The diverse history of Polish gardens is centuries old. The great variety of forms, composition principles and purposes constitutes an important chapter in the history of Polish art and assigns the Polish garden a high rank in the European art of gardening. What is the reason for the need and necessity of recording historical gardens and other monuments? Registers as such are not the ultimate targets, but remain rather a means or an instrument intended for scientific or practical application. Without them it would be impossible to create a scholarly and exhaustive synthesis dealing with the history of art, including the art of gardening. Inventories of historical monuments in Poland date back to the eighteenth century (the initiative of Rev. Ksawery Zubowski), but after the loss of state independence Polish society grew increasingly aware of the historical and national value of its monuments. Official decisions led to records and first inventory regulations. Unfortunately, they did not relate to historical parks and gardens. The progress of a movement intent on the protection of historical monuments finally recognised garden premises as monuments which, in time, were included in inventories (the Central Office for Art Monument Inventories was established in 1929). Larger-scale inventories of Polish monuments of the art of gardening were conducted in the interwar period by Franciszek Krzywda-Polkowski, Oskar Sosnowski and Gerard Ciolek (Warsaw University of Technology). During the 1950s and 1960s similar inventories were entrusted to the Ministry of Culture and Art. At the same time, work at the Warsaw University of Technology was continued by Gerard Ciolek, and subsequently Witold Plapis and Longin Majdecki. Similar research on Polish gardens was pursued at the Cracow University of Technology by Tadeusz Tolwinski and Zygmunt Novak. Janusz Bogdanowski acted as the heir of their accomplishments and resumed this particular trend of research. Inventories of historical gardens initiated in 1975 are carried out up to this day. The task consists of listing all parks and gardens, including relics, regardless of pertinent information or the degree of conservation. In this manner, inventories are to reflect the actual state of the preservation of all park and garden premises across the country.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.