Lithuania proper

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Lithuania proper (; , literally: "Genuine Lithuania"; , Lite) refers to a region which existed within Grand Duchy of Lithuania, and spoke Lithuanian language. The primary meaning is identical to the Duchy of Lithuania, a land around which Grand Duchy of Lithuania evolved. The territory can be traced by Catholic Christian parishes established in pagan Baltic lands of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania subsequent to the Christianization of Lithuania in 1387. They were quite distinguishable, as the Ruthenian parts of the Duchy were already baptised in orthodox manner. The term in Latin was widely used during the Middle Ages and can be found in numerous historical maps until World War I.

Lithuania proper sometimes is also called Lithuania Major (), particularly in contrast with Lithuania Minor.

Evolution of a term

Before the Grand Duchy of Lithuania

Historians designate Lithuania Proper (or Land of Lithuania in a narrow sense) as a Lithuanian land that existed prior to Grand Duchy of Lithuania, near other lands: Land of Nalšia,...
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