Berlin is the largest and capital city of Germany with 3,392,026 inhabitants, after London's second largest city of the European Union. Except that, Berlin might be the atheist capital of Europe, because sixty percent of Berlin residents have no registered religious.
Berlin is located on the rivers Spree and Havel in the northeast of Germany. One of Germany's 16 federal states, with all sides surrounded by the province of Brandenburg. Before World War II had 4.5 million inhabitants, and during the Cold War since 1949. to 1990. was divided into East Berlin and West Berlin.
3rd day of German unification October 1990. The unified Berlin has become one of Germany's 16 federal states and is one of three provinces, which is also the city (along with Hamburg and Bremen).
The former West Berlin was the enclaves in the West Germany and East Germany had some powers of provinces, but the formal and the military remained under the administration of the western allies, the United States, Britain and France, and was not de jure part of West Germany. East Berlin since 1949. to 1990. He was the capital of East Germany, which was contrary to the agreement four Allied powers.
Berlin controlled the Senate of Berlin, which consists of a mayor and 8 senators who have parliamentary status. The mayor of Berlin is representative of the state. The legislative authority of the city-province made the House of Representatives (Abgeordnetenhaus).
Berlin had its beginning in two Wendish villages, Berlin and Kölln, which were chartered in the 13th cent. and merged in 1307. It assumed importance as a Hanseatic League town in the 14th cent. and became the seat of the electors of Brandenburg (after 1701, kings of Prussia) in 1486. Berlin suffered severely from the Thirty Years War (1618–48), but Frederick William (reigned 1640–88), the Great Elector, restored and improved the city. Occupied in the Seven Years War by Austrian (1757) and Russian (1760) troops and in the Napoleonic Wars by the French (1806–8), Berlin emerged from the conflicts as a center of German national feeling and an increasingly serious rival of Vienna.
From the 18th and early 19th cent. date many of the distinguished monuments and buildings of the city (chiefly by Andreas Schlüter and Karl Friedrich Schinkel). Berlin was the center of the Revolution of 1848 against King Frederick William IV. The construction of railroads (1840–61) gave it additional importance as an industrial and commercial center. Berlin also became part of a canal system that linked it to the Oder, Elbe, and Rhine rivers and to the North Sea. In 1866 it became the seat of the North German Confederation and in 1871 it was made the capital of the German Empire. The city prospered and expanded rapidly, becoming one of the great urban centers of the world. Berlin's population had increased from 201,000 in 1819 to 914,000 in 1871; by 1900 it was 2,712,000.
The German military defeat of 1918 brought on a period of social and political unrest. After the establishment (Nov., 1918) of a Socialist government, Berlin was the scene of the abortive uprising of the Communist Spartacus party (Jan., 1919) and of the conservative putsch of 1920 (see Kapp, Wolfgang). As the capital of the Weimar Republic, Berlin suffered severe economic crises in the 1920s, but it was also a brilliant cultural center.
Throughout the Nazi regime (1933–45) Berlin remained the second largest city of Europe, a notable economic, political, and educational center, and a huge inland port with a flourishing world trade. It was also the major communications and transportation hub of Central Europe. During World War II, Berlin was repeatedly bombed from the air by the Allies, but the heaviest destruction was caused by a Soviet artillery barrage of unprecedented intensity that preceded the capture (May 2, 1945) of the city by Marshal Zhukov.
Berlin Divided City
Toward the end of World War II, Berlin was destroyed 70% thanks to the allies radar and street fighting. Therefore named "Time Zero", which meant a new beginning for the city. Berlin was divided into four zones by the London Protocol (1944). The four zones are supervised by USA, Great Britain, France and the USSR.
Soviet sector of Berlin, East Berlin became the capital of East Germany, which was formed from the Soviet occupation zone in October 1949. West Germany was founded in 23. june 1949. from American, British, and French zones, the capitol was in Bonn. 13. August 1961. built the Berlin Wall, cut West Berlin from East Germany and the rest. In the sixties of the twentieth century, Berlin was the center of European student protests.
The Berlin Wall has fallen 9th studenog 1989th During the reunification of Germany third October 1990., the wall was almost completely destroyed. Others are small parts, which most serve as reminders and tourist attractions. German Bundestag in June 1991. passed a decision to be the capital of Germany, Bonn, moves to Berlin. Berlin again became the capital of Germany. Ministry of Government and Administration moved to Berlin in 1997/1998.
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