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Turistické info o meste Prešov | Tourist info on the town Presov | Informacja turystyczna w mieście Presov | Touristische Informationen über die Stadt Presov

6973062_origThe city of Prešov, the third biggest city of Slovakia, is situated at the confluence of the Torysa and Sekčov rivers. Geographically, it is situated on territory between the 49 degrees of the north geographical latitude and 21,15 degrees of eastern geographical longitude. The latitude crosses the city in the middle of the of the main square. The city of Prešov including its adjacent territories has more than 100,000 inhabitants who live on the territory of 124,34 square kilometres. Prešov became the natural centre of the Šariš region as early as during the Middle Ages. After the origination of the Slovak Republic in 1993 and consequent new administrative organisation, the city became the centre of both the district of Prešov and the Prešov County. The Prešov County is the biggest county of the Slovak Republic.

1824211_origPrešov was established on the territory that had been attracting people for the centuries. The archaeologists found the remnants of settlement coming from the Middle Palaeolithic Era (80,000-40,000 B.C.). Following research confirmed the hypothesis that the Torysa riverbanks were populated later as well. The first written citation of Prešov dates back to the 7th of November 1247 in a document issued by King Bela IV. The other citations of the city of Prešov are much more frequent later, especially after 1299 when the already a royal city was granted municipal privileges by King Andrew III.
999672_origThe city was developing much more rapidly since then, especially because it was granted other privileges by orher rulers. These privileges extraordinarily fostered the city’s economic, political and cultural development. Its advantageous location that is on the crossroads of the important west-east and north-south business routes also caused the development of the city. That is why the city was nicknamed “Little Vienna” and “Little Leipzig”in the 16th century.

6540033_origThe history of Prešov is extremely dramatic, interesting and, at the same time, specific. The city was changing its character and was gradually becoming a massive fortress, especially since the 14th century. Granting the privilege to build city walls (by Louis I. in 1374) the rulers meant to protect the city from it being destroyed by war. The city, however, could not avoid destruction. Both the Habsburg rulers and the Anti-Habsburgs troops occupied the city between the 16th and the 18th centuries, so each of them left its traces there.

5373421_origPrešov was a multicultural city open to different cultural influences. Its inhabitants were mostly Slovak, Hungarian, Ruthenian, Ukrainian, Jewish and Polish artisans and traders. 94,7% out of the total number of inhabitants are Slovaks currently. The remaining 5,3% of population are the Ukrainians, Ruthenians, Czechs, Romanes and Hungarians.

Prešov has always been open to different religious denominations. Original Roman-Catholic population conversed to Evangelic Protestantism in the 1630s, which was the result of the influence of the priests. During the Counter-Reformation in the late 17th century, part of the population returned to Roman Catholicism. The new religions such as Greek Catholic (Uniate – 18th century), Israelite (19th century) and Russian Orthodox Church (20th century) enriched the diversity of the religious life of Prešov.
3080253_origThe current religious composition of the Prešov population is as follows: Roman Catholics – 81,6%; Greek Catholics (Uniates) – 10,1%; Evangelics of the Augsburg Confession – 5,8%; Russian Orthodox believers – 1,5%. The city of Prešov is the seat of the Metropolitan of the Orthodox Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia, but also of the Uniate and Evangelical Bishop Officers and the Roman Catholic Deacon’s Office. A wonderful synagogue situated in the city of Prešov represents Israelite Church.

In the course of its history, the city of Prešov has always been famous for its outstanding educational opportunities. Evangelical College established in 1667 continued in the tradition of the earlier municipal humanistic school (gymnasium). The scientific and educational quality of the Evangelical College attracted many foreign students as well. Its tradition continued with the establishment of the tertiary educational institutions in Prešov later. 9889879_origPrešov is an important university centre currently. The University of Prešov consists of five faculties, and the Faculty of Production Technologies as well as the Institute of Automatisation Technology, both being part of the Technical University of Košice, enrich the educational opportunities of this city. In addition to the basic schools, there are 37 secondary schools which evoke the image of the young and dynamic city.

Past and present live in a certain symbiosis in Prešov. Tradition, tolerance, high educational potential, people’s initiative and geographical proximity of three neighbouring states – Poland, Ukraine and Hungary to Prešov make this city attractive. These qualities create space for the city’s further development.