Grand Duchy Of Lithuania – 1 of 10 Forgotten Kingdoms Lost To History

Although most people know of large kingdoms like the Romans or the Ottomans, many kingdoms in history have disappeared from public knowledge. These kingdoms were important in ancient history but sadly remain forgotten by most modern people.

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Listverse portal made a Top 10 of Forgotten Kingdoms.

In first place you can find – Grand Duchy Of Lithuania (1236–1795) 

When most people hear of the country Lithuania, they do not think of a major world power. But for a large chunk of European history, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania was one of the most powerful forces on the continent.

At first, they were a set of unaligned tribes. But under King Mindaugas, the various Lithuanian tribes united as a single nation.

The Lithuanians spread their influence across Eastern Europe, conquering territories all the way from the Baltics to the Black Sea, including large chunks of modern-day Ukraine and Russia.

Lithuania also made a powerful alliance with Poland but only under the condition that the grand duke of Lithuania convert to Catholicism. When the grand duke acquiesced, the two countries united under a single ruler. With that rule coming from Lithuania, the grand duchy increased its influence.

However, a series of weak rulers allowed the power of the country to shift to Polish kings. Eventually, the two countries split, allowing the Lithuanians to continue wars with the Muscovites in the East and the Tartars in the South. These wars spread the Lithuanians thin, and they gradually lost territory.

During this time, Poland made a deal to reunite with Lithuania, guaranteeing independence for the state. While this worked for a short time, Poland eventually lost its land to Russian annexation, and Lithuania ceased to exist as an independent state. Yet the small Baltic country was one of the greatest powers in Europe during the medieval period.

 

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