Volume 2: The Sandomierz Region

The Complete Works vol. 2: The Sandomierz Region. Wrocław – Poznań 1962, pp. 286, illustrations, two color plates. Photo-offset re-edition; first edition: Warsaw 1865.

Kolberg’s first, yet incomplete, ethnographic regional monograph concerns the area of Sandomierz on the left bank of the Vistula River (former Sandomierz district in the Radom province). The information in the area of material culture is limited to the issues of village layout and costumes, supplemented by two color illustrations based on a watercolor by Wojciech Gerson. Some detailed presentation is devoted to ritual folklore (descriptions of weddings, bonfires traditionally lit by country-folk on Midsummer Day, customs of harvest celebrations with corresponding songs), and songs and dances (a total of 303 texts including 272 texts with melodies and 25 melodies without texts). Kolberg added a Commentary to the description of rituals, which includes, e.g. his contemporary (of 1865) view on the nature and origin of Polish folk music, supplementing thus the observations presented in the introduction. Kolberg devoted a separate chapter to the issue of language (glossary, dialect characteristics, texts of tales, a few of them as examples which illustrate the living language, and onomastic compounds). The materials come from the fieldwork that Kolberg performed in the years 1854-1855 and partly from literature of that time. In the introduction Kolberg explains why he abandoned his former editorial plan (monographic collections of songs) and initiated a new publication, namely ‘The People’.