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In Brazil, the majority of Polish immigrants settled in Paraná State.
Smaller, but significant numbers settled in the states of Rio Grande do Sul, Espírito Santo and São Paulo (state).
Influences were also conveyed by immigrants (Hungarian, Slovak, Czech, Jewish, German and Dutch), political alliances (with Lithuania, Hungary, Saxony, France and Sweden), conquests of the Polish-Lithuanian state (Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Romania and Latvia) and conquerors of the Polish lands (the Russian Empire, Kingdom of Prussia and the Habsburg monarchy, later to be known as the Austrian Empire or Austria-Hungary).
Over time, Polish culture has been greatly influenced by its ties with the Germanic, Hungarian, and Latinate world and other ethnic groups and minorities living in Poland.
A recent large migration of Poles took place following Poland's accession to the European Union and opening of the EU's labor market; with an approximate number of 2 million, primarily young, Poles taking up jobs abroad.
A German general Helmut Carl von Moltke, in his Poland.
A historical sketch (1885), stated that "Poland of the fifteenth century was one of the most civilised states of Europe." In the 19th and 20th centuries, the Polish focus on cultural advancement often took precedence over political and economic activity, experiencing severe crises, especially during World War II and in the following years.
The population of self-declared Poles in Poland is estimated at 37,394,000 out of an overall population of 38,538,000 (based on the 2011 census), A wide-ranging Polish diaspora (the Polonia) exists throughout Europe, the Americas, and in Australasia.
Today, the largest urban concentrations of Poles are within the Warsaw and Silesian metropolitan areas.