How about city Novogrudok? I always thought it's the first Lithuanian capital!
Too strong and unrealistic UU! +1 movment (wow!)-why? I think vytis should be like knight with bonus against mounted units (Golden Horde and Tevton Order).
Our first capital was Kernave, second Trakai, third Vilnius (and now it's Vilnius). Once (after WWI till WWII) our capital was Kaunas (second largest city) - because Vilnius was ocupied by Poland.
Novogrudok - has NOTHING to do with Lithuania exept the fact that once it was the part of Lithuania (we were ocupants, but peacefull ocupants here: "Because Lithuanians were pagan, they were generally tolerant towards other religions, including Eastern Orthodox, unlike European Catholic powers of the time"). Even the language is different from Lithuanian.
The short history of Lithuania:
Lithuania is based in center-east Europe near the Baltic sea ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:LocationLithuania.png
). Lithuanians have their own language (which is the oldest language still in use!). And ofcourse they were pagans...
In the middle ages Poland duke asked for the foreign assistance agains eastern pagans. And Pope announced several crusades to the east (towards anybody near baltic sea).There were 2 institutions (orders) to bring the only one and true religion (cristianity) to the region: one occupied Prussians (now adays Kaliningrad district) - it's to the south of Lithuania, the other to the north - they occupied territory, were now is Latvia and Estonia. The only region which was not occupied was Lithuania (thanks to our elders, who managed to unite the country against foreign expansion).
It should be mentioned, that lithuanians beat both foreign armies, and at that times the battles were the most casual (yes there were bigger battles in UK and elsewhere, but in Lithuania nobody took prisons, so every knight was killed insted of being taken to prisons).
In 1253 we got an oficial King, who agreed to give part of Lithuania (the part near the Baltic sea) to the Orders and to accept cristianity. That was the only one crowned King the Lithuania ever had (because Lithuanias were pegans we couldnt get a crown from Rome, so official rulers title was "The Grand Duke of Lithuania"). Back to the our only King - he was poisoned and killed, all cristian missionares were killed, and the land given to cristian order "came" back to us.
While constantly being attacked by foreing forces from the west (their tactics has change from the real battle into small pillaging attacks, by the way, about 200 such attacks were made intio Lithuania per year) Lithuanian Kings managed to be expansive to the east - where was Russia occupied by the Mongols (by the "Golden Horde"). We managed to occupy now adays Belarus, Ukraine and a big part of Russia (the whole east part of it (Moscow was burned several times, but never occupied) ).
In the expansion times dutchies tried to find contacts with the cristian west and to change their attitude toward pagan Lithuania. Our position was: "cristian Orders are not here to bring cristianity, but just to occupie us. And yes - we respect your God, and we would accept your religion - but bring it in peace". In some periods of time the pope even forbidden attacks against Lithuania.
At the time when Lithuania was from the Baltic sea to the Black sea (oh yes, baby, we were large...) we were ruled by our most heroic Grand Duke Vytautas. Who understood that even expansion to the east won't save us from the west agression and tried to destroy crusaders Order (the only able to bring attacks was in Prussia(Kaliningrad)). The only ally they could find was Poland, which was fighting with cursaders (Order has occupied some parts of Poland).
In 1386 Lithuanian duke Jogaila was crowned the King of Poland (he married Poland Princes, which was umm.. about 30-50 years younger - but such are political mariages...). With this marriage Lithuania was officialy second time declaried as Cristian country (the first was when we got our King Mindaugas crowned). In 1410 a united army (of Lithuaninas, polands and some tatarians), led by Vytautas defeated cristian order army (the numbers of armies were about: 30.000 vs 20.000 (Lithuania and Poland vs. Cristian Order)) this was the blow which ended western (mainly german) expansion.
This batle was named "Zalgirio" (also it is namded "Battle of Grunwald").
It should be mentioned of difficult situation of rulers inside Lithuania - Vytautas and Jogaila were cousins and they were fighting for the goverment power, two times Vytautas has ran to the Prussia (Cristian Order) for help, and two times he broke all agreements with them, by destroying their castles and coming back to Lithuania. But when Jogaila become the king of Poland - Vytautas was officialy (from Jogaila) declared as the Grand Duke of Lithuania. In the lats years of Vytautas it was tired to crown him (so he could be called the King of Lithuania), the pope blessed and send the crown - but polish made everything whats is possible to stop the crown from reaching him (simply - they arrested the carriage with the crown), and the crown never reach him (by the way - Vytautas even for two years was a king of Czechia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czechia)
. Vytautas died being at about 90 years old! (oh yes, i wouldn't mind to go so far, and he did that all the time by fighting in battles).
Both countries (Lithuania and Poland) relations were good enougth and in 1569 we got a united kingdom (some facts about it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polish-Lithuanian_Commonwealth
). The united kingdom was ruled by the noblemans, tjhey got the right to elect the King, and also the golden "Veto right" (if one of hundred noblemans disagrees with anything - he sais "veto" - and the law or just a decision is denied). So the united kingdom went worse - never had a strong King, and slowly loosed the lands it controlled. In the end of XVII century there were three official partitions by the Prussia, Russia and Austria. And the united country was wiped from the maps. 90% of Lithuania went into Russians hands.
