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Coat of arms of Dresden
Dresden is located in Germany
Coordinates 51°2′0″N 13°44′0″E / 51.033333°N 13.733333°E / 51.033333; 13.733333
Country Germany
State Saxony
Admin. region Dresden
District Urban district
Basic statistics
Area 328.8 km2
Elevation 113 m  (371 ft)
Population 517,052 (31 December 2009)[1]
 - Density 1,573 /km2 (4,073 /sq mi)
 - Urban 783,977
 - Metro 1,143,197 
Founded 1206
Other information
Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Website dresden.de

Dresden (etymologically from Old Lusatian-Sorb word Drežďany, meaning people of the riverside forest) is the capital city of the Federal State of Saxony of the Federal Republic of Germany.


It is situated in a valley on the River Elbe. The Dresden conurbation is part of the Saxon Triangle metropolitan area. It is the third most populous city in the area of former East Germany, after Berlin and Leipzig. Dresden's urban area comprises the towns of Freital, Pirna, Radebeul, Meißen, Coswig, Radeberg and Heidenau and has around 790,000 inhabitants.[2]


The Dresden metropolitan area has approximately 1.34 million inhabitants.[3]


Dresden has a long history as the capital and royal residence for the Kings of Saxony, who for centuries furnished the city with cultural and artistic splendor. Originally a collection of Sorbian (Slavs) tribal villages on either side of the river Elbe, who were long ago driven out or assimilated, Dietrich, Margrave of Meissen, chose Dresden as his interim residence in 1206, as documented in a record calling the place "Civitas Dresdene".


The fire bombing of Dresden by the Allies during World War II – considered a war crime by many – changed the face of the city dramatically.[4][5][6]

Modern Dresden

Since German partial unification in 1990, Dresden has emerged as a cultural, political, and economic centre in the middle part of Germany, with significant restoration and rebuilding of some of the pre-war buildings.

See also


  1. Bevölkerung des Freistaates Sachsen jeweils am Monatsende ausgewählter Berichtsmonate nach Gemeinden (German). Statistisches Landesamt des Freistaates Sachsen (31 December 2009).
  2. citypopulation.de quoting Federal Statistics Office. Germany: Urban Areas.
  3. Population on 1 January by broad age group, sex and metropolitan regions. Eurostat.
  4. The Destruction of Dresden by David Irving, first published 1963; revised 1971 and again 1985 , Macmillan, London, 1985, ISBN 0-333-40483-1
  5. Dresden - Tuesday 13 February 1945, by Frederick Taylor, Bloomsbury, London, 2004, ISBN 0-7475-7078-7
  6. The Fire - The Bombings of Germany 1940-1945, by Jorg Friedrich, Columbia University Press, English-language edition, 2006, ISBN 0-231-13380-4