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Baltasar
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Re: Gdansk restored to Poland after WW1?

Post by Baltasar » 28 Aug 2011 19:00

Domen121 wrote:
Even after another harbor was built with money from France and Britain?
What "money from France and Britain"? Do you know when Gdynia was built?
You are avoiding the actual question.
Then economical interests were more important than the will of the people?
During history of our civilization always economical interests have been more important. Also today economical interests are more important - that's why Libyan rebels have received help while Syrian rebels have not.
First of all I don't believe that is true, secondly we're not allowed to discuss modern politics on this forum.

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Re: Gdansk restored to Poland after WW1?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 29 Aug 2011 15:16

The beauty of using pre-WWI German statistics is that, because multi-national states were then common and as there was then no Poland and no prospect of its re-emergence, the Germans had no particular reason to "massage" them. All Polish and German post-WWI statistics were produced in an highly charged, nationalistic atmosphere on both sides.

German census statistics consistently show a Polish majority in the corridor before WWI, and this was despite a century of Germanization.

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Re: Why Westpreussen is an artificial name & (Ost)Preussen i

Post by michael mills » 26 Sep 2011 03:52

[quote]I do not posses enough expertise but it seems that the terms "Great" and "Small Russia" were first used by the Orthodox Church in Constantinople.
/quote]

Correct.

The terms "great" and "small" were geographical terms, used in both medieval Greek and Latin.

The term "small", "mikra" in Greek, "minor" in Latin, denoted a territory that was closer to Constantinople or Rome.

"Great". "megha" in Greek, "Maior" in Latin, denoted a territory further away.

A modern example is Asia Minor, the territory of modern Turkey, denoting the part of Asia closest to Greece.

Another modern example is Great Britain, a translation of the Medieval Latin "Britannia Maior". Britannia Maior was the island of Britain, lying further away from Rome than Britannia Minor, the province of Brittany in France.

The scribes of the Byzantine Empire used the term "Rossia" to denote the land of the Russ people. That land was divided into "Mikra Rossia" (Russia Minor in Latin), the southern part closest to Constantinople, and "Megha Rossia" (Russia Maior in Latin), the northern part part further away from Constantinople.

The words Velikorus and Malorus are simply Slavic translations of the original Greek words used in Byzantine documents. They are purely geographical terms, and do not denote size or political importance.

The terms "White Russia", "Black Russia" and "Red Russia" are also purely geographical designators, borrowed from Mongol-Tatar use of colours to denote the four directions.

In Mongol-Tatar usage, yellow denoted north, red denoted south, white denoted west and black denoted east. Hence the name "Yellow Horde" or "Golden Horde", indicating the Mongol-Tatar khanate lying to the north of the Ilkhanate in Iran.

Thus, White Russia (Belarus) denoted the Rus territory lying furthest to the West, adjoining Poland, while Black Russia (Chernarus) lay to the east of it, comprising the territory from Minsk eastwards (today, Black Russia is part of the state of Belarus). Red Russia (Rus Chervona), also called Galicia, lies to the south of Belarus and Chernarus.

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Re: Why Westpreussen is an artificial name & (Ost)Preussen i

Post by Art » 26 Sep 2011 20:53

michael mills wrote: Thus, White Russia (Belarus) denoted the Rus territory lying furthest to the West, adjoining Poland, while Black Russia (Chernarus) lay to the east of it, comprising the territory from Minsk eastwards (today, Black Russia is part of the state of Belarus). Red Russia (Rus Chervona), also called Galicia, lies to the south of Belarus and Chernarus.
Geographical localization of White and Black Russian wasn't fixed, different authors at different points of time used to designate different regions with these terms. Moscovia or modern central Russia was frequently called White Russia. Alleged Mongol origin of the names is under question mark, as far as I understand.

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Re: Why Westpreussen is an artificial name & (Ost)Preussen i

Post by henryk » 27 Sep 2011 19:04

Here are other reasons for the colours, including contradictory uses:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Russia
Many other variants of this name appeared in ancient maps: for instance, Russia Alba, Russija Alba, Wit Rusland, Weiss Reussen, White Russia, Hvite Russland, Hvíta Rússland, Weiss Russland, Ruthenia Alba, Ruthenie Blanche and Weiss Ruthenien (Weißruthenien), assigned to various territories, often quite distant from that of present Belarus. For example, at one time the term was applied to Novgorod.

