Podolia or Podilia is a historic region in Eastern Europe, located in the west-central and south-western parts of Ukraine and in northeastern Moldova. The name derives from Old Slavic po, meaning "by/next to/along" and dol, "valley"; the area is part of the vast East European Plain, confined by the Dniester River and the Carpathian arc in the southwest. It comprises an area of about 40,000 km2, extending for 320 km from northwest to southeast on the left bank of the Dniester. In the same direction run two ranges of low hills separated by the Southern Bug, ramifications of the Avratynsk heights; the Podolian Upland, an elongated, up to 472 ft high plateau stretches from the Western and Southern Bug rivers to the Dniester, includes hill countries and mountainous regions with canyon-like fluvial valleys. Podolia lies east of historic Red Ruthenia, i.e. the eastern half of Galicia, beyond the Seret River, a tributary of the Dniester. In the northwest it borders on Volhynia, it is made up of the present-day Ukrainian Vinnytsia Oblast and southern and central Khmelnytskyi Oblast.
The Podolian lands further include parts of adjacent Ternopil Oblast in the west and Kiev Oblast in the northeast. In the east it consists of the neighbouring parts of Cherkasy and Odessa Oblasts, as well as the northern half of Transnistria. Two large rivers, with numerous tributaries, drain the region: the Dniester, which forms its boundary with Moldova and is navigable throughout its length, the Southern Bug, which flows parallel to the former in a higher, sometimes swampy, interrupted in several places by rapids; the Dniester forms an important channel for trade in the areas of Mohyliv-Podilskyi and other Podolian river-ports. In Podolia, "black earth" soil predominates, making it a fertile agricultural area. Marshes occur only beside the Bug. A moderate climate predominates, with average temperatures at Kamianets-Podilskyi of 9 °C. Russian-ruled Podolia in 1906 had an estimated population of 3,543,700, consisting chiefly of Ukrainians. Significant minorities included Poles and Jews, as well as 50,000 Romanians, some Germans, some Armenians.
The chief towns include Kamianets-Podilskyi, the traditional capital, Bar, Haisyn, Letychiv, Mohyliv-Podilskyi, Nova Ushytsia, Skala-Podilska and Yampil. In Moldova, the major Podolian cities are Rîbniţa. Podolia is known for its cherries, melons and cucumbers; the country has had human inhabitants since at least the beginning of the Neolithic period. Herodotus mentions it as the seat of the Graeco-Scythian Alazones and Scythian Neuri. Subsequently, the Dacians and the Getae arrived; the Romans left traces of their rule in Trajan's Wall, which stretches through the modern districts of Kamianets-Podilskyi, Nova Ushytsia and Khmelnytskyi. During the Great Migration Period, many nationalities passed through this territory or settled within it for some time, leaving numerous traces in archaeological remains. Nestor in the Primary Chronicle mentions four Slavic tribes: the Buzhans and Dulebes along the Southern Bug River, the Tivertsi and Ulichs along the Dniester; the Avars invaded in the 7th century.
Prince Oleg of Kiev, extended his rule over this territory known as the Ponizie, or "lowlands." These lowlands became a part of the Rus' principalities of Volhynia and Galicia. In the 13th century, Bakota served as its administrative centre. During that time, the Mongols plundered Ponizie. Polish colonisation began in the 14th century. After the death of the Lithuanian prince Vytautas in 1430, Podolia was incorporated into Podolian Voivodeship of the Polish Crown, with the exception of its eastern part, the Province of Bratslav, which remained with Lithuania until its union with Poland in the Union of Lublin of 1569. From 1672, Podolia became part of the Ottoman Empire and where it was known as Podolia Eyalet. During this time, it was a province, with its center being Kamaniçe, was divided into sanjaks of Kamaniçe, Bar and Yazlovets, it remained with the Ottoman Empire for a substantial period of time, only returning to the Polish regime in 1699. The Poles retained Podolia until the partitions of their country in 1772 and 1793, when the Austrian Habsburg Monarchy and Imperial Russia annexed the western and eastern parts respectively.
