It remained independent until the outset of World War II, when it was occupied by the Soviet Union under the terms of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact.
Following a brief occupation by Nazi Germany after the Nazis waged war on the Soviet Union, Lithuania was again absorbed into the Soviet Union for nearly 50 years.
According to the historian Marija Gimbutas, these people came from two directions: the Jutland Peninsula and from present-day Poland.
They brought two different cultures, as evidenced by the tools they used.
The late 12th century brought an eastern expansion of German settlers (the Ostsiedlung) to the mouth of the Daugava River area.
Military confrontations with Lithuanians followed at that time and at the turn of the century, but for the time being the Lithuanians had the upper hand.
Lithuania, located along the lower and middle Neman River basin, comprised mainly the culturally different regions of Samogitia (known for its early medieval skeletal burials), and further east Aukštaitija, or Lithuania proper (known for its early medieval cremation burials).In 1990–91, Lithuania restored its sovereignty with the Act of the Re-Establishment of the State of Lithuania.Lithuania joined the NATO alliance in 2004 and the European Union as part of its enlargement in 2004.Agriculture did not emerge until the 3rd millennium BC due to a harsh climate and terrain and a lack of suitable tools to cultivate the land.
Crafts and trade also started to form at this time.
Some of these merged into Lithuanians and Latvians (Samogitians, Selonians, Curonians, Semigallians), while others no longer existed after they were conquered and assimilated by the State of the Teutonic Order (Old Prussians, Yotvingians, Sambians, Skalvians, and Galindians).