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Title: Voivodship  
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Subject: Administrative division, Jeremi Wiśniowiecki, Waltershausen, Elizabeth Lacković, Secret Polish Army, Załęże, Dąb, Katowice, Zawodzie, Katowice, Giszowiec, Murcki
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This article is about historical and contemporary voivodeships in various countries. For more on the divisions of modern and historical Poland, see Voivodeships of Poland.

Voivodeship is a term denoting the position of, or more commonly the area administered by, a voivode (local ruler) in several countries of central and eastern Europe. Voivodeships have existed since medieval times in Poland, Romania, Hungary, Lithuania, Latvia, Russia and Serbia. Administrative level of area (territory) of voivodeship is equivalent to duchy in western medieval states, much like the title of voivode was equivalent to that of a duke. Another roughly equivalent title and area in medieval Eastern Europe were those of ban (bojan, vojin or bayan) and banate.

In a modern context, the word normally refers to one of the provinces (województwa) of Poland, of which there are currently 16.


A voi(e)vod(e) (literally, "leader of warriors" or "war leader", equivalent to the Latin "Dux Exercituum" and the German "Herzog") was originally a military commander who stood, in a state's structure, next to the ruler. Later the word came to denote an administrative official.

Words for "voivodeship" in various languages include the Polish: województwo; the Romanian: voievodat; the Serbian: vojvodina (војводина), vojvodstvo (војводство) or vojvodovina (војводовина); the Hungarian: vajdaság; the Belarusian: ваяводства (vajаvodstva); the Lithuanian: vaivadija. Some of these words, or variants of them, may also be used in English.

Named for the word for "voivodeship" is the autonomous Serbian province of Vojvodina.

Though the word "voivodeship" (other spellings are "voievodship" and "voivodship") appears in English dictionaries such as the OED and Webster's, it is not in common general usage, and voivodeships in Poland and elsewhere are frequently referred to as "provinces".[1] Depending on context, historic voivodeships may also be referred to as "duchies", "palatinates" (the Latin word "palatinatus" was used for a voivodeship in Poland), "administrative districts" or "regions".

Current Polish voivodeships

Since 1999, Poland has been divided into the following 16 voivodeships or provinces (for more information see Administrative divisions of Poland and Voivodeships of Poland):

Historical voivodeships

Outside Poland

In the territory of modern Romania and Moldova, the regions of Wallachia, Moldavia and Transylvania were formerly voivodeships.

Historical voivodeships in the territory of modern Serbia include the Voivodeship of Salan (9th–10th century), Voivodeship of Sermon (11th century) and Voivodeship of Syrmia of Radoslav Čelnik (1527–1530). A voivodeship called Serbian Vojvodina was established in 1848–1849; this was transformed into the Voivodeship of Serbia and Banat of Temeschwar, a land within the Austro-Hungarian Empire from 1849 to 1860. This is the origin of the name of the present-day Serbian autonomous province of Vojvodina.

Historical voivodeships in the territory of modern Romania and Serbia include the Voivodeship of Glad (9th–10th century) and the Voivodeship of Ahtum (11th century).

In Poland and its territories

For more information about the divisions of Polish lands in particular periods, see Administrative divisions of Poland ("Historical").

Voivodeships in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (1569–1795):

Voivodeships of Poland, 1921–1939:

  • Silesian Voivodeship (Województwo Śląskie)
  • Białystok Voivodeship (Województwo Białostockie)
  • Kielce Voivodeship (Województwo Kieleckie)
  • Kraków Voivodeship (Województwo Krakowskie)
  • Łódź Voivodeship (Województwo Łódzkie)
  • Lublin Voivodeship (Województwo Lubelskie)
  • Lwów Voivodeship (Województwo Lwowskie)
  • Nowogródek Voivodeship (Województwo Nowogrodzkie)
  • Polesie Voivodeship (Województwo Poleskie)
  • Pomeranian Voivodeship (Województwo Pomorskie)
  • Poznań Voivodeship (Województwo Poznańskie)
  • Stanisławów Voivodeship (Województwo Stanisławowskie)
  • Tarnopol Voivodeship (Województwo Tarnopolskie)
  • Warsaw Voivodeship (Województwo Warszawskie)
  • Wilno Voivodeship (Województwo Wileńskie)
  • Volhynian Voivodeship (Województwo Wołyńkie)

Voivodeships of Poland, 1945–1975:

Voivodeships of Poland, 1975–1998:


Template:Turkish terms for country subdivisions Template:Types of administrative country subdivisionde:Woiwodschaft

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