Poland’s national anthem 83 years old today
On 26 February 1927, Dabrowski’s Mazurka became the official national anthem of the Republic of Poland.
Earlier it was sung by Poles during battle, national uprisings, as well as used a patriotic song. The Mazurka was written by Józef Wybicki, a poet and general, in 1797, and was simply known as the “The Song of the Polish Legions in Italy”.
The song is dedicated to the Legions’ commander, General Jan Henryk Dabrowski.
Wybicki wrote the words to the music of an already popular folk mazurka. The current form of the Polish national anthem is regulated by an act passed in 1980.
The words to Poland’s national anthem have been popular for over 170 years, with Dabrowski’s Mazurka being translated into over a dozen languages. It became the inspiration for the national anthem of the former Yugoslavia.
The mazurka itself became the leitmotif in the “Polonia” overture by Richard Wagner, penned by the composer after the fall of the November Uprising against Imperial Russia.
Dabrowski’s Mazurka is 213 years old, and is still hailed as a symbol of Polishness and the Polish soul.
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