Świdnica (shvēdnēˈtsä) [key], Ger. Schweidnitz, town (1993 est. pop. 64,200), Dolnośląskie prov., SW Poland. It has metal and chemical works, textile mills, sugar refineries, and various manufactures. An early residence of the Piast dukes of Silesia, Świdnica and the surrounding principality came to the Bohemian crown in 1368. They were ceded to Prussia in 1745 and returned to Poland in 1945.