The Baptism of Poland. Detail from Jan Matejko's Christianization of Poland AD 966.
Fragment of Gesta Hammaburgensis ecclesiae pontificum (1073) by Adam of Bremen, containing the name "Polans": "trans Oddaram sunt Polanos"
West Slav tribes in the 9th and 10th centuries
Book of Henryków. Highlighted in red is the earliest known sentence written in the Old Polish language
Reconstruction of the Slavic temple in Groß Raden
King Casimir III the Great welcomes the Jews to Poland (painting by Gerson, 1874).
West Slavic languages

Poles, or Polish people, are a West Slavic nation and ethnic group, who share a common history, culture, the Polish language and are identified with the country of Poland in Central Europe.

- Poles

West Slavic speaking nations today include the Poles, Czechs, Slovaks, Sorbs and ethnic groups Kashubians, Moravians and Silesians.

- West Slavs
The Baptism of Poland. Detail from Jan Matejko's Christianization of Poland AD 966.

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Poland

Country in Central Europe.

Country in Central Europe.

A reconstruction of a Bronze Age, Lusatian culture settlement in Biskupin, 8th century BC
Poland under the rule of Mieszko I, whose acceptance of Christianity under the auspices of the Latin Church and the Baptism of Poland marked the beginning of statehood in 966.
Casimir III the Great is the only Polish king to receive the title of Great. He built extensively during his reign, and reformed the Polish army along with the country's legal code, 1333–70.
The Battle of Grunwald was fought against the German Order of Teutonic Knights, and resulted in a decisive victory for the Kingdom of Poland, 15 July 1410.
Wawel Castle in Kraków, seat of Polish kings from 1038 until the capital was moved to Warsaw in 1596.
King John III Sobieski defeated the Ottoman Turks at the Battle of Vienna on 12 September 1683.
Stanisław II Augustus, the last King of Poland, reigned from 1764 until his abdication on 25 November 1795.
The partitions of Poland, carried out by the Kingdom of Prussia (blue), the Russian Empire (brown), and the Austrian Habsburg Monarchy (green) in 1772, 1793 and 1795.
Chief of State Marshal Józef Piłsudski was a hero of the Polish independence campaign and the nation's premiere statesman from 1918 until his death on 12 May 1935.
Polish Army 7TP tanks on military manoeuvres shortly before the invasion of Poland in 1939
Pilots of the 303 Polish Fighter Squadron during the Battle of Britain, October 1940
Map of the Holocaust in German-occupied Poland with deportation routes and massacre sites. Major ghettos are marked with yellow stars. Nazi extermination camps are marked with white skulls in black squares. The border in 1941 between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union is marked in red.
At High Noon, 4 June 1989 — political poster featuring Gary Cooper to encourage votes for the Solidarity party in the 1989 elections
Flowers in front of the Presidential Palace following the death of Poland's top government officials in a plane crash on 10 April 2010
Topographic map of Poland
Morskie Oko alpine lake in the Tatra Mountains. Poland has one of the highest densities of lakes in the world.
The wisent, one of Poland's national animals, is commonly found at the ancient and UNESCO-protected Białowieża Forest.
The Sejm is the lower house of the parliament of Poland.
The Constitution of 3 May adopted in 1791 was the first modern constitution in Europe.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, located in Warsaw
Polish Air Force F-16s, a single-engine multirole fighter aircraft
A Mercedes-Benz Sprinter patrol van belonging to the Polish State Police Service (Policja)
The Old City of Zamość is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
PKP Intercity Pendolino at the Wrocław railway station
Physicist and chemist Maria Skłodowska-Curie was the first person to win two Nobel Prizes.
Nicolaus Copernicus, the 16th century Polish astronomer who formulated the heliocentric model of the solar system.
Population of Poland from 1900 to 2010 in millions of inhabitants
Dolina Jadwigi — a bilingual Polish-Kashubian road sign with the village name
John Paul II, born Karol Wojtyła, held the papacy between 1978-2005 and was the first Pole to become a Roman Catholic Pope.
Jagiellonian University in Kraków
The Polish White Eagle is Poland's enduring national and cultural symbol
All Saints' Day on 1 November is one of the most important public holidays in Poland.
Lady with an Ermine (1490) by Leonardo da Vinci. It symbolises Poland's cultural heritage and identity.
Selection of hearty traditional comfort food from Poland, including bigos, gołąbki, żurek, pierogi, placki ziemniaczane, and rye bread.
Traditional polonaise dresses, 1780–1785.
Andrzej Wajda, the recipient of an Honorary Oscar, the Palme d'Or, as well as Honorary Golden Lion and Golden Bear Awards.
Headquarters of the publicly funded national television network TVP in Warsaw
The Stadion Narodowy in Warsaw, home of the national football team, and one of the host stadiums of Euro 2012.

