Zygmunt Golian 1824-1885

He was born in Kraków on the 2nd of May, 1824. In his youth, following his father’s will, he did his apprenticeship at a goldsmith’s shop since he had not made the expected progress in education. He attended a technical school for three long years before taking up a secondary school in 1841, which he  completed with good results in 1845. Then he began theological studies and was ordained priest in 1849. He was a curate at St. Florian’s Church (in the Kraków district of Kleparz), then at the parish of All Saints, eventually to become the confessor and preacher in the Cathedral on the Wawel Hill – the former seat of Polish Kings in Kraków. During his stay in Leuven and Rome he increased his knowledge of theology, receiving the doctoral degree. In March 1858 he joined the Dominican Order; however, he unfrocked himself already in April of the following year and returned to the Wawel Hill. In the early 1860’s, when a debate on the papal temporal power and future of the State of the Church was raging throughout Europe, Golian took up the cause of papal authority and earned himself the name of one of the leading Polish ultramontanists. In that period he wrote the following works: Słowo o prawdziwym zjednoczeniu, Nieprzyjaciele sprawy papieskiej w Polsce, Baczność katolicy, Rozbiór broszury: Papież i Polska, Kilka słów o doczesnej władzy Papieża, Adres katolików krakowskich i skarżąca go protestacja, List do Przeglądu Powszechnego Lwowskiego. In 1862 he went to Warsaw to lecture at the Faculty of Theology, which he did until its closure in 1867. He returned to Kraków in 1868, and administered, first, the parish of Saint Florian, and then the Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He also lectured at the Jagiellonian University. The final years of his life the Rev. Golian spent as the parish-priest in Wieliczka, where he died on the 21st of February, 1885. Apart from the above-mentioned works on the temporal authority of the pope, he also became famous as the author of a pamphlet Moderanci wobec Kościoła, Narodu i dziejowej przeszłości (Lviv, 1871), in which he severely criticised Kraków Conservatives from the environment of the ‘Stańczycy’ circle - and particularly Józef Szujski, whose points he directly argued – condemning their understanding of Catholicism which was – in his opinion – much too progressive.


This website is a part of the project entitled ‘Polish Political Thought and Independence: A Program for the Promotion of Polish Intellectual Heritage Abroad’, generously funded
by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland as A part of ‘Public Diplomacy 2017’ programme, component ‘Collaboration in the field of Public Diplomacy 2017’.
Design by Stereoplan