From 1793–1917, part of the region was the Podolia Governorate in southwestern Russia bordering with Austria across the Zbruch River and with Bessarabia across the Dniester. Its area was 36,910 km2. In the 1772 First Partition of Poland, the Austrian Habsburgs had taken control of a small part of Podolia west of the Zbruch River around Borschiv, in what is today Ternopil Oblast. At this time, Emperor Joseph II toured the area, was impressed by the fertility of the soil, was optimistic about its future prospects. Poland disappeared as a state in a third partition in 1795 but the Polish gentry continued to maintain local control in both eastern and western Podolia over a peasant population, ethnically Ukrainian whose
The Ottoman Empire known in Western Europe as the Turkish Empire or Turkey, was a state that controlled much of Southeast Europe, Western Asia and North Africa between the 14th and early 20th centuries. It was founded at the end of the 13th century in northwestern Anatolia in the town of Söğüt by the Oghuz Turkish tribal leader Osman I. After 1354, the Ottomans crossed into Europe, with the conquest of the Balkans, the Ottoman beylik was transformed into a transcontinental empire; the Ottomans ended the Byzantine Empire with the 1453 conquest of Constantinople by Mehmed the Conqueror. During the 16th and 17th centuries, at the height of its power under the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent, the Ottoman Empire was a multinational, multilingual empire controlling most of Southeast Europe, parts of Central Europe, Western Asia, parts of Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, North Africa and the Horn of Africa. At the beginning of the 17th century, the empire contained numerous vassal states; some of these were absorbed into the Ottoman Empire, while others were granted various types of autonomy during the course of centuries.
With Constantinople as its capital and control of lands around the Mediterranean basin, the Ottoman Empire was at the centre of interactions between the Eastern and Western worlds for six centuries. While the empire was once thought to have entered a period of decline following the death of Suleiman the Magnificent, this view is no longer supported by the majority of academic historians; the empire continued to maintain a flexible and strong economy and military throughout the 17th and much of the 18th century. However, during a long period of peace from 1740 to 1768, the Ottoman military system fell behind that of their European rivals, the Habsburg and Russian empires; the Ottomans suffered severe military defeats in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, which prompted them to initiate a comprehensive process of reform and modernisation known as the Tanzimat. Thus, over the course of the 19th century, the Ottoman state became vastly more powerful and organised, despite suffering further territorial losses in the Balkans, where a number of new states emerged.
The empire allied with Germany in the early 20th century, hoping to escape from the diplomatic isolation which had contributed to its recent territorial losses, thus joined World War I on the side of the Central Powers. While the Empire was able to hold its own during the conflict, it was struggling with internal dissent with the Arab Revolt in its Arabian holdings. During this time, atrocities were committed by the Young Turk government against the Armenians and Pontic Greeks; the Empire's defeat and the occupation of part of its territory by the Allied Powers in the aftermath of World War I resulted in its partitioning and the loss of its Middle Eastern territories, which were divided between the United Kingdom and France. The successful Turkish War of Independence against the occupying Allies led to the emergence of the Republic of Turkey in the Anatolian heartland and the abolition of the Ottoman monarchy; the word Ottoman is a historical anglicisation of the name of Osman I, the founder of the Empire and of the ruling House of Osman.
Osman's name in turn was the Turkish form of the Arabic name ʿUthmān. In Ottoman Turkish, the empire was referred to as Devlet-i ʿAlīye-yi ʿOsmānīye, or alternatively ʿOsmānlı Devleti. In Modern Turkish, it is known as Osmanlı Devleti; the Turkish word for "Ottoman" referred to the tribal followers of Osman in the fourteenth century, subsequently came to be used to refer to the empire's military-administrative elite. In contrast, the term "Turk" was used to refer to the Anatolian peasant and tribal population, was seen as a disparaging term when applied to urban, educated individuals. In the early modern period, an educated urban-dwelling Turkish-speaker, not a member of the military-administrative class would refer to himself neither as an Osmanlı nor as a Türk, but rather as a Rūmī, or "Roman", meaning an inhabitant of the territory of the former Byzantine Empire in the Balkans and Anatolia; the term Rūmī was used to refer to Turkish-speakers by the other Muslim peoples of the empire and beyond.
