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region, western Ukraine, south of Volhynia and extending between the rivers Dniester and Southern Buh. The name Podolia appeared in the 14th century when the Poles began to colonize the area. Except for a period in the late 17th century when it was held by the Ottoman Turks, it was under Polish rule until 1772. Then the part west of the Zbruch River became Austrian; the rest became a province of Russia in 1793. After World War I the region continued to be divided at the Zbruch, between Poland and the Soviet Union. After World War II it was entirely incorporated into the Soviet Union, forming part of the western Ukrainian S.S.R. Its population always had a Ukrainian majority