Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore, Lithuania
The Expression of Herder’s Concept of Humanität in Daukantas’s BUDĄ Senowęs-Lëtuwiû Kalnienû ĩr Ƶámajtiû (1845)
Simonas Daukantas (1793–1864) was the first Lithuanian national historian to find a correspondence to Johann Gottfried Herder's term humanity. In his work Buda Senowes Lëtuwiû Kalnienû and Ƶámajtiû (The Character of the Lithuanian Highlanders and Samogitians of the Old Times, 1845), Daukantas used the word žmonystė (humanity). First, the article discusses Daukantas' acquaintance with Herder's works. It is stated that Daukantas, like Herder, lived in Riga. According to Daukantas' notebooks, in which he evaluated Herder's texts, Daukantas noted nieodbicie trzeba czytać, called die meisterhaften Arbeiten. Daukantas emphasized that humanity is directly related to human freedom, which determines creativity and elevates the nation to a higher degree of civilization. The wars with the Teutonic Order not only changed the Lithuanian way. Unable to conquer the Lithuanians, the Teutons spread false information in Europe about Lithuania. Daukantas emphasizes that the meaning of human and national life – to participate in the lives of others; when it becomes impossible, life is degraded.
Key Words: humanity, human, nation, history, language, philosophy, liberty