The Prussian-Lithuanian Frontier of 1242
LITHUANIAN QUARTERLY JOURNAL OF ARTS AND SCIENCES, Volume 21, No.4 – Winter (1975)
Although the Teutonic Knights had not come into contact with the Lithuanians until 1242, except in Kurland, already their organization of frontier defense in Prussia showed they were aware that the Lithuanians would most likely come to the aid of those tribes which were already conquered by the crusaders.
The Lithuanians had long had a formidable reputation. They raided the Livonian tribes, the Russian princedoms, the Polish duchies, and presumably also the Prussians. Not only were they feared by their neighbors, but the princes feared one another, and fought among themselves for leadership. This sporadic warfare did not, however, prevent a considerable cultural and religious unity from existing among all the Lithuanian peoples and even close ties to the other peoples of the area. Many common practices were maintained through trade and intermarriage, by the capture of prisoners from the weaker tribes, and by common religious beliefs and traditions.