Warsaw

Article

August 14, 2022

Warsaw (Polish Warszawa, pronunciation ) is the capital and largest city of Poland. There are approximately 1.79 million inhabitants, with a surrounding agglomeration of around 3 million inhabitants. Warsaw is located in central Poland on the middle course of the Vistula in the Warsaw Basin at an average height of 100 meters above sea level, 520 km east of Berlin and 250 km south of the Baltic Sea coast. Warsaw is located in historical Mazovia, from the 15th century it was the capital of the Principality of Mazovia, and in 1596 it replaced Krakow as the capital of Poland. The German occupation during the Second World War had a significant impact on the history of the city, when the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising took place here, and most of the city was destroyed. Warsaw is also the capital of the Masovian Voivodeship. There is a developed industry in the metropolis, especially processing, steel, electrotechnical and automotive. It is home to more than 60 educational institutions, mainly the University of Warsaw (Uniwersytet Warszawski), Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University, Warsaw University of Technology (Politechnika Warszawska), Warsaw School of Economics (Szkoła Główna Handlowa) and others. There are over 30 theatres, including the National Theater and the Opera House, and the National Philharmonic Orchestra is based here. Warsaw's Latin motto Semper Invicta means "Always Undefeated".

History

Early History

The first fortified settlement on the territory of today's Warsaw was the settlement of Bródno in the 9th and 10th centuries and Jazdów in the 12th and 13th centuries. After the Duke of Płock, Boleslav II. Masovian attacked Jazdów in 1281, a new seat was founded in the place of the small fishing village of Warzsowa. At the beginning of the 14th century, this place became one of the seats of the Masovian Voivodeship, and in 1413 it became the capital of Masovian Voivodeship. After the local voivodeship line died out in 1526, the voivodeship was incorporated under the Polish crown. In 1529, Warsaw became the seat of the Polish Sejm for the first time, and the Sejm has been permanently located here since 1569. In 1573, Warsaw gave its name to the Warsaw Confederation, an agreement of the Polish nobility on the tolerance of different religions in the Kingdom of Poland.

16th to 19th century

Due to its advantageous central location between Vilnius and Krakow in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, Warsaw became the capital of this Commonwealth and, at the same time, the capital of Poland in 1596, when King Sigismund III. Vasa moved the royal court from Krakow. Warsaw was the capital of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth until 1795, when the state was invaded by Prussia and Warsaw became the capital of the province of New East Prussia. In 1807, the city was liberated by Napoleon's army and the city on the Vistula became the capital of the Warsaw Voivodeship. In 1815, after Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo, the then powers Austria, Russia and Prussia met (Congress of Vienna), on the basis of which Poland came under the influence of imperial Russia. It restored the Polish constitutional monarchy under its influence. Uprisings against Russian rule in 1830 and 1863 only increased the repression against the Polish population.

Capital (1918–1939)

After Poland regained its independence after the end of the First World War in 1918, Warsaw once again became the capital of the newly formed state. In 1919, Poland entered into a war with Bolshevik Russia over historical territories in Ukraine and Lithuania. In the Battle of Warsaw (1920), Polish troops completely destroyed Red Army units attacking the city, thwarting an attempt by Lenin and the Russian Bolsheviks to join forces with the German, French, and Hungarian Bolsheviks to dominate Europe.

World War II

World War II began on September 1, 1939, when Germany invaded the western part of Poland. At the same time, on September 17, 1939, Poland was attacked by the Soviet Union from the east. The country capitulated after w