An outstanding biologist with a recognized reputation, prolific poet and playwright, activist of the Polish Socialist Party, a tireless lecturer at people's universities, propagator wolnomyślicielstwa, a publicist who boldly proclaims his own opinion – that's only part of it, what can be said about Romuald Kazimierz Minkiewicz. He was born in Suwałki 27 January 1878 year. He was the son of Kazimierz from Filipów, a tax officer and Karolina née Michałowska, Henry's brother. He studied in Augustów, he attended junior high school in Mariaampol. Winds 1895-1900 studied biology at the University of St. Petersburg. He joined the socialist movement early, for which he was arrested and imprisoned in 1899 i 1902 year. From 1900 do 1904 year he was an assistant at the University of Kazan on the Volga – scientific work was not enough for him, organized university courses for Polish women, participated in Polish cultural events, writing literary works for their needs.
In his youth, he was mainly interested in aquatic fauna. He conducted hydrobiological observations in freshwater stations (Bologoje, 1898) and marine (Sewastopol, 1899; Yillefranche, 1902-1904; Banyuls, 1903). He received his doctorate in Kazan in 1904 year. We know, that fall 1903 year and in 1904 he stayed in Krakow for a year, more probably in connection with conspiratorial activities than in research, because v 1905 In the year he collaborated in Warsaw with the PPS body “By Daily Courier” and participated in the activities of the Fighting Organization of the Polish Socialist Party. In August 1905 he was imprisoned in the 10th Pavilion, then he left for Paris as an agent of the Polish Socialist Party. From 1905 do 1925 year he published political articles in “Worker”. The organizational relationship with the party has loosened, when Minkiewicz devoted himself to science.
Patch 1905-1916 spent between Western Europe, where he worked in hydrobiological stations, and Zakopane and its surroundings, where he often visited, saving his endangered health. He conducted biological observations at the Villefranche sea stations (1905-1906), Roscoff (1906-1907), Monaco (1900) and in Paris and Brussels. He published the research results in several languages in various scientific journals. From the early work On Disharmonies in Human Nature, about natural death and the so-called. death instinct (Critical remarks on the book by prof. Mechnikov) (Warsaw 1905), he revealed his main characteristic of a scholar – criticism and independence of views. He dealt especially with the conditioning of animals to light and colors. His literary work gave him a respite. In one of the poems he wrote, that he already has enough “greedy scientific questions”. Thanks to the dating of some works, we can now present the subject of Minkiewicz's scientific and literary works, observe ebbs of creative power and doubts. An image of a man with many-sided interests emerges from them (for example, Indian and Japanese culture) and great literary erudition; at the same time – a man longing for his mother and experiencing emotional dilemmas.
The autobiographical drama of Lucyan (1911), referring to the revolution 1905 year, contains an explanation of the reasons for the poet's certain reserve towards the activities of the Polish Socialist Party. He wrote there: The currents of party politics are only a faint moment, and the goal of progress is the only one who is always conscious: human soul, liberation of human souls. This idealistic and romantic one, taken from Król-Duch Juliusz Słowacki, Minkiewicz tried to implement the program in practice. Based on the philosophical indications of Edward Abramowski, he belonged – together with brothers Dionizy and Józef Bek, Julian Kowalczyk and Władysław Riptide – to the so-called spiritual commune. The Zakopane-Poronin circle “brothers” it soon fell apart; there are private letters and program brochures of Minkiewicz: About the fullness of life and spiritual communion (Cracow 1907) and The ideal and the life of a socialist(Cracow 1908).
Minkiewicz, member of the OB PPS, he was able to glorify active underground activity: We are not in loud lightning, like the knights of the huf / But in the dungeons and in the cellars. With the torch of faith in the pupils, with a whisper of brave words.
Minkiewicz, member of a spiritual commune, stated: I live by the cult of brotherhood (…), I live with the delusion of friendship. The lyrical and dramatic works of the author before World War I testify to the strong influence of J.. Kasprowicz, S. Wyspiański and T.. Miciński. It was expressed in a critical and literary study of Upetual Gate of Longing (Warsaw 1910) and volumes of poetry and dramas: Princess of the Sea (Warsaw 1911), At my sea (Warsaw 1911), Love letters and songs (Vilnius 1922). The typically Young Poland themes and styles of these works did not bring him any critical acclaim, although it is worth paying attention to the rehearsals of songs in French and German and various ways of musical and symbolic expression of spiritual content.
In the reborn Poland, Minkiewicz became involved in editing “Worker” (1918-1919), however, his main occupation was science. From 1918 do 1939 He was a professor of biology at the Free Polish University in Warsaw, Director of the Institute named after M.. Nenckiego (1926-1931), he co-organized the hydrobiological station at Lake Wigry. He published a number of popularizing and scientific works in the field of zoology, focusing mainly on the issues of the neurophysiologist. The results of his studies on the life of ants burned down in the Warsaw Uprising. As a publicist, he demanded independence in proclaiming scientific truths (Dogmatism and authority in science and teaching, 1927; Why have I become a member of the Tow. Scientific in Warsaw, 1934) and opposed the feeling of shoes and triumphalism in the womb of the PPS (Warsaw clique OKR PPS, 1928). W 1920 he organized the Association of Polish Freethinkers in Warsaw, he was the chairman of the non-denominational community in the capital and a long-term editor “Free Thought” and “Polish Freethinker”. He died 24 of August 1944 year in Warsaw.