Krasicki, Ignacy

Krasicki, Ignacy

(ēgnä`tsē kräsēts`kē), 1735–1801, Polish satirist. He is noted for the poems Myszeidos, an allegory on political disorder, and Monachomachia, a witty inspection of monastic life, as well as for his novels, prose satires (e.g., Satyry, 1779), and fables. Krasicki enjoyed the favor of both Stanislaus II and Frederick the Great. Six years before his death he was made archbishop of Gniezno.

Krasicki, Ignacy

 

Born Feb. 3, 1735, in Dubiecko, Rzeszów Wojewodztwo; died Mar. 14, 1801, in Berlin. Polish poet.

The son of an impoverished count, Krasicki was appointed royal chaplain. In 1766, he became bishop of Warmia and in 1795 archbishop of Gniezno. He helped found the Society of Friends of Science in Warsaw in 1800. Among his best-known works are the mock epics Myszeidos (1775), which parodies medieval chronicles and touches upon the political practices of feudal Poland, and Monachomachia (1778, published anonymously), ridiculing monastic life. In his verse cycle Satires (1779; revised ed., 1784), Krasicki denounces the mores of the gentry. His fables, also exposing his countrymen’s flaws, are distinguished for their wit, lively dialogue, and poetic grace.

Krasicki was the author of the first modern Polish novel, The Adventures of Mikotaj Doświadczynski (1776). The novel depicts the evils of Polish reality and treats the problem of the nobleman’s education, based on reason. The “ideal” nobleman is portrayed in his didactic novel Lord High Steward (book 1, 1778; book 2, 1784; book 3, published 1803). Krasicki also wrote a verse treatise entitled On Versification and Poets (published 1803) and an encyclopedia, The Collection of Useful Knowledge (vols. 1–2, 1781). The greatest Polish writer of the Enlightenment, Krasicki contributed to the development of Polish realistic satire and the literary language.

WORKS

Pisma wybrane, vols. 1–4. Warsaw, 1954.
In Russian translation:
Izbr. proizv. Moscow, 1951.

REFERENCES

Bulakhovskaia, lu. L., and A. V. Lipatov. “Ignatsii Krasitskii.” In Istoriia pol’skoi titeratury, vol. 1. Moscow, 1968.
Woyciechowski, K. /. Krasicki, 2nd ed. L’vov, 1922.
Piszczkowski, M. Ignacy Krasicki. Kraków [1969].
Mentioned in ?