Frombork castle: a gallery of portraits of Copernicus

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Today we have been in the wonderful Frombork castle (after driving from Gdansk for a long time through these bad ways!). Frombork is a small town near Russia and the castle is its main attraction. Before arriving at the city, something similar to a heliocentric system welcomes the visitors announcing that we are approaching to one of the most important places in Copernicus life:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Copernicus moved permanently to Frombork after his uncle’s death on 29 March 1512 (his uncle was Lukas Watzenrode, Bishop of Warmia). He began to attend the Chapter meetings and was appointed to take up administrative functions. From the buildings of the castle he worked on the calendar’s reform and made a lot of observations of the planets’ movements which were the starting point of his De Revolutionibus. In 1516 he moved to Olsztyn but before August 1521 he finally came back to Frombork and remained there until his death. Two years later, he was appointed to General Administrator of Warmia until the election of a new bishop. So Copernicus wrote his main work in Frombork and the castle is one of the most important stages of the history of science. Furthermore, he died there and was buried in the cathedral.

The main entrance of the castle is introduced by a great monument dedicated to him:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

The statue was designed by Mieczyslaw Welter in 1972 although it wasn’t the first monument dedicated to the astronomer in Fromborg: there was another one by Max Meckel and Julius Seitz from order of the German Emperor Wilhelm II of Prussia, which was destroyed in nineteen fifties by local authorities:

Source: Wikimedia Commons

After visitnig the cathedral we have gone to the the museum:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

The museum is dedicated to the Polish astronomer and it’s full of statues and portraits of him:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

For example, this great portrait welcolmes you to the museum:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

After a lot of paintings dedicated to local authorities, you can go upstairs to the first floor and then you can enjoy the gallery of portraits. The first one is this painting made by an unknown author from the 18th century:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

This copy made in 1948 of the portrait of Copernicus epitaph (16th c.) located in St. John’s Cathedral of Torun:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Another copy is this one made by Anny Szymborskiej in 1948 of “Copernicus talking with God”. The original was painted by J.Matejko in 1873:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

And the Torun portrait copied by J.Hoppena in 1948! The original was painted around 1580 and was in possession of the Municipal School of Torun:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Finally, this copy was made by M.Majer in 1925. The original was painted by Tobias Stimmer in 1574.

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Of course, there also are engravings and small sculptures…

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

…like this one designed by P.Patray in 1973:

Photography by Carlos Dorce

Photography by Carlos Dorce

I don’t know if there are more portraits of Copernicus but here we have a large collection of them.

To be continued…

Location: Frombork castle (map)

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One response

  1. […] a previous post I began to talk about this museum located inside Frombork castle. You can learn almost everything […]

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