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Pomerania during the Early Modern Age

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Pomerania during the Early Modern Age covers the history of Pomerania in the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries.

The name Pomerania comes from Slavic po more, which means "[land] by the sea".[1]

The Duchy of Pomerania was fragmented into Pomerania-Stettin (Farther Pomerania) and Pomerania-Wolgast (Western Pomerania) in 1532,[2][3] underwent Protestant Reformation in 1534,[4][5][6] and was even further fragmented in 1569.[7] In 1627, the Thirty Years' War reached the duchy.[8] Since the Treaty of Stettin (1630), it was under Swedish control.[8][9] During the war, the last duke Bogislaw XIV died without an issue. Garrison, plunder, numerous battles, famine and diseases left two thirds of the population dead and most of the country ravaged.[10][11] In the Peace of Westphalia of 1648, the Swedish Empire and Brandenburg-Prussia agreed on a partition of the duchy, which came into effect after the Treaty of Stettin (1653). Western Pomerania became Swedish Pomerania, a Swedish dominion, while Farther Pomerania became a Brandenburg-Prussian province.

A series of wars affected Pomerania in the following centuries. As a consequence, most of the formerly free peasants became serfs of the nobles.[12] Brandenburg-Prussia was able to integrate southern Swedish Pomerania into her Pomeranian province during the Great Northern War, which was confirmed in the Treaty of Stockholm in 1720.[13] In the 18th century, Prussia rebuilt and colonised her war-torn Pomeranian province.[14]

Throughout this time, Pomerelia was within Poland as province of Royal Prussia with certain degree of autonomy until 1569 when it was further integrated with Polish state. In the late 18th century, it was forcefully annexed by Kingdom of Prussia and subjected to Germanization efforts.