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Panorama of Kraków, former capital of Poland

Welcome to the Poland Portal
Witaj w Portalu o Polsce

Coat of arms of Poland
Map 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 People's Republic of Poland 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 largely completed, Poland is an increasingly active member of NATO and the European Union.

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From Polish history

A historically inaccurate depiction of Boleslaus and Svyatopolk entering Kiev through the Golden Gate, by Jan Matejko, 1883
The intervention in the Kievan succession crisis by Duke Boleslaus the Brave of Poland in 1015–1019 was an episode in the struggle between Svyatopolk Vladimirovich the Accursed and his brother, Yaroslav the Wise, for the rulership of Kiev and Kievan Rus'. It occurred when Boleslaus, Svyatopolk's father-in-law, intervened on the latter's behalf. The intervention was initially successful as Boleslaus defeated Yaroslav's armies and temporarily secured the throne for Svyatopolk. Svyatopolk, however, was unable to retain his position after Boleslaus withdrew from Kiev and was defeated by Yaroslav in the following year. Chronicles of the expedition include legendary accounts as well as factual history and have been subject to varied interpretations.
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Monument to the Fallen Shipyard Workers of 1970
Credit: Jan Mehlich

The Monument to the Fallen Shipyard Workers of 1970 outside the Gdańsk Shipyard consists of three anchors, each hanging from a concrete cross 42 meters tall. It commemorates 42 workers killed during the 1970 protests against price hikes. The monument, marking the spot where the first three men fell, was erected thanks to the 1980 Gdańsk Agreement between Solidarity and communist authorities.

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From Wikipedia's new or recently improved articles about Poland:

The Lusatian Neisse river separating Görlitz, Germany, from Zgorzelec, Poland

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Stanisław Lem
Stanisław Lem (1921–2006) was a Polish science fiction, philosophical and satirical writer, best known for his novel Solaris. His works explore philosophical themes; speculation on technology, the nature of intelligence, the impossibility of mutual communication and understanding, despair about human limitations and humankind's place in the universe. They are sometimes presented as fiction, but others are in the form of essays or philosophical books. His works have been translated into 41 languages and have sold over 27 million copies. In 1976, Theodore Sturgeon claimed that Lem was the most widely read science-fiction writer in the world.
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The Spodek multipurpose sports arena at night

Katowice, located on the Kłodnica and Rawa rivers in the Silesian Highlands, is the capital city of the Silesian Voivodeship. With 312,201 inhabitants, it is the largest city of the Upper Silesian Industry Area and the principal scientific, cultural, industrial, business and transport center of the region. Before World War II, Katowice was the seat of the Silesian Sejm, the legislature of the Silesian Voivodeship. The multipurpose arena complex known as Spodek, or "Saucer" (pictured), is the city's most recognizable landmark.

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Poland now

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U.S. President Barack Obama (left) and Polish PM Donald Tusk

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