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Encyclopedia > Province of Prussia

The Province of Prussia was a province of Poland from the 15th century until 1660, consisting of Royal Prussia and Ducal Prussia.


During the Reformation endemic religious upheavals and wars occurred, and in 1525, the last Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights, Albert of Brandenburg, a member of a cadet branch of the house of Hohenzollern, resigned his position, adopted the Lutheran faith and assumed the title of "Duke of Prussia." In a deal partially brokered by Martin Luther, Ducal Prussia became the first Protestant state. In 1618 the dukedom of Prussia passed to the senior Hohenzollern branch, the ruling Margraves of Brandenburg.


The ducal capital of K÷nigsberg (now the Russian city of Kaliningrad) with the Albertina University established by Duke Albrecht of Prussia in 1544 became a centre of learning and printing. In 1492 a life of Dorothea of Montau, published in Marienburg/Prussia, became the first printed publication in Prussia.


The second Treaty of Thorn had left eastern Prussia as a fief of the Polish Crown. In 1660, after the Northern Wars between Sweden, Poland and Brandenburg, the Treaty of Welawa granted full sovereignty to Frederick William I, the "Great Elector" of Brandenburg, as Duke of Prussia. The treaty also prescribed that when the Hohenzollern ruling expires, the land would revert to the Polish crown. (Hohenzollern rule expired in 1918, when Wilhelm II of Germany abdicated as German Emperor and King of Prussia but the land didn't revert to Poland until the end of WW II in 1945). In 1773, the Dukedom became known as East Prussia.


External links

  • Map of Prussia (http://wwwtest.library.ucla.edu/libraries/mgi/maps/blaeu/prvssia-preview.jpg)

  Results from FactBites:
 
East Prussia - LoveToKnow 1911 (596 words)
EAST PRUSSIA (Ost-Preussen), the easternmost province of the kingdom of Prussia, bounded on the N. by the Baltic, on the E. and S.W. by Russia and Russian Poland, and on the W. by the Prussian province of West Prussia.
East Prussia is the headquarters of the horse-breeding of the country, and contains the principal government stud of Trakehnen; numerous cattle are also fattened on the rich pastures of the rivervalleys.
The extensive woods in the south part of the province harbour a few wolves and lynxes, and the elk is still preserved in the forest of Ibenhorst, near the Kurisches Haff.
East Prussia - Encyclopedia, History, Geography and Biography (2292 words)
East Prussia was located along the southeastern coast of the Baltic Sea, where it enclosed the bulk of the ancestral lands of the now-extinct Old Prussians.
In 1875 the ethnic make-up of East Prussia was 73.48% German-speaking, 18.39% Polish-speaking, and 8.11% Lithuanian-speaking (according to Słownik geograficzny Królestwa Polskiego).
During the interwar period, East Prussia was an exclave of Germany, created as a result of the Treaty of Versailles when most of West Prussia and the former Prussian Province of Posen were ceded to Poland to create the Polish Corridor and the Free City of Danzig.
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