Poland is a country located in Central Europe. The country is officially the Republic of Poland in English and Rzeczpospolita Polska in Polish. The country's name is derived from the Polans, a West Slavic tribe that inhabited present-day Poland in the 9th and 10th centuries.
Origin and Meaning
Poland is derived from the Polans, a West Slavic tribe that inhabited the area around the 9th century. The Polans were found in the Warta River Basin in what is today Western Poland. The tribe was named for the Proto-Slavic word "pole" which means field, plain, or open area. Thus the Polans were the people of the fields, people of the plains, field dwellers, or plain dwellers.
The name Poland appeared in 10th-century manuscripts with various Latin and Arabic spellings including Polania, Palania, Polenia, Polonia. The earliest recorded usage of Polish (Polianicus in Latin) dates back to the early 11th century.
The term Rzeczpospolita Polska (The Commonwealth of Poland) has been in use since the early 16th century. However, during that time the region that is now Poland was part of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. Today, many within Poland continue to refer to the country as Rzeczpospolita or simply kraj meaning country. Polska is the common name for the country in Polish and means Polish land.