Announcement of the patron of the 20th edition of the Academy of Young Diplomats
Karolina Lanckorońska, born on August 11, 1898, was a prominent Polish art historian and activist in Italy. Throughout her life, she dedicated herself to serving her nation by promoting national culture and supporting Polish science. Despite not directly engaging in political or military activities, she played a crucial role in preserving and advancing Polish cultural heritage.
During World War II, Lanckorońska served as a soldier in the Union of Armed Struggle and later as a lieutenant in the Home Army. She faced imprisonment by the Gestapo in Ravensbrück camp from 1942 to 1945, documenting her experiences in the book “War Memories 22 September 1939 – 5 April 1945.”
After the war, she lived in exile in Italy and co-founded the Polish Historical Institute in Rome in 1945. Lanckorońska dedicated herself to publishing and organizational work for Polish science, contributing significantly to the study of Poland’s history. In 1967, she founded the Lanckoroński Foundation, supporting Polish science and culture.
In 1994, she generously donated her family’s collection of over one hundred high-class paintings and sixty other works of art to the Royal Castles in Krakow and Warsaw, enriching their collections. This act was a notable contribution to compensating for cultural losses during Poland’s turbulent history.
Karolina Lanckorońska received recognition for her civic patriotism and was awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta in 1991. Pope John Paul II honored her with the Commander of the Order of Saint Gregory the Great with Star in 1998 for her services to the Church.
Prof. Karolina Lanckorońska’s life exemplified extraordinary knowledge, conscientiousness, discipline, and scientific honesty. She passed away on August 25, 2002, leaving a lasting legacy in Polish art history and cultural preservation.