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Örjan Martinsson

Grand Princes of Lithuania

Lithuania was the last European country to be Christianized (1387). The Lithuanian state had been created as a defence against the German crusaders who conquered the Baltic during the 13th century. The constant wars transformed Lithuania into a great power and it controlled a vast territory stretching from the Baltic sea to the Black sea. The reason why the Lithuanians became Christians 1387 was that their grand prince had become king over Poland. Lithuania and Poland would thereafter often be in a personal union, which 1569 was transformed into a real union. The Poles dominated this union however and the Lithuanian nobility were gradually polonaised.

1238-1263
1263-1264
1264-1267
1267-1269
1269-1281
1281-1285
1285-1291
1291-1295
1295-1316
1316-1341
1341-1345
1345-1377
1377-1381
1381-1382
Mindaugas ( = 1253)
Treniota
Vaišalgas (Vaišelga)
Švarnas
Traidenis
Daumantas
Butigeidis
Butvydas
Vytenis
Gediminas
Jaunutis
Algirdas
Jogaila
Kęstutis
1382-1392 Jogaila (restored)
1387-1392 Skirgaila (regent)

1392-1430
1430-1432
1432-1440
Vytautas
Švitrigaila
Žygimantas Kęstutaitis
1440-1492 Kazimieras
1492-1506 Aleksandras
1506-1548
Žygimantas Senasis (the Old)


1544-1572 Žygimantas Augustas

The Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth

The grand principality of Lithuania and the kingdom Poland were 1569 united in a permanent union with a weak central power, its name can be translated to either “the Republic” or "the commonwealth". The kings/grand princes were thereafter elected jointly by the Sejm and came from different families.

1573-1574 Henrikas Valua *
1576-1586 Steponas Batoras
1588-1632 Žygimantas Vaza
1632-1648
1648-1668
1669-1673
1674-1696
Vladislovas Vaza *
Jonas Kazimieras Vaza
Mykolas Kaributas Višnioveckis
Jonas Sobieskis
1697-1704 Augustas II Stiprusis (the Strong)
1705-1709 Stanislovas Leščinskis
1709-1733 Augustas II (restored)
1733-1734 Stanislovas Leščinskis (restored)
1734-1763 Augustas III
1764-1795 Stanislovas Augustas Poniatovskis

The third partition of Poland 1795 had the result that all of Lithuania became a part of the Russian empire. The Russian emperors would thereafter use the title “grand prince of Lithuania” but without giving the Lithuanians the same autonomy that Finland and Poland would later receive. Lithuania regained its independence after the First World War.

Kingdom of Lithuania

1918

1918-1940
1940-1990
1990-

Mindaugas II

Republic of Lithuania
Part of the Soviet Union
Republic of Lithuania

* = Henrikas III was French king 1574-1589 and Vladislovas was Russian tsar 1610-1612.

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