MaloPolska(Little Poland), Halicka Province(Ziemia Halicka)

Galicia, Galicja, Galizien

 The name of Galicja is mostly commonly associated with the Austrio-Hungarian partition of Poland in 1772, the province was made up of Wolyn and Podole. The area is and was very rich in traditions and the initial mention of the Galicja district dates back centuries. The area is full of Historic Polish towns and the ruins of the old Polish castles which are now being slowly being erased by the nationalistic Ukrainian Republic, to make it look like they never existed or are that they were and are part of the Ukrainian heritage. The ancient people of this land weren't Ukrainians but Rusin and/or Ruthenians. I can understand the nationalistic pride but as for the eradication of a proud Polish past history.

Ukrainian or Rusin

It is now 801st anniversary of the birth of the Halich Prince, Daniel Halicki, he received his Princely Title from the Pope in the 11th Century. The crown is believed to be in Poland.

These two Coats of Arms represent the different times of the land





This is the Original "Ziemi Halickiej" Coat of Arms, in the local language the name of the bird is "Halka"


This is the Austrio-Hungarian Coat of Arms of Galicja


Galicia - English, Galicja - Polish, Galiciya - Russian, Galizien - German/Austrian

Galicja (in Polish) Galicia (in English) or Galizien (in German) was the former Crown Land of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy. Its former territories are now shared between southern Poland and western Ukraine.

In old history this land was referred to as Red Rus or Red Ruthenia. Galicia extended from the Biala River in the west to the Zbrucz river, this being a tributary of the Dniester in the farther east. From the Carpathians in the south, the land drops off to the north, passing over the Sarmatian Plain. At its largest part Galicia comprised approximately 78,000 square kilometers.

The term Galicia was pressed into service by the Austrians to denote the lands taken from Poland during the partitions of 1775, 1793 and 1795. The name Galicia comes from Russin name Halychyna. The name of the principality comes from the name of its capital city of Halicz.


The dividing line separates parts of Galicja that was turned over to the Ukrainian Republic at the end of World War2

More detailed map of Galicia

Galicjan Administrative Districts

Major events in the Galicjan history

1387-1772 Galicia ruled by Poland.

1425 First record of artisan guilds in Lwow.

1430 Western Podolia is annexed by Poland.

1463 First citation of the Church Brotherhood of Uspenski in Lwow.

1538 Final transfer of Bukowina (former Galician Land) to Turkish sovereignty.

1538 Moldovan commander Bogdan marches on Galicia.

1586 Lwow brotherhood maintains Stawropehian Laws.

1596 Union of Brest. Beginning of Religious struggles.

1648 Beginning of the Bogdan Zenon Chmielnicki rebellion.

1649 & 1651 Chmielnicki attempts peace with Poland (Zborow & Bilotserk) agreements.

1657 Failure of the Chmielnicki rebellion.

 1744-64 Construction of St. George Cathedral in Lwow.

1772-1918 Period of rule of Galicia by the Austrio-Hungarian Empire

1848 Annulment of Feudalism; Political Rebirth of Galicia.

1861 First railroad in Galicia Pszemysl to Lwow.   

1943-44 Red Army fights to regain Eastern Galicia. Start of forced emmigration/resettlements of Polish populace.

Ancient history of Galicia

Ancient Galicia(Wolyn & Podole) was populated by the Slavic tribes of Dulibes and White Croatians. In 10th century these tribes were conquered by Kievan Rus Prince Wlodzimierz. He established the town Wlodzimierz there and a few small principalities were formed in Halicz, Trebowla and Wlodzimierz. The Galician territory was started to be referred as a Red Rus or Red Ruthenia. The final formation of united Galician principality occurred during the reign of Prince Wlodzimierz of Galicia in 1124 -1152.

Wlodzimierz united small Galician principalities with its capital in Halicz it's first citation was in 1140. In 1152-87 Galicia was ruled by prince Jaroslaw. He expanded the Galician principality to the Danube. Hungarian king Bela III occupied Galicia in 1189 and became "King of Halychyna". Galicia was ruled by Hungarians until Roman, prince of Wolynia managed to take it back. Roman started his rule in 1170 in Wolynia. Wolynia (Wolyn/Vohlyn) was a principality north of Galicia. In 1199 Wolyn (Wolynia) and Galicia were united under the rule of Prince Roman of Smolensk. In 1205 Prince Roman dies and the struggles for his legacy begin. In 1214 Boiaryn Wolodyslaw Kormilchicz became the Prince of Galicia.