A 16th century chronicler Guagnini wrote in his famous book Sarmatiae Europeae descriptio, that Rus' was divided in three parts. The first part, under the rule of the Moscovite Grand Duke, was called White Russia. The second one, under the rule of Polish king, was called Black Russia. And the rest was Red Russia. He also said Moscow was the center of White Russia and Russian metropolitanate, and that Grand Duke of Moscow was called the White Czar, especially by his subjects.

Only by the late 16th century did it become a name for the area of the present Belarus. Until this time and for a long time afterwards the population of this territory (Belarusians) were known as Litvins (i.e., Lithuanians), by the name of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, into which the land had been integrated since the 13th - 14th centuries, or as Ruthenians, by the name of the Ruthenian state which this area used to belong to.

The origins of the name, which is attested from the 14th century, are unclear[1] Vasmer's dictionary mentions the dichotomy of "white" land and "taxed" land in Domostroi and speculates that "white" Russia may have referred to the parts of Russia that were not subject to Tatar rule. Another speculation in Vasmer is that the color of the clothes of the White Russians (perhaps as well as the color of their hair) may have contributed to the name. Trubachev calls both theories "complete fantasies".

Alternatively, it may have its origins in the four coloured cardinal directions used in many Slavic and central Asian cultures, where white is an indicator for north.

It is noteworthy that some other Slavic people have been distinguished by colour. There have been, for example, White, Red and Black Croats. (White Croats and White Croatia lived in today's south-east Poland and western Ukraine, beyond the Carpathians; Red Croats and Red Croatia were situated in today's Croatia, present-day Montenegro, Bosnia, Herzegovina, southern Dalmatia and most of Albania, as well as "Old Serbia" (Raška and Metohija). Black Croats resided beyond the River Don; White Serbs in today's east Germany. There is also a region historically known as Black Ruthenia (Black Russia, Чорная Русь / Chornaya Rus’), it covers northwestern lands of modern-day Belarus: Hrodna, Slonim, Navahrudak, Vaukavysk and partly Minsk region.

The ethnographic explanation is that the term was derived from the old-Slavonic use of colors for the four cardinal points of the compass. The ancient totem-god Svitovyd had four faces. The northern face of the totem was white (hence White Russia), the western face was red (hence Chervona (Red) Rus'), the southern face was black and the eastern green (hence Zelenyj klyn). This, however, makes the placement of Black Ruthenia problematic.

Yet another theory is that the name may have had its origins in the efforts made by Russia's tsars to distinguish themselves from their predecessors in Rome and Byzantium (on the basis that Russia was the "Third Rome"). The Rerum Moscoviticarum Commentarii by Sigismund von Herberstein explains that the Muscovite (disambiguation) rulers wore white robes to distinguish themselves from the purple of the Roman rulers and the red of the Byzantines. The Russian Tsar was thus called the "White Tsar": Sunt qui principem Moscovuiae Album Regem nuncupant. Ego quidem causam diligenter quaerebam, cur Regis Albi nomine appellaretur, or Weisse Reyssen oder weissen Khünig nennen etliche unnd wöllen damit ain underscheid der Reyssen machen (from Rerum Moscoviticarum Commentarii).

The Tsar himself was often called the "Great White Tsar", while he included among his official titles the style (literal translation): "The Sovereign of all Rus': the Great, the Little, and the White". This appellation, together with the solemn wording "White Tsardom", was in use till the very end of the Russian Empire. Ultimately, this colour was transferred onto the name of the counter-revolutionary White Army that fought against the Red Army.

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Re: Gdansk restored to Poland after WW1?

Post by Baltasar » 28 Dec 2011 15:23

You might also easily find a Polish majority in certain other parts of Germany. Those were people who move there for a job. It still does not adress the issue of forcing people not to join their country of choice. The topic seems to be about Danzig and since the majority of it's population wanted to join the Weimar Republic instead of Poland, it would be politcially hard to force them to join Poland.

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Re: Gdansk restored to Poland after WW1?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 29 Dec 2011 14:44

Hi Baltasar,

Sticking to Danzig and your last post:

There was no international appetite to reattach Danzig to Poland after WWI as it was recognized that the city and its hinterland were by then 95% German and had been for centuries. On the other hand, if it remained in Germany it would give Berlin a stranglehold over Poland's international trade.

