Poland

Article

October 19, 2021

Poland (European Portuguese) or Poland (Brazilian Portuguese) (Polish/Polish: Polska, pronounced: [ˈpɔlska] (listen )), officially Republic of Poland (Polish/Polish: Rzeczpospolita Polska, pronounced: [ʐɛt͡ʂpɔˈspɔʎit̪a ˈpɔlska] (listen )), is a country in Central Europe that shares borders with Germany to the west; with Czechia and Slovakia to the south; with Ukraine and Belarus to the east; with the Baltic Sea, Kaliningrad Oblast (a Russian exclave) and Lithuania to the north. The nation's total area is 312,679 square kilometers, making it the 69th largest country in the world and the 9th largest in Europe. With a population of over 38.5 million people, Poland is the 34th most populous country in the world, the sixth most populous member of the European Union (EU) and the most populous post-communist state in the EU. Poland is a unitary state divided into 16 voivodeships (administrative subdivisions). Many historians trace the establishment of the Polish state to 966, when Mieszko I, ruler of a territory roughly the same extent as present-day Poland, converted to Poland. Catholicism. The Kingdom of Poland was founded in 1025 and in 1569 cemented a long-standing political association with the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, signing the Union of Lublin, which eventually formed the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The Commonwealth gradually ceased to exist in the years 1772-1795, when Polish territory was divided between the Kingdom of Prussia, the Russian Empire and Austria. Poland regained its independence (as the Second Polish Republic) at the end of World War I in 1918. Two decades later, in September 1939, World War II began with the invasion of Poland by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union (as part of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact). More than six million Polish citizens died in the war. In 1944 the People's Republic of Poland was proclaimed and in 1947, after a brief period of low-intensity civil war, referendums and rigged elections, the country became one of the members of the Iron Curtain, the set of allied countries. of the Soviet Union. During the 1989 Revolutions, the Polish communist government was overthrown and Poland adopted a new constitution, which established the country as a democracy and renamed it the Polish Third Republic. Poland is a developed country with an advanced economy and high standards of living . Despite the enormous destruction caused to the country by World War II, Poland managed to preserve much of its cultural wealth. There are 16 places in the country inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list, in addition to another 54 "Historical Monuments". Poland is currently considered a country with "very high" human development.

Etymology

The origin of the name Poland is still uncertain. It can be derived from Polish words like polo (field).

History

Prehistory

Historians have postulated that throughout Late Antiquity several ethnic groups populated the region now known as Poland. The exact ethnicity and linguistic affiliation of these groups is still a matter of heated debate; the date and route taken by the original Slavic settlers in these regions, in particular, arouse great controversy. The most famous archaeological find in Polish prehistory is the fortified colony of Biskupin (now rebuilt as a museum), which dates back to the Lusatian (an ethnic group that inhabited near the River Neisse) culture of the Iron Age, circa 700 BC.

Foundation, Golden Age and Polish-Lithuanian Community

Poland was founded in the mid-10th century by the Piast dynasty. The first historically verified Polish ruler, Miecislas I, was baptized in 966 and then adopted Catholicism as his country's official religion. In the 12th century, Poland fragmented into several states.

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