About the Exhibition
Nežinomas XVII a. dailininkas. Drobė, aliejus (ovalas) 101,5 x 78 cm.
LNM T 222
An exhibition dedicated to the 450th anniversary of the birth and the 400th anniversary of the death of Jan Karol Chodkiewicz ran in the fall of 2021 at the Wroblewski Library of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences.
The biography of Jan Karol will help us to gain a better understanding of the items displayed at the exhibition. In 2021 we commemorate both the beginning and the end of Chodkiewicz’s life, it is the year that marks 450 years since he was born and 400 since he died. As it happens, another birth date is often attributed to him – 1560 or 1561. However, following the study by Polish scientist Marian Chachaj (2014), it became more usual to date the birth of Chodkiewicz by 1571. In 1583-1586 Jan Karol and his elder Brother Alexander studied at Vilnius Academy, and in 1586-1589, at the Jesuit College of Ingolstadt. In early 1990, both the brothers arrived to Padua, where Alexander enrolled into the university.
In the spring of 1596, Jan Karol took on the mantle of command, heading a company that helped the Field Hetman Stanislaw Żółkiewski to suppress a revolt staged by the Cossacks of Severin Nalivaiko. On May 27, 1596, he was appointed the Cupbearer of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania for his courage on the battlefield. Soon after, Chodkiewicz was granted an even higher post: on July 19, 1599, he was appointed Elder of Samogitia and entered the Senate, becoming a member of the Council of Lords. In 1601, he became Field Hetman of the Grand Duchy; in 1603, Administrator of Livonia; in 1605, the Grand Hetman; and in 1616, Voivode of Vilnius. Jan Karol gained great fame for the victories achieved in 1600–1610 in the war with the Swedes over Livonia and in 1620–1621 in the war against the Turks. He died during the victorious battle of Khotyn and is buried in Ostrog.
To create this virtual tale about Jan Karol Chodkiewicz, we used not only documents from the holdings of the Wroblewski Library of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences, but also images received from various memory institutions of Lithuania and other countries. We put together this international exhibition to honour Lithuania’s great military leader and remind the public of his services to the state.
Exhibition partners: Academic Library of the University of Latvia, Vilnius University Library
Concept by Dr. Sigitas Narbutas
Design and texts by Dr. Daiva Narbutienė, Dr. Neringa Markauskaitė, Violeta Radvilienė, Dr. Sigitas Narbutas
Digitized by Laurynas Marcinkevičius
Translated into English by Ana Venclovienė
Design by Audronė Stasiukaitytė, Eglė Stasiukaitytė
Posted online by Audronė Steponaitienė