In about 1830 and 1860 there were revolts, during them Russia send more army agains rebels than agains Napolen army!
And during the period of Russian ocupation it was tried to destroy Lithuanian language - the books in Lithuanian were forbidden (only writings in Cyrylica were allowed (oh yes - we use Latin alphabet, and as I said before - we have our own Language, which has nothing in common with russian or any other)). Lithuanians as a nation survived - lithuanian books were printed in Prussia and as contraband smuggled into Lithuania (oh yes - if you were caught with lithuanian book - it would be even worse than just contraband). Pupils were taught to read at home (in school there were only few lessons, and everything in russian only, so parents didn't allowd their pupils to russian schools), russians made raids into villages to find lithuanian books and any unoficial schools. This situation lasted for 40 years - a whole lithuanian generation has grown under such oppresions.
But the russia was weakened from inside... and WWI done it's job. Communists took the power of goverment and accepted all German requests for peace. At that time Lithuania was occupied by German army. After WWI we declared independence (1918). And got our independece wars: first to beat russian army (Red Army, in fact Russia was fightint it's own civil war, and a war agains Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia... etc.). After red army we got to beat German army, and the lats(3rd) our enemy was... Poland! They claimed Vilnius (our capital) as their own and invaded Lithuania (it should be mentioned, that the main Red Army forces were sent agains Poland and were defeated - after that Polish army pushed them and occupied part of Lithuania). The war with Poland was more difficult - we managed to push them out of our land, but Poland several times addressed "League of Nations" which draw three or more lines between Lithuania and Poland and polish everytime were unhappy. So after last cease-fire they sent "uncontrolled" genreal with the army to occupy Lithuania, they took Vilnius (capital) and got a very big kick into the (you know what)... when our army was goind straigt to capital - they again addresed "League of Nations" to stop the war... and - yes - league of the nations asked to stiop any combat activities, and Lithuanians stoped without retaiking capital... till the WWII we got no diplomatical contacts with Poland (there was only one request for that - to give our Capital back).
So in 1918 we with blood regained our independence. In 192x (sorry - I love history, but cant remmeber the numbers withaout looking into the books) - diplomatic goverment was changed by the military (actualy - in Europe only France, UK and Czechoslovakia remained democratic countries (ah, yes - sandinavian ones too - Sweden, Noevegian, Danish, Finland)).
It should be mentioned, that we learned a lesson from Poland triks - and made the same to the "League of Nations" - One german city (build by the cristian Order) - Klaipeda, was (and still is) a big port - after WWI it's controll was givent to the League of Nations (and France troops were sent), so Lithuania silently organized an army to inaved Klaipeda and ratake it, all two weeks our diplomats were talking "we don;t know what they are", and Klaipeda was reunited with Lithuania. Sadly after German-USSR Molotov-Ribentrop pact (secret part) USSR prepared to occupy us again (well, the change of the name doesn't change the face)...
What shouhld be mentioned in WWI-WWII peace era?
We got our national heroes Darius and Girenas to fly over Atlantic ocean (they were the second or third once to fly over IT !), sadly - they crashed in Prussia (which was a part of Germany) - a lot of dispute is about the crash... but the fact is - they flew non-stop from USA over UK, and crashed in Germany, I'm afraid, but this should be the longest flight in that time...
In research we were good enought to start the study of parcticles physic ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Particle_physics
). Planes for this were used too.
We got several really gut enginers - who created planes, in fact there were some debates from UK to buy our planes graphics. Also a big trade surplus gave economivcal adavtages (a lot of gold was acountes in Sweden and UK). But still the country was massivle agronomical.
And yes - Lithuania two times became the champion of European basketball (this was made only with the big help from the USA Lithuanians, who came back to their nations and helped it).
Pre WWII. Germans ask for Klaipeda (Memel as they call it) (with ultimatum "give us what we want, or we don't know where our tanks will stop" Ribentrop). We accpeted their request (because it was made only week or so after Czechia surrended Suddet's to germans with the bless of UK and France. Invading Poland Germans asked Lithuanians assitance agains them - to recapture our capital (Vilnius), we denied any of such request. And soon USSR gave us thei ultimatum - to accept ocupation or to face war (well, actualy, week before this there were a lotof provocations near the border, even some of our border patrols were killed). To helpt us to decide to accpet such ultimatum was: red army across the border (it was 5 times more than we got soldiers at all) and the idea - if you disagree - Vilnius (and the districs around it) won't be Lihtunian part (aka - givent to Belarusia). So ultimatum was accepted, and till these days, Russian communists and other idiots think we were happy to accept USSR.
