- In brief
- Project motto, vision, mission, values & objectives
- The Council of Europe's Future Cultural Route
- Association of Local Governments "The Gediminids' Way"
- Czech Rupublic
- Project development chronology
Ukmerge District Municipality
A municipality in the Vilnius County in eastern Lithuania. Its administrative centre and largest city, Ukmergė, is one of the oldest in Lithuania. The city sits on the confluence of the Vilkmergėlė and Šventoji rivers (55°14′50"N 24°45′50"E), 78 km (48 mi) northwest of Vilnius, the Lithuanian capital. Ethnographic region: Aukštaitija.
Population, district: 37,911 in 2013 (Lithuanians, 93%; Russians, 6%; Belarusians, Poles and Ukrainians, 1%).
Population, Ukmergė: 22,732 in 2013.
Area, district: 1,395 sq km (539 sq mi).
First record, Ukmergė: 1333 as Vilkenberge.
Signed the Memorandum of Cooperation with the Association of Local Governments "The Gediminids’ Way" on February 19, 2014.
site of the Ukmergė District
Ukmergė development began with the formation of the state of Lithuania. According to archaeological research, settlements in the Ukmergė area appeared as early as around the 11th century. Since then, the town has been known under a whole series of names: Wilkemerge, Wilkamergen, Vilkenberge, Wilkinberg, Vilkomir, Wilkomir, Wilkomirz, Wilkomiria, Aukmergė, Ūkmergė, Wilkomierz, Vilkmergė, and Ukmergė.
Stephen Rowell, in his book Lithuania Ascending: A Pagan Empire within East-Central Europe, 1295-1345, suggests that the Gediminids dynasty had its origin in Ukmergė, from Duke Vilikaila. According to the historian, Ukmergė was in the center of the Gediminids' territorial possessions, and was their main stronghold in Eastern Lithuania.
Ukmergė was first mentioned in 1333 in the Chronicon Livoniale by Hermann von Wartberge. That year, the Livonian Order first attacked the Ukmergė castle. The Teutonic Knights continued their assaults upon the castle in 1364, 1365, 1373 and 1378. In 1391, the wooden castle was burned during the internecine war between two Gediminid cousins, Grand Dukes of Lithuania: Vitautas the Great and Władysław II Jagiełło (Jogaila).
The Lithuanian Civil War culminated in the Battle of Pabaiskas (Battle of Wilkomierz) by the Šventoji River near Ukmergė on Sept. 1, 1435. Vitautas's brother Sigismund Kęstutaitis (Žygimantas I Kęstutaitis, Zygmunt Kiejstutowicz) defeated Jogaila's brother Švitrigaila. One of the battle's consequences was the reduced power of the Livonian Order, which was an ally of Švitrigaila in the battle, whereas Sigismund Kęstutaitis was supported by the Kingdom of Poland.
Magdeburg rights were granted to Ukmergė in 1435 (according to other data, 1486).
Historical sites in the Ukmergė District related to the epoch of the Gediminids and GDL:
- The Mound of Ukmergė – a hill fort of the old town;
- The Pabaiskas Battle field. Reenactments of the battle take place annually on the field.