Pan Tadeusz: The Last Foray in Lithuania
By Adam Mickiewicz
Translated by Bill Johnston
Published by Archipelago Books
Publishing date: September 2018
In a panoramic view of early 19th century Polish society, Pan Tadeusz interlaces various narrative threads, from the homecoming of the eponymous Pan Tadeusz from his studies in the city, to a feud between local families over ownership of a ruined castle, to clandestine preparations for Polish participation in Napoleon’s anticipated invasion of Russia, to the mystery of Father Robak (“Worm”), a monk whose involvement in all the stories seems to tie them together.
The national epic of Poland and of the larger Lithuanian region, Pan Tadeusz has become ingrained in the Polish literary consciousness. Bill Johnston’s translation of this seminal text allows English-language readers to experience the richness, humor, and narrative energy of the original.