WWII. So - USSR annexed us, and also Vilnius district (which belonged to Poland, but Stalin did his word - Vilnius was returned to us ("Vilnius is ours, and we are russians part" - for 50 years such words will be silently mentioned in all Lithuania) ). It shoud be mentioned, what when Polands were in big trouble (and Lithuania hated them all - that's not he words, that's a fact) - we lodged polish survivors, who hoped for something better in Vilnius than staying in their occupied country (for whose who don;t know - WWII started with Germans invading Poland, but USSR was out of the war for 9 months(or more?)...).
Last week before the WWII entered USSR - Stalin passed a decree to send hundred of thousands of Lithuanians (also Latvians, Estoninans) to be send to Siberia and other "unpopulated" areas. The main target of this was: ALL lithuanian language techers, writers, university magistrals and others (in civ3-4 terms - anyone who would build culture). And only the war stoped the trains full of people into working camps (one man could take only 100kg of his own property with him).
When germans invaded USSR it was a big uprise in Lithuania - we on our own retake a lot of strategic points (telepgraphs, posts, etc.) - and russian army near the baltics was paralysed from inside (actuale, from what is now known - lithuanian partisans captured essential telegrpah line - and all red army near Baltic sea was unable to get any direct comand from Moscow).
But for those who hoped freedom from Russians got very disapointed - even now adays it's a live saying "the red plague has been cganhed to a black one" - germans sent any other inteligent survivors to their "labor camps". Also they sent a lot of Jew's top the camps and sadly, Lithuania had the biggest percent of it's own Jew'es killed ( > 90% can; remember the real number). Such things came because, most of Lithuanians REALY don't like jewry people (I checked a lot of Lithuanian greatest writers books - and more or less you can find such things/text like: "jewes sold this forest" "jewes chop down this forest" or the one I like most "One jew invented new bussiness - to build coffins, because - there allways weill be dead people" - and such things come from the XVII century! It doesn't mean that we all are anti-semitist - but there are a lot of reasons for this.... (
Lithuania was occupied (oh yes - it starts to be our hobby) - by USSR again, now they made real exiles (nobody stoped them now). Also there was a bog partisan activity (much bigger than in Latvian, haven't seen numbers to compare with Estonians). Partisan activity which started 1945 ended only in 1970... Till these days survived saying "day is russians, but the night is ours".
Even in USSR Lithuania was something like India for UK (a diamond for the crown) - actualy there were three of us: Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania. The most pro vestern, both incorporated into USSR by force. And with the begining of "perestroika" (reform) of Gorbachiov, Baltic states were a symbol of what USSR should become.
USSR hitory. I believe a lot of people dont' know what is it - living in communism. First - it's a veryu low level crime (because there is a very strict control of fireamrs, police has a lot of power and everybody fears it ("fears" - from both - the bad and the good side of this fact), everything is chepa enought for all - but it's allways the need of it (demand is much bigger than supplies), in elections more than 90% allways vote for the right candidate because, anyone who would bypass elections would be punished, and in elections there was only one candidate, so myou could vote for one and the only one
funny looks? but it was here for nearly fifty years).
The only official way to fight russians was in a non-conflict way: sport. We have (till these days) - a basketball team (from Kaunas "temporal capital") named "Zalgiris" (to remember our Duke Vytautas and his victory against western crusaders in the battlefield "Zalgiris battle"), "Zalgiris" was fighting against USSR other clubs, but the strongest was Russian central army club "CSK". "Zalgiris" took USSR gold 5 times (keep in mind - there are only 3 mln of lithuanians, and USSR nearly 300 mln. ). More of this club: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BC_Žalgiris
Actualy even Gorbaciov (the last president of USSR 1985-1991) didn't understand the needs of Lithuanians, he thought about us like about any different republic. We were the FIRST to declare independence from USSR (we were the first to divide from russian communist party, and yes - our neighbours like LAtvia and Estorina - were looking towards the things like "what will heppen to them" after such steps, nor - some actions against USSR, inside USSR were made together, like "Baltic Freedom road" (Baltic Road) - people from Vilnius to Tallin clinched with hands stood all the way! - it was a signs against Ribendtrop-Molotov Pact(and their secret parts (for those who don't know history: now they are not secret))).
But even in USSR declaration of freedom cots blood (where a lot of people believed/trusted in others in the rights of humanity - yes it was so - people blieved they live in a better country than really are!). In 1990 we declared independence from USSR, russian tanks started to occupy post offices, TV stations, telecomunications and so on. Agains them stood only unarmed people with flags. In some events tanks just ran across the people crushing their bones.... (on the january 13, more than 2000 there injured, when Russian armored groups overtake Vilnius TV translation building).
When it was clear, that military can't deal with independence - Russians started economic blockade (no oil, no gass from them - during winter every building was cold (my best regards goes to these days Ukrarine, for few days they could feel what economic blockade means)).
As Lithuanians declaried independence there was a small group (really small) of people who thought - that Vilnius is a part of Poland (yes, few old blinded people thopugth - "Lithuania is a part of us polish"... loosers... sad of them... still - some polands are really part of Lithuania and we can't deny this).
And in these days - we are a part of NATO, EU (European Union), have our own different language (oh yes - everytime I feel I have to remind this), our one currency (not for long "Litas" is dead, long live the "Euras").