THE 'UNKNOWN GOD'. ON NERVAL'S MICKIEWICZ
The image of Adam Mickiewicz that emerges from the very few remarks in the writings of Gérard de Nerval is interesting, though incomplete, since it is based only on certain ideas expressed in Mickiewicz's lectures at the College de France and in his 'Ksiegi narodu polskiego i pielgrzymstwa polskiego' (Books of the Polish Nation and of the Polish Pilgrimage). The French romantic poet equated Mickiewicz with the many representatives of syncretic religious movements popular in nineteenth-century France. In his letters and articles, Nerval interpreted the Polish poet's words as he sought in them a solution to his own faith dilemmas. Nerval's statements on the subject of Mickiewicz are confronted with the two final courses of the Paris lectures, where Mickiewicz deals with the issues that most interested Nerval: metempsychosis, modern pantheism, the relationship of the followers of religious eclecticism to the official Church, the mission of the Slavs, the role of Napoleon. A comparative reading enables us to shed closer light on little known aspects of Mickiewicz's work, as well as to comprehend certain tendencies in the writings of the French romantic poet.
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