. He gave exclusive rights to the polish catholics and provoked a war with Sweden. His reign was the initial of the polish XVII century, which led to the decline of the country.

Friday, January 18, 2013


I have two links about the polish people murdered in the 1944 in the western Ukraina, both links in Polish:

Antoni Kania "Ketlin" was a catholic priest living there at that time. In 1943 he notified Germans about the Ukrainians gathering there. This caused Germans to attack the Ukrainians, they were fighting for three days. I suppose the information he did it somehow got to the Ukrainians and they killed all the people in the village Huta Stara as a revenge in the 1944. I consider the priest responsible for their death. The interesting thing is that I am probably the only one who can see the corelation between these two facts. The persons having written these texts do not see any coincidence, they seem not to realize that what he did in 1943 may have caused the Ukrainians to strike back in the 1944. I think the Ukrainians may have found out about the betrayal from the Germans, or they may have just guessed it. One of the people killed in Huta Stara was Paweł Biernacki, aged 60 - his name was exactly the same like mine. It is extremely important to understand why what "Ketlin" did was wrong. He did something very dangerous for his people, but did not pay with his own life for that. He died long after the war, in the 1965.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Franz Josef von Habsburg

I suppose that Franz Josef von Habsburg has financed the polish anti-prussian propaganda in the late XIX century. This was a diplomatic war against Prussia, a continuation of the (lost) war from the 1866. The Kulturkampf was provoked by the Austrian-Hungarian agents, especially the Catholic Church. That is why I do not like von Habsburgs a little ;)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

A theory: how the Catholic Church made us to dislike a catholic nation

We, the Polish people, have been controlled by the Catholic Church throughout our history. I mean they largely influenced our politics. We are an exception among Slavs, because most slavic nations were either totally independent on the Church (like Russians), or were subordinate to the non-slavic nations, for example Austrians or Germans or Hungarians. It almost looks like we were the only slavic nation in a kind of anti-slavic coalition, since the Xth century. Our wars were wars against the enemies of the Church. For example the war against Russia (orthodox) in the XVIIth century, later against Ukraina (orthodox), later against Sweden (protestants), then against the Turkey (muslim). With a strange exception - Germany. Germans are a very strange exception indeed, because the last war we were fighting with them was maybe in the XIth century, yet we seem not to like each other. We did have had bitter enemies - the Prussians (not Germans), but they again fit into the schema, being protestants. Of course I suspect we did not like Prussians for the very same reason - because the Church did not like them.

My simple and stupid question is - how come we do not like Germans? Half of them are catholics and we did not fight with them for centuries, until the XXth century. So what happened in the XXth century? Suddenly something very strange must have happened. Well, my guess is that Germany "betrayed" the Rome in a way and joined the protestant Prussia (which happened in the 1871). Only then the Church decided that we should dislike also the Germans. I cannot prove my theory in numbers, but I know many examples from the polish literature (late XIX century) being very anti-german. One of the writers was Henryk Sienkiewicz, a very talented writer indeed. I spend some time reading his papers concerning the contemporary problems, and I must admit he was very anti-prussian and anti-german. I was also reading a little Bismarck ("Die Gedanken und Erinnerungen") and this led me to the conclusion that the Kulturkampf may have been provoked by the Catholic Church. Unfortunately the literature lives longer than opportunistic political strategies and the Church making us anti-german (just my theory) contributed to the tragic XXth century. In fact they made us anti-russian too (which I understand) and probably affected this way our attitude against the Soviet Union.

The large von Habsburg empire does not exist any more and the Catholic Church is not a serious threat since 1918. However the problem remains and we live between two large neighbour nations disliking them (to say the least). Neighbours usually have difficult history, but in this case I would say that the difficulties are unusually large. Of course, we say we dislike Russians because of the communism, but if my theory is correct then maybe the communism was that difficult for us BECAUSE we disliked the Russians. I can compare it now, since I live in Finland, and the Finns did not have had that many problems with the Russians as we did. The Finns were very practical about the communism. Well, I wanted to write about the Germans. If I am right then the Church did an extraordinary job making us anti-german in just few decades. I am sure they had no reason to do it before 1871, or, say, 1866, because then von Habsburgs were somehow controlling Germany. It is really strange that they succeeded, and now I guess most people in Poland would say that we have been fighting against Germans for one thousand years, which is not true. We were fighting with the Prussians, Russians, Swedish, Ukrainians, but almost never with the Germans.