That was why the Free City was created as a compromise by the League of Nations. It was inside the Polish customs area, but its administration was independent of Poland and almost entirely of local (and some not so local) Germans. Indeed, it for most of the 1930s it was governed by the Nazi Party.

So, Danzig was German, was ruled by Germans all along and this was guaranteed by the international community.There was never international support for it becoming Polish.

The only argument was whether Danzig should be German, or Reich German. Danzig initially enjoyed a stranglehold over Poland's international trade and this was graphically illustrated in 1920 when Danzig dockers refused to unload French weaponry sent the Poles so that they could fight off a Soviet invasion. As a result the international community decided that it was safer that Danzig should just be a German free city rather than part of the Reich.

The Danzig Free City was a fairish solution to a difficult problem, but ultimately proved unworkable in the face of the Nazis' ultranationalism, which could not stomach any Germans living outside the Reich. They either had to be repatriated (South Tyrol, the Baltic States) or their territories annexed (Austria, Sudetenland, Memel, Danzig, Western Poland, etc, etc..)

The Poles were extremely stubborn on this issue, but no amount of flexibility on their part was ever likely to achieve a workable compromise with the Nazis on a point of principle so close to their hearts.

Besides, at no point did Hitler try to detach the Danzig issue from other demands on Poland.

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Re: Gdansk restored to Poland after WW1?

Post by Baltasar » 29 Dec 2011 17:32

The Polish state did construct / extend the facilites of another port between the wars. These facilities should have been sufficient to free Poland of the possible bottleneck Danzig, yet the League of Nations didn't consider attaching Danzig to the Weimar Republic (where it would certainly have contruibuted to support the Republic against extremist elements) or it's successor state.

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Re: Gdansk restored to Poland after WW1?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 30 Dec 2011 17:57

Hi Baltasar,

That is true. Gdynia was built between the wars to carry Polish overseas trade without having to rely on Danzig exclusively.

However, Gdynia was never able to carry all Poland's overseas trade and Danzig still retained a very large slice of it in 1939:

1928 Gdynia (7.6%) Danzig (33.7%)
1933 Gdynia (37.3%) Danzig (31.7%)
1938 Gdynia (46.1%) Danzig (31.3%)

The problem for Danzig was that its existence depended largely on Polish trade. If it returned to Germany and Poland was able to divert all its overseas trade through Gdynia, Danzig would have died as a port and would either have suffered massive unemployment and/or emigration, or have had to be subsidized by the Reich.

Danzig was in something of a lose-lose situation. Its only hope of sustaining its existing population and employment was if its Polish interior returned to German rule - which is what actually happened over 1939-45.

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Stettin and Pomerania in the 12th century

Post by Peter K » 29 Nov 2012 18:12

[Split from "Germany's lost cities: Stettin"]
Since the mid-12th century the whole Pomerania was heavily Germanised, therefore as early as in the end of the 13th century members of the ducal family were speaking German
I wonder if this can be considered true. It was partly Germanised, but by the Danish people. Therefore, they were speaking Old Danish language, not Old German language. Of course the Danes are also Germanic people - but they do not speak the same language as Germans (and did not speak the same language in the Middle Ages, too).

And not "since the mid-12th century", but since the 2nd half of the 12th century - after the end of the Polabian Crusades (1147 - 1185). After the Polabian Crusades Denmark took control over the area of modern Szczecin.

I recommend reading the book "The Northern Crusades" by Eric Christiansen.

BTW - the Danish name for Szczecin (at least that used in 12th and 13th centuries) was Burstaborg.

========================================

As a side note / reflection - it is intriguing that Poland didn't take part in the Polabian Crusades of 1147 - 1185 (the only states that did take part, was the Kingdom of Denmark and the German duchies of Saxony and Bavaria, both ruled by duke Henry the Lion). West Pomerania was the area of interest and expansion, and - up to the river Oder - sphere of strong influence of Poland for a long time in the preceeding period. Even in the early 1120s, Poland under Boleslaw Krzywousty organized a campaign against West Pomerania, subordinating large part of this area (up to the river Odra / Oder, including Szczecin) to Poland. However, it became independent again after Boleslaw's death in 1138. He also divided the state among his sons, most of whom then successfully rebelled against the senior duke Wladyslaw, and as the result during the next decades Poland was an area of internal fights for his heritage. I guess this is the reason why Poland as a state - nor any of its duchies - was not interested in taking part in the crusade called in 1147. As the result Denmark and Saxony finally took what Poland fought for since early 11th century. If not the political fragmentation of Poland which occured at that time, Szczecin would probably never be German or Danish.
There are words which carry the presage of defeat. Defence is such a word. What is the result of an even victorious defence? The next attempt of imposing it to that weaker, defender. The attacker, despite temporary setback, feels the master of situation.

