History and contents of the repository
The establishment of the Deanery Library is officially dated to 1819, when on the initiative of Jan Brzuska (1757-1840), a parish priest and dean from Cieszyn, a group of clergymen and laymen entered into an agreement, pursuant to which they bought the history of Christianity in 15 volumes and obliged future deans to protect this work and make it available to local priests. The book collection of the Deanery Library has been deposited in Cieszyn Library since 2002. Over time, Reverend Jan Brzuska incorporated his own book collection (today, it includes 331 volumes) and collections gathered by former parish priests into the Deanery Library. All the books bore stickers saying Teschner Decanat Bibliothek. The Deanery Office operated at Saint Mary Magdalene Parish. In 1838, when the parish was taken over by Reverend Jan Koziar, the handover report noted that the parish library consisted of 980 volumes. In the 19th century, subsequent parish priests, deans and cardinal vicars from Cieszyn kept adding new books to the library. At a later stage, the remnants of book collections created by a few Catholic organizations from Cieszyn Silesia, as well as the remnants of the Library of Polish Theologians in Vidnava were incorporated into the Deanery Library as well. Today, the Deanery Library consists of 4253 bound volumes, including 5 incunabula, 1856 old prints, 1979 new non-serial prints, 356 new serial prints and 57 bound manuscripts. The majority of books are in German, but there are also quite a few prints in Latin and Polish, whereas materials in Czech and in other languages are the least numerous. Thematically, the foremost position is occupied by religious works (2/3 of the whole collection). When it comes to lay literature, there is an interesting and a quite large collection of works about Cieszyn dating back to the 19th and the 20th century. The remaining works are thematically varied. We can guess that they reflect the interests of subsequent library guardians and donators.
The alphabetical catalogue of the Deanery Library was devised by Weronika Pawłowicz in the 1980s. It was drawn up by hand, on cards in the international format. The catalogue was completed during the inventory carried out from 23 April to 10 June 2002, when the collection of the Deanery Library was deposited in Cieszyn Library.
Format symbols were added to inventory numbers, which also serve as call marks. They can be found in the top right corner of a card.
- author or title entry
- volume designation
- edition designation
- publisher’s name and publication place and year
- physical description
Descriptions also contain information about supplements, works bound in the same volume, defects and the name of the last owner. Apart from listing journals and issues, magazine descriptions contain physical descriptions.
Pawłowicz: Biblioteka Dekanatu w Cieszynie, “Kalendarz Cieszyński 1993”, Cieszyn 1992, pp. 77-78; W. Pawłowicz: Biblioteka Dekanatu w Cieszynie. Historia i księgozbiór, [in:] Cieszyńskie księgozbiory historyczne. Materiały z sesji naukowej Cieszyn, 18-20 listopada 1991 r., ed. H. Łaskarzewska, Warszawa 1993, pp. 42-52; W. Pawłowicz: U źródeł Biblioteki Dekanatu w Cieszynie – kolekcja księdza Antoniego Alojzego Löhna, “Pamiętnik Cieszyński”, vol. 10, Cieszyn 1995, pp. 18-24; M. Pawłowiczowa: Ks. Jan Brzuska (1757-1840). Jego prace i księgozbiór, “Biuletyn Informacyjny Biblioteki Śląskiej”, 1970, no. 1/4, pp. 88-101.