The political situation during his rule in Galicia was very unstable and Hungarians and Poles concluded Hungarian-Polish treaty regarding the government of Galicia in town of Spish. It was a time when fifth Mongol invasion started and in

1772 -1918  - Galicia under the Austrio-Hungarian Empire

The negotiations between the three powers, Russia, Prussia and Austria, over the first partition of Poland were concluded on August 5, 1772. The cession treaty between the last King of Poland and Empress Maria Theresa took effect on September 18 1773. Austria received Galicia including the Zamosc district, but excluding Krakow. In the course of the later Napoleonic wars, Zamosc was to be detached from Austria as a new duchy centered at Krakow was established. It was to be subsequently annexed by Austria in 1846. In 1775 Bukowina was conquered by Austria and became another Austrian province, separate from Galicia. On the 1st of September in 1774, the Empress issued the first settlement patent. The second settlement patent was issued on September 17, 1781, by Emperor Josef II which also allowed emigration of foreigners. This patent was supplemented by the Toleranzpatent of October 13, 1781, which proclaimed religious toleration for Protestants. In the years to come, thousands of German families emigrated into Galicia, mostly out of the Palatinate and settled in the newly-founded German communities or in the cities as craftsmen and artisans.

Austrio-Hungarian Military Records

Galician Poster

World War 1 in Galicia

At the outbreak of First World War in 1914, hostilities between Russia and Austria brought on persecution of minorities by both sides. Russians suppressed all cultural and political activities and exiled many prominent persons to Siberia. Retreating Austrians executed a large number of persons, who were suspected to sympathize with Russia. Russian troops entered Austrian Galicia in September 1914. They again started the arrests and exiled to Siberia many leading personalities mainly politicians, lawyers, writers, teachers and civic activists.

In the spring of 1915 Austrians recaptured western Galicja but, things did not go very well for them on other fronts. In an attempt to save the Habsburg Monarchy, social and political reforms were promised. However these did not satisfy subject nationalities, who strived for complete independence. In Russia, following the revolution in March 1917, a Provisional Government was formed headed by Alexander Kerensky. It introduced some democratic freedoms and lifted certain restrictions. All political exiles, were allowed to return home. In March the German - Austrian offensive dislodged the Bolsheviks from Kijow. In compliance with the terms of Brest - Litovsk Peace Treaty the Red Army left the Galicjan territory in April. The Disintegration of Habsburg Empire started in early 1918.

In October 1918 Ukrainian political leaders formed a state called "Western Ukrainian National Republic" consisting of eastern Galicia western Wolynia and northern Bukowina. Defending this new state were Ukrainian Galician Army, consisting of as we would call them Ukrainians from former Austrio-Hungarian army and a local volunteer force. On November 1, Ukrainian forces occupied Lwow, which started the war with Poles, who wished that Galicia became part of the Polish Republic. The Polish forces re captured Lwow on November 21 while the Romanian army occupied Bukowina. By late July, Polish forces re gained control over the whole of Galicia.

In October 1920, Poland made a truce with the Soviets and in March 1921 Polish and Soviet governments signed the Treaty of Riga whereby Poland recognized the Soviet jurisdiction over Right Bank but retained Galicia and western Wolynia. Therefore after World War I and unsuccessful struggle for independence, the Ancient Province of Rus(some call it the present day Ukraine) was divided between four states: Bukowina (Rumania), Transcarpatia (Czechoslovakia), eastern Galicia and western Wolynia were granted to Poland.

 GALICIA in inter war years of Poland, during the Second World War and in the present time

Eastern Galicia became part of Poland as Malopolska (Little Poland). After 1939 and the partition of Poland by Germany and USSR, East Galicia was occupied by Soviet troops and became part of Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic while West Galicia was part of the provisional Polish government of Warsaw. This division has remained to this day. A large part of the German population of East Galicia was, following negotiations, resettled out of the Russian area and into West Galicia. All the Poles populating Eastern Galicia were moved to Poland and all the Ukrainians living in Poland were moved to Ukraine. This resettlement was called "Wisla/Vistula". Contrary to the current Ukrainian Nationalist propaganda this action did not entail a wholesale slaughter of the Ukrainian population.

Red Army retakes Eastern Galicia incorporates it to the USSR's Soviet Ukraine.

Western Galicia remaines a part of Poland, which form newly created Polish provinces of Pod Karapckie and Malopolskie.

After the break up of the Soviet Union Eastern Galicia becomes part of the independent Ukraine.

How the Ukrainian Nationalists from the units of "Banderowcy and UPA/OUN" cleansed Wolyn


Copyright 2003; Paul Havers