In Western Europe, the two names "Ottoman Empire" and "Turkey" were used interchangeably, with "Turkey" being favoured both in formal and informal situations. This dichotomy was ended in 1920–23, when the newly established Ankara-based Turkish government chose Turkey as the sole official name. Most scholarly historians avoid the terms "Turkey", "Turks", "Turkish" when referring to the Ottomans, due to the empire's multinational character; as the Seljuk Sultanate of Rum declined in the 13th century, Anatolia was divided into a patchwork of independent Turkish principalities known as the Anatolian Beyliks. One of these beyliks, in the region of Bithynia on the frontier of the Byzantine Empire, was led by the Turkish tribal leader Osman I, a figure of obscure origins from whom the name Ottoman is derived. Osman's early followers consisted both of Turkish tribal groups and Byzantine renegades, many but not all converts to Islam. Osman extended the control of his principality by conquering Byzantine towns along the Sakarya River.
It is not well understood how the early Ottomans came to dominate their
The Bracław Voivodeship was a unit of administrative division of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. Created in 1566 as part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, it was passed to the Crown of Poland in 1569 following the Union of Lublin. After partitions of Poland in 1793 the voivodeship was taken by the Russian Empire and replaced with the Bratslav Viceroyalty. In 1648-57 the territory of voivodeship was a part of Cossack Hetmanate following the Khmelnytsky Uprising and Truce of Andrusovo, while in 1672-99 it became part of Ottoman Ukraine, a vassal Ottoman Empire. Together with the Podole Voivodeship it formed the historical province of Podolia and part of a bigger Lesser Poland Province of the Polish Crown; the capital of the voivodeship was in Braclaw, but local voivodes resided in Winnica. It was divided into County of County of Winnica; the County of Braclaw itself was divided into two districts—Braclaw and Zwinogrodek. In 1791, the Great Sejm created Boh County, but it was never created due to the Polish–Russian War of 1792.
Braclaw Voivodeship had the Castellan of Braclaw. It had six deputies to the Sejm—two from Braclaw County, two from Winnica County, two from District of Zwinogrodek. Local sejmiks took place in Winnica. Today the region belongs to Ukraine. Zygmunt Gloger in his monumental book Historical Geography of the Lands of Old Poland gives a detailed description of Braclaw Voivodeship: After the Union of Lublin, the province of Podolia was annexed by the Kingdom of Poland. Soon afterwards, Ukrainian Podolia, located lower than Podole Voivodeship, between the Dniestr and the Boh rivers, was turned into Braclaw Voivodeship, it had three castles at Braclaw and Zwinogrod In 1570, a special royal commission was created to mark the borders of the voivodeship. Its western boundary was marked by the Murachwa river, in the southeast, it was separated from Wallachia by the Dniestr; the commission marked northern border of the voivodeship along the Black Tatar Trail, to settle arguments between Braclaw and Kijow Voivodeships, King Stefan Batory in 1584 stated that boundary line was to be marked by the Uhorski Tykicz river In the late 16th century, most of Braclaw Voivodeship was a depopulated wild field.
Political and social life existed only in the agricultural belt, located in the immediate vicinity of royal castles. Settlers however began to move into the desert along southern border of the province, in the area called Pobereze After the Union of Lublin, when Ukrainian lands were annexed by the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland, life became more organized, with Polish-style starostas, nobility and courts The County of Winnica was smaller, but more populated, it had the area of 200 sq. miles, along the Boh river. The County of Braclaw had the area of 420 sq. miles, consisted of two districts - Braclaw and Zwinogrod. The district of Zwinogrod covered the desert of the Blue Waters, but due to destruction of the Zwinogrod Castle, it did not emerge as a separate county In 1584, Stefan Batory divided this area between Braclaw and Kijow Voivodeship, along the Uhorski Tykicz river In 1569, first voivode of Braclaw was Prince Roman Sanguszko, while first castellan was Knyaz Jedrzej Kapusta. In 1589 Polish Sejm ordered that all official documents in Braclaw Voivodeship should be written in Old East Slavic language The voivodeship had two senators, six deputies to the Sejm, two deputies to the Lesser Poland Tribunal at Lublin.
