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Little sceptre of the Kraków's mayors

The sceptre was a symbol of the mayors of Kraków. The form of a sceptre symbolizes power, and this refers to royal sceptres or those of university rectors. It was made of silver, and some of the elements were gilded. The lower part of the handle has a hexagonal cross section, the upper part is round, separated by convex rings. The bead of the head is topped with a disc and finished with an openwork frieze of lilies.

“Wawel: Cathedral’s courtyard”

This artistic photograph by Jan Motyka presents Wawel outlined with a white line, a side elevation of the Wawel cathedral with the Silver Bells’ Tower, Wawel itself, and Sigismund’s chapel. In the foreground, two men are standing in the alley; one is standing in front of the easel...

“Henryk Jordan’s Park”

The photograph shows an alley in Henryk Jordan’s Park with two distant busts of famous personalities. The white marble-sculpted busts are a noteworthy detail, the Barthesian punctum, or the intriguing elements of the picture. The bushes make up an evenly trimmed hedge. It is a stereoscopic photograph, a single print with two separate shots.

“Kaflak” table clock

Spring clocks, which were invented in the 15th century, have improved with time. Gradually they were constructed smaller and smaller, and at the beginning of the 16th century they were of such a size that they could be placed on the table. One of popular types of such clocks was a horizontal timer with a mechanism placed in a polygonal, flat casing with a horizontal disc on the top.

Toy “Lajkonik’s march” by Jan Oprocha (father)

A toy cart, or actually a platform on wheels with holes to thread a pulling cord through and 31 figurines arranged on it, rocking while the toy is pulled. The whole toy, including the platform and the figurines, is made of polychrome wood. The rectangular platform with its bevelled corners and wheels are painted green. The edges are coated with white, yellow and pink paint, and the spokes are marked with yellow, blue and red.

“Portrait of two boys”

The photograph shows two boys in Kraków costumes. The photo is exceptional since it presents genuine Kraków costumes from the 1860–1880 period. On the left you can see a boy turned ¾ to the left. He is wearing a light russet coat and a Kraków four-cornered hat and is holding an Easter palm in his right hand propped against the ground. The other boy, taller and clad in a similar russet coat and a hat with feathers, is standing behind the boy with his hand on his shoulder.

“The monastery of SS. Norbertine”

This photograph presents a view of the convent complex from the south-east side, from the bank of the Vistula. On the right, we see a silhouette of the church facade, with a roof with a turret for a signature, next to a clock tower with a high dome. From the left side, there is a complex of convent buildings with an elongated wing from the south; from the front, there is a high wall...

“Main Market Square, ceremony to celebrate Adam Mickiewicz monument re-erection”

The photograph presents an important historical moment in the history of the main market square in Kraków, because it probably shows the reinstallation of the statue of Adam Mickiewicz in the Main Square on 26 November 1955.

“Main Market Square in Kraków. May 3rd Constiution Day in 1919”

This is an amateur photograph in which an important historical event has been captured. It was made by an unknown author on 3 May 1919 in Kraków. On the Market Square, the infantry is in the foreground; next, the artillery — set in a double row, back to the photographer. Sukiennice [The Cloth Hall] was decorated with flags and the Polish emblem. Many groups of civilians stand under them. A field mass is taking place, organised by artillery and cavalry. Under the arcades of the central part of the Cloth Hall, on the side of Szewska street, an altar was organised which was decorated with flowers and emblems of national colours. From the side of the town hall there are Kraków units represented by the 13th Infantry Regiment with an orchestra, 20th Infantry Regiment of the Kraków Land and 8th Uhlan Regiment.

“Danube channel — Vistula — 2”

Kraków was to become an important hub for water transport. The idea came to light in 1901, when the Vienna State Council adopted the so-called the Koerber Act (from the name of the Austrian Prime Minister Ernst von Koerber, initiator of its adoption). The venture had a huge budget (1 billion kroner); it assumed the construction of new waterways...

“Block of flats being constructed — Kraków, Nowa Huta”

The photograph shows four people: two women, a man, and a boy. They look at the excavator digging the soil out for the foundations and loading it onto the truck. On the right, there is a young woman wearing a braid with a briefcase in her hand, standing with her back turned on the right side of the frame, and a man in a suit.

“Kraków, Szczepański Square, northern frontage”

Kraków, the Szczepański Square, northern frontage; the market square and kramnice stalls. A fragmentary view of the market square — you can see two gabled wooden kramnice stalls and tables with baskets on them. There are also barrels and wicker brooms lying on the pavement. A few persons are trading.

“Kraków’s architecture. City Hall at Wolnica Square”

The photograph presents a view of Wolnica Square. In the foreground of the photograph stands the city hall of Kazimierz (today the Ethnographic Museum), with the tower and gable of the Corpus Christi Church, tenements at Krakowska Street and tall deciduous trees in the background.

“Kraków’s architecture. Photomontage: white plane of the Main Market Square”

Photomontage: a white plane of the Main Market Square, the Adam Mickiewicz Monument, the Cloth Hall, outlines of the Wawel Castle and churches — all made of black paper columns with white letters overprinted. What draws our attention is the calendar page dated “March 8, International Women’s Day.”

“Kraków’s architecture. The Cloth Hall in Kraków”

The photograph shows a view of the Cloth Hall from the side of the Adam Mickiewicz monument and the St. Mary’s Basilica. There are interesting details: in the background behind the Cloth Hall you can see the dome of the town hall tower with many passers-by in front of the building. There are the umbrellas of the stalls selling flowers, many pigeons and a tree. The foreground features the pavement slabs from the 1960s . On the ground and in the upper parts of the monuments there are thick white painted lines, standing out from the grey and black.

Ring of the Kraków’s mayors

The date of creation was engraved inside the golden hoop of the ring: 1532. The octagonal sapphire stone of the ring is decorated with Kraków’s coat of arms made in a concave relief. The ring was the symbol of the mayor’s power, and also served as a city seal. The stone needed to be made from a hard, abrasion-resistant material.

Legion’s eagle — the top of the Column of the Legions

16 August 1915 marked the first anniversary of establishing the Supreme National Committee, which exercised political and organizational supervision over the Polish Legions. On that day, the Column of the Legions was unveiled in front of St. Mary’s Basilica in the Main Market Square in Kraków.

Kraków nativity scene by Maciej Moszew

Maciej Moszew is the author of the nativity scene presented. He has been participating in the Kraków Nativity Play Competition continuously since 1961. Mr. Moszew, a resident of Kraków by birth and by passion, began his adventure with nativity scenes at the age of six. He is an architect by profession, which is reflected in his works, but his real passion, which can happily be described in the case of Maciej Moszew also as a profession, is constructing nativity scenes.

“The stalls in the Corpus Christi church in Kraków” by Jacek Malczewski

Jacek Malczewski began systematic studies at the School of Fine Arts in Kraków in the middle of 1873. His first teachers were Władysław Łuszczkiewicz, a historical painter and a well-known art historian, and Feliks Szynalewski. His education was also overseen by Jan Matejko, to whom Malczewski was very attentive.

“Study of a male nude figure” by Jacek Malczewski

The presented drawing is the first student work by Jacek Malczewski to be noticed and awarded. He received the first prize and the amount of 30 guilders from the management of the Kraków Society of Friends of Fine Arts. At that time, Malczewski studied under Władysław Łuszczkiewicz and Feliks Szynalewski, with Jan Matejko also exerting a tremendous influence on the artistic development of the young adept.