Opava (IPA ; Troppau, Opawa) is a city in the northern Czech Republic on the Opava River, located to the north-west of Ostrava. The historical capital of Czech Silesia, Opava is now in the Moravian-Silesian Region and has a population of 59,843 as of January 1 2005.
In 1614 Karl I of Liechtenstein became Duke of Opava. After the majority of Silesia was annexed by the Kingdom of Prussia during the War of the Austrian Succession after 1740, the remaining Silesian territory still under the control of the Habsburg Monarchy became known as Austrian Silesia with its capital in Opava(1742–1918). The Congress of Troppau took place here in 1820.
According to the Austrian census of 1910 the town had 30,762 inhabitants, 29,587 of whom had permanent residence there. Census asked people for their native language, 27,240 (92%) were German-speaking, 2,039 (6.9%) were Czech-speaking and 274 (0.9%) were Polish-speaking. Jews were not allowed to declare Yiddish, most of them thus declared the German language as their native. Most populous religious groups were Roman Catholics with 28,379 (92.2%), followed by Protestants with 1,155 (3.7%) and the Jews with 1,112 (3.6%).
From 1938–45 Opava was part of Nazi Germany according to the Munich agreement. Already a day before Germany's annexation of the Sudetenland in 1938, the town seceded from its okres and became its own Stadtkreis. After the end of World War II, the German population of Opava was expelled in 1945–46; many of them settled in Bamberg, Germany.
While the Duchy of Opava has ceased to exist, the title of Duke of Opava lives on to present day, with Hans-Adam II, Prince of Liechtenstein being the current incumbent.