Maišiagala

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Maišiagala
Town
Skyline of Maišiagala
Coat of arms of Maišiagala
Coat of arms
Maišiagala is located in Lithuania
Maišiagala
Maišiagala
Location of Maišiagala
Coordinates: 54°52′20″N 25°04′00″E / 54.87222°N 25.06667°E / 54.87222; 25.06667Coordinates: 54°52′20″N 25°04′00″E / 54.87222°N 25.06667°E / 54.87222; 25.06667
Country  Lithuania
County Vilnius County
Municipality Vilnius district municipality
Eldership Maišiagala eldership
Capital of Maišiagala eldership
First mentioned 1254
Population (2001)
 • Total 1,634
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 • Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)

Maišiagala (Polish: Mejszagoła) is a historic town in Vilnius district municipality, Lithuania. It is located about 25 km (16 mi) northwest of Vilnius near the Vilnius–Panevėžys highway. According to the 2001 census, it had population of 1,634.[1]

History[edit]

Maišiagala, first mentioned in 1254, is one of the earliest Lithuanian settlements. It had a large defensive castle, which was part of the defensive network around Vilnius against the Teutonic Knights. The wooden castle was destroyed in 1365, but was rebuilt. According to Jan Dlugosz, Grand Duke of Lithuania Algirdas died in this castle in 1377.[2] After the Christianization of Lithuania in 1387, Maišiagala was one of the seven towns in Lithuania where a Catholic church was built.[3] In 1390, during the Lithuanian Civil War of 1389–1392, the castle was burned down and was not rebuilt.

The town continued to exist, growing as a trading center, and was granted city privileges sometime in mid-16th century. Its coat of arms depicted Saint Anthony of Padua. At the time it was royal property and King Sigismund I the Old built a castle for his Italian wife Bona Sforza.[2] Therefore the old hill fort is sometimes known as Bona's Hill. Sigismund also reconstructed the town church. After extinction of the Jagiellon dynasty, Maišiagala lost its status as royal summer residence and began to decline.[3] It became property of various nobles: first Sapieha, then Tyzenhaus family.[2] In 1805 the Houvalt family bought the town from heirs of Ignacy Massalski, Bishop of Vilnius.[3] They built a manor, which now houses a school, in the Classical style.

After World War I, the town was a target of clashes in the Polish–Lithuanian War. After Żeligowski's Mutiny in 1920, it became part of the Republic of Central Lithuania (1920-1922), which merged into the Second Polish Republic in 1922. After the Soviet–Lithuanian Mutual Assistance Treaty of 1939, Lithuania acquired the town.

Among its natives was the great Jewish philosopher Rabbi David ("the Nazirite") Cohen.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Vilniaus apskrities kaimo gyvenamosios vietovės ir jų gyventojai (in Lithuanian). Vilnius: Department of Statistics to the Government of the Republic of Lithuania. 2003. p. 121. ISBN 9955-588-04-7. 
  2. ^ a b c Semaška, Algimantas (2006). Kelionių vadovas po Lietuvą: 1000 lankytinų vietovių norintiems geriau pažinti gimtąjį kraštą (in Lithuanian) (4th ed. ed.). Vilnius: Algimantas. pp. 363–364. ISBN 9986-509-90-4. 
  3. ^ a b c Kviklys, Bronius (1964–1968). Mūsų Lietuva (in Lithuanian) I. Boston: Lietuvių enciklopedijos leidykla. pp. 176–178. OCLC 3303503.