The connections between the Dziewanowskis and the Chopins were many and varied, the best known being the friendship between Fryderyk Chopin and Dominik ‘Domuś’ Dziewanowski, which went back to their days at the Warsaw Lyceum. At the time, Domuś lived at the Chopins’ boarding house during the school year. He also took piano lessons from Wojciech Żywny. The intimacy between the two boys deepened when Chopin spent his 1824 and 1825 summer holidays on the Dziewanowski family estate in Szafarnia. He wrote humorous letters back to his family in the style of one of the Warsaw daily newspapers, even dubbing them the ‘Kurier Szafarski’ [Szafarnia courier].
The cordial relationship between the two families apparently went back a good deal earlier. When he was single, Mikołaj Chopin most likely tutored some of the children of Jan Kanty and Cecylia Dziewanowski at Szafarnia for a time, almost certainly including Jan Nepomucen Dziewanowski, a hero of the Battle of Somosierra in 1808, who held the Chopins’ baby daughter Ludwika at her baptism in the Church of the Visitation of the BVM in Warsaw in 1807.
Juliusz, the father of Chopin’s friend ‘Domuś’, was Jan Nepomucen’s brother. The numerous and ramified Dziewanowski family lived on several estates in various places around Szafarnia. From 1806 to 1842, the family was also in possession of a house at what is now ul. Senatorska 38, originally one of the wings of Mniszech Palace. It can be assumed that Chopin, a favourite of the Dziewanowskis, would have visited there as well. That building no longer exists. In 1904, the art nouveau Wilhelm Landau Bank, designed by Gustaw Landau and Stanisław Grochowicz, was erected in its place.