The name is derived from the Polans, a West Slavic tribe who inhabited the Warta River basin of present-day Greater Poland region (6th–8th century CE).

In the 2011 Polish census, 37,310,341 people reported Polish identity, 846,719 Silesian, 232,547 Kashubian and 147,814 German.

Germany

Country in Central Europe.

Country in Central Europe.

The Kingdom of East Francia in 843
Martin Luther (1483–1546), Protestant Reformer
The German Confederation in 1815
Adolf Hitler, dictator of Nazi Germany (1933–1945)
German-occupied Europe in 1942 during World War II
American, Soviet, British, and French occupation zones in Germany and the French-controlled Saar Protectorate, 1947. Territories east of the Oder-Neisse line were transferred to Poland and the Soviet Union under the terms of the Potsdam Conference.
The Berlin Wall during its fall in 1989, with the Brandenburg Gate in the background
Physical map of Germany
Berchtesgaden National Park
German TPz Fuchs armoured personnel carrier
Frankfurt is a leading business centre in Europe and the seat of the European Central Bank.
An ICE 3 on the Cologne–Frankfurt high-speed rail line
Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria
Cologne Cathedral is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Heidelberg University is Germany's oldest institution of higher learning and generally counted among its most renowned.
The Hospital of the Holy Spirit in Lübeck, established in 1286, is a precursor to modern hospitals.
A typical German Weihnachtsmarkt (Christmas market) in Dresden
Ludwig van Beethoven (1770–1827), composer
The Brothers Grimm collected and published popular German folk tales.
Babelsberg Studio in Potsdam near Berlin, the world's first large-scale film studio
Bavarian Bratwurst with mustard, a pretzel and beer
The German national football team after winning the FIFA World Cup for the fourth time in 2014. Football is the most popular sport in Germany.

After the invasion of the Huns in 375, and with the decline of Rome from 395, Germanic tribes moved farther southwest: the Franks established the Frankish Kingdom and pushed east to subjugate Saxony and Bavaria, and areas of what is today eastern Germany were inhabited by Western Slavic tribes.

Nazi policies in German-occupied countries resulted in the deaths of an estimated 2.7 million Poles, 1.3 million Ukrainians, 1 million Belarusians and 3.5 million Soviet prisoners of war.

Slavs

Slavs are the largest European ethnolinguistic group.

Slavs are the largest European ethnolinguistic group.

The origin and migration of Slavs in Europe between the 5th and 10th centuries AD:
Terracotta tile from the 6th–7th century AD found in Vinica, North Macedonia depicts a battle scene between the Bulgars and Slavs with the Latin inscription BOLGAR and SCLAVIGI
Slavic tribes from the 7th to 9th centuries AD in Europe
Great Moravia was one of the first major Slavic states, 833–907 AD
Seal from the pan-Slavic Congress held in Prague, 1848
The "Zbruch Idol" preserved at the Kraków Archaeological Museum
First Bulgarian Empire, the Bulgars were a Turkic semi-nomadic warrior tribe that became Slavicized in the 7th century AD

Present-day Slavs are classified into East Slavs (chiefly Belarusians, Russians, Rusyns, and Ukrainians), West Slavs (chiefly Czechs, Kashubs, Poles, Slovaks, Silesians and Sorbs) and South Slavs (chiefly Bosniaks, Bulgarians, Croats, Macedonians, Montenegrins, Serbs and Slovenes).

Poland under Mieszko's rule between ca. 960–992, encompassing most of the Lechitic tribes within its borders

Lechites

Poland under Mieszko's rule between ca. 960–992, encompassing most of the Lechitic tribes within its borders
The Limes Saxoniae border between the Saxons and the Lechitic Obotrites, established about 810 in present-day Schleswig-Holstein
Depiction of the legendary ruler Lech in Chronica Polonorum by chronicler Maciej Miechowita (Matthias de Miechow)

Lechites (Lechici, Lechiten), also known as the Lechitic tribes (Plemiona lechickie, Lechitische Stämme), is a name given to certain West Slavic tribes who inhabited modern-day Poland and East Germany, and were speakers of the Lechitic languages.

Distinct from the Czech–Slovak subgroup, they are the closest ancestors of ethnic Poles and the Pomeranians and Polabians.