Where did Wrocław’s dwarves come from?

Major Fydrych’s descendants Long ago, in the beginning of the 80s, a new movement, charmingly christened as the Orange Alternative was born in Wrocław. Waldemar Fydrych aka The Major aka The Commander of the Fortress of Wrocław (Festung Breslau), originally from Toruń, used it to put socialist surrealism into life. He and his followers maintained that the milicja (police forces in communist Poland) officer on the street were a piece of art and all proletarians were beautiful, not to mention other hoaxes. They also truly believed in Maria Konopnicka’s (famous Polish 19th and 20th century poet) quote: ‘whether you want it or not, there are dwarfs in the world’. Yes indeed, even the author of ‘Our old nag’ (‘Nasza szkapa’, a book by Maria Konopnicka) knew of their existence.

Orange fellows fought the hypocrisy of Polish People’s Republic without the use of force. Their actions and happenings took place mostly in Wrocław with temporary ‘visits’ to Łódź, Warsaw or Lublin. You may ask: ok, but what does it have to do with the dwarfs? Here comes the story.Fydrych’s group was known for their impressive sabotage of the milicja who used to cover anti-communist graffiti with the paint. Major’s people painted dwarfs on those stains. Since then, the dwarfs became the symbol of the Orange Alternative and once in the police station in Łódź Fydrych gave a short, witty speech on his theory stating that the graffiti was a thesis, the paint covering it was an antithesis and the dwarf – a synthesis. It’s an open secret that the opposition members wouldn’t have been able to hang around the city unnoticed with paintbrushes in their hands without the help from their tiny friends. No more than dozen centimeter tall dwarfs had no problems hiding away from the sinister sight of the milicja. Unfortunately, after a couple of successful actions, one failure occurred. The dwarf named the Paintbrush (Polish: Pędzelek) was caught red-handed by the ZOMO (armed milicja) officers. Accused of harmful activity towards the communist system and anti-communism, he was sentenced to lifelong prison. This is how Paintbrush turned into Prisoner and moved in Więzienna Street (if you feel like setting him free, you can do it here).

The Dwarf Council of Sages decided not to leave their friend. The decision couldn’t have been different: dwarfs stayed in Wrocław! This is how the construction of the Underground City of Dwarfs  began… The ancestors of the inhabitants of WrocławOr maybe the dwarfs lived in Wrocław since long before the Orange Alternative, communism and ZOMO? Dwarf genealogy experts discovered the Dwarf Chronicle with a surprising piece of information there: the first dwarf that ever existed in the world came from Wrocław! Nobody knows where did he come from but it’s definitely Lower Silesia where he chose to live in. As years went by, Papa Dwarf’s (he goes under this name today) family was growing bigger, bringing on Earth more and more intrepid, strong and brave dwarfs. It was only many years later when the humans appeared in the village. Fortunately, no conflicts or fights for power occurred. The big and the small got on well instantly and united in construction of the city they were supposed to share. Years later, to commemorate their effort, the inhabitants of Wrocław named the city’s districts after them. This is why Biskupin comes from Biskupik Dwarf, Sępolno from Sępik, Szczepin from Szczepik, Oporów from Opornik, etc…So if anybody ever asks you who’s the oldest inhabitant of Wrocław, don’t hesitate to answer: Papa Smurf!

Goblin busters

However, recent surveys prove that dwarfs don’t necessarily have to be ancient inhabitants of Wrocław or Major Fydrych’s helpers. According to the newest data, it’s the inhabitants of Wrocław who long ago asked the dwarfs for help with malicious Oder Goblin (Polish: Chochlik Odrzański) whose main purpose was to turn the life in Wrocław into a nightmare. And he seemed to be successful in his plan, luring pigeons to fly over parked cars, hiding glasses and even spitting into soups! His small size, agility and swiftness enabled him to fool even the smartest of men. Not dwarfs, though. The dwarfs, commonly known for their kindheartedness and generosity didn’t hesitate help the inhabitants of Wrocław and immediately set off to Lower Silesia. They arrived altogether as they didn’t use to travel alone, defeated the malevolent Goblin in a flash and imprisoned him in the dungeon in the Owl Mountains. He was guarded by the Halberd Dwarf and the people in Wrocław could finally feel relieved. To express their gratitude to the dwarfs, the City Council invited them to settle once and for all in the city of hundred bridges, which is another nickname of Wrocław. The dwarfs accepted eagerly. During many years that followed, Wrocław was a peaceful city where the humans and the dwarfs lived in harmony and friendship. They were in process of preparing the sumptuous feast on the Market Square to celebrate upcoming city’s festival (24th June) when a terrible notice from Owl Mountains reached the city – the Goblin had run away from prison! He wanted to interfere with celebration plans and spoil the feast by all means!

Dwarf Crisis Staff was called instantly. The greatest minds of the Dwarf Council agreed that to capture the Goblin quality not quantity was what they needed. Thus, instead of sending the whole bunch of dwarfs to chase him they selected Życzliwek, the Kind Dwarf to stop the scoundrel. The choice couldn’t have been better as the Kind Dwarf is well known for his natural-born optimism, love for the world, charming smile being his most dangerous weapon. It looks like there will be no fatalities in the battle with Goblin. Anyway, you can check themselves how the Kind Dwarf is doing and even help him, if necessary. All you have to do is join the dwarf game on www.gra.krasnale.pl And you, what is your favourite theory? Maybe you have one of your own? Luckily, as far as dwarfs are concerned each of them may be true without excluding the others. Another phenomenon of Wrocław. *****If you wish to visit Papa Dwarf, Prisoner, Kind or any other dwarf, our dwarf map may be of some help for you.