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Information about Prussia, Duchy of.

Country: Prussia, Duchy of
Province ofPolish-Lithuanian Commonwealth
From year1525
Existed to1701

The Duchy of Prussia (German: Herzogtum Preußen, Polish: Księstwo Pruskie) or Ducal Prussia (German: Herzogliches Preußen, Polish: Prusy Książęce) was a duchy in eastern Prussia established during the Protestant Reformation in 1525. It was the first officially Lutheran duchy with a dominant German-speaking population, as well as Polish and Lithuanian minorities. In old texts and in Latin, the term Prut(h)enia refers alike to Ducal Prussia, its western neighbor Royal Prussia, and their common predecessor, Teutonic Prussia. The adjectival form of the name was "Prut(h)enic".

In 1525 during the Protestant Reformation, the Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights, Albert, secularized the order's Prussian territory, becoming Albert, Duke of Prussia. The Lutheran church established in his duchy was the first Protestant state church to be founded. His duchy, which had its capital in Königsberg (Polish: Królewiec, Lithuanian: Karaliaučius; modern Kaliningrad), was established as fief of the Crown of Poland. It was inherited by the Hohenzollern prince-electors of Brandenburg in 1618; this personal union is referred to as Brandenburg-Prussia. Frederick William, the "Great Elector" of Brandenburg, achieved full sovereignty over the territory in the 1657 Treaty of Wehlau, which was confirmed in the 1660 Treaty of Oliva. The Duchy of Prussia was elevated to the Kingdom of Prussia in 1701.

Monarch reigns
Albrecht von Preussen (Duke Albert) 10 April 1525 20 March 1568
Albrecht Friedrich von Preussen (Duke Albert Frederick) 20 March 1568 28 August 1618
Johann Sigismund (Duke John Sigismund) of Brandenburg 28 August 1618 23 December 1619
Georg Wilhelm (Duke George William) of Brandenburg 23 December 1619 1 December 1640
Friedrich Wilhelm (Duke Frederick William) of Brandenburg 1 December 1640 29 April 1688
Friedrich I. von Preussen (Duke Frederick I) 29 April 1688 18 January 1701