Skip to main content


Lusatia (lōōsā´shə), Ger. Lausitz, Pol. Łużyce, region of E Germany and SW Poland. It extends N from the Lusatian Mts., at the Czech border, and W from the Oder River. The hilly and fertile southern section is known as Upper Lusatia, the sandy and forested northern part as Lower Lusatia. The Lusatian Neisse separates E Germany and SW Poland. Forestry, farming, and stock raising are the chief occupations. There are lignite mines, textile mills, and glass-making factories. Bautzen, Cottbus, Görlitz, Żagań, and Zittau are the main towns.

The Lusatians are descended from the Slavic Wends, and part of the population, particularly in the Spree Forest, still speaks Wendish and has preserved traditional dress and customs. The region was colonized by the Germans beginning in the 10th cent. and was constituted into the margraviates of Upper and Lower Lusatia. Both margraviates changed hands frequently among Saxony, Bohemia, and Brandenburg. In 1346 several towns of the region formed the Lusatian League and preserved considerable independence. Under the Treaty of Prague (1635) all of Lusatia passed to Saxony. The Congress of Vienna awarded (1815) Lower Lusatia and a large part of Upper Lusatia to Prussia. After World War II the Lusatian Wends (or Sorbs, as they are also called) sought unsuccessfully to obtain national recognition.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Lusatia." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . 19 May. 2019 <>.

"Lusatia." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . (May 19, 2019).

"Lusatia." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved May 19, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.