Portal:Silesia

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Silesia

THE SILESIA PORTAL


I n t r o d u c t i o n

Location of Silesia in Central Europe
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Silesia (Polish: Śląsk; Czech: Slezsko; German: About this sound Schlesien ; Silesian German: Schläsing; Latin: Silesia; Silesian: Ślůnsk) is a historical region in Central Europe. Most of it lies within the borders of Poland, with small parts belonging to the Czech Republic and Germany. Silesia is located along the upper and middle Oder (Odra) River, upper Vistula River, and along the Sudetes, and Carpathian (Silesian Beskids) mountain ranges. The largest cities of Silesia are Wrocław and Katowice both located in Poland.

Slavic people arrived in this territory around the 6th century. It then became the territory of Greater Moravia and Bohemia. Rulers of Bohemia received ducal authority by pledging allegiance to Emperor Otto I in 950 AD. With the establishment of the Piast Poland shortly thereafter, Mieszko I of Poland reunited Silesia with the rest of his territories.

In the Middle Ages, Silesia was divided between many independent duchies ruled by a cadet branch of the Piast dynasty (Silesian Piasts). During this time, cultural and ethnic German influence increased due to immigrants from the Holy Roman Empire and subsequently became the majority population in much of the region. It became a possession of the Bohemian crown under the Holy Roman Empire in the 14th century, and passed with that crown to the Habsburg Monarchy of Austria in 1526. The Duchy of Crossen was inherited by Brandenburg in 1476 and, with the renunciation by King Ferdinand I in 1538, it became an integral part of Brandenburg.

In 1742, most of Silesia was seized by King Frederick the Great of Prussia in the War of the Austrian Succession. This part of Silesia constituted the Province of Silesia (later the Prussian provinces of Upper and Lower Silesia) until 1945, when most of the German part of Silesia was seized by the Soviets and transferred to Polish administration after World War II. Austrian Silesia, the small portion of Silesia retained by Austria after the Silesian Wars, now lies within the borders of the contemporary Czech Republic.

Selected article

Spodek

Spodek is a multipurpose arena complex in Katowice, Silesia, Poland, opened in 1971in Korfantego street. Aside from the main dome, the complex includes a gym, an ice rink, a hotel and three large car parks. It is the largest indoor venue of its kind in Poland. It hosts many important cultural and business events. Music concerts are especially common non-sport events. Spodek can hold 11,500 people, although this number is in practice limited to 10,000 or even 8,000, due to stage set-ups obscuring the view. Its name means "saucer" in Polish, because it resembles a tilted flying saucer. Spodek is a major contribution to the cultural significance of Katowice in Poland, especially for the younger generations.

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Silesian Library

Silesian Library (Polish: Biblioteka Śląska), is one of the most modern libraries in Poland, and is located in the south-western city of Katowice, Silesia.

Selected biography

Adolf Anderssen

Karl Ernst Adolf Anderssen (July 6, 1818 - March 13, 1879) was a famous German chess master, one of the most renowned of the classic masters of 19th century chess. He had a long and distinguished chess career, at times considered the leading player in the world, and world famous for his sparkling play even today.

Anderssen was born in Breslau, Germany (now Wrocław, Poland) in 1818. He lived in the city of his birth for most of his life, never married, living with and supporting his widowed mother and his unmarried sister. Anderssen graduated from the public gymnasium in Breslau, then attended university where he studied mathematics and philosophy. He graduated, and took a position at the Friedrichs-Gymnasium as an instructor in 1847 (29 year old) and later Professor of Mathematics. Anderssen lived a quiet, stable, responsible, respectable, middle-class life. His career was teaching math, while his hobby and passion was playing chess. More....

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