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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Polish Language

History of the Polish language


The above is a page from Jan Kochanowski's Fraszki, published 1584. As you can see, the language has gone through some transformation over time.

The following is an excerpt from The Slavonic Languages / Bernard Comrie and Greville G. Corbett (eds.).  London and New York: Routledge, 1993, pp. 686-687.  It gives a general overview of Polish as a language.

A really brief history

Poland's national coat of arms has changed through time, reflecting the territorial makeup of the kingdom.  In the above version it reflects the Commonwealth of Poland and Lithuania, which formally existed from the 16th until the 18th century. 

Poland is represented by its White Eagle = Orzeł Biały, while The Chase (pol.  Pogoń, lith. Vytis) stands for the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.  To read more about Polish history, and to learn some basic facts about the country,  you may wish to check out the national statistics page for Poland here.