Toruń [ˈtɔruɲ] ( listen) (German: Thorn) is a city in northern Poland, on the Vistula River. Its population was 202,591 as of June 2016. Previously it was the capital of the Toruń Voivodeship (1975–98) and the Pomeranian Voivodeship (1921–45). Since 1999, Toruń has been a seat of the self-government of the Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodeship and, as such, is one of its two capitals (together with Bydgoszcz). The cities and neighboring counties form the Bydgoszcz–Toruń twin city metropolitan area. Toruń is one of the oldest cities in Poland, with the first settlement dated back to the 8th century and later having been expanded in 1233 by the Teutonic Knights. Over centuries, it was the home for people of diverse backgrounds and religions. At one point, the city was considered the most modern cultural and technological centre in Medieval Europe. From 1264 until 1411 Toruń was part of the Hanseatic League and by the 17th century it was one of the elite trading points, which greatly affected the city's architecture ranging from Brick Gothic to Mannerism and Baroque. In the early-modern age, the city was a royal city of Poland, it was also considered one of four largest cities of Poland, after the partitions of Poland it was part of Prussia and later on the German Empire.
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