|Municipality||Anykščiai district municipality|
|Capital of||Anykščiai district municipality
|Granted city rights||1516|
|Time zone||EET (UTC+2)|
|• Summer (DST)||EEST (UTC+3)|
Anykščiai ( pronunciation (help·info); see other names) is a ski resort town in Lithuania, 20 miles (32 kilometres) west of Utena. The Roman Catholic Church of St. Matthias in Anykščiai is the tallest church in Lithuania, with spires measuring 79 metres (259 feet) in height.
The city has a football club FK Anykščiai.
Anykščiai is the Lithuanian name of the town. Its name in other languages includes Polish: Onikszty; Russian: Они́кшты (Onikshty); Belarusian: Ані́кшты (Anikshty); Yiddish: (Aniksht) אַניקשט; German: Onikschten; and Latvian: Anīkšči.
Archeological research in the area has revealed settlements dating from the late Neolithic. Its location on the Šventoji River, connecting it to the Baltic Sea via the Neris River and Neman River, contributed to its development. It also lay on a land route between the cities of Vilnius and Riga. Its strategic importance led to frequent assaults by the Teutonic Order. The first written mention of the town dates to 1442; its first appearance on a map is dated tentatively to about 1578.
Prior to Lithuania re-establishing its independence after World War I, Anykščiai was part of the Kovno Governorate of the Russian Empire. A shtetl existed within the town (Yiddish: Aniksht אַניקשט), with a Jewish population of 2,754 in 1900.
Wool processing facilities, a winery, and Lithuanian and Jewish schools were established after World War I, when its population reached about 4,000. During World War II, its bridges and city center were destroyed. In summer 1941, 2 mass executions of the local Jewish population occurred. Around 1,500 Jews were shot. Over 20 members of the Lithuanians nazis assassinated them.
Notable natives and residents
- Józef Abelewicz, Polish theologian
- Antanas Baranauskas, poet, whose home is preserved in Anykščiai Regional Park.
- Jonas Biliūnas, writer
- Giedrius Titenis, swimmer
- Antanas Vienuolis, writer
Twin towns — Sister cities
Anykščiai is twinned with:
- (English) Skiing in Lithuania - Ski vacation in Lithuania
- "History". Anykščiai district municipality. Retrieved 2009-12-16.
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