Michał Kazimierz Ogiński
|The Polonaise, Farewell to Homeland
and was a military commander in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, which was part of the Polish-Lithuanian
Commonwealth. In addition he was a notable musician and composer.
At the age of eighteen he became the Field Writer of Lithuania, a mid-level position bureaucratic position. It was
then that his political career began. In 1764 he was one Russia's candidates for the Polish-Lithuanian throne.
However, Stanisław August Poniatowski was chosen instead and Oginski was named Palatine of Vilnius. He later
joined the anti-Russian Bar Confederation. After the Battle of Stolowicze, in which the Russian forces under
Alexander Suvorov were defeated, Oginski was forced into exile, but was permitted to return in 1768. When he
was nominated to the rank of the Grand Hetman of Lithuania he became one of two highest ranking military
commanders in the Polish-Lithuanian state. Oginski was a member of the Patriotic Party during the Great Sejm of
1788–1791. Following the defeat of his faction in the Polish-Russian War of 1792, he resigned his position and
retired to his family manor in Słonim.
In addition to his political and military career, he was a notable musician and engineer. He collaborated in
establishing the Pińsk-Volhynia road, the arsenal in Vilnius, and the Oginski Canal, which joined the watersheds
of the Neman and Dnieper rivers (1765-1784). He was also the founder of numerous factories and foundries in
the lands belonging to his family. He was a benefactor of artists as well. At Słonim he held two theater groups
(Italian and Polish), a printing house and orchestra. He also modified the design of the harp and wrote several