Furthermore, like in neighbouring Podole Voivodeship, Braclaw had its own border judges, who cooperated with officials of the Ottoman Porte and the Crimean Khanate, solving conflicts between citizens of the two countries In 1598 the Sejm ordered that all courts and sejmiks be moved from Braclaw to Winnica. As a result, Winnica became to be regarded the capital of the voivodeship. Since in the 18th century the population of the region grew, in 1791 the Sejm created another county, called Boh County, increasing number of deputies from the voivodeship from six to eight. After the Partitions of Poland, Russian authorities created Braclaw Governorate, whose lands were divided between Podolia Governorate, Volhynian Governorate, Kiev Governorate According to the 1625 census, Braclaw Voivodeship had 285 villages, but its population grew so fast that in the early 1790s, the number of villages grew to 1,500 Before the Union of Lublin, there were some 30 castles and strongholds in the province. Fifty years after the union, the number of castles grew significantly.
Most of them were private, with the strongest one being Uman In the 18th century, the voivodeship had several grand residences of Polish magnates, among them was Zofiowka of the Potocki family, located in close proximity to Uman. Voivodeship Governor seat: Bracław Regional council for all Ruthenian lands Sądowa Wisznia Regional council seats: Winnica Bracław County, Bracław Winnica County, Winnica Zwinogrodek District or Zwinogrodek County, Boh County, created in 1791, Roman Sanguszko Aleksander Zasławski Stanisław "Rewera" Potocki Adam Kisiel Andrzej Potocki Stanisław Lubomirski Podole Voivodeship Kijów Voivodeship Jedysan
Grand Duchy of Lithuania
The Grand Duchy of Lithuania was a European state that lasted from the 13th century to 1795, when the territory was partitioned among the Russian Empire, the Kingdom of Prussia and Austria. The state was founded by one of the polytheistic Baltic tribes from Aukštaitija; the Grand Duchy expanded to include large portions of the former Kievan Rus' and other Slavic lands, including what is now Belarus and parts of Ukraine and Russia. At its greatest extent, in the 15th century, it was the largest state in Europe, it was a multi-ethnic and multi-confessional state, with great diversity in languages and cultural heritage. Consolidation of the Lithuanian lands began in the late 12th century. Mindaugas, the first ruler of the Grand Duchy, was crowned as Catholic King of Lithuania in 1253; the pagan state was targeted in the religious crusade by the Teutonic Knights and the Livonian Order. The multi-ethnic and multi-confessional state emerged only at the late reign of Gediminas and continued to expand under his son Algirdas.
Algirdas's successor Jogaila signed the Union of Krewo in 1386, bringing two major changes in the history of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania: conversion to Catholicism and establishment of a dynastic union between the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland. The reign of Vytautas the Great marked both the greatest territorial expansion of the Grand Duchy and the defeat of the Teutonic Knights in the Battle of Grunwald in 1410, it marked the rise of the Lithuanian nobility. After Vytautas's death, Lithuania's relationship with the Kingdom of Poland deteriorated. Lithuanian noblemen, including the Radvila family, attempted to break the personal union with Poland. However, unsuccessful wars with the Grand Duchy of Moscow forced the union to remain intact; the Union of Lublin of 1569 created a new state, the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. In the federation, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania maintained its political distinctiveness and had separate government, laws and treasury; the federation was terminated by the passing of the Constitution of 3 May 1791, when there was supposed to be now a single country, the Commonwealth of Poland, under one monarch and one parliament.
