Marc Jones has this incorrectly marked as L. Stowacki, September 4, 1809, place unknown. His correct name is Juliusz Slowacki, born in Krzemieniec Poland; now Ukraine.
Slowacki is one of the “Three Bards” of Polish literature and a major figure in the Polish Romantic period, concurrent with Percy Shelley, Lord Byron and John Keats in England. He is also the father of modern Polish drama. His works often feature elements of Slavic pagan traditions, Polish history, mysticism and Orientalism.
Primarily a dramatist, he also wrote lyric poetry. His most popular works include the dramas Kordian and Balladyna and the poems Beniowski and Testament mój. He was a major influence on Polish writer, Joseph Conrad who felt he was the “soul of Poland.”¹
His father taught literature in the local lycee from 1811 until his death in 1814, and rhetoric and poetry at the University of Wilno . These “Stolen Lands”, Kremenets and Wilno, (Vilnius Lithuania) influenced him greatly as did his father’s studies. He briefly worked for the government of the Kingdom of Poland and during the November 1830 Uprising, he was a courier for the Polish revolutionary government as part of the independence movement.
The uprising though ended in defeat & Slowacki was now an expatriate first settling in in Paris, and then Geneva. He traveled throughout Italy, Greece and the Middle East but returned to Poland when the Spring of Nations (February 23, 1848) broke out.
He died 3 April 1849 in Poland.
- Conrad, J., Karl, F., Davies, L., Knowles, O., Stape, J. and Moore, G. (1988). The collected letters of Joseph Conrad. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.