'We are and want to be'. On the organization and statistics of congresses of Polish medical and naturalist milieus from all the lands of partitioned Poland , 1869-1914
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The importance of cyclical congresses of the scientific and socio-professional milieus, convened in the second half of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century in the partitioned Poland, is discussed. A total of sixty five such congresses were held between 1869 and 1914, attended by delegates from all the three occupied parts of Poland, serving the strenghthening of national ties as well as exchange of scientific knowledge and professional experience. Thus, for example, congresses of Polish physicians and naturalists brought together specialists from fields as diverse as: anatomy, archaeology, botany, chemistry, pharmacy, philosophy, physics, geology, hygiene, mathematics, psychology, agricultural sciences, veterinary science, forensic medicine, and a variety of medical specializations (surgery, dermatology, gynaecology, dentistry, laryngology, ophthamology, neurology, pediatrics and psychiatry). Congresses of other professional groups also had such an interdiscplinary character. They were organized and hosted above all by two Polish university centres, Cracow and Lwów (Lvov), which were situated in the Austrian partition. Four congresses were held in Warsaw, and two in Poznan. Initiated in 1869 by physicians and naturalists, the congresses were modelled on the example of their German peers, who had held similar congresses regularly since 1822. Although the congresses of physicians and naturalists were the most frequent, it turned out to be impossible to hold them either on an annual basis, as originally planned, or even every three years, as later envisaged. In total, ten congresses of physicians and naturalists from all parts of partitioned Poland were held until the outbreak of WW I.
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