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Old print. Marcin Kromer’s work, “De origine et rebus gestis polonorum libri XXX” (with Grodecki’s map)

The presented old print is the most complete issue of one of the best known works by Marcin Cromer with the Polish title: O pochodzeniu i czynach Polaków ksiąg trzydzieści [About origins and deeds of Poles in thirty books] (the first Polish translation of the work written in Latin came out in 1611).

“Righteous Among the Nations” medal for Tadeusz Pankiewicz

The original of the medal granted to Tadeusz Pankiewicz (21.11.1908—5.11.1993) by the Israeli Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority Yad Vashem on 15 September 1983 is stored in the Częstochowa sanctuary, placed there as an offering by his widowed wife after the death of Pankiewicz.

Model of Tadeusz Kościuszko Monument for Washington

The plaster sculpture representing Tadeusz Kościuszko is a fragment of the model of the monument erected in Washington in 1910. Spacious, small-size models of monumental sculptures were demonstrative objects for a commissioner or for competitions. They were made of plaster—brittle, non-durable material — and, therefore, many of them did not survive.

Fragments of the Grunwald Monument demolished by the Germans

The head of the Grand Duke of Lithuania Vytautas (45 x 35 cm) — the head of a middle-aged man with a short neck, slightly bent down, long hair combed backwards. Around the neck a wide strap with threaded screws.

Photograph “Tadeusz Pankiewicz in the company of four people in the duty room”

Dr Roman Glassner is sitting in a dark leather armchair in the middle; on the left is Helena Krywaniuk sitting back on an armchair, leaning against Aurelia Danek who is standing behind her. Dr Leon Glück is sitting back on the seat on the right. Tadeusz Pankiewicz stands behind the armchair in the background.

Virtuti Militari Cross of General Benedykt Kołyszko

One of a few preserved specimens from 1792. An even-armed cross with slightly arched arm edges. On the obverse the arms are covered with black enamel with a golden rim left on the edges. The arms feature the order’s motto of VIR/ TUTI/ MILI/ TARI. At the intersection of the cross’s arms there is a round central shield covered with green-enamelled laurel leaves on the rim. In the central field there is an enamelled image of a white eagle with a golden crown, with a sceptre in its beak and an orb in its claws.

Renaissance plate

This plate was originally located above the entrance gate to the city of Biecz. It belonged to Mikołaj Ligęza from Bobrek (c. 1530–1603) who obtained the position of starosta (district governor) of Biecz in 1561, through his marriage to Elżbieta née Jordan, and in 1575 the position of the governor of Biecz Province from Jan Tarło.

Commemorative box with coins and a banknote from the times of the November Uprising of 1831

At the time of the November Uprising, which broke out in Warsaw in 1830 to oppose Tsarist Russia, the National Government ordered a series of new coins to be made including a 3 copper groschen, a 10 coin groschen, silver two- and five-zloty coins and gold Dutch ducats.

Jarosław Kozłowski, “Counting-Out Rhyme”

Fifteen bowls of dried-up paint each have a matching cloth on which someone has wiped their dirty hands. Each such soiling/cleaning set is ascribed to a site of genocide. Washing hands is a symbolic act of removing oneself from these events and thereby from any responsibility. However, the material testimony remains.

Commemorative plaque “Cannon 30.5 cm Škoda”

This memorial plaque—which is also an ashtray—was stamped to commemorate the battle of Gorlice and presents a 30.5 cm mortar, which was used during the battle.

Zorka Wollny, untitled

Zorka Wollny’s work situates itself between theatre, dance, music and visual arts. Her achievements include video films – distinguishing themselves with a pictorial vision – concerts and choreographic performances involving numerous actors (often realized together with Anna Szwajgier). In projects that refer to the form of an audiovisual show, the artist plays the role of director and producer, inviting musicians, actors, and dancers to cooperate, working with members of local communities, amateur clubs, and groups that share common interests. The essential element of her projects is space: works are created as a result of observing the existing conditions created by the architecture of the place, as well as penetrating its private, public, and institutional aspects.

Silver cup designed by Jan Matejko

The collection of the Historical Museum of the City of Kraków features an interesting 19th-century goblet of unknown history. According to tradition, it was associated with the figure of Jan Matejko. The silver goblet has a lid made in a historic style, with its form and decoration resembling Gothic chalices.

Anna Zaradny, “BruitBruit”

Anna Zaradny’s activities – as a composer, instrumentalist, multimedia artist – are strongly intertwined with the issue of polysensory stimulation. This aspect is especially characterized by two of them: Najsłodszy dźwięk krążącego firmamentu [The sweetest sound of a revolving firmament] (2011), a sound performative installation inspired by the figure of the medieval composer and mystic, Hildegard of Bingen, and Język Wenus [The Language of Venus] (2012), a sound and visual installation, referring to the author of piano compositions and pianist, Tekla Bądarzewska. In BruitBruit, the combination of musical and visual themes is also significant. This time, the inspiration for the artist was Krystyna Tołłoczko-Różyska (1909–2001), the architect and author of the Municipal Exhibition Pavilion in Kraków – the current Bunkier Sztuki Gallery of Contemporary Art.

Commemorative spade

Among the four mounds in Krakow, the Piłsudski Mound is the youngest and the biggest. It was raised on the top of Sowiniec Hill, situated in the Wolski Forest. In 1934 the Association of Polish Legionnaires put forward the idea of raising a mound-statue of the nation’s fight for independence.

Kazimierz Piotrowski’s dog tag from the Warsaw Uprising

A dog tag is an inextricable part of a contemporary soldier's equipment. The dog tag allows one to identify the corpse of a soldier. This dog tag epitomises the improvisation in the combat conditions of the Warsaw Uprising...

“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.

Old print. Marcin Kromer’s work, “De origine et rebus gestis polonorum libri XXX”, published in Basel

Marcin Kromer’s old print, being one of the oldest book relics, is entitled De origine et rebus gestis polonorum (On the origin and deeds of Poles). The printed book by Kromer (in Latin) shows the 16th-century researcher’s state of knowledge about history and it is also an interesting source in the field of research contemporary to him on the oldest history of Poland.

Commemorative plaque “Pustki Hill”

This is a memorial plaque, stamped in commemoration of the battle of Gorlice, depicting the attack on Mount Pustki near Gorlice, on which fierce battles were fought on 2 May 1915, during the Gorlice operation.

Small cross — a badge commemorating the battle of Krzwopłoty

Badge in the shape of Latin cross. On the obverse is shown eagle in crown and inscription above: HONOR OF HEROS WHO DIED FOR POLAND.

Photograph “The staff of Tadeusz Pankiewicz’s The Eagle Pharmacy”

The photograph was taken either in 1942 or 1943, in the times of the Kraków ghetto in Podgórze. It presents Tadeusz Pankiewicz accompanied by his employees: Helena Krywaniuk (in the background), Aurelia Danek (in the middle) and Irena Droździkowska. Contrary to their superior, the women did not stay in the ghetto at night.