Ukmergė is a city in eastern Lithuania and lies on the banks of the Šventoji. It is the seat of the Rajongemeinde of the same name (Ukmergės rajono savivaldybė) and has the status of an administrative district within it.



Originally it was called Vilkamergė (vilkas, German wolf, + merga, girl). The place was only mentioned in 1333. In 1486 the city was granted city rights under Magdeburg law. In the city there is a large castle hill of a medieval castle complex.

Until 1914 the city was called Vilkmergė (synonyms: Aukmergė, Likmerė; Polish Wiłkomierz, Russian Вилькомир).

The city name Ukmergė only dominated in the 1940s and then became official in the post-war period.

The city was occupied by the Soviets from 1940 to June 22, 1941, when deportations began. After the German attack on the Soviet Union, the German occupiers shot and killed around 10,000 Jewish residents of the city. During the Second World War, the place was badly affected by bombing.

The Great Synagogue from the 18th century was converted into a sports hall in 1953.