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Re: Germany's lost cities: Stettin

Post by michael mills » 06 Dec 2012 00:36

I wonder if this can be considered true. It was partly Germanised, but by the Danish people. Therefore, they were speaking Old Danish language, not Old German language.
The above represents a misunderstanding of the medieval history of North Germany.

The Kingdom of Denmark was ethnically partially German since it included the German territories of Schleswig and Holstein. The ruling dynasty was also of German origin.

Although the Danish Kingdom established overlordship over large parts of the Baltic coast of what is now North Germany, there was no large-scale settlement of ethnic Danes in the area, essentially because the ethnic Danish population was relatively small. The settlers in the Baltic coastal region between the Elbe and Oder rivers were drawn mostly from what is now the Netherlands, an area that had already become somewhat overpopulated; those settlers spoke a Low German dialect.

In fact, the vast majority of the Germans who settled in the East in the course of the eastward expansion of the various German dukedoms up to and beyond the Oder came from the Netherlands or adjacent areas of modern Germany, and spoke Low German dialects. As an example, the language used in the Monastic State of the Teutonic Order was a Low German dialect, not the Middle German dialect that is the Standard German language of today.

It is a standard part of modern Polish chauvinist propaganda to claim that cities like Stettin, and the whole of eastern Germany were never really German in ethnic identity, that those areas were inhabited by a submerged Slavic population with a thin German veneer. That of course is a total falsehood; ever since at least the late Medieval period Stettin and almost all of Eastern Germany (apart from a few small Slavic enclaves) was ethnically German, the population consisting of a mixture of thoroughly germanised Slavs (who had forgotten their origin) and settlers from the Netherlands and Western Germany.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wends
In 1168 during the Northern Crusades, Denmark mounted a crusade led by Bishop Absalon and King Valdemar the Great against the Wends of Rugia in order to convert them to Christianity. They captured and destroyed Arkona, the Wendish temple fortress, and tore down the statue of the Wendish god, Svantevit. With the capitulation of the Rugian Wends, the last independent pagan Wends were defeated by the surrounding Christian feudal powers.

From 12th to 14th century, German colonists were called into the Wend lands and settled there in large numbers, transforming the area from a Slavic to a Germanic culture. The settlers were called in by local dukes and monasteries to repopulate land devastated in the wars, to cultivate the large woodlands and heavy soils that have not been settled before, and to found cities as part of the "Ostsiedlung" (German eastward expansion).

The German population assimilated most of the Wends, making them disappear as an ethnic minority except for parts of the Sorbs. The Polabian language survived until the beginning of the 19th century in what is now the German state of Lower Saxony.[5] Yet, many place names and some family names in eastern Germany still are of Wendish origin today. Also, the Dukes of Mecklenburg, of Rügen and of Pomerania had Wendish ancestors.

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Re: Germany's lost cities: Stettin

Post by Peter K » 06 Dec 2012 11:13

The Kingdom of Denmark was ethnically partially German since it included the German territories of Schleswig and Holstein.
Those were ethnic Danish terrotories back then according to Christiansen. At least the countryside was fully Danish. Ethnic Danish territory extended to the south as far as to the Bay of Kiel and the mouth of river Eider.

The city of Slesvig (Germ. Schleswig) itself was ethnically mixed - there were Danes, Frisians, Saxons, Russians*, Polabians and Norwegians. Also some Poles, Germans, Slavs from Rugen island, even Greeks (Byzantines).

*Mainly Novgorodians.

This is what Eric Christiansen writes about ethnic / language groups in Slesvig (page 77).

To the south and south-east of the Bay of Kiel was ethnic Slavic territory. Between the Bay of Kiel and the river Trawa (Germ. Trave) lived Wagrowie. From the Trawa river to the upper Warnawa (Germ. Warnow) river lived Warnowie. Areas from the Warnow river to the Rana (Germ. Rugen) island, Piana (Germ. Peene) river and the mouth of the Odra (Germ. Oder) river were inhabited by Veleti. On the Rana island itself lived Ranowie. To the south of those tribes lived the Serbo-Łużyczanie (Sorbs), who spoke slightly different dialects than their neighbours from the north (Sorbs spoke Eastern-Lechitic dialects while those in the north spoke Western-Lechitic dialects).

