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  About Vilnius   The City’s History   Historical Timeline   Streets, Squares, Hills, and Courtyards   Geography   Houses of Worship   Publications about Vilnius   Places of Events   Recommended Destinations   Galleries and Exibition Centres   Interesting to Know
City guide
 
Historical Timeline
7th–2nd Centuries BC  The first Baltic tribes established themselves on territory which is now known as Lithuania.
1009  Lithuania was first mentioned in written texts, the Kvedlinburgh Chronicle, as the country where archbishop Brunonus was ‘hit over the head by pagans in Lituae and then went to heaven’.
1236  Duke Mindaugas united local chieftains to defeat the Livonian knights at the battle of Saule and established the state of Lithuania. Embracing Christianity for political reasons he was crowned Lithuania’s one and the only king in 1253. Now July 6th is the Day of Lithuanian Statehood.
1323  During the reign of the Grand Duke of Lithuania Gediminas Vilnius was first mentioned as the capital of Lithuania. The Grand Duke sent an official invitation to many Western European merchants and craftsmen to visit the city, settle and work here.
1387  The Grand Duke Jogaila after entering into royal union with Poland and christianising Lithuania granted Vilnius municipal rights. Lithuania was the last pagan state converted to Christianity.
1410  The Army, united and led by two cousins, Jogaila the King of Poland and Vytautas the Grand Duke of Lithuania, achieved a resounding victory in the historic Battle of Grunewald (Žalgiris) against the Teutonic knights. Vilnius was able to expand southwards from the confines of the original site.
1495  The first goldsmith and sewing crafts guilds were established. Vilnius starts its expanding as trade, industrial and cultural centre of the Eastern Europe.
1522  Pranciskus Skoryna established the very first Printing House of the city. Vilnius flourished as a city of merchants and craftsmen, becoming one of the great book printing centres of Europe.
1569  Vilnius lost its significance, as a royal residence and administrative capital after Lublin Union, when the Commonwealth of Lithuania and Poland was created, as Warsaw, thanks to its central location, became the hub of the huge united state.
1579  The school founded by Jesuits in 1570 was raised to University status and became the most important cultural centre in the region.
1795  Following the third Partition of the Lithuanian-Polish State Lithuania was annexed to Russia and Vilnius became the centre of the Governor-General’s province. The city was plundered and devastated; many of its citizens were killed, or forcibly exiled to outlying eastern regions of Russia.
1831  After the failed Rebellion Vilnius University was closed, Catholic churches were changed to Russian Orthodox and monasteries were either closed, or converted into military barracks. Despite such destruction, Vilnius distinguished itself among the other cities of Russian empire by the sheer number of guilds in existence.
1869  The St. Petersburg–Vilnius–Warsaw railway was completed, the first gas factory was built, cast iron foundry and a tobacco plant were opened, and the first brewery was established. In the early 20th century Vilnius became the centre of Lithuanian national revival.
1918  On February 16 the restoration of the Independent State of Lithuania was proclaimed.
1920  Poland annexed Vilnius and the Lithuanian capital was transferred to Kaunas.
1939  Lithuanian independence ended with the secret signing of the Molotov-Ribbentropp pact and agreeing on a division of political spheres of influence. The Soviets restored Vilnius to Lithuania as its capital in return for the right to establish military bases there. That paved the following annexation of the country.
WWII  During the Second World War Vilnius Old Town suffered great losses. However, the majority of the most valuable monuments survived.
1990  On March 11 the Supreme Council announced Lithuanian independence restored and a new cultural social and economical revival period commenced in the country and its capital.
2003  More than 90% of the Lithuanian voters said YES in the 11 May’s EU accession referendum. In May 2004 Lithuania becomes a member of the EU.
2004  In May, Lithuania became a member of th EU and the NATO.
 
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  About Vilnius   The City’s History   Historical Timeline   Streets, Squares, Hills, and Courtyards   Geography   Houses of Worship   Publications about Vilnius   Places of Events   Recommended Destinations   Galleries and Exibition Centres   Interesting to Know


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