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Situated near a settlement (Munichen) that was established in Carolingian times, Munich was founded (1158) by Henry the Lion, duke of Saxony and of Bavaria. In 1255 it was chosen as the residence of the Wittelsbach family, the dukes of Bavaria; it later became (1506) the capital of the dukedom. During the Thirty Years War, Munich was occupied (1632) by Gustavus II of Sweden. In 1806 the city was made capital of the kingdom of Bavaria. Under the kings Louis I (1825–48), Maximilian II (1848–64), and Louis II (1864–86), Munich became a cultural and artistic center, and it played a leading role in the development of 19th- and 20th-century German painting.
After World War I the city was the scene of considerable political unrest. National Socialism (Nazism) was founded there, and on Nov. 8, 1923, Adolf Hitler failed in his attempted Munich “beer-hall putsch”—a coup aimed at the Bavarian government. Despite this fiasco, Hitler made Munich the headquarters of the Nazi party, which in 1933 took control of the German national government. Michael Cardinal Faulhaber, the archbishop of Munich, was one of the few outspoken critics of the National Socialist regime. In Sept., 1938, the Munich Pact was signed in the city; in 1939 Hitler suppressed a Bavarian separatist plot there. Munich was badly damaged during World War II, but after 1945 it was extensively rebuilt and many modern buildings were constructed.
(München), a city in the southern Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and capital of the Land (state) of Bavaria. An important economic and cultural center, it is situated on the Isar River. Population, 1.3 million (1971). Greater Munich, which includes 150 surrounding communities, has a population of more than 1.8 million. Munich is a focal point of railroads, highways, and air routes, with international airports in the suburbs of Riem and Erdinger-Moos. Industry, especially new branches, has been rapidly developing in the postwar period. In terms of number of persons employed, the most important industries are electrical engineering, electronics, and instrument-making, which together account for 37 percent of the work force. General and transport machine building accounts for 29 percent; paper and printing, for 9 percent; clothing and textiles, for 7 percent; and food and condiments, including brewing, for 6 percent. The chemical industry primarily produces chemicals, pharmaceutical and rubber goods, motion-picture film, and synthetic fabrics. Although there are still many handicraft shops (14,000 shops with 110,000 employees) and medium-size industrial enterprises, huge concerns occupy the leading place in industry. These include Siemens—electrical engineering and electronics; Haniel-Konzern (MAN firm)—general and heavy machine building; Quandt (BMW firm)—automobiles; Flick (Krauss-Maffei firm)—buses and heavy trucks; Messerschmitt-Bolkow-Blohm—aircraft and space vehicles; and Junkers—aircraft and engines. Munich is one of the FRG’s major centers of banking (Bayerische Vereinsbank AG, Bayerische Hypotheken und Wechselbank), insurance (Allianz Versicherungs AG, Münchener Rückversicherungsgesellschaft AG), and trade. International fairs are held periodically. Among the city’s educational institutions are the University of Munich (Ludwig Maximilian University), the Technische Hochschule, the Academy of Fine Arts, and the Academy of Music. Museums include the German Museum, the Bavarian National Museum, the Glyptothek, the Old and the New Pinakothek, and a theater museum. There are several theaters in Munich.
A. I. MUKHIN
A settlement arose on the site of Munich in the eighth century. In 1158, it was granted a city charter by Henry the Lion, Duke of Bavaria. Munich was the capital of Bavaria from the 13th century until 1871. Handicrafts and trade greatly developed in the city in the 13th and 14th centuries, and in the 16th century Munich became a major cultural center of Germany. It was occupied by Swedish troops in the Thirty Years’ War (1618–48) and by Austrian troops in 1705, during the War of the Spanish Succession (1701–14). When the German Empire was founded in 1871, Munich was incorporated into it together with Bavaria. The city’s population grew rapidly: it rose from 89,000 in 1840 to 596,000 in 1910 and to 829,000 in 1939.
V. I. Lenin lived in Munich from 1900 to 1902 and directed the work of the newspaper Iskra, which was published here during this period. In April 1919 the Bavarian Soviet Republic was proclaimed in Munich.
On Nov. 8–9, 1923, Munich was the scene of a fascist putsch headed by Hitler and Ludendorff; the headquarters of the Nazi Party was located in Munich until 1933. After the establishment of the fascist dictatorship in Germany in 1933, Munich, long a center of thriving Nazi organizations, became a major strong-hold of the fascist reaction. The Munich Pact of 1938 was signed here. During World War II (1939–45), the city was heavily damaged by aerial bombardment. After the defeat of fascist Germany, it became a part of the American zone of occupation (1945–49).
Munich’s churches include the Late Gothic Frauenkirche, or Church of Our Lady (1466–92, architect J. Ganghofer), the Late Renaissance St. Michael’s Church (1583–97, architect F. Sustris), and the baroque Church of the Theatines (1663–1767, architects A. Barelli, E. Zuccali, and F. Cuvilliés). Other buildings of major architectural interest include the Alte Rathaus (1470, architect J. Ganghofer); the Residenz of the Bavarian dukes (16th through 19th centuries); the Nymphenburg palace (1663–1728); L. von Klenze’s Glyptothek (1816–30), the Old Pinakothek (1826–36), and the Propylaea (1846–60); the Neue Rathaus (1867–1908, architect G. J. von Hauberrisser); the German Museum (1903–25, architect O. von Miller); and the House of German Art, or Haus der Kunst (1933–37).
Between 1968 and 1972, a whole complex of structures was erected in the new neighborhood of Oberwiesenfeld for the 20th Summer Olympic Games. Designed to accommodate 220,000 spectators, the complex includes a stadium with a capacity of 80,000, a small sports arena that holds 11,000 spectators, and a swimming pool with 9,000 spectator seats, as well as an Olympic village that can house 12,000 people. A team of architects headed by I. Benisch designed the stadium, sports arena, and pool; the Olympic village was designed by the architect G. Gollein. A new commuter railroad line and subway line have been built.