Thursday, July 5, 2012

Answer: Who is the mystery man?

Yesterday's July 4th challenge had three parts:
(Easy)  What is the name of our mystery man?
Recall that he was a hero in the US, Lithuania, Poland, and Belarus.  A quick search for: 

   [ hero USA Lithuania Poland Belarus

Kościuszko image: Wikipedia
pretty quickly leads to Tadeusz Kościuszko, the man who seems to statues to him everywhere I go.  Oddly, I'd only heard of him tangentially in my reading of US history, which is sad, as he seems to have been quite a character on multiple history stages.  

 (Moderate)  What is the monument to the man who tried to sell off the fort that was fortified by our mystery man?

If you search for [Tadeusz Kościuszko fortifications] or [ Tadeusz Kościuszko fort] you'll also fairly easily find results that indicate it was West Point.  Reading the Wikipedia entry on West Point article tells the story of his the construction of the defenses of the garrison (the name was later changed to Fort Clinton). 

Arnold image: Wikipedia
Searching on this page for "sell" reveals it was Benedict Arnold who tried to sell West Point to the British as part of his treason against the US.  (Reading the excellent Wikipedia article tells a richer story about Arnold than I ever learned in school.  Another interesting character who went on to a long career post-treason as a loyal British subject.)  

A search for [ Benedict Arnold monument ] reveals a number of plaques and markers, but the only real monument to the man is the "Boot Monument" that commemorates Major General Benedict Arnold's service at the Battles of Saratoga in the Continental Army, but contrives not to name him.  It lauds the actions, but not the man.  

 (Harder)  What are the lyrics to the first verse of the song our mystery man wrote?  (Not just a hero, but a musician as well!) 

The Tadeusz Kościuszko Wikipedia article included an entry for about the polonaise he composed. A quick search for "Polonez Kościuszki" reveals the lyrics in Polish, although the lyrics are written by Rajnold Suchodolski. 

Patrz, Kościuszko, na nas z nieba, 
Jak w krwi wrogów będziem brodzić, 
Twego miecza nam potrzeba, 
By ojczyznę oswobodzić.

Lyrics in English (via Google Translate): 

See, Kosciuszko, on us from heaven, 
As in the blood of enemies will wade, 
We need your sword, 
To liberate the homeland.

So it IS possible to be a patriot in multiple countries, be a musician, and an engineer.  Kościuszko is a man well worth remembering during our long weekend of national historical reflection and patriotism.  

And the search lesson?  Keep following the trail, where ever it leads.  

Searching on!  

1 comment:

  1. Those are not *the* lyrics in Polish; as the YouTube video says, there are 2 versions of the song, and the original goes
    Podróz twoja nam niemila
    lepsza przyjazn w domu byla.
    Kochalim cie nad swe zycie,
    Szanowali nalezycie...
    I can't give an English translation, as I don't know any Polish and Google Translate makes a mess of it.

    I love the song BTW, I've been playing it a lot the last few days. :-)