Shortly afterward, the unitary character of the state was confirmed by adopting the Reciprocal Guarantee of Two Nations. However, the newly-reformed Commonwealth was invaded by Russia in 1792 and partitioned between the neighbours, with a truncated state remaining only nominally independent. After the Kościuszko Uprising, the territory was partitioned among the Russian Empire, the Kingdom of Prussia and Austria in 1795; the Statutes of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania have the complete name of the state as the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and Samogitia. The title of "grand duchy" was applied to Lithuania from the 14th century onward. In other languages, the grand duchy is referred to as: Belarusian: Вялікае Княства Літоўскае German: Großfürstentum Litauen Estonian: Leedu Suurvürstiriik Latin: Magnus Ducatus Lituaniae Latvian: Lieitija or Lietuvas Lielkņaziste Lithuanian: Lietuvos Didžioji Kunigaikštystė Old literary Lithuanian: Didi Kunigystė Lietuvos Polish: Wielkie Księstwo Litewskie Russian: Великое княжество Литовское Ruthenian: Великое князство Литовское Ukrainian: Велике князiвство Литовське The first written reference to Lithuania is found in the Quedlinburg Chronicle, which dates from 1009.
In the 12th century, Slavic chronicles refer to Lithuania as one of the areas attacked by the Rus'. Pagan Lithuanians paid tribute to Polotsk, but they soon grew in strength and organized their own small-scale raids. At some point between 1180 and 1183 the situation began to change, the Lithuanians started to organize sustainable military raids on the Slavic provinces, raiding the Principality of Polotsk as well as Pskov, threatening Novgorod; the sudden spark of military raids marked consolidation of the Lithuanian lands in Aukštaitija. The Livonian Order and Teutonic Knights, crusading military orders, were established in Riga in 1202 and in Prussia in 1226; the Christian orders posed a significant threat to pagan Baltic tribes and further galvanized the formation of the state. The peace treaty with Galicia–Volhynia of 1219 provides evidence of cooperation between Lithuanians and Samogitians; this treaty lists 21 Lithuanian dukes, including five senior Lithuanian dukes from Aukštaitija and several dukes from Žemaitija.
Although they had battled in the past, the Lithuanians and the Žemaičiai now faced a common enemy. Živinbudas had the most authority and at least several dukes were from the same families. The formal acknowledgment of common interests and the establishment of a hierarchy among the signatories of the treaty foreshadowed the emergence of the state. Mindaugas, the duke of southern Lithuania, was among the five senior dukes mentioned in the treaty with Galicia–Volhynia; the Livonian Rhymed Chronicle, reports that by the mid-1230s, Mindaugas had acquired supreme power in the whole of Lithuania. In 1236, the Samogitians, led by Vykintas, defeated the Livonian Order in the Battle of Saule; the Order was forced to become a branch of the Teutonic Knights in Prussia, making Samogitia, a strip of land that separated Livonia from Prussia, the main target of both orders. The battle provided a break in the wars with the Knights, Lithuania exploited this situation, arranging attacks towards the Ruthenian provinces and annexing Navahrudak and Hrodna.
Belarusian historians consider that Mindаugas was invited to rule Navahrudak and that the union was peaceful. In 1248 a civil war broke out be
Bratislava is the capital of Slovakia. With a population of about 430,000, it is one of the smaller capitals of Europe but still the country's largest city; the greater metropolitan area is home to more than 650,000 people. Bratislava is in southwestern Slovakia, occupying both banks of the River Danube and the left bank of the River Morava. Bordering Austria and Hungary, it is the only national capital; the city's history has been influenced by people of different nations and religions, namely Austrians, Croats, Germans, Jews and Slovaks. It was the coronation site and legislative center of the Kingdom of Hungary from 1536 to 1783, has been home to many Slovak and German historical figures. Bratislava is the political and economic centre of Slovakia, it is the seat of the parliament and the Slovak Executive. It has several universities, many museums, theatres and other cultural and educational institutions. Many of Slovakia's large businesses and financial institutions have headquarters there. In 2017, Bratislava was ranked as the third richest region of the European Union by GDP per capita.
GDP at purchasing power parity is about three times higher than in other Slovak regions. Bratislava receives around 1 million tourists every year; the city received its contemporary name in 1919. Until it was known in English by its German name, since after 1526 it was dominated by the Habsburg Monarchy and the city had a relevant ethnic-German population; that is the term from which the pre-1919 Czech names are derived. The city's Hungarian name, was given after the castle's first castellan, "Poson"; the origin of the name is unclear: it might come from the Czech Pos or the German Poscho, which are personal names. The medieval settlement Brezalauspurc is sometimes attributed to Bratislava, but the actual location of Brezalauspurc is under scholarly debate; the city's modern name is credited to Pavel Jozef Šafárik's misinterpretation of Braslav as Bratislav in his analysis of mediaeval sources, which led him to invent the term Břetislaw, which became Bratislav. During the revolution of 1918–1919, the name'Wilsonov' or'Wilsonstadt' was proposed by American Slovaks, as he supported national self-determination.
