Infobox German Bundesland
Name = Hesse
German_name = Hessen
state_coa = Coat of arms of Hesse.svg
flag2 = Flag of Hesse (state).svg
capital = Wiesbaden
largest_city = Frankfurt
area = 21100
population = 6073000
pop_ref = [cite web |url=http://www.statistik-portal.de/Statistik-Portal/de_zs01_he.asp |title= State population |work= Portal of the Federal Statistics Office Germany |accessdate=2007-04-25]
pop_date = 2007-09-30
GDP = 198
GDP_year = 2005
GDP_percent = 8.8
Website = [http://www.hessen.de/ www.hessen.de]
leader = Roland Koch (Acting)
leader_party = CDU
votes = 5
NUTS = DE7
iso region = DE-HE
Hesse ( _de. Hessen) is a state of
Germanywith an area of 21,110 km² and just over six million inhabitants. The state capital is Wiesbaden. Hesse's largest city is nearby Frankfurt am Main.Hesse contributes the largest share to the Rhine Main Area.
Situated in west-central Germany, Hesse borders on the German states (starting from the northwest and proceeding clockwise) of
North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony, Thuringia, Bavaria, Baden-Württembergand Rhineland-Palatinate.
The principal cities of Hesse include
Frankfurt am Main, Wiesbaden, Darmstadt, Offenbach, Hanau, Gießen, Wetzlarand Limburg in the greater Rhine Main Area, Fuldain the east, and Kasseland Marburg an der Lahnin the north.
The most important rivers in Hesse are the Fulda and
Ederrivers in the north, the Lahnin the central part of Hesse, and the Mainand Rhinein the south. The countryside is hilly and there are numerous mountain ranges, like the Rhön, the Westerwald, the Taunus, the Vogelsberg, the Knüllor the Spessart.
Most of the population of Hesse is in the southern part of Hesse in the Rhine Main Area. The Rhine borders Hesse on the southwest without running through the state, only one old arm – the so-called Alt-Rhein – runs through Hesse. The mountain range between the Main and the Neckar river is called the
Odenwald. The plain in between the rivers Main, Rhine and Neckar, and the Odenwald mountains is called the Ried.
List of places in Hesse.
Hesse is divided into 21 districts and 5 independent cities:
Celtic presence in what is now Hesse is indicated by a mid 5th century BC La Tènestyle burial uncovered at Glauberg. The region was later settled by the Germanic Chattitribe in ca. the 1st century BC, and the name "Hesse" is a continuation of that tribal name. In the early Middle Ages, a Frankish "gau" comprising an area around Fritzlarand Kasseland a Saxon one further north were known as Hessengau. In the 9th century the Saxon Hessengau also came under the rule of the Franconians. In the 12th century it was passed to Thuringia.
War of the Thuringian Succession(1247-64), Hesse gained its independence and became a Landgraviate within the Holy Roman Empire. It shortly rose to primary importance under Landgrave Philip the Magnanimous, who was one of the leaders of German Protestantism. After Philip's death in 1567, the territory was divided up among his four sons from his first marriage (Philip was a bigamist) into four lines: Hesse-Kassel(or Hesse-Cassel), Hesse-Darmstadt, Hesse-Rheinfelsand the also previously existing Hesse-Marburg. As the latter two lines died out quite soon (1583 and 1605, respectively), Hesse-Kassel and Hesse-Darmstadt were the two core states within the Hessian lands. Several collateral lines split off during the centuries, such as in 1622, when Hesse-Homburgsplit off from Hesse-Darmstadt. In the late 16th century, Kassel adopted Calvinism, while Darmstadt remained Lutheranand subsequently the two lines often found themselves on different sides of a conflict, most notably in the disputes over Hesse-Marburgand in the Thirty Years' War, when Darmstadt fought on the side of the Emperor, while Kassel sided with Swedenand France.
Hesse-Kassel was elevated to the rank of an Electorate in 1803, but this remained without effect as the
Holy Roman Empirewas disbanded in 1806. The territory was annexed by the Kingdom of Westphaliain 1806, but restored to the Elector in 1813. While other Electors had gained other titles, becoming either Kings or Grand-dukes, the Elector of Hesse-Kassel alone retained the anachronistic dignity. The name survived in the term "Kurhessen", denoting the region around Kassel. In 1866 it was annexed by Prussia, together with the Free City of Frankfurt, Hesse-Homburg and the duchy of Nassau, which established the province of Hesse-Nassau.
Hesse-Darmstadt was elevated to the rank of a Grand Duchy in 1806. In the
War of 1866, it fought on the side of Austriaagainst Prussia, but retained its autonomy in defeat, because a greater part of the country was situated south of the Main river and Prussia did not dare to expand beyond the Main line as this might have provoked France. But the parts of Hesse-Darmstadt north of the Main river (the region around the town of Gießen, commonly called "Oberhessen") were incorporated in the Norddeutscher Bund, a tight federation of German states, established by Prussia in 1867. In 1871 the rest of the Grand Duchy joined the German Empire. Around the turn of the century, Darmstadt was one of the centres of the Jugendstil.Until 1907, the Grand Duchy of Hesse used only the Hessian red and white lion as its coat-of-arms
The revolution of 1918 transformed Hesse-Darmstadt from a monarchy to a republic, which officially renamed itself to "
Volksstaat Hessen" (People's State of Hesse). The parts of Hesse-Darmstadt on the western banks of the Rhine (province Rheinhessen) were occupied by French troops until 1930 under the terms of the Versailles peace treaty that officially ended WWI in 1919.
