This book summarises more than a decade of work conducted by two researchers who set out to verify in archival sources the existing biographical information about Fryderyk Chopin, his family and his friends, and also to obtain new material to expand our knowledge of his ancestors. The research covered approximately 100,000 handwritten legal documents from Kuyavia, Mazovia and Royal Prussia, numerous printed and cartographic sources, and also the subject literature. The majority of sources held in Polish archives were examined, as well as information from France and Russia.
As a result of their research, the authors were able to refute many of the myths and false convictions persistently recurring in the Chopin literature. They have also described the newly-discovered fortunes of Fryderyk Chopin’s Polish ancestors and significantly broadened our knowledge of his French roots. Particularly interesting proved to be their research into the circumstances that brought the young Nicolas Chopin, the composer’s father, to Poland.
This book, presenting the most up-to-date historical findings, also shows the influence of Fryderyk’s hometown of Warsaw from 1815 to 1830 on the formation of the young composer’s personality.