Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • A historical region of north-central Europe including present-day northern Germany and Poland. Its ancient, Baltic-speaking inhabitants were conquered by the Teutonic Knights in the 1200s. West Prussia was ceded to Poland in 1466, and East Prussia became a Polish fief that passed to Brandenburg in 1618. Proclaimed a kingdom in 1701, Prussia became a military power under Frederick II (reigned 1740–1786). Prussia was instrumental in the unification of Germany, and in 1871 its king was declared Kaiser Wilhelm I of Germany.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • proper noun A geographical area on the Baltic coast of northeastern Europe.
  • proper noun historical A Baltic country located in this area, conquered by the Teutonic Order and ultimately absorbed into Germany.
  • proper noun historical A German province which was originally located in this area but later greatly expanded, and which was the predecessor to and a member of the German Empire; abolished as an administrative unit at the end of the Second World War.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a former kingdom in north-central Europe including present-day northern Germany and northern Poland

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From the New Latin Prussia, a Latinization used by Peter of Dusburg of a Baltic-language autonym. The Middle English designation for the region, Pruce, derives from the same Latinization and is the source of the term spruce.

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