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Among English speakers, Frankfurt typically refers to Frankfurt am Main, described below. There is another Frankfurt in Germany, see Frankfurt an der Oder

Frankfurt am Main is a city in Germany. Situated at the Main river, it is the largest city in the German Bundesland Hessen. Pop.: appr. 650,000.


The name of Frankfurt on the Main river is derived from the Franconofurt of the Germanic tribe of the Franks; Furt (cf. English ford) denotes a low point passage across a stream or river. Alemanni and Franks lived there and by 794 Charlemagne presided over an imperial assembly and church synod, at which Franconofurt (-furd -vurd) is first mentioned. However, since frank is also an old German word for frei (meaning "free"), Frankfurt was a "free ford," an oportunity to cross the river Main without paying bridgetoll.

In the Holy Roman Empire, Frankfurt was one of the most important cities. Over several centuries, German kings and emperors were crowned here, initially after having been elected in Aachen.

After the ill-faithed revolution of 1848, Frankfurt was home to the first German National Assembly (Nationalversammlung), which resided in St. Paul's Church (Paulskirche) (see German Confederation for details).


Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was born in Frankfurt.

Frankfurt is the home of the European Central Bank, the German Bundesbank[?] and the German stock exchange.

See also: Frankfurt International Airport, