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Mug with a cover

European goldsmithing between the 16th and the 18th century reached an unprecedented artistic and technical level, which was largely due to German masters operating mostly in the chief goldsmithing centre — Augsburg. Thanks to their mass production and high artistic class, goldsmith products from Augsburg soon dominated the markets of Central and Eastern Europe.

Statue of Augustus III Wettin

The statue is modelled on a portrait painted in 1737 by Louis de Silvestre, the court painter of Augustus III. The sculpture was designed by Johann Joachim Kändler in 1740, on the request of Heinrich, Count von Brühl; the sculpting work was completed in the autumn of 1741 and was carried out in cooperation with Johann Friedrich Eberlein and with the assistance of Johann Gottlieb Ehder.

Painting “Portrait of Seweryn Józef Rzewuski”

The portrait depicts Seweryn Jan Rzewuski of the Krzywda coat of arms, a son of Stanisław Mateusz, the Grand Crown Hetman, an older brother of Hetman Wacław Rzewuski, and of Ludwika née Kunicka.

Painting “Portrait of King Augustus III in a Polish costume”

The representative room of the Bishop Erazm Ciołek Palace, known as the Room of Virtues, houses the gallery of old Polish portrait paintings that were common in the old Poland. For the nobility, their own images and depictions of their relatives and ancestors formed a vital factor for building family and social ties and documenting genealogy and affiliations.

Kontusz style outfit

This outfit, comprising the kontusz, żupan, trousers, kalpak, boots and karabela sabre, belonged to the Drohojowski Family from Czorsztyn. A full Polish national costume consists of an external part known as the kontusz and the żupan, the part which is worn underneath the kontusz. The kontusz was made of velvet. The back was cut in a characteristic manner with the so-called pillar, flared with a system of deep pleats highlighted with the sewn-in silk haberdashery.

Kontusz sash

The sashes worn with the kontusz by the nobility of the Republic of Poland are of Eastern origin. In Poland they became popular by the agency of Armenians, who first brought them from Persia and Turkey, and later initiated their production in the workshops set up in Poland. The best-known manufacturing factory was located in Słuck.

Scale helmet

A helmet created from overlapping circular scales ornamented with rosettes, riveted down to a leather base. On the top, there is a multi-leaf medallion topped with a high tip. The hatband consisting of a few belts of metal sheet is ornamented with a turban made of raspberry-coloured silk and trimmed with golden braid.

Hussar sabre

Turkish, Damascus blade with a smooth cut. On the external side of the blade, at the base, there is a gold-embossed Eastern inscription in the cartouche with fleurons. A closed hilt. A gilded crossguard decorated with a Rococo medallion, and additionally fitted with a plastic ornament at the end of its arms and terminals. A guard bent at a straight angle leading up to the pommel, gilded and niello with floral motifs.

Painting “Portrait of Łukasz Węgliński”

The painting is a small, intimate image which belongs in a collection of the most exquisite portraits displaying an excellent characterisation of a Polish nobleman. The tawny face of the man endowed with great temperament, with a distinct nose and shiny lively eyes, reveals his high intelligence. The creator of this portrait was an anonymous artist, exactly as in the case of most “Sarmatian portraits.”

Coffin portrait of a young woman

The image of an unknown young woman is an example of a coffin portrait: a special genre of portraits that emerged in close relation with the funeral customs in the Baroque period.

Painting “Portrait of Jan Sobieski”

The portrait presents Jan Sobieski (1629–1696) of the ”Janina” coat of arms, the son of the Kraków castellan and Teofilia née Daniłowicz. It is one of the rare images of Sobieski, the Grand Hetman of the Crown (1688) before his election for the King of Poland in 1674. Jan Sobieski, the hero of Chocim and Vienna, was born in the castle in Olesko, near Podhorce. He was the descendant of the famous hetman, Stanisław Żółkiewski.

Painting “Portrait of Kazimierz Boreyko”

Kazimierz Boreyko is yet another interesting figure in the colourful procession of noble types in the Podhorce gallery. The nobleman depicted in this portrait was the son of Jan, the Pobersztyn starost and Katarzyna née Terlecka. He held numerous offices in the old Commonwealth. He was the lieutenant of the armoured chorągiew [banner] military unit in the fee tail estate of the Ostrogski family, master of the hunt in the Lviv Land, the standard-bearer in Latyczów as well as a deputy for Sejms [parliament].

“Corda Fidelium” cup

In the case of the Tarnów collection, the cultural background of the epoch has its counterparts in the Sarmatian culture, characterised by the owner’s need for the ostentatious presentation of his affluence and wealth. The primacy of nobility and magnates, who were in possession of huge estates and enjoyed wide privileges in the 18th century, influenced the development and industrialisation of the country.