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For other places with the same name, see Leszno (disambiguation).
Main square
Main square
Coat of arms of Leszno
Coat of arms
Motto: "Leszno — rozwiń skrzydła"
"Leszno — spread your wings"
Leszno is located in Poland
Coordinates: 51°51′N 16°34′E / 51.850°N 16.567°E / 51.850; 16.567
Country  Poland
Voivodeship  Greater Poland
County city county
Established 14th century
Town rights 1547
 • Mayor Tomasz Malepszy
 • Total 31.9 km2 (12.3 sq mi)
Population (2008)
 • Total 71,000
 • Density 2,200/km2 (5,800/sq mi)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 64-100 to 64-106, 64-110
Area code(s) +48 065
Car plates PL
Website www.leszno.pl

Leszno [ˈlɛʂnɔ] ( ) (German: Lissa, between 1800 and 1918 also called Polnisch Lissa or Lissa in Posen) is a town in central Poland with 63,955 inhabitants (2008). Situated in the southern part of the Greater Poland Voivodeship since 1999, it was previously the capital of the Leszno Voivodeship (1975–1998). The town has county status.


Town hall
St. John the Baptist Church
PL Leszno Kamieniczka Wieniawa.JPG

Leszno was first mentioned in historical documents in 1393. The settlement was then the property of Stefan z Karnina of Clan Wieniawa. The family adopted the surname of Leszczyński from the name of their estate according to the medieval custom of the Polish nobility.

In the early 16th century a community of Protestant Unity of the Brethren refugees from Bohemia settled in Leszno invited by the Leszczyński family, who were since 1473 imperial counts and had converted to Calvinism. The arrival of the Bohemian Protestants as well as weavers from nearby Silesia helped the settlement to grow and made it possible to became a town in 1547 by a privilege given by King Sigismund I the Old. Leszno was also the biggest printing center in Greater Poland thanks to the activity of the Protestant community, whose number increased because of inflow of German refugees from Silesia during the Thirty Years War. At the time it already had a Gymnasium school led for a period by Jan Amos Komenský (known in English as Comenius), a Bohemian educator who was a bishop of the Unity of the Brethren. From 1638 to his death in 1647, Johann Heermann, a German-speaking poet, lived in Leszno. Between 1636 and 1639 the town became fortified and its area increased. The golden era of Leszno ended with a large fire in 1655. During the Great Northern War the town was burned again in 1707 by Russians and had a plague in 1709. The Leszczyński family owned the city until 1738 when king Stanisław Leszczyński sold it after he abdicated for the second time.

During the Second Partition of Poland in 1793, Leszno was annexed by Prussia and became part of Province of Posen as Lissa. The town took part in the Greater Poland Uprising (1918–1919) and was returned to Poland by the Treaty of Versailles on 1920 January 17. The local populace had to acquire Polish citizenship. The town was annexed by Nazi Germany in 1939. The Polish population was resettled to the General Government. Most of the town's Jewish population (which in its history included such famous rabbis as Leo Baeck and Jacob of Lissa as well as the writer Ludwig Kalisch) and remaining Poles were murdered by the Nazi Einsatzgruppen. After the defeat of Nazi-Germany the town returned to Poland in 1945. After the war, the city underwent a period of fast development especially between 1975 and 1998 when it was a seat of a voivodeship administrative area. In 2000 the city was awarded "The Golden Star of Town Twinning" prize by the European Commission.

International relations[edit]

Twin towns – Sister cities[edit]

Leszno is twinned with:


Primary schools[edit]

  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 1
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 2
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 3
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 4
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 5
  • Zespół Szkół Specjalnych Nr 6
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 7
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 8
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 9
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 10
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 12
  • Szkoła Podstawowa Nr 13

Middle schools[edit]

  • Gimnazjum Nr 1
  • Gimnazjum Nr 2
  • Gimnazjum Nr 3
  • Gimnazjum Nr 4
  • Gimnazjum Nr 5
  • Zespół Szkół Specjalnych Nr 6
  • Gimnazjum Nr 7 SP 13
  • Gimnazjum Nr 8
  • Gimnazjum Nr 9

Secondary schools[edit]

Technical Schools[edit]

  • Zespół Szkół Rolniczo-Budowlanych im. Synów Pułku
  • Zespół Szkół Ekonomicznych im.Jana Amosa Komeńskiego
  • Zespół Szkół Technicznych im. 55 Poznańskiego Pułku Piechoty http://www.zst-leszno.pl
  • Zespół Szkół Elektroniczno-Telekomunikacyjnych
  • Zespół Szkół Ochrony Środowiska

High schools[edit]



Coordinates: 51°52′N 16°34′E / 51.867°N 16.567°E / 51.867; 16.567