Funeral Celebrations of the Radziwiłłs in the Context of Burial Customs of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in the 18th Century (Summary)

Filip Wolański (PDF)

The article examines the scenarios of mourning and funeral ceremonies typical of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth culture in the mid-18th century. The article analyses typical examples of the funeral ceremonies of Anna Katarzyna Sanguszko-Radziwiłł, the wife of the Grand Chancellor of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (1747) and Jerzy Radziwiłł, the Voivode of Novogrudok (1757) held in Nyasvizh. It is based on printed descriptions of the Radziwiłłs funeral ceremonies, funeral sermons and speeches. The visual form of funeral ceremonies and their representativeness are discussed. The symbolic content of the ceremony stages of the nobility is revealed. Funeral ceremonies are an important sign of the mentality of the sarmatic society of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The theatricalisation of funeral ceremonies can be seen as a form of social domestication of death based on Christian eschatology, Baroque symbolism and pathos.

Keywords: Nyasvizh, Novogrudok, nobility, sermons, ceremonies