The Thinking of Speaking
Issue #7 January / February 2014
Where Are You?
by Sonja Krüger
January / February 2014 | 

This city is located in the central area of its country, but it is not the capital. Once, it belonged to a different country entirely. Over the centuries, it has been called a few different names. During the Middle Ages, the Germans called it Kronstadt, meaning "Crown City". Another name it used at the time was Corona, and in the 20th century, it at one time bore the title of Oraşul Stalin ("Stalin City").

German colonists were important to the development of this city. During the 12th century, they developed towns, built mines, and cultivated lands, eventually becoming settlers to the region. The Teutonic Knights were called upon to fortify the region in 1211. That is when they built, as it was called then, Kronstadt. They were evicted by 1225, but the colonists that had come with them stayed, joining with the existing population. They were involved in trading, and the city became the junction of trade routes between Western Europe and the Ottoman Empire. Fortifications around the city were built up and expanded as a result of its rising importance.

After World War I, the city adopted a proclamation and swore allegiance to another country. After that, they enjoyed a good economy and cultural life. World War II brought an end to that. The country fought on both sides, first with the Axis countries, then with the Allies. At the end of the war, the country fell under communist rule. Many ethnic Germans were deported by force to the Soviet Union while others emigrated to West Germany. In 1965, harsh austerity measures and political repression began under the communist party and the country became the most Stalinist police state in the Eastern bloc. This authoritarian government was finally overturned December of 1989 during a revolution.

Jews have lived in the city since 1807. A Jewish community was officially established in 1826, and the first Jewish school was built in 1864. Today, the Jewish community here has a population of around 230. The city is also home to a large number of ethnic Hungarians. According to the 2011 census, this city is the 8th most populous one in its country. To its fame, the city is the birthplace of the country's national anthem. It also hosted the 2013 European Youth Winter Olympic Festival.

Can you name this city and country?

Last month's answer: Lyon, France

Where Are You?
Writer: Sonja Krüger
Petey: Mystery picture

All images are Copyright - CC BY-SA (Creative Commons Share Alike) by their respective owners, except for Petey, which is Public Domain (PD) or unless otherwise noted.


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