Poznan is one of the oldest and largest cities of Poland, the capital of Greater Poland (Wielkopolska). Situated on area of Poznan’s watershed of Warta, Poznan Lake District and Wrzesinski Plains. Poland’s fifth largest city proper by population – over 550 thousands, and the seventh proper by area. An important centre of trade, industry, service industry, culture, education and a higher education. Furthermore, the seat of metropolis and diocese of Poznan’s Roman Catholic Church. Also the capital of Pomorsko-Wielkopolska Diocese.
The city is full of historic buildings protected by law, which in accordance with the act have status of fixed monuments, among others Old Town, sacred architecture, the Imperial castle. From other city’s attractions is possible to listed: two zoological gardens, the palm house, the botanic garden, historic parks and many different. Poznan, in 2010, ran for the title of the European Capital City of Culture 2016.
Poznan as the large commercial centre organizes The Poznan International Fair every year (taking place since 1925) – concentrated producers and salesmen from entire world. During year Poznan organizes also several dozen commercial-exhibition parties: to the most important we can include Polagra – The agricultural-industrial fair, Polagra Farm and Polagra Ford. Moreover agricultural-gardener Stock of Greater Poland is acting. Poznan after Warsaw is the second centre of banking with the extended service infrastructure, numerous bank head offices and departments of foreign banks.
Culture and education
Poznan has a state-owned colleges (Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan University of Medical Sciences and University of Fine Arts) and private-run colleges (among others Higher School of Managing and Banking). On its area many scientific research facilities are acting. I.e. the Central Laboratory of Batteries and Links, the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry PAN and others departmental institutions. As a community centre city has numerous museums, cinemas, theatres, cyclical parties and others. To numerous cultural institutions acting on the area of Poznan we can rank among others Moniuszko Great Theatre established in 1919; Philharmonic established in 1947 with a male and boys choir “Poznan’s nightingales”; National Museum with the Poland’s art gallery, Poland’s art gallery and world’s painting; literary museums – H. Sienkiewicz, J.I Kraszewski and K.Illakowiczowna. Among cultural parties are: Modern Music Festival – Poznan’s Music Spring has organized since 1961; violin competitions (takes place every 5 years) and International Drama Festival.
The first signs of settlements in what is now Poznan can be traced to the Paleolithic period. Before city was granted a charted in 1230, had been thriving economic centre. One’s coming into existence and development owe mainly strategically location in the central point of Warta valley ravine, where leaded paths from central Polan’s lands to Nadodrze. The first guard castle was built on Ostrow Tumski (a little island between Warta and Cybina rivers) in the middle of the IX century. In the next age guard castle was expansioned and became the mightiest stronghold, and the second after Gniezno, castle’s in capital cities of Poland. In 966 in Poznan, Poland established Christianity, and in 968 the city became seat of the first bishopric in Poland. In 1138, by the testament of Boleslaw Krzywousty Poznan became the domain of Mieszko III. During the reign of Wladyslaw Jagiello the city became an important knot, where commercial trails were crossed. In the XVI century the city developed as the centre of craft (mainly leather, tanning, shoemaking and furrieries). An annual Midsummer Eve fair took place here, which performed the role of international corn exchange. From the end of the XVI century till 1662 a mint worked here. In the XVI Lubranski Academy and a Jesuit Magistrates’ court came into existence. The reformation movement started developing, synods and conventions took place, with the famous reunion of Lutherans and Czech brothers in 1560. Then outstanding specialists in the arts were active in the city:
A. Frycz Modrzewski and J. Lubranski; well-known Protestant theologians as J. Seklucjan or Grzegorz Pawel from Brzezin; and the thirst biblical scholar W. Wrobel. In 1520, Jan Petruus opened the first bookshop in Poznan, whereas in 1576 a certain Melchior Nehrinh opened the first printing house. For the consecutive century for the development for city beneficial conditions lasted, which broke the Swidish Deluge in 1655 and next wars. Years between 1830 and 1848 were so-called golden age of the Great Poland culture. Poznan became the centre of the Polish scientific and political-social thought, a publishing was being conducted, bookshops, printing houses, libraries came into existence. A boom of the agricultural-food-processing, metal and machine industry took place from the second half of the XIX century; in the interwar period a broad development of the city was taken note. After the II World War the rebuilt city still constituted one of the most important centers of learning, cultural and economic in the country.
The natural system of Poznan is based on a system of green in the form of wedges coming from the centre in direction of outskirts. A nature of city consists of 4082 hectares of forests, parks, greens, two nature reserves; Meteoryt Morasko, Zurawiniec, three landscape parks, four farmlands, bats’ habitats and a few lakes. Poznan is the fourth universities’ centre in the country (25 universities).