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Wołów ˈvɔwuf German: Wohlau, Czech: Volov is a town in Lower Silesian Voivodeship in south-western Poland It is the seat of Wołów County, and of the smaller administrative district gmina called Gmina Wołów It lies approximately 38 kilometres 24 miles north-west of the regional capital Wrocław As of 2006update, the town has a population of 12,286


  • 1 Name
  • 2 History
  • 3 Notable residents
  • 4 References
  • 5 External links


The town's name is derived from the Polish word wół "ox"


The area around Wołów was settled since prehistoric times1 It was first mentioned in 11572 when a wooden castle founded by Senior Duke of Poland Władysław II the Exile is documented,34 which developed into a castle complex, which was again mentioned in 12025 Two villages developed near the castle, one of them called Wołowo Probably in the second half of the 13th century the town was founded near Wołowo and partially on the soil of the second village6 Wołów received German town law about 1285; a Vogt is mentioned in 12886

Wohlau around 1750 Wołów Castle

At that time Wołów belonged to the Duchy of Głogów, after 1312 to the Duchy of Oels6 With the duchy it passed to Bohemia in 1328 In 1517 Johann Thurzo received Wołów From shortly before, 1473, dates the oldest known seal of the town, which already shows an ox, as do all later seals In 1523 the town passed to the Duchy of Legnica and remained there until the dukes of Liegnica-Brzeg-Wołów died out in 1675

The Protestant Reformation was introduced to the town in 1522 by duke Frederick II After the extinction of the local Piasts the duchy passed to the House of Habsburg, which opposed the Protestant denomination in the town, as part of the Counter-Reformation In 1682 the town's parish church was closed and given to the Catholics According to the Treaty of Altranstädt the church however was already returned to the Protestants in 1707 and stayed Protestant until 1945 The small Catholic minority in return received a Josephinian curacy7

In 1742 Wohlau was annexed by Prussia The duchy was divided into two districts and the town became county seat of one of the districts The structure of the town was, until 1700, defined by craft, especially clothiers As the seat of a duchy and a district administrative function however became more and more important The industrialization played only a minor role and mostly affected smaller companies of the timber industry7

In January 1945 – just before town was taken by the Red Army – the Wehrmacht evacuated the German population westwardscitation needed In the May 1945, Poles – some of whom expelled by the Soviets from the eastern part of pre-war Poland – started to settle in Wołów and Lower Silesia with the native German population expelledcitation needed

Notable residentsedit

  • Mirosław Hermaszewski born September 15, 1941 The first and to this day remains the only Polish national in space
  • Jan II the Mad Polish: Jan II Szalony; 16 April 1435 – 22 September 1504, was a Polish House of Silesian Piasts dynasty Duke of Żagań-Przewóz since 1439 Jan II died in Wołów on 22 September 1504, ending with him the male line of the Piast Żagań-Głogów branch He was buried in the local parish church
  • Oskar Müller 1896-1970 German politician


  1. ^ Hugo Weczerka, Handbuch der historischen Stätten, Schlesien, 2003, p570, ISBN 3-520-31602-1
  2. ^ Józef Pilch, Leksykon zabytków architektury Dolnego Śląska, Wydawn "Arkady", 2005, p 403 link
  3. ^ Romuald M Łuczyński, Chronologia dziejów Dolnego Śląska, Oficyna Wydawn ATUT, Wrocławskie Wydawn Oświatowe, 2006, p 143 link
  4. ^ Ernst Badstübner, Dehio - Handbuch der Kunstdenkmäler in Polen: Schlesien, 2003, p1028, ISBN 3-422-03109-X
  5. ^ Badstübner, p1028
  6. ^ a b c Weczerka, p570
  7. ^ a b Weczerka, p571

External linksedit

  • Official site of Wołów
  • Wohlau Wołów and Polnischdorf Polska Wieś on an Austro-Hungarian military map 1:200 000 from c1910

Coordinates: 51°20′29″N 16°37′42″E / 5134139°N 1662833°E / 5134139; 1662833

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