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Tag Archives: VARVOUNIS-M

Vilnius Dispute Brother Against Brother

By Miltiades Varvounis. After the last partition of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in 1795, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania was annexed by the Russian Empire. However, the Lithuanian national revival emerged during the late 19th century and the movement to establish an independent nation-state intensified during the early 20th century. During ...

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Witchcraft in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania

By Miltiades Varvounis. Witch hysteria took hold in Europe during the mid-1400s, when many accused witches confessed, often under torture, to a variety of wicked behaviors. Within a century, witch hunts were common and most of the accused were executed by burning at the stake or hanging. The publication of ...

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Vincas Kudirka, Herald of the Modern Lithuanian Nation

The home of Vincas Kudirka in Paežeriai. Photo from 1911

By Miltiades Varvounis. At the time when Lithuania was under Russian rule, national identity was shaped by the Lithuanian intelligentsia, the educated social elite in the country. One of the most prominent intellectuals and activists of the late 19th century was Vincas Kudirka, a publicist and publisher, author of Lithuania’s ...

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Chodkevicius is the central figure in this famous painting of the Battle of Chocim by Polish artist Jozef Brandt.

By Miltiades Varvounis. The Chodkevičius (Chodkiewicz) family was one of the richest and most influential families of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (GDL) in the 16th –17th centuries. The most prominent member of this family was Jonas Karolis Chodkevičius (Jan Karol Chodkiewicz), a renowned Lithuanian military commander. He played a ...

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The Tatars and Karaim of Lithuania

The first Lithuanian State, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (GDL), which existed from the thirteenth to the eighteenth century, was basically an emanation of the Lithuanian people, but also a multinational and multicultural state. The Lithuanians concentrated at the core were about one third of its population; the rest were ...

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Lithuania On the Map: Cartography in Lithuania From the Sixteenth to the Eighteenth Century

Cartography (from the Greek Khartes, papyrus, and graphein, to write) is a witrecreated at a later date from his writings. We are aware of several fifteenth-century maps of Central Europe that present a topographic image of Lithuania, but they were compiled by Italian mapmakers from the data given by Ptolemy ...

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Captain Cook’s Naturalist, Georg Forster, in Lithuania 1784-1787

Today, Johann Georg Adam Forster is not a household name. This contrasts very much with his own time, when he was the author of a celebrated book about James Cook’s second voyage to the South Pacific, A  Voyage Round the World. As a traveler and naturalist, he made major contributions ...

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Was Columbus a Lithuanian Prince?

By Miltiades Varvounis arvounis WHO WAS CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS? WELL, THE date of his birth, his birthplace, and his parentage are all tangled in obscurity. To this day, no hard evidence tells us exactly where he came from, what his native language was or even his proper name. For unknown reasons, ...

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Zygmunt Mineyko: the Lithuanian Count of Monte Cristo

By Miltiades Varvounis IN 1795, THE NAME OF LITHUANIA WAS ERASED from the map of the world. Most of the lands of the former Grand Duchy of Lithuania were directly annexed by the Russian Empire, and a policy of Russification was fiercely implemented. Describing the horrible Russian occupation of Lithuania, ...

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The British in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania

By Miltiades Varvounis The British in the Grand Duchy  of Lithuania For over five hundred years Britons have visited the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Some came as warriors, others as diplomats, educators or traders, and still others as permanent settlers BRITONS HAVE BEEN VISITING LITHUANIA AND Lithuanians Great Britain since ...

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