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Department of Auxiliary Sciences and Methodology of History

(+48) 22 55 24 510 (room 22), 22 55 24 511 (room 23)


The Department deals with issues relating to broadly defined source and archive studies. They have been present in the history curriculum since the revival of the University of Warsaw in 1915 – primarily as part of lectures and classes dealing with the history of the Middle Ages. The emphasis was on issues concerning diplomas and palaeography. Institutionally, they were linked to the department headed from 1934 by Prof. Stanisław Kętrzyński. Teaching was continued as part of clandestine classes during the Second World War. In 1945, in the revived Institute of History the department was again entrusted to Stanisław Kętrzyński, who had returned from the concentration camp in Auschwitz. After his death in 1950 the department was chaired for a long time by Prof. Aleksander Gieysztor, followed by Prof. Ireneusz Ihnatowicz and then (1999-2008) by Prof. Maria Koczerska. Today the Department is headed by Prof. Sławomir Gawlas.


Today there are separate classes dealing with four periods: the Middle Ages, 16th-18th centuries, 19th century and the 20th century, as well as the specialist subjects mentioned earlier. In addition to sources, archives and editing, research carried out by the Department scholars focuses on their own specialties in the relevant historical periods and concerns primarily issues dealing with the history of culture, social history, history of the political system, and history of historiography.