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December 08, 2021 2 min read
So, was Poland part of Prussia?
Yes, Polish Prussia refers to the territory of Poland under Prussian rule.
But let’s look at the beginnings of Polish history.
Poland, as a kingdom, was founded in 1025. During its history, it has fought many times to preserve its independence and unity. Some of the wars were won - some were lost.
When Poland joined with Lithuania to create the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, it had drawn the eyes of the foreign attackers, wishing to destabilize it. The rule of the war game was (and still is) - stronger forces were to take over the weaker ones.
So, soon it witnessed its partitions, which tore the kingdom apart - literally. Habsburg Monarchy, the Kingdom of Prussia and the Russian Empire divided the kingdom amongst themselves, and Poland ceased to exist on the map of Europe.
The first partition took place in 1772, the second in 1792, and the third in 1795. Prussia, the German state of the time, took rule over the Polish province of Poznania.
Poland under Prussian rule was thought to be the most developed of the three.
Prussian cities, formerly Polish, were Poznan, Torun, Gdansk. The region spreading alongside Baltic sea (Pomerania) became Pomerania Prussia.
During the 123 years of the period of the partition, plus due to the closeness of Prussia throughout its history, Polish land near the border has a lot of Germanic influences. Not to mention that about 20% of the Polish population suddenly lived under foregin rule. Going through the history of the Prussian Poland genealogy, you will most likely come across many families with mixed Polish and German descent. East Prussian surnames, those that combine both the Germanic and the Slavic sounds were and still are common (Abramowski), as are Germanic first names.
Once Poland gained its land back, in came World War I and World War II - German occupation, and it has been only in the recent years that Poland has been able to reestablish itself.
Was Poland under Prussian rule a happy place to live? It depends on the family. For some, it surely has been yet as long as their home was not called Poland - it was not a perfect place to be.
What is the history of the Polish city you come from?
Let us know!
And don’t forget to browse our shop for some proud Polish items!
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