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The Royal Łazienki Gardens are open daily, from dawn untill 7 p.m.
During this time, following objects are free to visit: Amphitheatre, Sybil Temple, Egyptian Temple, Waterwell Building and other pavilions and sculptures located in Royal Łazienki Gardens.
 

XVIIIth Century Royal Garden

The oldest part of the garden with relicts that date back to the end of  the 17th and the 18th  century was built  at the place of the former swampy Wild Animals’ Park that belonged to Stanisław Lubomirski. Numerous channels  ordered that boggy space. Nearby pavilion on the Isle – Bathhouse which was built by Court Marshal of the Crown, was built first, not large, star shaped garden in Italian style.

Tankred i Klorynda

The form of the garden kept during the reign of Stanisław August didn’t survive till our times. Today this place resembles an arrangement of crossed hornbeam paths. There was a  sculpture of  Tankred and Klorynda bought by the king and it was placed on the square in the  middle of alleys’ crossing . Today we can find here only its replica because the original is now in the former Czartoryski’s residence, in Puławy.

The surroundings of the raised Hermitage Museum nearby Piaseczyński channel didn’t have features of orderly garden. There was  a Chinese Garden just near the Hermitage that reached Piaseczyński Channel during the reign of the king. It was forgot in the 19th  century, reshaped and divided in the 20th century. One part is a sports area while surroundings of  the Hermitage stylistically refers to polish gardens that is manor house style.

Widok na Staw i Pałac na Wyspie

The others parts of today’s  Łazienki also had forest nature before they were taken over by king Stanisław August. For years during the reign of Sasów they had been used for hunting. In time of  August III (about the second half of the 18th  century) in area of Wild Animals’ Park,  below the scarp and Belvedere, a  small, regular garden was built by minister Henryk von Brühl. It was surrounded by channel from each side, divided by regular arrangement of alleys. It was a  very interesting element in an  uncultivated forest space. The garden was included into arrangement and reshaped in the 19th century, however later it completely lost its original character and didn’t survived till our times.

The Royal Garden had the most interesting form during the reign of the king Stanisław August. It counted 146 ha along with sticked to it from the west side not large, regular garden just near the Belvedere  (former Paca’s garden) and  land from the south and the east. The arrangement work this new space near summer residence of Stanisław August started in 1765- 1768. In 1766 across area of Wild Animals’ Park, from Ujazdów Castle southerly they built a Road to Wilanów, later called Chinese Road, which became in the course of time one of the most important roads in this area. At the same time, August Fryderyk Moszyński, king’s adviser had an enormous influence on the shape of the garden. He was an expert in art, propagator of new, English garden style that was characterized by free composition and referred to trend of natural landscape that was spreading in Europe.

Wierzba nad Stawem Południowym

The garden had part former regular, traditionally designed, part  fashionable, irregular arrangement of paths and alleys. There is no doubt that from beginning the water arrangement played  a vital role. A small pond, surrounding from the north the Bathhouse on the isle in 1784 was converted into bigger pond that reaches Agrykola Street. Here, in 1788, on the bridge the king erected a monument of the king Jan III Sobieski, which is visible from The Palace on the Isle. The second pond with isle and Theatre on the Isle ( 1790), was built from the south, is characterized by  soft coastline and was jointed with the third pond with solitary isle, picturesque situated among meadow. On the link between ponds a bridge and stone cascade were built, which is visible to this day from the first floor in the Palace. Coastlines of ponds are filled up with waterside vegetation, bushes and not very high at that time trees. In this way main aim  of royal guidelines was put into  effect.

During continuous reconstruction of gardens in the 18th century the whole area was ordered and decorated. Alders which were characteristic for swampy area were cut and replaced by new bushes and trees for instance oaks, ashes, lindens, poplars, maples, walnuts, willows ( this is extant up to today;  additionally we can find here today also horse – chestnuts). Roads, bridges were built over channels that were drying that area. Also during 70. of the 18th  century a walk was marked out – Royal Promenade- joining Palace on the Isle with White House (1774). It was a  wide alley, about 420 meters in length, that ran between two channels overgrown with climbers, decorated with orange trees. The Chinese Gate  was built in 1779-1780 on the junction of Promenade with Wilanowska Road (1766/67 r.) later renamed to Chinese Road in accordance with lasting trend for chinoiserie. In the second half of the 19th century  bridges as well as gate were pulled down and channels filled up. To this day there is left only a wide alley.

Widok na Aleje Królewską The changes of the residence and raise of pavilions were accompanied continuously by extension of the garden inter alia near White House from the south they built a  regular, not very large garden with sundial, surrounded by channels  and small bridges above it in Chinese style( along with channels they were liquidated in the 19th century). There was an elegant driveway with flower bed and garden from the south with aviary for birds near Myślewicki Palace (1775) . Below the terrace of Old Orangery and Stanisławowski Theatre (1776-1778 r.)there was built  a regular garden with fountain, which now is named Rose Garden. A regular division of the space is based on circle and  square and sculptures which are there, date back to XVIII century and  refer to so - called orangery gardens. There, among paths, during summer,  exotic plants were taken out inter alia palms, laurels, lemon and orange trees. Above, the area on scarp had usable character. There were greenhouses which neighboured kitchen garden, rooms for figs, pineapples and orangeries. Gardens on the scarp along with greenhouses were reshaped and replaced  in the 19th century by Botanical Garden in 1818. Within borders of today’s Royal Garden only small part of former areas left, which neighbour to this day Botanical Garden.

An additional decoration of Royal Garden were sculptures, collected by Stanisław August. This collection as “ type of modern outdoors  museum” in the open space in the garden took place in the neighbourhood  of Palace on the Isle, on terrace in alleys near the Theatre on the Isle and in the garden near Old Orangery. Most of these were preserved and decorate the garden until today, they stand in places fixed three centuries ago for example stone well with lion’s head – la fontaine d`Agricola – placed in 1784 under scarp nearby Old Orangery.

The Royal Garden was characterized by dual style. To some extent it had a  preserved traditional French and English style, characterized by huge lawns and solitary growing trees that is “ Syngielton" used in order to admire its strange shapes, typical for particular species. Paths of arch shape, perspective of picturesque views and imitation of nature has become a burden of the garden but was also at that time a  novelty.

After 1795,  when Stanisław August left Poland forever, work in the garden stopped. Until death of the king in 1798, Łazienki didn’t change its arrangement nonetheless its original form underwent some changes. Faraway an optical axis was lost because the planted trees were grown. What is worth mentioning is the fact that changes in the 19th century eliminated exotic details. Remaining parts of royal composition are visible to this day and are a unique example for summer residence of  the last king of Poland.

 


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