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Kobenhavn History, Denmark

Kobenhavn, more commonly known as Copenhagen, is the capital of Denmark, and a European centre of art, culture and entertainment to boot. Kobenhavn is the kind of town that offers to its inhabitants and its visitors all the comforts and perks of a metropolis, while retaining the intimate atmosphere of a small Old World town. A short distance Odense, another historic tow, Kobenhavn can be called the Scandinavian the Scandinavian city par excellence. Many of the sights and attractions of the place have a great historical significance, and their mere presence conjures up images of the city’s past. This Kobenhavn History Guide will help you discover the history of this fascinating city.

Kobenhavn History - Foundation and Middle Ages

Kobenhavn was founded in the 11th century as a small fishing, but in only a few more centuries it grew a great deal more important. The settlement came under the authority of Bishop Absalon, and by the 13th century, a sturdy defense wall was already surrounding the budding town. Kobenhavn’s seaside location was one of its greatest assets: herring fishing was a lucrative business in the early Middle Ages, and the fish trade helped the town become so rich that even the Hanseatic League saw it as a threat. The 16th century was a time of change for the city, that was enlarged with new neighborhoods and decorated with sumptuous architecture. Denmark’s king at the time saw Kobenhavn as a means to prove his greatness, and it’s largely due to him that the city is the architectural wonder we see today. The late 18th and early 19th century were not so kind, as the city was first attacked by Sweden and then destroyed by fire. At the beginning of the 19th century, British-Danish hostilities led to the bombing of the city. Around 1850, the city’s thick walls were taken down, offering it more space for expansion.

Kobenhavn History - Modern History and Present

The 20th century started off well for Kobenhavn, and the city grew and developed. It survived World War I unscathed, but during World War II it was occupied by Nazi Germany. No lasting damage was done to the city itself, but this was not a pleasant period in Kobenhavn’s past. After the war ended, the city went through another growth spurt. The city’s infrastructure was modernized, and in 2000, the Oresund Bridge was erected over the Oresund Strait, connecting Kobenhavn to Malmo. Today, Kobenhavn is one of the liveliest and most interesting cities in Northern Europe, and a great holiday spot for people of all ages.

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