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Portal:Poland

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Welcome to the Poland Portal — Witaj w Portalu o Polsce

Cityscape of Kraków, Poland's former capital
Cityscape of Kraków, Poland's former capital
Coat of arms of Poland

Poland is a country in Central Europe, bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Russia's Kaliningrad Oblast to the north. It is an ancient nation whose history as a state began near the middle of the 10th century. Its golden age occurred in the 16th century when it united with the Grand Duchy of Lithuania to form the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. During the following century, the strengthening of the gentry and internal disorders weakened the nation. In a series of agreements in the late 18th century, Russia, Prussia and Austria partitioned Poland amongst themselves. It regained independence as the Second Polish Republic in the aftermath of World War I only to lose it again when it was occupied by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union in World War II. The nation lost over six million citizens in the war, following which it emerged as the communist Polish People's Republic under strong Soviet influence within the Eastern Bloc. A westward border shift followed by forced population transfers after the war turned a once multiethnic country into a mostly homogeneous nation state. Labor turmoil in 1980 led to the formation of the independent trade union called Solidarity (Solidarność) that over time became a political force which by 1990 had swept parliamentary elections and the presidency. A shock therapy program during the early 1990s enabled the country to transform its economy into one of the most robust in Central Europe. With its transformation to a democratic, market-oriented country completed, Poland joined NATO in 1999 and the European Union in 2004, but has experienced a constitutional crisis and democratic backsliding under the rule of the populist Law and Justice party since 2015.

From Polish history – show another

Kotwica (Anchor), symbol of the Home Army
Kotwica (Anchor), symbol of the Home Army
The Home Army (Armia Krajowa) was the dominant Polish resistance movement in World War II German-occupied Poland. It was loyal to the Polish government-in-exile and constituted the armed wing of what became known as the Polish Underground State. Most common estimates of its membership in 1944 are around 400,000; that figure would make it not only the largest Polish underground resistance movement but one of the two largest in Europe during World War II. The AK's primary resistance operations were the sabotage of German activities; it also fought several full-scale battles against the Germans, particularly in 1943 and 1944 during Operation Tempest. The most widely known AK operation was the failed Warsaw Uprising. (Full article...)

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Detail of a half-timbered wall of the Holy Trinity Church in Świdnica. It is one of the Churches of Peace constructed after the Peace of Westphalia allowed Lutherans to build three churches in the Catholic parts of Silesia. They were to be built outside city walls, without steeples and church bells, and made only of wood, loam and straw. The three churches were erected in Glogau (Głogów), Jauer (Jawor) and Schweidnitz (Świdnica), the latter of which two have survived to this day.

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The New Jewish Cemetery of Kraków

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Mieczysław Jagielski as painted on a commemorative mural
Mieczysław Jagielski as painted on a commemorative mural
Mieczysław Jagielski (1924–1997) was a Polish politician and economist. During the times of the People's Republic of Poland he was the last leading politician from the former eastern regions of pre-World War II Poland. Jagielski became a communist member of parliament in 1957 and he would continue to serve in that capacity for seven consecutive terms until 1985. In 1959, he was posted to be a member of the Central Committee of the Polish United Workers' Party and appointed minister of agriculture. After he left the latter position in 1970, Jagielski became a deputy prime minister, and the next year, a member of the party's politburo. In August 1980, Jagielski represented the government during talks with striking workers in Gdańsk. He negotiated the agreement which recognized the Solidarity trade union as the first independent trade union within the Eastern Bloc. In late July 1981, Jagielski was fired from the deputy premiership, reportedly because he failed to produce a recovery program for the economic crisis Poland was experiencing at that time. The same year, he renounced his membership in the politburo and in the Central Committee. (Full article...)

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Słupsk town hall
Słupsk town hall
Słupsk is a city on the Słupia River, 18 km away from the Baltic Sea coast. It dates back to a medieval Slavic settlement on a ford along a trade route connecting eastern and western parts of Pomerania. Incorporated in 1265, the town gradually fell under Brandenburgian rule, becoming a German town known as Stolp. In Polish hands since the end of World War II, Słupsk is developing thanks to local footwear industry and a bus factory owned by Scania. With the election of Robert Biedroń in 2014, it became the first town in Poland with an openly gay mayor. (Full article...)

Poland now

Recent events

Iga Świątek

Ongoing
Constitutional crisis • COVID-19 pandemic • Belarus–EU border crisis • Ukrainian refugee crisis

Holidays and observances in August 2022
(statutory public holidays in bold)

Polish military aircraft flying in formation during a Polish Armed Forces Day parade

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Wikipedias in the languages of Poland

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