The name Bratislava, used only by some Slovak patriots, became official in March 1919. Other alternative names of the city in the past include Greek: Ιστρόπολις Istropolis, Czech: Prešpurk, French: Presbourg, Italian: Presburgo, Latin: Posonium, Romanian: Pojon and Serbo-Croatian: Požun / Пожун. In older documents, confusion can be caused by the Latin forms Bratislavia, Wratislavia etc. which refer to Wrocław, not Bratislava. The first known permanent settlement of the area began with the Linear Pottery Culture, around 5000 BC in the Neolithic era. About 200 BC, the Celtic Boii tribe founded the first significant settlement, a fortified town known as an oppidum, they established a mint, producing silver coins known as biatecs. The area fell under Roman influence from the 1st to the 4th century AD and was made part of the Danubian Limes, a border defence system; the Romans introduced grape growing to the area and began a tradition of winemaking, which survives to the present. The Slavs arrived from the East between the 6th centuries during the Migration Period.
As a response to onslaughts by Avars, the local Slavic tribes rebelled and established Samo's Empire, the first known Slavic political entity. In the 9th century, the castles at Bratislava and Devín were important centres of the Slavic states: the Principality of Nitra and Great Moravia. Scholars have debated the identification as fortresses of the two castles built in Great Moravia, based on linguistic arguments and because of the absence of convincing archaeological evidence; the first written reference to a settlement named "Brezalauspurc" dates to 907 and is related to the Battle of Pressburg, during which a Bavarian army was defeated by the Hungarians. It is connected to the fall of Great Moravia weakened by its own inner decline and under the attacks of the Hungarians; the exact location of the battle remains unknown, some interpretations place it west of Lake Balaton. In the 10th century, the territory of Pressburg became part of Hungary, it developed as a key administrative centre on the kingdom's frontier.
This strategic position destined the city to be the site of frequent attacks and battles, but brought it economic development and high political status. It was granted its first known "town privileges" in 1291 by the Hungarian King Andrew III, was declared a free royal town in 1405 by King Sigismund. In 1436 he authorized the town to use its own coat of arms; the Kingdom of Hungary was defeated by the Ottoman Empire in the Battle of Mohács in 1526. The Turks failed to conquer it. Owing to Ottoman advances into Hungarian territory, the city was designated the new capital of Hungary in 1536, after becoming part of the Habsburg Monarchy and marking the beginning of a new era; the city became a coronation town and the seat of kings, the nobility and all major organisations and offices. Between 1536 and 1830, eleven Hungarian kings and queens were crowned at St. Martin's Cathedral. The
The szlachta was a privileged noble class in the Kingdom of Poland, in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. After the Union of Lublin in 1569, the Grand Duchy and its neighbouring Kingdom became a single state, the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth; the origins of the szlachta are shrouded in obscurity and mystery and have been the subject of several theories. Traditionally, its members were landowners in the form of "manorial estates" or so-called folwarks; the nobility won substantial and increasing political and legal privileges for itself throughout its entire history until the decline and end of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth in the late 18th century. Apart from providing officers for the army, among its chief civic obligations were electing the monarch, plus filling advisory and honorary roles at court, e.g. Stolnik - "Master of the King's Pantry," or their assistant, in the state government, e.g. Podskarbi, "Minister to the Treasury", they served as elected representatives in the Sejm and in local Sejmiki assemblies, appointing officials and overseeing judicial and financial governance, including tax-raising, at the provincial level.
