Place:Aachen, Aachen, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany

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NameAachen
Alt namesAix-la-Chapellesource: Wikipedia
Akensource: Wikipedia
Aquaesource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Aquae Granisource: Webster's Geographical Dictionary (1988) p 1
Aquae Grannisource: Princeton Encyclopedia of Classical Sites (1979) p 76
Aquasgranumsource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Aquense palatiumsource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Aquensis urbssource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Aquissource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Aquis Granumsource: Canby, Historic Places (1984) I, 1
Aquis palatiumsource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Aquisgranasource: Cassell's Italian Dictionary (1983) p 39
Aquisgranisource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Aquisgranumsource: Wikipedia
Aquisgránsource: Cassell's Spanish Dictionary (1990) p 629
Bad Aachensource: Canby, Historic Places (1984) I, 1
Grani palatiumsource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Granis aquaesource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Granum palatiumsource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
Ochesource: Wikipedia
Palatium aquaesource: Orbis Latinus (1971) p 24
TypeCity
Located inAachen, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany     (1816 - 1946)
Also located inAachen, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany     (1946 - present)

Note: In keeping with the 1900-rule at WeRelate, places in Germany are organized as they were in 1900 when Germany was known as the German Empire.

In 1900, Aachen city was in Aachen (district), Rheinland (province), Preußen, Germany.

In 1946, Aachen city became located in Aachen (district), Nordrhein-Westfalen (state), Germany.

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Modern description of Aachen (city)

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Aachen, also known as Bad Aachen ("Aachen Spa"), and in French and traditional English as Aix-la-Chapelle, is a spa and border city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. Aachen developed from a Roman settlement and spa, subsequently becoming the preferred medieval Imperial residence of Charlemagne, and, from 936 to 1531, the place where 31 Holy Roman Emperors were crowned Kings of the Germans.[1]

Aachen is the westernmost city in Germany, located near the borders with Belgium and the Netherlands, west south west of Cologne in a former coal-mining area.[2] One of Germany's leading institutes of higher education in technology, the RWTH Aachen University is located in the city. Aachen's industries include science, engineering and information technology. In 2009, Aachen was ranked eighth among cities in Germany for innovation.

This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Aachen. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

History of Aachen (city)

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Early history

Flint quarries on the Lousberg, Schneeberg, and Königshügel, first used during Neolithic times (3000–2500 BC), attest to the long occupation of the site of Aachen, as do recent finds under the modern city's Elisengarten pointing to a former settlement from the same period. Bronze Age (around 1600 BC) settlement is evidenced by the remains of barrows (burial mounds) found, for example, on the Klausberg. During the Iron Age, the area was settled by Celtic peoples who were perhaps drawn by the marshy Aachen basin's hot sulphur springs where they worshipped Grannus, god of light and healing.

Later, the 25-hectare Roman spa resort town of Aquae Granni was, according to legend, founded by Grenus, under Hadrian, around 124 AD. Instead, the fictitious founder refers to the Celtic god, and it seems it was the Roman 6th Legion at the start of the 1st century AD that first channelled the hot springs into a spa at Büchel,[3] adding at the end of the same century the Münstertherme spa, two water pipelines, and a probable sanctuary dedicated to Grannus. A kind of forum, surrounded by colonnades, connected the two spa complexes. There was also an extensive residential area, part of it inhabited by a flourishing Jewish community. The Romans built bathhouses near Burtscheid. A temple precinct called Vernenum was built near the modern Kornelimünster/Walheim. Today, remains have been found of three bathhouses, including two fountains in the Elisenbrunnen and the Burtscheid bathhouse.

Roman civil administration in Aachen broke down between the end of the 4th and beginning of the 5th centuries. Rome withdrew its troops from the area, but the town remained populated. By 470, the town came to be ruled by the Ripuarian Franks and subordinated to their capital, Cologne.

