Thorn was established in 1231 as the first settlement in the Kulmerland under the administration of the Teutonic Order. Originally this was in the area of the later village of Alt-Thorn (Polish: Stary Toruń, since the end of the 20th century the district of Starotoruńskie Przedmieście), around 7.5 km west of today's city, but was moved to its current location in 1236 due to the permanent risk of flooding relocated. The Teutonic Order was called into the country by the Polish Duke Konrad of Masovia in order to Christianize the pagan Baltic Prussians living in the area. The order only became active after Emperor Friedrich II had assured him the right to rule over the land to be conquered in 1226. Landmeister Hermann von Balk laid the foundation stone for the town of Thorn in 1231. Immigrants from Westphalia populated the town, which was granted town charter on December 28, 1233 with the Kulmer Handfeste. Thorn is the oldest city in Prussia.  In 1255 the city still lacked a city wall.  Thorn Castle was built in 1260. The city supposedly got its name after the fortress and barony Toron, a crusader castle of the Teutonic Order in the Holy Land. In old documents the city is called Thoren.In the 14th century Thorn joined the Hanseatic League and, like Elbing, Danzig, Königsberg and Kulm, belonged to the Hanseatic cities. In 1367 Thorn joined the Cologne Confederation of Hanseatic Cities. The endeavors of the order to expand its sovereignty and to control trade at the same time led to armed conflicts and an alliance of the German trading cities with the Kingdom of Poland. In 1411 the First Peace of Thorner was concluded between the Polish King Władysław II Jagiełło and the Teutonic Order. In 1454, when there were new conflicts, the Ordensburg in Thorn was conquered by the Prussian Confederation and destroyed by its citizens.After the Thirteen Years War of the Cities, the Second Peace of Thorner was concluded with the Teutonic Order on October 19, 1466. After that, the order state had to cede large areas around the lower Vistula to the autonomous Prussian Royal Share, which had voluntarily submitted to the sovereignty of the Polish crown. The cities of Thorn, Danzig and Elbing became "district cities" of the Hanseatic League of Polish-Prussian city republics with political representation in the Sejm.
October 31, 2021
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