Their roles included Voivodeship, Marshal of Voivodeship and Starosta. The szlachta gained considerable institutional privileges between 1333 and 1370 in the Kingdom of Poland during the reign of King Casimir III the Great. In 1413, following a series of tentative personal unions between the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland, the existing Lithuanian-Ruthenian nobility formally joined this class; as the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth evolved and expanded in territory, its membership grew to include the leaders of Ducal Prussia and Livonia. During the Partitions of Poland from 1772 to 1795, minor szlachta began to lose these legal privileges and social status, while elites became part of nobility of partitioning countries. Although in reality, szlachta members could have unequal status due to wealth and political influence, there were few official distinctions between the elites and common nobility. Unlike in most other countries, those few hereditary titles that there were in the Kingdom of Poland, were bestowed by foreign monarchs, including personal hereditary titles granted by the Pope, see Feliks Sobański as an example.
While in Grand Duchy of Lithuania, Samogitia princely titles were inherited either by descendants of Old Lithuanian-Ruthenian Rurikid and Gediminids princely families, or by princely dynasties of Tatar origin that settled there. The Polish term szlachta is derived from the Old High German word slahta. In modern German Geschlecht - which came from the Proto-Germanic *slagiz, "blow", "strike", shares the Anglo-Saxon root for "slaughter" or the verb "to slug" – means "breeding" or gender. Like many other Polish words pertaining to nobility, it derives from Germanic words: So for example, the Polish for a "knight" is "rycerz", a cognate of the German "Ritter"; the Polish word for "coat of arms" is "herb" from the German "Erbe" or "heritage". 17th century Poles assumed that "szlachta" came from the German "schlachten" "to slaughter" or "to butcher", was therefore related to the German word for battle, "Schlacht". Some early Polish historians thought the term might have derived instead from the name of the legendary proto-Polish chief, mentioned in Polish and Czech writings.
A few exceptionally wealthy and powerful szlachta members during the 17th and 18th centuries came to be known as "magnates" - "możni": see Magnates of Poland and Lithuania. The Polish term "szlachta" designated the formalized, hereditary noble class of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, which constituted the nation itself, ruled without competition. In official Latin documents of the old Commonwealth, the hereditary szlachta were referred to as "nobilitas" from the Latin term, could be compared in legal status to English or British peers of the realm, or to the ancient Roman idea of cives, "citizen". Today the word szlachta translates as "nobility". In its broadest sense, it can denote some non-hereditary honorary knighthoods and baronial titles granted by other European monarchs, including the Holy See. 19th-century landowners of non-noble descent were referred to as szlachta by courtesy or error, when they owned manorial estates but were not in fact noble by birth. Szlachta denotes the Ruthenian and Lithuanian nobility from before the old-Commonwealth.
In the past, a misconception sometimes led to the mistranslation of "szlachta" as "gentry" rather than "nobility". This mistaken practice began due to the inferior economic status of many szlachta members compared to that of the nobility in other European countries; the szlachta included those rich and powerful enough to be magnates down to the indigent with a noble lineage, but with no land, no castle, no money, no village, no subject peasants. At least 60,000 families belonged to the nobility, only about 100 were wealthy, all the rest were poor. Over time, numerically most lesser szlachta became or were poorer than their few rich peers in their social class, many were worse off than the non-noble gentry, they were called szlachta zagrodowa, that is, "nobility from within the second estate compound", sometimes referred to as drobna szlachta, "petty nobles" or yet, szlachta okoliczna, meaning "local". Impoverished szlachta families were forced to become tenants of their wealthier peers, they were described as "tenant nobles" who paid rent.
