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Wolin district (Poland)
Kamień Pomorski county, Zachodnio-Pomorskie voivodship
Last modified: 2011-05-14 by andrew weeks
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image by Ivan Sarajcic, 21 Nov 2002
Image after "Wappen und Flaggen der Kreise und Kreisstädte in Pommern",
by Erwin Günther. Old German name: Wollin.
Slavic Wolin is described in contemporary chronicles as 'Opulentissima
civitas Slavorum...' meaning 'The Richest Town of the Slavś; it occurs
also as Jumne. It is also identified with praise by Icelandic skalds
as Jómsborg and the drawn town Vineta - as the legend says.
The times of its greatest excellence fall in the early mediaeval period
(VIII- XII centuries).In that times Wolin was a powerful merchant republic
situated on the very crossing of great trade routes of the contemporary
world. Merchants from Byzance, Central Asia, Russia, Frisia and the nearest
Slavic towns arrived here by sea. Because of Wolin's layout and the role
that it played together with Swedish Birka and Danish Hedeba
beside the Slavs this territory was inhabited by Frisians, Saxons, Russians
and Scandinavian Vikings. The latter arrived to Wolin both as plunderers
(as happened in 1043 during Magnus the Kind's invasion) and as merchants.
Written in the XIIIth century in far Iceland Jómswikingsaga covers
the history of the Vikings from Jómsborg (as the Vikings called
Wolin). This motif also occurs in the saga dedicated to one of the most
famous among Vikings and later King of Norway Olaf Trygvarsson, who lived
in Jómsborg during a certain period of his life. The Danish King
and the founder of the Danish Country Harald Bluetooth also ran away to
Wolin and was given a warm welcome here. He died in Wolin from injuries
suffered in the battle with Swen the Forkbeard's army of the rebels. Archeological
excavations that have been held in Wolin for more than a century represent
a good source of information about both the importance of Wolin as a great
early mediaeval centre of production and trade as well as an important
role in contemporary Europe.
Source: Wollin commune's homepage.
Jens Pattke, 4 Mar 2003
Wolin Coat of Arms
image from this website.