Professor Henryk Samsonowicz (born 23 January 1930 in Warsaw, died 28 May 2021 in Warsaw)
Honorary Citizen of the Capital City of Warsaw from June 2015
Historian, medievalist, professor and rector of the University of Warsaw, minister of national education in the years 1989-1991.In 1950, he graduated from the Faculty of Humanistic Studies at the University of Warsaw, after which he began working there as an assistant. In 1954, he received a PhD for a thesis written under the supervision of prof. Marian Małowist, titled "Rural Crafts in Poland in the XIV to XVI Centuries". In 1960 he completed his habilitation on the basis of a dissertation titled "Studies of Burgher Capital in Gdansk in the XV Century". In 1969 he was named professor of humanities. He became an associate professor in 1971, and nine years later a full professor of humanities. In the years 1964-2009 he conducted master seminars, in 1969 he began conducting medieval and modern doctoral seminars at the Institute of History. He promoted a total of 11 PhD holders. From 1967 he was the Vice-Dean of the Faculty of History, between 1970 and 1973 he served as a Dean of this unit. In the years 1975-1980 he was the director of the Institute of History, with which he remains professionally engaged since 1950. From October 1, 1980 to April 8, 1982, he served as the rector of the University of Warsaw. Between 1991 and 1996 he was vice-president of the Scientific Research Committee, in 1994 he became a member-correspondent of the Polish Academy of Sciences, in the years 1999-2006 he presided over the First Department of Social Sciences at the Polish Academy of Sciences. In 2002 he became a full member of PAS and also a member of its presidium. He became a lecturer at the Academy of Humanities in Pułtusk, as well as a member of the Polish Academy of Learning, Academia Europaea and other scientific institutions. He has written approximately 800 scientific papers, mostly on the history of medieval Poland, including 16 books and university textbooks. He became a member of Solidarity in 1980. In 1989 he participated in the talks of the Round Table. After the elections to the so-called Contracted Sejm he was appointed minister of national education in Tadeusz Mazowiecki's government. He served as Minister until January 1991. He was awarded with the Commander's Cross with Star of the Order of Polonia Restituta and the Order of the White Eagle. He received the title of doctor honoris causa of such universities as: the University of Nicolaus Copernicus in Toruń, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin, the University of Wrocław, the University of Gdańsk, Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań and the Jagiellonian University. He is a honorary citizen of Sandomierz, Ostrowiec Świętokrzyski and Pułtusk.