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czyca Castle
Coat of arms of czyca
Coat of arms
czyca is located in Poland
Coordinates: 52°3?N 19°12?E / 52.050°N 19.200°E / 52.050; 19.200
Country Poland
Countyczyca County
Gminaczyca (urban gmina)
 o MayorKrzysztof Lipi?ski (suspended)
 o Total9.0 km2 (3.5 sq mi)
 o Total14,362[1]
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 o Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
Car platesELE

czyca [w?n'tt?sa] (in full the Royal Town of czyca; Polish: Królewskie Miasto czyca; German: Lentschitza; Hebrew: ?‎) is a town of 14,362 inhabitants (as of 2016)[1] in central Poland. Situated in the ?ód? Voivodeship, it is the county seat of the czyca County.

Origin of the Name

The town was probably named after a West Slavic (Lechitic) tribe called Leczanie, which inhabited central Poland in the early Middle Ages. Some scholars however claim that the town was named after an Old Polish word g, which means a swampy plain.

In medieval Latin documents, czyca is called Lonsin, Lucic, Lunciz, Lantsiza, Loncizia, Lonsitia and Lunchicia. In the early 12th century, Gallus Anonymus called czyca "Lucic", and in 1154, Arab geographer Muhammad al-Idrisi named it Nugrada, placing it among other main towns of the Kingdom of Poland, such as Kraków, Sieradz, Gniezno, Wroc?aw and Santok.


czyca lies in the middle of the county, and has the area of 8.95 km2 (3.46 square miles). In the past, the town was the capital of the Land of czyca, which was later turned into czyca Voivodeship. In the Second Polish Republic and in 1945 - 1975, czyca belonged to Lodz Voivodeship. In 1975-1998, it was part of Plock Voivodeship. The geometric centre of Poland is located near czyca.


czyca is one of the oldest Polish cities, mentioned in the 12th century. It was the place of the first recorded meeting of Sejm, the Polish parliament, in 1182. In 1229 it became the capital of the Duchy of czyca (see Testament of Boleslaw III Wrymouth), which in 1263 was split into two parts - the Duchy of czyca and the Duchy of Sieradz. In the early 14th century, the czyca Voivodeship was created. This administrative unit of the Kingdom of Poland existed until the Partitions of Poland in the late 18th century.

czyca, which lies in the centre of Poland, was for centuries one of the most important cities of the country. It received Magdeburg rights before 1267, and in 1331 the Teutonic Knights sacked the city during one of their repeated incursions into Poland. A considerable number of buildings were burned down, including two churches. A few decades later, on the initiative of Casimir the Great, the city was walled and a castle built to the southeast of the city.[2]

czyca prospered in the period between the mid-14th and mid-17th centuries. The royal castle, built by Casimir the Great, was located on a small hill, protected by a moat with water from the Bzura river. The complex was made from red brick, set on stone foundations. It was protected by a 10-meter high wall, with a tower located in its southwestern corner. Gate tower was placed in the western wall, in the basement was a prison, and in the courtyard there was a two-storey tenement building. Rooms of that building frequently housed meetings of the Royal Council. In 1964, widespread renovation of the complex began. Another building was added at that time, which now houses the Museum of the Land of czyca.

Soon after its completion in the mid-14th century, the castle was named one of royal residences, and the seat of the Starosta of czyca. In 1406, it was burned by the Teutonic Knights, but the complex was rebuilt so quickly that in 1409, King W?adys?aw II Jagieo attended here a meeting of his advisors, discussing the oncoming war with the Knights.

Following the Battle of Grunwald (1410), a number of high-ranking Teutonic prisoners was kept here for ransom. Four sessions of the Sejm (Polish parliament) took place here: in 1420, 1448, 1454 i 1462. Furthermore, the castle served as headquarters of King Casimir IV Jagiellon, during the Thirteen Years' War (1454-66). At that time, the czyca Voivodeship was divided into three counties - Brzeziny, Orzel and czyca. In 1420, a Bohemian delegation offered here Czech crown to Jagieo. The city's prominence came to an end with the Swedish invasion of Poland when the castle was overrun and most of the city once again destroyed, and it remained in a state of crisis until the Partitions.[2]

Following the invasion of Poland at the start of the Second World War, czyca was occupied by Nazi Germany and incorporated into the region known as Reichsgau Wartheland as part of the district (kreis) of Lentschütz (Germanized word for 'czyca'). In January 1942 there was a forced labor camp operating in or near the town.[3]

Jews had been an important part of the population of czyca since the late 1400s. At the beginning of the war in 1939, the Jewish population was more than 4000, about 30 percent of the community. The Germans began to terrorize, pillage, and humiliate the Jewish population from the beginning of the occupation. The Germans established a ghetto in late 1939, and later forbade any Jew to leave it on penalty of death. After the ghetto was enclosed, hunger and typhus ravaged the ghetto population. Periodically, hundreds of the community were expelled to other places, while Jews in other locations were brought to czyca. In April 1942, the remaining Jews, about 1700 people, were sent to the Chelmno death camp where they were immediately gassed. The local Poles took over their houses and what meager possessions they left behind. [4]

After the war it was reintegrated into the People's Republic of Poland.

Notable locations

A view from the castle tower
Town hall of czyca

Because of its royal history czyca is probably more tourist-worthy than its current size might suggest. Some of the more interesting sights include:

  • The Royal Castle - originally dating from the 14th century, rebuilt from scratch after 1964.
  • The Church of St Andrew the Apostle--the current church dates was consecrated in 1425.
  • The former Dominican monastery in Ul. Pocztowa (served as a prison from 1799 until 2006)[2]. Former political internees include W?adys?aw Gomu?ka and W?adys?aw Frasyniuk.
  • The Cistercian church and monastery in ul. Pozna?ska, built between 1636-1643.
  • The defensive walls of czyca, some of which are still extant. The original walls enclosed an area of approximately 9 hectares, amounted to 1150 metres in length and 7 metres in height.[2] The town plan is still recognisably that of a medieval town.

A couple of kilometres away are the Collegiate church and the earthworks at the site of the medieval settlement of Tum.

Dukes of Sieradz-czyca

after 1305 parts of the united Kingdom of Poland initially as two vassal duchies, later incorporated as czyca Voivodeship and Sieradz Voivodeship.

Dukes of czyca

After 1305 part of the united Kingdom of Poland as a vassal duchy, later after 1343 incorporated by the king Casimir III the Great as the czyca Voivodeship.


Twin towns - sister cities

czyca is twinned with four cities:[5]

See also


  1. ^ a b Population. Size and Structure and Vital Statistics in Poland by Territorial Division in 2016, as of December 31 (PDF). Warszawa: G?ówny Urz?d Statystyczny. 2017. p. 114. ISSN 2451-2087.
  2. ^ a b c czyca, Poland (official tourist guide). czyca, Poland: Urz?d Miasta czyca (Municipal Office of czyca). Cite has empty unknown parameter: |coauthors= (help)
  3. ^ Zwangsarbeit im NS-Staat at German Federal Archive (Bundesarchiv) [1] Accessed September 29, 2011.
  4. ^ Megargee, Geoffrey (2012). Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos. Bloomington, Indiana: University of Indiana Press. p. Volume II, 74-75. ISBN 978-0-253-35599-7.
  5. ^ Miasta Partnerskie - Urz?d miasta czyca (in Polish)

External links

Coordinates: 52°03?N 19°12?E / 52.050°N 19.200°E / 52.050; 19.200

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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