Romanticism in Poland: characteristics of the epoch

Romanticism is an amazing era. Full of anxiety and sacrifice in the name of the nation, but also being a cult of youth. This is the time when the most outstanding Polish poets - Adam Mickiewicz, Juliusz Słowacki and Cyprian Kamil Norwid - were creating. What songs did they write? Km was a romantic hero and what values ​​did he represent? Read on.

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1. Romanticism. What does a high school graduate have to remember?

Romanticism in Poland is believed to have started in 1822, when the first volume of Adam Mickiewicz's "Poetry" was published. The date ending the epoch is considered to be 1863 (the outbreak of the January Uprising).

Romanticism was opposed to the Enlightenment. He rejected exploring the world through science and experience in favor of intuition and imagination. Representatives of romanticism believed in dreams, ghosts and phantoms. Feelings were more important than reason.

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A strong sense of patriotism was also characteristic of the era. In Poland, it was related to the national liberation movements, which were gaining momentum at the time. Officially, our country did not appear on the maps. Poland was under partitions. The romantics wanted to change that and snatch the country from the hands of strangers. They were willing to sacrifice for the motherland (Prometheism).

In the era of Romanticism, the artist was a bard, a nation's guide. His words on paper were meant to encourage fighting, cheer up people in difficult times, and support people in their pursuit of freedom.

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The Romantics also developed a historiosophical view that assigned the Polish nation a special mission. I am talking about messianism, which was used to explain, among others, defeat of the November Uprising. It was proclaimed that this was a necessary sacrifice for the fulfillment of the work of liberating the peoples of Europe. Adam Mickiewicz wrote in the messianic spirit. In the third part of "Dziady", Poland is presented as the crucified Christ of nations.

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The fascination with folklore was also characteristic. Romanticism appreciated folklore and living in harmony with nature, which was synonymous with goodness and purity. The creators of this period eagerly referred to folk beliefs.

2. Who was the romantic hero?

The authors of romanticism created a personality model of a literary hero, which was distinguished by several features.

The romantic hero is a human:

  • young, but often immature (cf. Tadeusz in "Pan Tadeusz"),
  • unhappily in love,
  • ready to sacrifice in the name of the nation (My name is a million, because for millions I love and suffer torment || Konrad, 3rd part of "Dziady" by Adam Mickiewicz),
  • rebellious, rebellious, which sometimes borders on pride and egotism,
  • loner, individualist, feels incomprehensible by the environment,
  • is aware of his own above-average,
  • has a strong need for a bond with nature.

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3. Romanticism in a nutshell

What is worth knowing about romanticism?

  • Proposed ideals: freedom, youth, independence
  • Attitude towards the world: rebellion, readiness to give one's life for the motherland, faith in the solidarity of the people
  • Philosophical inspirations: transcendent absolute, mysticism, messianism, irrationalism
  • Culture and worldview: their formation was influenced by the collapse of the Polish state, captivity and national liberation struggles
  • Literary genres: ballad, poetic novel, sonnet, digressive poem, romantic drama, novel
  • Representatives of Romanticism in Poland: Adam Mickiewicz, Juliusz Słowacki, Cyprian Kamil Norwid, Aleksander Fredro, Karol Ujejski, Seweryn Goszczyński, Wincenty Pol
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