From top: View of Cottbus at sunset,
The Art-Nouveau façade of the State Theater (1905), The 14th cent. Spremberger Tower,
View on the Karl-Liebknecht Str, The library of the Brandenburg University of Technology
|• Lord mayor (2014–22)||Holger Kelch (CDU)|
|• Total||164.28 km2 (63.43 sq mi)|
|Elevation||70 m (230 ft)|
|• Density||600/km2 (1,600/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+01:00 (CET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+02:00 (CEST)|
Cottbus (German pronunciation: [ˈkɔtbʊs] ( listen ); Lower Sorbian : Chóśebuz, pronounced [ˈxɨɕɛbus] ) is a university city and the second-largest city in Brandenburg, Germany. Situated around 125 km (78 mi) southeast of Berlin, on the River Spree, Cottbus is also a major railway junction with extensive sidings/depots. Although only a small Sorbian minority lives in Cottbus itself, the city is considered as the political and cultural center of the Sorbs in Lower Lusatia.
Until the beginning of the 20th century, the spelling of the city's name was disputed. In Berlin, the spelling "Kottbus" was preferred, and it is still used for the capital's Kottbusser Tor ("Cottbus Gate"), but locally the traditional spelling "Cottbus" (which defies standard German-language rules) was preferred, and it is now used in most circumstances. Because the official spelling used locally before the spelling reforms of 1996 had contravened even the standardized spelling rules already in place, the Standing Committee for Geographical Names stress their urgent recommendation that geographical names should respect the national spelling standards. A citizen of the city may be identified as either a "Cottbuser" or a "Cottbusser".
Names in different languages:
Duchy of Poland 1002–1025
Kingdom of Poland 1025–1032
March of Lusatia 1032–1367
Lands of the Bohemian Crown 1367–1445
Margraviate of Brandenburg 1445–1618
Kingdom of Prussia 1701–1807
Kingdom of Saxony 1807–1815
Kingdom of Prussia 1815–1871
German Empire 1871–1918
Weimar Republic 1918–1933
Nazi Germany 1933–1945
Allied-occupied Germany 1945–1949
German Democratic Republic 1949–1990
The settlement was established in the 10th century, when Sorbs erected a castle on a sandy island in the River Spree. The first recorded mention of the town's name was in 1156. In the 13th century German settlers came to the town and thereafter lived side by side with the Sorbs. In the Middle Ages Cottbus was known for wool, and the town's drapery was exported throughout Brandenburg, Bohemia and Saxony. In 1445 Cottbus was acquired by the Margraviate of Brandenburg from Bohemia. In 1514 Jan Rak founded the Universitas Serborum, a Sorbian gymnasium, in the city. In 1701 the city became part of the Kingdom of Prussia. It was also ruled by Saxony between 1807 and 1813. In 1815 the surrounding districts of Upper and Lower Lusatia were ceded by the Kingdom of Saxony to Prussia. According to the Prussian census of 1905, the city of Cottbus had a population of 46,270, of which 97% were Germans, 2% were Sorbs and 1% were Poles.
In interwar Germany, the town was the site of a concentration camp for unwanted Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe.
During World War II, Cottbus was taken by the Red Army on 22 April 1945. From 1949 until German reunification in 1990, Cottbus was part of the German Democratic Republic (East Germany).
Cottbus is the cultural centre of the Lower Sorbian minority. Many signs in the town are bilingual, and there is a Lower Sorbian-medium Gymnasium and a Sorbian Quarter, but Sorbian is rarely spoken on the streets.
Next to Cottbus is the famous Branitz Park, created by Prince Hermann von Pückler-Muskau after 1845. Schloss Branitz (Branitz Castle) was rebuilt by Gottfried Semper in a late Baroque style between 1846 and 1852, and the gardens Prince Hermann laid feature two pyramids. One of these, the Seepyramide, is in the middle of an artificial lake and serves as his mausoleum.
Cottbus is also home to the Brandenburg University of Technology (BTU) and the maths/science-oriented Max-Steenbeck-Gymnasium, named after the physicist Max Steenbeck.
Every year Cottbus hosts the East Europe International Film Festival.
Cottbus has a soccer team, Energie Cottbus, that plays in the Regionalliga Nordost. Their home matches are played at the city's Stadion der Freundschaft.
Cottbus is served by Cottbus Hauptbahnhof main railway station.
There are several lignite-fired power stations in the area around Cottbus (Lausitz) fed through local open pit mining. The biggest stations are "Schwarze Pumpe" (1600 MW), "Boxberg" (1900 MW) and "Jänschwalde" (3000 MW). Some of the open-pit mines have already been shut down with the former de:Tagebau Cottbus Nord being converted into an artificial lake with 19 km² surface area called Cottbuser Ostsee (Cottbus eastern lake).
Cottbus is twinned with:
Brandenburg is a state in the northeast of Germany. With an area of 29,478 square kilometres (11,382 sq mi) and a population of 2.5 million residents, it is the fifth-largest German state by area and the tenth-most populous. Potsdam is the state capital and largest city, while other major towns include Cottbus, Brandenburg an der Havel and Frankfurt (Oder).