World War IIthe Hessian territory left of the Rhine was again occupied by France, whereas the rest of the country was part of the US occupation zone. The French separated their part of Hesse from the rest of the country and incorporated it into the newly founded state of Rhineland-Palatinate (Rheinland-Pfalz). The United States, on the other side, proclaimed the state of Greater Hesse("Groß-Hessen") on 19 September 1945, out of Hesse-Darmstadt and most of the former Prussian province of Hesse-Nassau. On December 4, 1946Groß-Hessen was officially renamed Hessen. [cite web |url=http://60stolzejahre.hessen.de/dynasite.cfm?dssid=77&dsmid=1898 |title=Hessen - 60 stolze Jahre - Zeittafel 1945/1946 |accessdate=2006-12-01 |format= |work= ]
The state is called Hessen in German and Hesse in English; the English name for the state was taken from French. An inhabitant of the state is a "Hesse" (masculine) or "Hessin" (feminine) in German and a "Hessian" in English (see
Hessian (soldiers)). Occasionally the German term "Hessen" is also used in English. " Hessia" is another variant, although rarely used.Hesse refers to the Germanic tribe of the Chatti, who settled in the region in the first centuries B.C.
The Politics of Hesse takes place within a framework of a federal parliamentary representative democratic republic, where the Federal Government of Germany exercises sovereign rights with certain powers reserved to the states of Germany including Hesse. The state has a multi-party system where the two main parties are the rightist Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and the leftist Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD).
Hesse state election of 2008, the outgoing Prime Minister, Roland Koch(CDU), lost his majority in the state diet ( Landtag of Hesse).
The official state song of Hesse is called "Hessenlied" (Song of Hesse), but is not widely known. It was written by Carl Preser
"Ich kenne ein Land, so reich und so schön,voll goldener Ähren die Felder,dort grünen im Tal bis zu sonnigen Höh`n viel dunkele, duftige Wälder.Dort hab ich als Kind an der Mutter Handin Blüten und Blumen gesessen.Ich grüß’ Dich, du Heimat, du herrliches Land,Herz Deutschlands, mein blühendes Hessenland.
Vom Main bis zur Weser, Werra und Lahnein Land voller blühender Auen, dort glänzen die Städte, die wir alle sahn,sind herrlich im Lichte zu schauen.Dort hab ich als Kind an der Mutter Handin Blüten und Blumen gesessen.Ich grüß’ Dich, du Heimat, du herrliches Land,Herz Deutschlands, mein blühendes Hessenland."
(1828-1910, text) and Albrecht Brede (1834-1920, melody). [http://www.hessen.de/irj/zentral_Internet?cid=a440b60a30af08a480026d4cbce9d5d9]
TV & radio stations
Hessischer Rundfunk(HR) is the main ARD broadcaster in Hesse, providing a third TV programme as well as its local radio stations ( HR 1, HR 2, HR 3, HR 4, you fm and HR info ). Other than HR, ZDFand other privately run TV stations flourish. Among the commercial radio stations that are active in Hesse are Hit Radio FFH, Planet Radio, Harmony FM, SKY Radio and Main FM.
Traffic and public transportation
Hesse has one of the best transportation infrastructures in Europe. Many trans-European and German interstate freeways cross Hesse as well as high-speed train lines and many important trans-European waterways.
Frankfurt International Airportis Germany's biggest airport and the third largest in Europe (after London and Paris). Near the airport is the Frankfurter Kreuz, Europe's most important motorway junction, where the German autobahns A3 (Arnhem-Cologne-Frankfurt-Nuremberg-Passau) and A5 (Hattenbach-Frankfurt-Karlsruhe-Basel) meet. Frankfurt (Main) Hauptbahnhofis Germany's most important railway station.
death penaltyis still mentioned in the constitution of Hesse, as the Hessian constitution was ratified in 1946, when the death penalty was still part of the German penal code (and carried out as well). Because the 1949 federal constitution provides for the abolition of the death penalty (Art. 102) and because of the supremacy of the federal constitution (Art. 31, incidentally the two shortest articles in the whole constitution), the Hessian constitutional articles still mentioning the death penalty are de facto obsolete. Nonetheless, no politician has yet proposed to formally abolish the death penalty in Hesse because that would require a plebiscite.
*Locals from the area speak the
Rhine Franconiandialect known as "Hessisch".
*The chemical element of
Hassiumis named for Hesse alongside with Darmstadtiumfor the Hessian City of Darmstadt.
*Hesse is a
sister stateof Wisconsin, one of the states of the United States of America
*During the 17th and 18th centuries thousands of Hessians fought in the American Revolution and other conflicts as soldiers of fortune (though usually conscripted, the pay going to their Lord) on both sides [cite web |url=http://www.kriegsreisende.de/absolutismus/hessen.htm |title=Die verkauften Hessen (German text) |accessdate=2007-19-02 |format= |work= ] .
Landgraviate of Hesse
Landgraviate of Hesse-Darmstadt
* [http://www.hessen.de/ Official government portal]
* [http://www.360-rhoen.de/ 360 degree virtual trip through the Rhön - part of eastern Hesse]
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