Poznań [ˈpɔznaɲ] ( ) (Latin: Posnania; German: Posen) is a city on the Warta river in west-central Poland, the region called Wielkopolska (Greater Poland). The city population is about 550,000, while the continuous conurbation with Poznan County and several other communities (Oborniki, Skoki, Szamotuły i Śrem) is inhabited by almost 1.1 million people. The Larger Poznań Metropolitan Area (PMA) is inhabited by 1.3-1.4 million people and extends to such satellite towns as Nowy Tomyśl, Gniezno and Wrzesnia. According to this delimitation PMA is fourth largest in Poland.
Poznań is among the oldest cities in Poland and was one of the most important centers in the early Polish state in the tenth and eleventh centuries. The first center city was Ostrów Tumski, the natural island on the Warta river-very similar to the Île de la Cité in Paris. The first rulers were buried in Poznań's cathedral on the island. It also served as the capital for a short time in the 13th century, hence the official name: The capital city of Poznan.
Poznań is one of the biggest cities in Poland. It is the historical capital of the Wielkopolska (Greater Poland) region and is currently the administrative capital of the province called Greater Poland Voivodeship. Poznań is today one of the largest Polish centers of trade, industry, sports, education, technology, tourism and culture. It is particularly important academic center, with about 130,000 students and the third biggest Polish university - Adam Mickiewicz University. It is also the residence of the oldest Polish diocese, now being one of the most populous archdioceses in the country.
The city hosts regular international trade fairs and was the host city for the United Nations Climate Change Conference in December 2008, a key stage in the creation of a successor to the Kyoto Protocol. Poznań was one of the host cities for the association football tournament UEFA Euro 2012. The city also hosts a number of rowing world cup events by the Malta lake (for example "ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships" in 1990, 2001, and again in 2010). Also, a great number of various international festivals takes place in the city - Transatlantyk – Poznań International Film and Music Festival, "Malta International Theater Festival", "ANIMATOR (festival)" and Maski Festival to name just a few. In addition, the International Henryk Wieniawski Violin Competition, the oldest violin competition in the world, is held in Poznań every five years.
In 2012, the Poznań's Art and Business Center "Stary Browar" won a competition organized by National Geographic Traveller and was given the first prize as one of the seven "New Polish Wonders". Poznań has been rated highly, often coming first for Poland, as a city with a very high quality of life. The city has also won many times a prize awarded by "Superbrands" for a very high quality brand of city of Poznań. Poznań was classified in 2010 as high sufficiency city by Globalization and World Cities Research Network.
The official patron saints of Poznań are Saint Peter and Paul of Tarsus, the patrons of the cathedral. As a patron of the city is regarded as well the patron of the main street Święty Marcin - Martin of Tours.
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