Jan Potocki

Jan Potocki


Born
in Pików na Podolu, Poland
March 08, 1761

Died
December 02, 1815


Jan Potocki was born into the Potocki family, an aristocratic family, that owned vast estates in Poland. He was educated in Geneva and Lausanne, served twice in the Polish Army as a captain of engineers, and spent some time on a galley as a novice Knight of Malta. He was probably a Freemason and had a strong interest in the occult.
Potocki's colorful life took him across Europe, Asia and North Africa, where he embroiled himself in political intrigues, flirted with secret societies, contributed to the birth of ethnology — he was one of the first to study the precursors of the Slavic peoples from a linguistic and historical standpoint.
In 1790 he became the first person in Poland to fly in a hot air balloon when he made an ascent over Warsaw wi
...more

Average rating: 4.13 · 2,688 ratings · 241 reviews · 43 distinct worksSimilar authors
The Manuscript Found in Sar...

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4.16 avg rating — 2,142 ratings — published 1814 — 94 editions
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Manoscritto trovato a Sarag...

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3.72 avg rating — 123 ratings — published 1814 — 3 editions
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Hafız'ın Yolculuğu

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3.28 avg rating — 54 ratings — published 1791 — 2 editions
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Manuscrito Encontrado em Sa...

4.59 avg rating — 17 ratings — published 2004 — 2 editions
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Manuscrito Encontrado em Sa...

4.38 avg rating — 16 ratings — published 2004 — 2 editions
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Manuscrit trouvé à Saragoss...

4.82 avg rating — 11 ratings — published 1804 — 2 editions
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The New Decameron: More Tal...

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4.67 avg rating — 3 ratings — published 1805 — 3 editions
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Diabli wiedzą co...

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4.33 avg rating — 3 ratings — published 1972
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Rękopis znaleziony w Sarago...

3.67 avg rating — 3 ratings — published 2014
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Parady

4.67 avg rating — 3 ratings — published 1959 — 3 editions
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More books by Jan Potocki…
“Nature is infinitely rich and diverse in her ways. She can be seen to break her most unchanging laws. She has made self-interest the motive of all human action, but in the great host of men she produces ones who are strangely constituted, in whom selfishness is scarcely perceptible because they do not place their affections in themselves. Some are passionate about the sciences, others about the public good. They are as attached to the discoveries of others as if they themselves had made them, or to the institutions of public welfare and the state as if they derived benefit from them. This habit of not thinking of themselves influences the whole course of their lives. They don't know how to use other men for their profit. Fortune offers them opportunities which they do not think of taking up.
In nearly all men the self is almost never inactive. You will detect their self-interest in nearly all the advice they give you, in the services they do for you, in the contacts they make, in the friendships they form. They are deeply attached to the things which affect their interests however remotely, and are indifferent to all others. When they encounter a man who is indifferent to personal interest they cannot understand him. They suspect him of hidden motives, of affectation, or of insanity. They cast him from their bosom, revile him.”
Jan Potocki, The Manuscript Found in Saragossa

“Words strike the air and the mind, they act on the senses and on the soul.”
Jan Potocki, The Manuscript Found in Saragossa

“It is not science which leads to unbelief but rather ignorance. The ignorant man thinks he understands something provided that he sees it every day. The natural philosopher walks amid enigmas, always striving to understand and always half-understanding. He learns to believe what he does not understand, and that is a step on the road to faith.”
Jan Potocki, The Manuscript Found in Saragossa

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