The Sorbian languages are two closely related, but only partially mutually intelligible, West Slavic languages spoken by the Sorbs, a West Slavic minority in the Lusatia region of eastern Germany. They are classified under the West Slavic branch of the Indo-European languages and are therefore closely related to the other two West Slavic subgroups: Lechitic and Czech–Slovak. Historically, the languages have also been known as Wendish or Lusatian. Their collective ISO 639-2 code is wen.
Sorbs are a West Slavic ethnic group predominantly inhabiting Lusatia, a region divided between Germany and Poland. Sorbs traditionally speak the Sorbian languages, which are closely related to Polish, Kashubian, Czech, Silesian, and Slovak. Sorbian is an officially recognized minority language in Germany. Sorbs are genetically closest to the Poles and Czechs. They also share their origins with Serbs.
Lusatia is a historical region in Central Europe, split between Germany and Poland. Lusatia stretches from the Bóbr and Kwisa rivers in the east to the Pulsnitz and Black Elster rivers in the west, and is located within the German states of Saxony and Brandenburg as well as in the Polish voivodeships of Lower Silesia and Lubusz. Lusatia's central rivers are the Spree and the Lusatian Neisse, which constitutes the border between Germany and Poland since 1945. The Lusatian Mountains, separate Lusatia from Bohemia in the south. Lusatia is traditionally divided into Upper Lusatia and Lower Lusatia.
Dahme-Spreewald is a district in Brandenburg, Germany. It is bounded by the districts of Oder-Spree, Spree-Neiße, Oberspreewald-Lausitz, Elbe-Elster and Teltow-Fläming, and by the city of Berlin.
Oberspreewald-Lausitz is a Kreis (district) in the southern part of Brandenburg, Germany. Neighboring districts are Dahme-Spreewald, Spree-Neiße, the districts Bautzen and Meissen in Saxony, and the district Elbe-Elster.
Spree-Neiße is a Kreis (district) in the southern part of Brandenburg, Germany. Neighboring districts are the districts Niederschlesischer Oberlausitzkreis and Kamenz in Saxony, the districts Oberspreewald-Lausitz, Dahme-Spreewald and Oder-Spree. The district-free city Cottbus is surrounded by the district. To the east is Poland.
Guben is a town on the Lusatian Neisse river in the state of Brandenburg, Germany. Located in the Spree-Neiße district, Guben has a population of 20,049. Along with Frankfurt (Oder) and Görlitz, Guben is a divided city on the border between Germany and Poland, having been separated into Guben and Gubin in 1945 by the Oder–Neisse line.
Bad Muskau is a spa town in the historic Upper Lusatia region in Germany, at the border with Poland. It is part of the Görlitz district in the State of Saxony.
Lübbenau is a town in the Upper Spree Forest-Lusatia District of Brandenburg, Germany. It is located in the bilingual German/Sorbian region of (Lower) Lusatia, on the river Spree, where this forms a large inland delta surrounded by woodland, called "Spree Forest", about 82 km (51 mi) southeast of Berlin. The town is best known through the incorporated villages of Lehde/Lědy and Leipe/Lipje, villages where there just exist anabranches of the Spree River instead of streets.
Lower Lusatia is a historical region in Central Europe, stretching from the southeast of the German state of Brandenburg to the southwest of Lubusz Voivodeship in Poland. Like adjacent Upper Lusatia in the south, Lower Lusatia is a settlement area of the West Slavic Sorbs whose endangered Lower Sorbian language is related to Upper Sorbian and Polish.
Forst (Lausitz) is a town in Brandenburg, Germany. It lies east of Cottbus, on the river Lausitzer Neiße which is also the German-Polish border, the Oder-Neisse line. It is the capital of the Spree-Neiße district. It is known for its rose garden and textile museum. The town's population is 18,651. In Forst, there is a railway bridge across the Neiße belonging to the line Cottbus–Żary which is serviced by regional trains and a EuroCity train between Hamburg and Kraków (2011). There is also a road bridge across the river north of Forst.
Lübben (Spreewald) is a town of 14,000 people, capital of the Dahme-Spreewald district in the Lower Lusatia region of Brandenburg, Germany.
Luckau is a city in the district of Dahme-Spreewald in the federal state of Brandenburg, Germany. Known for its beauty, it has been dubbed "the Pearl of Lower Lusatia".
The Lusatian Alliance, formerly the Wendish People's Party is a political party founded on 26 March 2005 in Cottbus to represent the Sorb/Wendish ethnic and linguistic minority in the German states of Saxony and Brandenburg in the region of Lusatia. At its third party congress of 26 April 2010 in Cottbus, the party changed its name to the Lusatian Alliance. The party is a full member of the European Free Alliance.
Finsterwalde is a town in the Elbe-Elster district, in Brandenburg, Germany.
Senftenberg is a town in southern Brandenburg, Germany, capital of the Oberspreewald-Lausitz district.
Kolkwitz is a municipality in the district of Spree-Neiße, in southeastern Brandenburg.
Friedland is a town in the Oder-Spree district, in Brandenburg, Germany. It is situated in the historic Lower Lusatia region, about 8 km (5.0 mi) south of Beeskow, and 39 km (24 mi) north of Cottbus.
Schwarzheide is a town in the Oberspreewald-Lausitz district, in southern Brandenburg, Germany. It is situated on the river Schwarze Elster, 11 km southwest of Senftenberg, 110 km south of Berlin and 40 km north of Dresden. The little river Pössnitz runs through the eastern part of Schwarzheide.
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