Middle Ages

After Roman times, Pepin the Short had a castle residence built in the town, due to the proximity of the hot springs and also for strategic reasons as it is located between the Rhineland and northern France. Einhard mentions that in 765–6 Pepin spent both Christmas and Easter at Aquis villa, ("and [he] celebrated Christmas in the town Aquis, and similarly Easter") which must have been sufficiently equipped to support the royal household for several months. In the year of his coronation as king of the Franks, 768, Charlemagne came to spend Christmas at Aachen for the first time. He remained there in a mansion which he may have extended, although there is no source attesting to any significant building activity at Aachen in his time, apart from the building of the Palatine Chapel (since 1930, cathedral) and the Palace. Charlemagne spent most winters in Aachen between 792 and his death in 814. Aachen became the focus of his court and the political centre of his empire. After his death, the king was buried in the church which he had built; his original tomb has been lost, while his alleged remains are preserved in the Karlsschrein, the shrine where he was reburied after being declared a saint; his saintliness, however, was never officially acknowledged by the Roman Curia as such.

In 936, Otto I was crowned king of East Francia in the collegiate church built by Charlemagne. During the reign of Otto II, the nobles revolted and the West Franks, under Lothair, raided Aachen in the ensuing confusion. Aachen was attacked again by Odo of Champagne, who attacked the imperial palace while Conrad II was absent. Odo relinquished it quickly and was killed soon afterwards. The palace and town of Aachen had fortifying walls built by order of Emperor Frederick Barbarossa between 1172 and 1176.[4] Over the next 500 years, most kings of Germany destined to reign over the Holy Roman Empire were crowned in Aachen. The original audience hall built by Charlemagne was torn down and replaced by the current city hall in 1330.[4] The last king to be crowned here was Ferdinand I in 1531.[3][5] During the Middle Ages, Aachen remained a city of regional importance, due to its proximity to Flanders; it achieved a modest position in the trade in woollen cloths, favoured by imperial privilege. The city remained a free imperial city, subject to the emperor only, but was politically far too weak to influence the policies of any of its neighbours. The only dominion it had was over Burtscheid, a neighbouring territory ruled by a Benedictine abbess. It was forced to accept that all of its traffic must pass through the "Aachener Reich". Even in the late 18th century the Abbess of Burtscheid was prevented from building a road linking her territory to the neighbouring estates of the duke of Jülich; the city of Aachen even deployed its handful of soldiers to chase away the road-diggers.

As an imperial city, Aachen held certain political privileges that allowed it to remain independent of the troubles of Europe for many years. It remained a direct vassal of the Holy Roman Empire throughout most of the Middle Ages. It was also the site of many important church councils, including the Council of 837 and the Council of 1166, a council convened by the antipope Paschal III.[2]

Manuscript production

Aachen has proved an important site for the production of historical manuscripts. Under Charlemagne's purview, both the Ada Gospels and the Coronation Gospels may have been produced in Aachen. In addition, quantities of the other texts in the court library were also produced locally. During the reign of Louis the Pious (814–840), substantial quantities of ancient texts were produced at Aachen, including legal manuscripts such as the leges scriptorium group, patristic texts including the five manuscripts of the Bamberg Pliny Group.[6] Finally, under Lothair I (840–855), texts of outstanding quality were still being produced. This however marked the end of the period of manuscript production at Aachen.[6]

16th–18th centuries

In 1598, following the invasion of Spanish troops from the Netherlands, Rudolf deposed all Protestant office holders in Aachen and even went as far as expelling them from the city. From the early 16th century, Aachen started to lose its power and influence. First the coronations of emperors were moved from Aachen to Frankfurt. This was followed by the religious wars, and the great fire of 1656. After the destruction of most of the city in 1656, the rebuilding was mostly in the Baroque style.[4] The decline of Aachen culminated in 1794, when the French, led by General Charles Dumouriez,[7] occupied Aachen.[5]

By the middle of the 17th century Aachen had become attractive as a spa: not so much because of the effects of the hot springs on the health of its visitors but because Aachen was then – and remained well into the 19th century – a place of high-level prostitution. Traces of this hidden agenda of the city's history are found in the 18th-century guidebooks to Aachen as well as to the other spas.

The main indication for visiting patients, ironically, was syphilis; only by the end of the 19th century had rheumatism become the most important object of cures at Aachen and Burtscheid.

Aachen was chosen as the site of several important congresses and peace treaties: the first congress of Aachen (often referred to as the Congress of Aix-la-Chapelle in English) on 2 May 1668, leading to the First Treaty of Aachen in the same year which ended the War of Devolution. The second congress ended with the second treaty in 1748, ending the War of the Austrian Succession.[3] In 1789, there was a constitutional crisis in the Aachen government, and in 1794 Aachen lost its status as a free imperial city.[4]

19th century

On 9 February 1801, the Peace of Lunéville removed the ownership of Aachen and the entire "left bank" of the Rhine from Germany and granted it to France.[7] In 1815, control of the town was passed to Prussia, by an act passed by the Congress of Vienna.[4][5] The third congress took place in 1818, to decide the fate of occupied Napoleonic France.

