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The extended title of the present work is appropriate for such an innovative and multifaceted book. It alludes to the fundamental subject matter of the research which Zuzanna Jakubowska asserts concisely and in support of which she presents the first rate evidence. The author's aims appear di·fficult to fulfil. Her research questions the long established dogma, that all possible works of any literary or scientific value by the Polish-Royal-Prussia born Forsters (supernumeraries on James Cook's Second Circumnavigation, 1772-1775) have been both identified and closely read, and that nothing new of any primary value could possibly be found in the documentation of the Voyage. The aim of Zuzanna Jakubowska's research is also of a rather sensitive nature. The literary heritage of the Forsters is claimed by six nations or states, namely by Poland, Germany, England, Scotland, France, and, last but not least, by Lithuania. The present work is especially important with reference to Poland and Lithuania. The Forsters were contemporaries of Cook and King George III of Great Britain and Ireland, and Catherine, Empress of Russia, as well as of King Stanislas Augustus Poniatowski of the Polish/Lithuanian Commonwealth. All the above had a profound e·ffect on the lives of the Forsters. As alluded above, the Forsters were born near the Free City of Gdańsk/Danzig in the territory of Royal Prussia. Royal Prussia was at the time part of the Crown of Poland, which itself constituted part of the abovementioned Polish/Lithuanian Commonwealth. The Forsters were partly forgotten in the countries which formed the monarchy. The work of Z. Jakubowska strives to bring them back to the pantheon of the old Commonwealth's heritage.
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