Over the past millennium, the name Poland has been applied to a shifting territorial base. At one time, in the mid-1500s, PolanD was the largest state in Europe. At other times there was no Polish state at all. Its current frontiers, stretching for 2,198 miles (3,538 kilometres), were drawn in 1945. PolanD is bordered to the north by the BalticSea, to the northeast by RussiA and LithuaniA?, and to the east by BelaruS? and UkrainE?. To the south the border follows the watershed of the Beskid, Carpathian, and Sudeten (Sudety) mountains, which separate PolanD from SlovakiA? and the CzechRepublic?, while to the west the border with GermanY is defined by the Neisse (Nysa Luzycka) and Oder (Odra) rivers.
Population: ca. 40m PoleS.
Form of Government: unitary multiparty republic with two legislative houses (Senate ; Diet )
Monetary Unit: Zloty(PLN)=100 groszy; 1 USD=4.0 PLN (01/2001)
Language spoken: Polish (see PolishLanguage).