Zhytomyr (Ukrainian Житомир) is the capital of the Zhytomyrs'ka oblast' in Ukraine. Geographical location . It has about 271,200 inhabitants (2004), and occupies an area of 65 km².
Zhytomyr is a major transportation hub. The city lies on a historic route linking Kyiv with the west through Brest. Today it links Warsaw with Kyiv, Minsk with Izmail , and several major cities of Ukraine.
Zhytomyr was allegedly established in the 8th century by Zhytomyr, prince of slavic tribe of derevlians. However the first records of the town date from 1240 when it was sacked by the Mongol hordes of Batu Khan. In 1320 Zhytomyr was captured by the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and received Magdeburg rights in 1444. After the Union of Lublin the city was incorporated into the Crown of the Polish Kingdom. In the Second Partition of Poland in 1793 it passed to imperial Russia. During a brief period of Ukrainian independence the city was for a few weeks in 1918 the national capital. From 1920 the city was under soviet rule, and from 1991 is in the independent republic of Ukraine.
Zhytomyr lies in a unique natural setting; all sides of the city are surrounded by ancient forests through which flow the Teterev, the Kamyanka, the Yaroshenka and the Putyatinka. The city is rich in parks and public squares