Eric Christiansen when describing those Slavic duchies & city-states along the Baltic coast up to the Polish-controlled region of Gdańsk (Pomerelia) in early 12th century, listed several large Slavic urban centers / civic centers and wrote that there was not a single city of similar size in Denmark at that time, maybe except of Slesvig.

Those main cities of the Baltic Slavs living west of the Odra river, were: Stargard (Germ. Oldenburg, Dan. Brandehuse); Ljubice (Germ. Lubeck); Racibórz (Germ. Ratzeburg); Mechlin (Germ. Mecklenburg) - Mechlin was the main city of Obodrites; Roztok (Germ. Rostock). On the Rana island were located two important cities - Arkona (Germ. Arkona) and Gardziec (Germ. Garz). At the Piana river were located Dymin (Germ. Demmin), at the Odra river Szczecin (Germ. Stettin, Dan. Burstaborg), in the area around the Szczecin Lagoon - Wołogoszcz (Germ. Wolgast), Uznam (Germ. Usedom), Lubin (Germ. Lebbin), Wolin (Germ. Wollin) and Kamień (Germ. Cammin).

There was also a big Slavic city called Vineta, the exact location of which is nowadays unknown.

As you can see all the modern German names of these cities are derived from old Slavic names (some phonetically and some semantically - like for example in case of Slav. Stargard / Germ. Oldenburg).

Indeed those were very large settlements for that time period and part of Europe. Their wealth resulted from intense trade and raids of Slavic pirates against neighbouring Christian countries. For example Slavic Szczecin had 5000 or more inhabitants, some of whom were slaves (among those slaves were many from Denmark, which was being heavily devastated by raids of Slavic pirates in period prior to the Polabian Crusades of 1147 - 1185).

Danish 12th century historian Saxo Grammaticus referred to Szczecin as an "impregnable fortress" during times when it was held by independent Slavic Pomeranians (until mid-12th century). He wrote that there was a proverb "to be safe like behind the walls of Szczecin". According to German missionary Otto from Bamberg Szczecin was inhabited by ca. 900 Slavic families / clans (plus, of course, their slaves).

One of Slavic merchants & members of the ruling class from Szczecin - certain Domisław - had his "private army" consisting of 500 armed servants and a also private fleet of 6 ships.

Indeed, Slavic Szczecin was never captured during the crusades of 1147 - 1185. But Duke of Pomerania and Szczecin Boguslav I (died 1187) was defeated in the battle of Kamien in 1185 and after that battle he agreed to become a vassal of the Danish king Canute VI (reigned 1182 - 1202). Until 1180 West Pomerania & Szczecin were vassal states of Poland (since the Polish invasion in late 1110s and early 1120s, led by duke Bolesław Krzywousty).

In German and Scandinavian sources all those Western Slavic nations were called Wends.

Regarding the border between German and Slavic territories.

At that time the northern and north-eastern border of Saxon territory was so called "limes Saxoniae" - the one hundred kilometers wide belt of almost completely uninhabited, heavily forested land, extending from the south-western banks of the Bay of Kiel to the town of Lauenburg at the Elbe river - near Hamburg (Christiansen, page 48).

To the south and west of this area lived the Saxons, while to the north and east of it lived the Slavic Wends.
As an example, the language used in the Monastic State of the Teutonic Order was a Low German dialect, not the Middle German dialect that is the Standard German language of today.
In the State of the Teutonic Order was in use not just one language, but many languages.

And even at its high in 15th century Germans were only 40% of the total population of this state. Ethnic Prussian population was gradually undergoing Germanization, but the process lasted well into 17th century.

In the eastern part of the state of the Teutonic Order majority spoke Polish or Pomeranian dialects. In the eastern part of this state, close to the border with Lithuania and near Baltic coasts, majority spoke Baltic languages.

In the southern part - modern Warmia & Mazury - Polish colonists from Mazovia were very numerous.

Regarding how many colonists came to the Teutonic State from various parts of Germany (or other Germanic-speaking countries) - I have a book about the Teutonic State & Society which contains some of such statistics.

