Poland

Poland i/ˈpoʊlənd/ (Polish: Polska), officially the Republic of Poland (Polish: Rzeczpospolita Polska; Kashubian: Pòlskô Repùblika), 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 Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north. The total area of Poland is 312,679 square kilometres (120,726 sq mi), making it the 69th largest country in the world and the 9th largest in Europe. Poland has a population of over 38.5 million people, which makes it the 34th most populous country in the world and the sixth most populous member of the European Union, being its most populous post-communist member. Poland is a unitary state made up of 16 voivodeships. Poland is a member of the European Union, NATO, the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), European Economic Area, International Energy Agency, Council of Europe, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, International Atomic Energy Agency, European Space Agency, G6, Council of the Baltic Sea States, Visegrád Group, Weimar Triangle and Schengen Agreement.

The establishment of a Polish state is often identified with the adoption of Christianity by its ruler Mieszko I in 966, over the territory similar to that of present-day Poland. The Kingdom of Poland was formed in 1025, and in 1569 it cemented a long association with the Grand Duchy of Lithuania by signing the Union of Lublin, forming the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. The Commonwealth ceased to exist in 1795 as the Polish lands were partitioned among the Kingdom of Prussia, the Russian Empire, and Old Austria. Poland regained its independence as the Second Polish Republic in 1918. Two decades later, in September 1939, World War II started with the Nazi Germany and Soviet Union invasion of Poland (Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact). Over six million Polish citizens died in the war. The People's Republic was declared in 1952 although Poland was a client state of the Soviet Union from the closing days of the war. During the Revolutions of 1989, the communist state was overthrown and democratic rule was re-established in the form of the current Poland, constitutionally known as the "Third Polish Republic".

Despite the vast destruction the country experienced in World War II, Poland managed to preserve much of its cultural wealth. There are currently 14 heritage sites inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list in Poland. Since the end of the communist period, Poland has achieved a "very high" ranking in terms of human development.

Read more about Poland:  Etymology, Geography, Politics, Economy, Demographics, Culture, International Rankings

Other articles related to "poland":

President Of Poland
... The President of the Republic of Poland (Polish Prezydent Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej, shorter form Prezydent RP) is the Polish head of state ... are determined in the Constitution of Poland ... The President of the Republic of Poland is the head of state, the supreme representative of Poland in the international arena ...
Poland - International Rankings
... The following are links to international rankings of Poland ... Index Rank Countries reviewed Human Development Index 2011 39th 187 Corruption Perceptions Index 2011 41st 178 OECD Working time 2nd 27 Index of Economic Freedom 2012 64th 179 Privacy International Yearly Privacy ranking of countries, 2007 19th 45 Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index 2011–2012 24th 179 UNICEF 14th 21 Networked Readiness Index 2010–2011 62nd 138 OICA Automobile Production 2010 18th 48 ...
Oder - History
... in the Dagome iudex, which described territory of the Duchy of Poland under Mieszko I of Poland ca ... allies at the Potsdam Conference as the new border between Poland and Germany ... East Germany confirmed the border with Poland in 1950, then West Germany, after a period of refusal, finally accepted the border in 1970 ...
President Of Poland - Former Presidents
... Since former Presidents of Poland are for the most part well-known, public figures (quite often of celebrity status) each of them is entitled to lifetime personal protection (thou ... As of 2012, three former Presidents of Poland are alive Also, three former Acting Presidents are alive Bronisław Komorowski (2010, currently also President) Bogdan Borusewicz (2010) Grzegorz Schetyna (2010 ...
Partitions Of Poland
... The Partitions of Poland or Partitions of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth – three partitions which took place in the second half of the 18th century and ended the existence of the Polish–Lithuan ... The First Partition of Poland, which the Poles proved incapable of resisting, was decided on August 5, 1772 ... Russian and Prussian troops entered Poland again and the Second Partition was signed on January 23, 1793 ...

Famous quotes containing the word poland:

    It is often said that Poland is a country where there is anti-semitism and no Jews, which is pathology in its purest state.
    Bronislaw Geremek (b. 1932)