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Encyclopedia > Lubawa
Coat of Arms of Lubawa
(Flag) (Coat of Arms)
Motto: none
Voivodship Warmian-Masurian
Municipal government Rada Miasta Lubawa
Mayor Edmund Antoni Standara
Area 16,84 km˛
 - city
 - urban
 - density

9 726 (2004)
City rights
12th century
N 53°30'
E 19°45'
Area code +48 89
Car plates  ?
Twin towns none
Municipal Website (http://www.lubawa.pl/)

Lubawa is a town in Poland. It is located on Sandela river, some 18 kilometres south-east from Iława. It was first mentioned in 1216.



At least since 10th century BC the area of modern Lubawa has been populated by members of the Lusatian culture. In 7th century they were pushed out or assimilated by the tribes of Prussians that arrived from the east.

In 1214 the local Prussian landlord Surwabuno was christened by Christian, the first Catholic bishop of Prussia. The latter is nowadays featured on the coat of arms of Lubawa. The town was first mentioned in a bull of January 18, 1216, issued by Pope Innocent III. Soon afterwards a wooden castle was built. In 1243 a Chełm diocese was created and in 1257 the town became a property of the church and the seat of bishops of Chełm. In 1268 the castle was destroyed. Between 1301 and 1326 a new castle was built of stone by the local bishop named Arnold. In 1330 it was destroyed by an invasion of Lithuanian forces of Gedyminas, but was rebuilt. The area was conquered by the Teutonic Order, but after the Battle of Grunwald in 1410 it was recaptured by Poland and in 1466 assigned to Royal Prussia.

Soon afterwards the town became a centre of local trade and commerce. As such it became one of the seats of the bishops of Warmia. In 1533 it was razed to the ground by a great fire (which was mentioned by Erasmus of Rotterdam), but it was soon rebuilt and between 1535 and 1539 Nicolaus Copernicus lived in the local castle. In 1545 the town and the castle were yet again destroyed by a fire.

The town gained significant profits from the trade. In 1627 the castle was refurbished and became a baroque style palace of bishop Jan Zadzik. By 1640 construction of water works and sewers was completed. After the Partitions of Poland in 1773 the town was briefly incorporated into Prussia. After the dissolution of a short-lived Duchy of Warsaw it was re-annexed by Prussia and then in 1871 became a part of Germany. In 1815 the palace was destroyed by a fire and in 1826 its walls were demolished. After signing the Treaty of Versailles, on January 19, 1920, it was returned to Poland. During the German occupation during the World War II it housed a German concentration camp for children. It was liberated on January 21, 1945.


In addition, Lubawa is an important centre of furniture industry. Also, a "Lubawa S.A." company is located there, which is the biggest Polish producer of military equipment such as bullet proof vests, currently used by both Polish Army and Polish press.


Currently Lubawa is a centre of local tourism. The "Wzgórza Lubawskie" forest reserve is located only some 10 kilometres westwards and the picturesque Drwęca river flows some 5 kilometres to the west. Also, the nearby battlefield of the Battle of Grunwald attracts many tourists, both from Poland and from abroad (mostly from Germany).

Tourist attractions

  1. Monument to children-prisoners of Nazi Germany
  2. two 15th century towers
  3. Parts of city walls from 14th century
  4. Ruins of a Gothic castle
  5. St. Ann's Church from 1330
  6. St. John's Church from 1496-1507, rebuilt in 1603-10
  7. wooden St. Barbara's Church from 1779, built in baroque style
  8. 19th century houses
  9. Łazienki Miejskie park
  10. remnants of wooden sewer system, according to a local urban legend designed by Nicolaus Copernicus

External links:

  • Municipal website (http://www.lubawa.pl/)
  • Lubawa commune (http://www.gminalubawa.pl)
  • Catholic Decanate in Lubawa (http://www.gminalubawa.pl/dekanat/index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=1)
  • Lubawa area on a detailed map of Poland (http://www.pilot.pl/index.php3?z_city_id=202&katalog=n13_&max_katalog=n14_&x_obr=267&y_obr=420&x_15=102440&y_15=80545&form_t=0&tool=1&info=len&lang=en)

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