=======================================

Some paintings showing architecture & art of the Early Medieval Pagan Slavic city-states along the Baltic coast:
a.jpg
b.jpg
c.jpg
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Last edited by Peter K on 06 Dec 2012 12:31, edited 1 time in total.
There are words which carry the presage of defeat. Defence is such a word. What is the result of an even victorious defence? The next attempt of imposing it to that weaker, defender. The attacker, despite temporary setback, feels the master of situation.

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Re: Germany's lost cities: Stettin

Post by Peter K » 06 Dec 2012 12:30

Some more:
d.jpg
e.jpg
f.JPG
Image
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There are words which carry the presage of defeat. Defence is such a word. What is the result of an even victorious defence? The next attempt of imposing it to that weaker, defender. The attacker, despite temporary setback, feels the master of situation.

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Re: Germany's lost cities: Stettin

Post by Peter K » 06 Dec 2012 12:52

there was no large-scale settlement of ethnic Danes in the area, essentially because the ethnic Danish population was relatively small.
This is a misunderstanding of Danish history. Denmark in the Early Medieval was relatively overpopulated (compared to its limited food resources / rather harsh climate) and this was the main cause of the Viking expansion. Of course the Viking expansion was in period a bit earlier than the one we discuss here, but the (relative) overpopulation did not vanish completely, and the Kingdom of Denmark still wanted to expand - this time to areas along the Baltic Coast - which was one of reasons why Denmark participated in the Polabian Crusades and in the Livonian Crusades.

Nota bene - ethnic German population of Northern & Eastern Germany was also relatively small & population density low - despite this the Saxons participated in the German Eastward expansion and colonized new territories. Of course eastern German territories were not ethnically German in the Middle Ages, especially in the Early Middle Ages. Political expansion of German Eastern Marches and Duchies was not followed immediately by complete Germanization of that land - for example Saxon knighthood did not exterminate ethnic Slavic population of lands conquered by Saxony in the East, but rather imposed them the rules of the Feudal System, including serfdom similar to that in other parts of Germany. In other words, Slavic society consisting of 3 classes - nobles, free people and priests - turned into Feudal society with serfdom. Former Slavic free villagers were turned into serfs of Saxon landowning nobility.
There are words which carry the presage of defeat. Defence is such a word. What is the result of an even victorious defence? The next attempt of imposing it to that weaker, defender. The attacker, despite temporary setback, feels the master of situation.

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Re: Stettin and Pomerania in the 12th century

Post by michael mills » 07 Dec 2012 01:59

Nice pictures, Peter K, but I doubt that early medieval settlements were so clean and tidy, and the garments of the people so brilliantly white.

But the bottom line is that by the end of the Medieval period the city of Stettin, and all the territory from the Elbe to the Oder and some way beyond had an ethnic German population, apart from small Slavic-speaking enclaves. That situation was achieved by two processes:

1. The immigration of German-speaking settlers from the Netherlands and Western Germany.
2. The adoption of German language and culture by the existing Slavic population.

The second process did not only affect the lower strata of the Slavic-speaking population; much of the Slavic nobility retained its lands and lordships, and became part of the German nobility, for example in Mecklenburg and Pomerania.

A similar process occurred in the Monastic State of the Teutonic Order, where Old Prussians who accepted the rule of the Teutonic Order and did not participate in revolts kept their lands and status as freemen, and eventually became fully germanised. The great majority of the population of East Prussia was ethnically German by the end of the Medieval period, consisting of a mixture of immigrants from Germany, germanised Old Prussians, and germanised immigrants from Poland and Lithuania; immigrants from the two latter areas who retained their Slavic and Baltic languages constituted a small minority.

All the descendants of the original Old Prussians who had remained in East Prussia had become ethnically German by the 17th Century, when the Old Prussian language died out. Thus, the Germans expelled from East Prussia in 1945 and the next few years included practically all the descendants of the indigenous Old Prussians.

Furthermore, almost all the pre-1945 Polish-speaking minority in East Prussia, the so-called Masurians, emigrated to Germany from the 1970s onward, claiming the status of Ethnic German. Thus, almost none of the Polish colonists who presently live in part of the former East Prussia have any genuine historical connection to that territory.

In the same way, most of the descendants of the original Slavic populations of Pomerania and Silesia, who had become germanised, were expelled in 1945 and replaced by Slavic colonists from the east, from as far away as Volhynia, who likewise had no historical connection with the territories in which they settled.

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