Kazimierz Siemienowicz

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20th century artistic vision of Kazimierz Siemenowicz
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Siemienowicz coat of arms, Ostoja


Kazimierz Siemienowicz (Lithuanian: Kazimieras Simonavičius, Belarusian: Казімер Семяновіч, Kazimier Siemianovič) (born c.1600 - c.1651) was a Polish-Lithuanian szlachcic, he referred himself as Lithuanian nobleman[1], from the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, then part of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, General of artillery, gunsmith, military engineer, artillery specialist and pioneer of rocketry. His coat of arms was Ostoja. No portrait or detailed biography of him have survived.

Biography

Born near Raseiniai in Samogitia[1][2], likely in a relatively poor szlachta family with military service traditions, Siemenowicz was educated in the Academy of Vilnius. As he wrote himself, he was fascinated by artillery since childhood, and he studied many sciences to increase his knowledge (mathematics, mechanics, hydraulics, architecture, optics, tactics). In 1634 he took part in the Smolensk War, in the siege of Biała. It is possible in 1644 he took part in the battle of Achmatów. He spent some time in the Netherlands, where he was sent by the King Wladyslaw IV to serve in the army of Duke Frederick Henry of Orange during the war with Spain. In 1646 he returned to Poland, when Wladyslaw created the Polish artillery corps and gathered specialists from Europe. From 1648 he served as Second in Command of Polish Royal Artillery, as an expert in the field of artillery and rocketry. However, in 1649 after the conflict with Krzysztof Arciszewski over a bureaucratic matter, he decided to leave the Commonwealth and work on his book in Amsterdam.

Fundamental work

He is famous for his work Artis Magnae Artilleriae pars prima. Only the first part was published before his death, although it is rumored he did write a manuscript for part two before his death. The five sections of the Latin first edition deal with caliber, pyrotechnics, rockets, fireballs and the building of firework set-pieces. Due to its specialized nature, this treatise became the standard "recipe book" for firework displays and the ultimate, and often plagiarized, authority on military and recreational pyrotechnics for well over a century. In the first part of his work he also wrote that the second one would contain the universal pyrotechnic invention, containing all of our current knowledge. According to his short description, this invention was supposed to greatly ease all measurements and calculations. It is also rumored that he was killed by members of the metallurgy/gunsmith guilds, who were opposed to him publishing a book about their secrets, and that they hid or destroyed the manuscript of the second part.

"Artis Magnae Artilleriae pars prima" ("Great Art of Artillery, the First Part". also known as "The Complete Art of Artillery"), first printed in Amsterdam in 1650, was translated to French in 1651, German in 1676, English and Dutch in 1729 and Polish in 1963.
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Litas commemorative coin dedicated to the 350th anniversary of Artis Magnae Artilleriae
For over two centuries this work was used in Europe as a basic artillery manual. The book provided the standard designs for creating rockets, fireballs, and other pyrotechnic devices. It discussed for the first time the idea of applying a reactive technique to artillery. It contains a large chapter on caliber, construction, production and properties of rockets (for both military and civil purposes), including multistage rockets, batteries of rockets, and rockets with delta wing stabilizers (instead of the common guiding rods).

Siemienowicz considered the use of poison gases unhonorable. In his work, he wrote: and most of all, they shall not construct any poisoned globes, nor other sorts of pyrobolic inventions, in which he shall introduce no poison whatsoever, besides which, they shall never employ them for the ruin and destruction of men, because the first inventors of our art thought such actions as unjust among themselves as unworthy of a man of heart and a real soldier.

His inventions were used in many battles. For example, in the Battle of Chocim on November 11, 1673, where Commonwealth military units defeated the Ottoman army.

Quotes

  • "Let better rockets serve Venus than blood-thirsty Mars".

See also

Contemporary rocket inventors:

References

  • Tadeusz Nowak "Kazimierz Siemienowicz, ca.1600-ca.1651", MON Press, Warsaw 1969

Notes

1. ^ Encyclopedia Lituanica. Boston, 1970-1978, Vol.5 p.147
2. ^ Lietuviškoji tarybinė enciklopedija. 1983 T.10 p.166

External links

Lithuanian (lietuvių kalba) is the official state language of the Republic of Lithuania, spoken by about 4 million native speakers.

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The Belarusian or Belorussian language (беларуская мова, BGN/PCGN: byelaruskaya mova, Scientific: bjelaruskaja mova) is the language of the Belarusian people and is spoken in Belarus
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Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, also known as the First Polish Republic or Republic (Commonwealth) of the Two (Both) Nations (Peoples), (Polish: Pierwsza Rzeczpospolita or Rzeczpospolita Obojga Narodów
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Szlachta (/span>]] ?· i ) Lithuanian: Bajorai, was the noble class in Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the two countries that later jointly formed the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.
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Lithuanians are the Baltic ethnic group native to Lithuania, where they number a little over 3 million. [1] Another million or more make up the Lithuanian diaspora, largely found in countries such as the United States, Brazil, Canada and Russia.
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Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, also known as the First Polish Republic or Republic (Commonwealth) of the Two (Both) Nations (Peoples), (Polish: Pierwsza Rzeczpospolita or Rzeczpospolita Obojga Narodów
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A General Officer is an officer of high military rank. The term is used by nearly every country in the world. General can be used as a generic term for all grades of general officer, or it can specifically refer to a single rank that is just called General.
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Historically, artillery (from French artillerie) refers to any engine used for the discharge of large projectiles in war. The term also describes soldiers with the primary function of manning such weapons and is used organizationally for the arm of a nation's land
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A gunsmith is a person who designs, builds, repairs or modifies firearms to blueprint and customer specifications, using hand tools and machine tools such as grinders and lathes.
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military engineer is primarily responsible for the design and construction of offensive, defensive and logistical structures for warfare. Other duties include the layout, placement, maintenance and dismantling of defensive minefields and the clearing of enemy minefields and the
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rocket is a vehicle, missile or aircraft which obtains thrust by the reaction to the ejection of fast moving fluid from within a rocket engine.

The history of rockets goes back to at least the 13th century[1].
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coat of arms or armorial bearings (often just arms for short), in European tradition, is a design belonging to a particular person (or group of people) and used by them in a wide variety of ways.
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Ostoja - is a Polish Coat of Arms. It was used by several szlachta families in the times of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

History

Blazon

Notable bearers

Notable bearers of this Coat of Arms include:
  • Kazimierz Siemienowicz

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Raseiniai ( (help info ) ) is a city in Lithuania. It is located on the south eastern foothills of the Samogitians highland, some 5 kilometers from the Kaunas-Klaipėda highway.
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Samogitia (Lithuanian: Žemaitija, literally lowlands) is one of the five ethnographic regions of Lithuania.

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Szlachta (/span>]] ?· i ) Lithuanian: Bajorai, was the noble class in Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the two countries that later jointly formed the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.
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Smolensk War (1632–1634) was a conflict fought between the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Russia.

Hostilities began in October 1632 when Tsarist forces tried to capture the city of Smolensk, a former Russian possession.
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Frederick Henry or Frederik Hendrik in Dutch (January 29, 1584 – March 14, 1647) was Prince of Orange from 1625 to 1647.

Biography

Frederick Henry, the youngest child of William the Silent, was born at Delft about six months before his father's assassination
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Motto
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"Further Beyond"
Anthem
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Krzysztof Arciszewski (b. December 9 1592 in Rogalin - d. April 7 1656 by Gdańsk) was a Polish nobleman (szlachcic), military officer, engineer, and ethnographer. General of artillery of Holland, and Poland .
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