Riga succumbs to Poland-Lithuania

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1582

The city of Riga had, since March 1562, been a free city. In reality, its military security was still dependent on Poland-Lithuania; especially after Gotthard Ketter was divest of office. Still, Poland did not impose its authority on the city and so it officially remained independent for 20 years.

Alas, in 1581, when king Stefan Bathroy had driven the Russians from Latvia, he rode to Riga, accompanied by a large army, and made it clear that the city had no other choice but to submit to him. Officially, this happened a year later, after the Jam Zepolski treaty was signed.

Unlike the rest of Livonia, which the king considered to had been conquered by the sword, Riga surrendered with a contract and received substantial privileges; especially in defense of Lutheranism. Because of this, the new bishopric was not established in Riga, but instead, in Võnnu (Cesis) .


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