By the middle of the 19th century, industrialisation had swept away most of the city's medieval rules of production and commerce, although the entirely corrupt remains of the city's medieval constitution were kept in place (compare the famous remarks of Georg Forster in his Ansichten vom Niederrhein) until 1801, when Aachen became the "chef-lieu du département de la Roer" in Napoleon's First French Empire. In 1815, after the Napoleonic Wars, the Kingdom of Prussia took over. The city was one of its most socially and politically backward centres until the end of the 19th century.[3] Administered within the Rhine Province, by 1880 the population was 80,000. Starting in 1838, the railway from Cologne to Belgium passed through Aachen. The city suffered extreme overcrowding and deplorable sanitary conditions until 1875, when the medieval fortifications were finally abandoned as a limit to building and new, better housing was built in the east of the city, where sanitary drainage was easiest. In December 1880, the Aachen tramway network was opened, and in 1895 it was electrified. In the 19th century and up to the 1930s, the city was important in the production of railway locomotives and carriages, iron, pins, needles, buttons, tobacco, woollen goods, and silk goods.

20th century

After World War I, Aachen was occupied by the Allies until 1930, along with the rest of German territory west of the Rhine.[5] Aachen was one of the locations involved in the ill-fated Rhenish Republic. On 21 October 1923, an armed band took over the city hall. Similar actions took place in Mönchen-Gladbach, Duisburg, and Krefeld. This republic lasted only about a year.

Aachen was heavily damaged during World War II. The city and its fortified surroundings were laid siege to from 12 September to 21 October 1944 by the US 1st Infantry Division with the 3rd Armored Division assisting from the south. Around 13 October the US 2nd Armored Division played their part, coming from the north and getting as close as Würselen, while the 30th Infantry Division played a crucial role in completing the encirclement of Aachen on 16 October 1944. With reinforcements from the US 28th Infantry Division the Battle of Aachen then continued involving direct assaults through the heavily defended city, which finally forced the German garrison to surrender on 21 October 1944.[8] Aachen was the first German city to be captured by the Allies, and its residents welcomed the soldiers as liberators. The city was destroyed partially – and in some parts completely – during the fighting,[3] mostly by American artillery fire and demolitions carried out by the Waffen-SS defenders. Damaged buildings included the medieval churches of St. Foillan, St. Paul and St. Nicholas, and the Rathaus (city hall), although Aachen Cathedral was largely unscathed. Only 4,000 inhabitants remained in the city; the rest had followed evacuation orders. Its first Allied-appointed mayor, Franz Oppenhoff, was assassinated by an SS commando unit.

History of Aachen Jews

During the Roman period, Aachen was the site of a flourishing Jewish community. Later, during the Carolingian empire, a Jewish community lived near the royal palace.[9] In 802, a Jew named Isaac accompanied the ambassador of Charlemagne to Harun al-Rashid. During the 13th century, many Jews converted to Christianity, as shown in the records of the Aachen Minster (today's cathedral). In 1486, the Jews of Aachen offered gifts to Maximilian I during his coronation ceremony. In 1629, the Aachen Jewish community was expelled from the city. In 1667, six Jews were allowed to return. Most of the Aachen Jews settled in the nearby town of Burtscheid. On 16 May 1815, the Jewish community of the city offered an homage in its synagogue to the Prussian king, Friedrich Wilhelm III. A Jewish cemetery was acquired in 1851. 1,345 Jews lived in the city in 1933. The synagogue was destroyed during Kristallnacht in 1938. In 1939, after emigration and arrests, 782 Jews remained in the city. After World War II, only 62 Jews lived there. In 2003, 1,434 Jews were living in Aachen. In Jewish texts, the city of Aachen was called Aish, or Ash (אש).

21st century

The city of Aachen has developed into a technology hub as a by-product of hosting one of the leading universities of technology in Germany with the RWTH Aachen (Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule), known especially for mechanical engineering, automotive and manufacturing technology as well as for its research and academic hospital Klinikum Aachen, one of the largest medical facilities in Europe.

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