Zagłębie Dąbrowskie

Zagłębie Dąbrowskie

Zagłębie Dąbrowskie (literally "Coal Fields of Dąbrowa"; IPAudio|Zaglebie.ogg| [za'gwɛ̃bʲɛ dɔ̃'brɔvskʲɛ] ) is a historical and geographical region in Poland. It forms a part of the Lesser Poland, though it shares many cultural and historical features of the neighbouring Silesia.

It is often referred to in English as Zaglembie or Zaglembia.Fact|date=August 2008


Zagłębie is a highly industrialised and densely populated region of southern Lesser Poland, bordering Silesia through the Brynica river (running between Sosnowiec and Katowice). Apart from the three main cultural and industrial centres of the area (Dąbrowa Górnicza, Sosnowiec and Będzin), the region also includes a number of smaller cities. Among them are Czeladź, Wojkowice, Siewierz and Sławków,and also smaller villages: Psary, Ożarowice, Bobrowniki and Mierzęcice.

Since the borders of the region were never clearly defined, other towns are also sometimes listed among the cities of Zagłębie. These are: Zawiercie, Poręba, Włodowice, Kroczyce, Ogrodzieniec, Łazy and Olkusz.

Until the 19th century, Zagłębie shared the fate of the rest of the region of Lesser Poland, with the exception of the Duchy of Siewierz, which between 1177 and 1443 was under silesian rule, on 30th December 1443 incorporated back into Lesser Poland as Polish fief and a property of the bishops of Kraków. After the Partitions of Poland, in 1795 Zagłębie was briefly annexed to the Prussian province of New Silesia. In 1807 however, during the Napoleonic Wars and the Polish-Austrian War, it was liberated and became part of the Duchy of Warsaw.

After the Congress of Vienna, along with the greater part of the Duchy, Zagłębie became part of the Russian-controlled Kingdom of Poland. Simultaneously, in both Silesia and Zagłębie, large deposits of coal were discovered and with the opening of the Warsaw-Vienna railroad in 1848, the region became the most industrialised part of the Kingdom. Despite developing simultaneously with adjacent Silesia, the region remained outside of German influence and remained largely Polish, a fact that is still a source of a certain animosity between Silesians and "Zagłębiacy" of Zagłębie. Zagłębie is sometimes called "Red", because of its Socialist or Communist tradition, while Silesia is more conservative and religious. Zagłębie people speak standard Polish, Silesians speak Silesian.

After Poland regained her independence in 1918, Zagłębie became part of the Kielce Voivodship, while the formerly German-held Silesia became part of a separate Silesian Voivodship. After WWII most of Zagłębie was attached to the Silesian Voivodship, later Katowice Voivodship and recently Silesian Voivodship.

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