Kingdom of Poland
Baptism of Poland
Christianization of Poland A.D. 966. by Jan Matejko
966 Apr 14

Baptism of Poland

Poznań, Poland

Before the adoption of Christianity in modern-day Poland, there were a number of different pagan tribes. Svetovid was among the most widespread pagan gods worshiped in Poland. Christianity arrived around the late 9th century, most likely around the time when the Vistulan tribe encountered the Christian rite in dealings with their neighbors, the Great Moravia (Bohemian) state.


"The Baptism of Poland" refers to the ceremony when the first ruler of the Polish state, Mieszko I, and much of his court converted to the Christian religion. Mieszko's wife Dobrawa of Bohemia, a zealous Christian, played a significant role in promoting Christianity in Poland, and might have had a significant influence on converting Mieszko himself. The Moravian cultural influence played a significant role in the spread of Christianity onto the Polish lands and the subsequent adoption of that religion. 


The exact place of Mieszko's baptism is disputed; Most historians argue that Gniezno or Poznań are the most likely sites. However, other historians have suggested alternative locations, such as Ostrów Lednicki, or even in German Regensburg. The date of Mieszko's baptism was 14 April 966, Holy Saturday.

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