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[pruhsh-uh] /ˈprʌʃ ə/
a former state in N Europe: became a military power in the 18th century and in 1871 led the formation of the German empire; formally abolished as an administrative unit in 1947.
German Preussen. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for Prussia
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But I have been away so long, and everything is changed since the King of Prussia began his wars.

    In the Valley Harold Frederic
  • His object was to have a personal interview with the King of Prussia.

    The Downfall Emile Zola
  • Broad privileges were granted, but Prussia remained an absolute monarchy.

    Blood and Iron John Hubert Greusel
  • On the night of the 29th came the news by telegraph—“First blood for Prussia!”

    Blood and Iron John Hubert Greusel
  • Oct. 14th, 1806, the terrible defeat at Jena put Prussia in the hands of the enemy.

    Blood and Iron John Hubert Greusel
  • Our friend has no doubt but the King of Prussia will accede to the convention.

  • Here's the King of Prussia, claiming a right to this kingdom!'

    Benjamin Franklin Paul Elmer More
  • But what will you live on, since, as a Jew, you can't get any post or professorship in Prussia?

  • The King of Prussia will pay his debts, but he will end his days at Spandau.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
British Dictionary definitions for Prussia


a former German state in N and central Germany, extending from France and the Low Countries to the Baltic Sea and Poland: developed as the chief military power of the Continent, leading the North German Confederation from 1867–71, when the German Empire was established; dissolved in 1947 and divided between East and West Germany, Poland, and the former Soviet Union. Area: (in 1939) 294 081 sq km (113 545 sq miles) German name Preussen
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for Prussia

from Medieval Latin Borussi, Prusi, Latinized forms of the native name of the Lithuanian people who lived in the bend of the Baltic before being conquered 12c. and exterminated by (mostly) German crusaders who replaced them as the inhabitants. Perhaps from Slavic *Po-Rus "(The Land) Near the Rusi" (Russians). The duchy of Prussia after union with the Mark of Brandenberg, became the core of the Prussian monarchy and later the chief state in the German Empire.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Prussia in Culture

Prussia definition

Former state in north-central Germany. At the height of its power, Prussia occupied more than half of present-day Germany, stretching from The Netherlands and Belgium in the west to Lithuania in the east.

Note: During the eighteenth century, Prussia established its independence from Poland, built up a strong army, and undertook a successful conquest of north-central Europe.
Note: In the nineteenth century, Prussia led the economic and political unification of the German states, establishing itself as the largest and most influential of these states, with Berlin as the capital of the German Empire.
Note: After Germany's defeat in World War II, Prussia was abolished as a state, and its territory was divided among East Germany, West Germany, the Soviet Union, and Poland.
Note: Prussians are often depicted as authoritarian, militaristic, and extremely orderly, a characterization based on the unswerving obedience of their army.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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