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Mühlhausen, Thuringen

Mühlhausen (official Mühlhausen/Thüringen) is a city in the federal state of Thuringia, Germany. It is the capital of the Unstrut-Hainich district, and lies along the river Unstrut.

Mühlhausen is one of the oldest towns in Thuringia. It said to have been fortified in 925, and is first documented in 967 as an Ottonian village. Its early importance is shown by the grant of privileges made to it by the German King Henry the Fowler (876–936), and by the Imperial Diet held here in 1135. Its period of glory was the 13th through the 15th century. During the Reformation, Mühlhausen became one of the chief seats of the Anabaptists. The radical reformer Thomas Müntzer preached in the Church of Saint Mary in 1525, and was captured in the vicinity and executed in the town. Johann Sebastian Bach was an organist in the Church of Saint Blaise from 1707-1708. Internal dissensions and injuries received during the Thirty Years’ War (1618–1648) and the Seven Years’ War (1756–1763) reduced Mühlhausen to unimportance. In 1802 it lost its independence and passed to Prussia. In 1807 it was attached to theKingdom of Westphalia, but in 1815 it again became part of the Prussian Province of Saxony. From 1944 to March 1945, a women’s slave labor camp was directly outside Mühlhausen (a branch of the Buchenwald camp). The women were deported in April 1945 to Bergen Belsen.

Main sights

  • Historic city wall
  • City archives
  • 11 churches
  • National Park Hainich
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