Vyborg (vĭˈbərk) [key], Finnish Viipuri, Swed. Viborg, city (1989 pop. 81,000), NW European Russia, NW of St. Petersburg and near the Finnish border, on Vyborg Bay and the Gulf of Finland. A Baltic port and railroad junction, it is an export center for lumber and the terminus for a natural-gas pipeline to Germany. It also has shipyards and industries producing farm machinery, electrical equipment, furniture, and paper. In the city are a castle (c.1300), a tower (1550), several towers of the town hall (15th–17th cent.), and a fort (18th cent.).
Vyborg was a trading point for Novgorod in the 12th cent. but actually grew around a Swedish castle built there in 1293. Vyborg became a port for the Hanseatic League and was chartered in the 15th cent. In 1710 Peter the Great seized Vyborg, and it was incorporated with Finland (then under Russian sovereignty) in 1812. Before 1917, it was a key transit point for revolutionary literature, arms, and agitators going into Russia. Vyborg remained Finnish until 1940, when it was occupied by the Soviet Union. It was recaptured by Finnish forces in 1941 and was finally seized by the Soviets in 1944 and awarded to them by the Finnish-Soviet peace treaty (1947).
More on Vyborg from Infoplease:
See more Encyclopedia articles on: CIS and Baltic Political Geography