Małgorzata Czerniakowska

Związki króla Stanisława Augusta i uczonych z jego kręgu z Royal Society w Londynie

Gdańsk 2000

Gdański Oddział TPK

Komisja Historyczna Gdańskiego Towarzystwa Naukowego

Summary

Connections of King Stanislas Augustus and Scientists from his Environment with the Royal Society in London.

The learned society - the Royal Society in London played a significant role in development of English science. The matter of activity of the Royal Society were mainly mathematics and natural science. The society was established on June 18th 1662 by Charles II, king of England.

The first Polish member of the Royal Society was a scientist Jan Hevelius (1611-1687) who maintained close contacts with the Society, corresponded with its secretary Henry Oldenburg and published works in the column of a paper of the Royal Society: "Philosophical Transactions".

Popiersie Jana Heweliusza - dar króla Stanisława Augusta dla Gdańska w 1790 roku


The members of the Society were also Gdanskers: Jan Jakub Breyne, Daniel Farenheit and Jakub Teodor Klein.

Sala obrad Royal Society

On December 11th 1766 the Polish king, Stanislas II Augustus (1732-1798) was elected an honorary member of the Society. This king as a meritorious protector and a lover of sciences, contributed to the fact that many scientists from his environment were in contact with the Royal Society. The king met many contemporary and future members of the Society during his journey through Europe in the years 1753-1754. He stayed in England from February to June 1754. He made friends with the Speaker of the House of Lords Philip York and with his sons Charles York and Joseph York. King of England George II (1683-1760) gave Stanislas Poniatowski an audience. The heir to the English throne - George III considered Stanislas Augustus a good friend. Edward Montague (1713-1776) helped Stanislas Augustus to make contacts that enabled the king to become a member of the Royal Society. The patron of the Royal Society in London was king George III. The Polish king sent to the Royal Society a medal "Merentibus".

Król Stanisław August

A Polish legate in England Tadeusz Burzyński and a royal astronomer from Vilnius Marcin Poczobut, thanks to king's recommendation became members of the Royal Society. In 1778 a royal astronomer from Warsaw Royal Castle - Jowin Fryderyk Bystrzycki (1727-1821) visited a seat of the Royal Society. He presented there astronomical observations made by the Royal Observatory form Vilnius. Jan Œniadecki during his stay in England in 1787 was in close contact with English scientists: W. Herschel, N. Maskeline. The members of the Society became also a chief of the king's Military Chancellery - general Jan Komarzewski and the king's brother, prymate Michał Poniatowski. Members of the Society, participants of James Cook's second expedition Jan Reinhold Forster and his son J.J.A. Forster (1754-1794) had contact with the Society. J.J. A. Forster was a professor of natural history in the Lithuanian School since 1784. Stanislas Augustus corresponded with many members of the Royal Society (A.Aubert, Charles York, Joseph York, the Stuart brothers, Horace Walpole, M.Matty, Morton). The king had in his library the whole edition of "Philosophical Transactions". The majority of instruments in the Royal Observatory in Warsaw Royal Castle came from English optical workshops owned by members of the Royal Society: Ramsden, Dollond, Nairne, Shelton, Blunt. Among the outstanding Poles whose busts decorated the Knight's Room in Warsaw Royal Castle were two members of the Royal Society: Jan Hevelius and Marcin Poczobut.

translated by Monika Hoppe

Ilustracje do komunikatu: M. Czerniakowska, Związki Jana Heweliusza z Royal Society w Londynie (BG PAN, 3 III 2004)

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