Lilies in the Mystical Works of Juliusz Słowacki Cover Image

Lilie w twórczości mistycznej Juliusza Słowackiego
Lilies in the Mystical Works of Juliusz Słowacki

Author(s): Bożena Adamkowicz-Iglińska
Subject(s): Language and Literature Studies, Studies of Literature, Polish Literature
Published by: Towarzystwo Literackie im. Adama Mickiewicza
Keywords: Juliusz Słowacki; Rafael Santi; flower; lily; symbol; white; angel; tomb

Summary/Abstract: The paper demonstrates the importance of lilies in Słowacki’s works. The analysis focuses primarily on his mystical texts. Lilies are, for the poet, a symbol of purity, innocence, and virtue. It may be noted that these flowers are sometimes presented next to narcissi and lily of the valley. The colour of the lilies is also significant. They are usually white in Słowacki’s poems and dramas, and occasionally gold and silver. The poet names them “angelical” flowers and “angelic rye.” The article shows the importance of lilies particularly in the construction of Słowacki’s female characters. The poet makes these flowers their floristic attributes. This problem is illustrated using the example of, inter alia, the figure of Dobrawna in "The Spirit King", Salomea in "The Silver Dream of Salomea", and Laura in "Zawisza Czarny". Słowacki links lilies with the figure of the Virgin Mary. For the poet, flowers usually symbolize the sacred and the angelic, but also appear in the context of the image of sin and the serpent. The final part of the essay concerns lilies growing from a tomb. The paper presents the genesis of this painting with reference to the painting by Raphael. It also explores the presence of this theme in the works of Słowacki.

  • Issue Year: LXVIII/2013
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 285-301
  • Page Count: 17
  • Language: Polish