Źitava (German Zittau, Polish Żytawa, Sorbian Zitawa) is a city in Germany, in the Saxon part of Upper Lusatia, in the district Görlitz.
The town with a rich history, a number of monuments and unique natural surroundings lies northwest of the Czech-German-Polish border, near the confluence of Mandava and Lusatian Neisse.
In the years 1232–1237 in the neighboring Bautzen the castellan of the castle of Jindřich of the Ronovec family. He took advantage of this time and together with his brother Castol and with the help of the Czech ruler Wenceslas I gained the local territory including the castle and the settlement. The documents were then written with the nickname de Sitavia.
Soon after the first written mention in 1238 in 1255 Přemysl Otakar II. he visited Zittau and granted him city rights. In 1248 it is mentioned as the burgrave of Zittau mentioned Henry of Ronovců. Around 1263, the two Ronovs retreat from Zittau and the territory was taken over by the king. However, some farms in the area were kept by the Ronov family.
After 1260 Zittau became a rapidly growing important royal town. A mint was established here and the town was gradually fortified.
Since 1346, together with 5 other towns, Zittau has become part of the Lusatian Six-town. In 1390 the Zittau bureau was occupied by others from the Klinštejn branch of the former Ronov family, Anselm and Předbor of Ronov.
After the Battle of White Mountain, Zittau became one of the centers of Protestant Czech exiles. Some settled here, others continued further to Dresden or Berlin (at that time part of Brandenburg). During the Seven Years War the town was almost completely destroyed. At the beginning of the 16th century, the town traded most in beer, from the 18th century began to trade in textiles, which had a tradition throughout the Upper Lusatia.