Olsztyn - Copernicus city with 15 lakes
Olsztyn is situated in the southern part of Warmia on the river Łyna, within the boundaries of Olsztyńskie Lakeland. There are 15 lakes situated within the borders of Olsztyn, among numerous frontal moraines which were formed during the last glaciations.
The most important monuments of Olsztyn, the capital of Warmian-Mazurian Voivodship are the Old Town with the castle complex and Saint Jacob Apostle’s Church dating back to the XIV century. The monuments of the Olsztyn Town Square are situated on the European Route of Gothic and the church is deemed one of the greatest monuments of brick gothic era in Poland.
The history of Olsztyn castle is very rich. Under the peace treaty dating back to 1466 signed in Toruń, Olsztyn and the whole area of Warmia, lands that at that time were the property of the State of the Teutonic Knights’ Order went under the rule of Poland. Then the King handed the castle over for the benefit of Warmian bishops.
Nicolas Copernicus himself lived in the castle in Olsztyn for many years. In 1521 he prepared the stronghold/bastion for defence against the Teutonic Knights Order armies, here Copernicus wrote one of the first works in the history of economical thought, explaining the phenomenon of inflation. The character of Copernicus is commemorated by two monuments and memorial boards. A fragment of a wall, on which the great astronomer drew auxiliary lines during his research on the day and night of the equinox in 1517 actually remained in the castle.
In 19th century the city enlarged and became the actual capital city of Warmia. New public buildings were raised, among others new town hall resembling the style of Dutch renaissance, neo-Gothic churches i.e. the Church of the Holly Heart of Jesus Christ and Saint Joseph’s Church, the seat of court clerks and many beautiful living quarters.