Łódź lo͞oj [key], city (1993 est. pop. 842,300), capital of Łódzkie prov., central Poland. The second largest city of Poland and an important industrial center, Łódź was long the center of the Polish textile industry, but the industry has declined significantly since the end of Communist rule. Other manufactures include computers and electronics, chemicals, and consumer goods. Chartered in 1423, the city passed to Prussia in 1793 and to Russia in 1815. It reverted to Poland in 1919. The first textile mills were established in the city c.1830, but the industry grew only after 1870. The city was also the center of the Polish labor and socialist movements. In World War II it was incorporated into Germany, renamed Litzmannstadt, and subjected to ruthless Germanization. The city has a university (founded in 1945).
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