Letters of Remigian Korwin Kossakowski (Remigijus Korvin Kosakovskis 1730–1780) in the Vilnius University Library
Veronika Girininkaitė
Vilnius University, Lithuania
Published 2021-02-22


Remigian Korwin Kossakowski
Remigijus Korvin Kosakovskis
Vilnius University Library
18th century

How to Cite

Girininkaitė V. (2021) “Letters of Remigian Korwin Kossakowski (Remigijus Korvin Kosakovskis 1730–1780) in the Vilnius University Library”, Vilnius University Open Series, pp. 18-51. doi: 10.15388/PZOP.2020.3.


In this article it is aimed to tell about a person, which was unduly forgotten in the history of the Vilnius University, though among his other activities, he did a lot to support and help the astronomers, coming to Paris and London from Vilnius. A former jesuit, talented preacher, professor of Rhetorics and other disciplines in Vilnius academy, Remigian Korwin Kossakowski (1730–1780) wrote a lot of letters to Vilnius (and perhaps to Warsaw too), from 1774 on, while working in Paris as the representative of the National Comission of Education of the Commonwealth of Kingdom of Poland and Grand Duchy of Lithuania. The letters which are kept in Vilnius university library, mainly addressed to the astronomers Marcin Poczobut and Andrzej Strzecki (1737–1797) are mainly connected with the scientific journey of Strzecki in 1778 to Paris and London and the circumstances of election of Poczobut as a member of the Royal Academy of Sciences in Paris. Letters are filled with digressions, reminding of gawenda literary genre, providing the researcher with data on the details of everyday life in the second half of XVIII century, political and ideological views of the addressee, his nostalgy for the Grand Duchy and Poland and his exceptional gift of expressing his feelings. The style of these letters show us that the human who wrote them was well educated, highly critical, curious and well-spoken, and the contents testify the not so well known side of the history of science relations between Vilnius, Warsaw and Paris.

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