In doing so, they retained all their constitutional prerogati
Wrocław is a city in western Poland and the largest city in the historical region of Silesia. It lies on the banks of the River Oder in the Silesian Lowlands of Central Europe 350 kilometres from the Baltic Sea to the north and 40 kilometres from the Sudeten Mountains to the south; the population of Wrocław in 2018 was 639,258, making it the fourth-largest city in Poland and the main city of the Wrocław agglomeration. Wrocław is the historical capital of Lower Silesia. Today, it is the capital of the Lower Silesian Voivodeship; the history of the city dates back over a thousand years, its extensive heritage combines all religions and cultures of Europe. At various times, it has been part of the Kingdom of Poland, Kingdom of Bohemia, Kingdom of Hungary, Habsburg Monarchy and Germany. Wrocław became part of Poland again in 1945, as a result of the border changes after the Second World War, which included a nearly complete exchange of population. Wrocław is a university city with a student population of over 130,000, making it one of the most youthful cities in the country.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, the University of Wrocław Breslau University, produced 9 Nobel Prize laureates and is renowned for its high quality of teaching. Wrocław is classified as a Gamma-global city by GaWC, it was placed among the top 100 cities in the world for the quality of life by the consulting company Mercer and in the top 100 of the smartest cities in the world in the IESE Cities in Motion Index 2017 report. The city hosted the Eucharistic Congress in the Euro 2012 football championships. In 2016, the city was a European Capital of the World Book Capital. In this year, Wrocław hosted the Theatre Olympics, World Bridge Games and the European Film Awards. In 2017, the city was the host of the World Games; the city's name was first recorded as "Wrotizlava" in the chronicle of German chronicler Thietmar of Merseburg, which mentions it as a seat of a newly installed bishopric in the context of the Congress of Gniezno. The first municipal seal stated. A simplified name is given, as Wrezlaw, Prezla or Breslaw.
The Czech spelling was used in Latin documents as Vratislavia. At that time, Prezla was used in Middle High German. In the middle of the 14th century, the Early New High German form of the name, began to replace its earlier versions; the city is traditionally believed to be named after Wrocisław or Vratislav believed to be named after Duke Vratislaus I of Bohemia. It is possible that the city was named after the tribal duke of the Silesians or after an early ruler of the city called Vratislav; the city's name in various other languages is: Hungarian: Boroszló, Czech: Vratislav, German: Breslau, Hebrew: ורוצלב, Yiddish: ברעסלוי, Silesian German: Brassel, Latin: Vratislavia or Budorgis or Wratislavia. The city's name in other languages is available at the list of names of European cities. Persons born or living in the city are known as "Vratislavians". In ancient times at or near Wrocław was a place called Budorigum, it has been mapped to Claudius Ptolemy's map of AD 142–147. The city of Wrocław originated at the intersection of two trade routes, the Via Regia and the Amber Road.
Settlements in the area existed during the migration period. A Slavic tribe Ślężans erected on Ostrów Tumski a gord; the city was first recorded in the 10th century as Vratislavia, the Bohemian duke Vratislaus I founded here a Bohemian stronghold. Vratislavia was derived from the duke's name Vratislav. In 985, Duke Mieszko I of Poland conquered Silesia including Wrocław; the town was mentioned explicitly in the year 1000 AD in connection with a founding of a bishopric during the Congress of Gniezno. The medieval chronicle, Gesta principum Polonorum, written by Gallus Anonymus in 1112–1116, named Wrocław, along with Kraków and Sandomierz, as one of the three capitals of the Polish Kingdom. During Wrocław's early history, the control over it changed hands between Bohemia, the Kingdom of Poland, after the fragmentation of the Kingdom of Poland, the Piast-ruled duchy of Silesia. One of the most important events during this period was the foundation of the Diocese of Wrocław by the Polish Duke Bolesław the Brave in 1000.
Along with the Bishoprics of Kraków and Kołobrzeg, Wrocław was placed under the Archbishopric of Gniezno in Greater Poland, founded by Pope Sylvester II through the intercession of the Emperor Otto III in 1000, during the Congress of Gniezno. In the years 1034–1038 the city was affected by Pagan reaction in Poland; the city became a commercial centre and expanded to Wyspa Piasek, to the left bank of the River Oder. Around 1000, the town had about 1,000 inhabitants. In 1109 during the Polish-German war, Prince Bolesław III Wrymouth defeated the King of Germany Henry V at the Battle of Hundsfeld, stopping the German march into Poland. By 1139, a settlement belonging to Governor Piotr Włostowic was built, another was founded on the left bank of the River Oder, near the present seat of the University. While the city was Polish, there were communities of Bohemians, Jews and Germans. In the 13th century, Wrocław was the political centre of the divided Polish kingdom. In April 1241, during the First Mongol invasion of Poland the city was abandoned by the inhabitants and burned for strategic reason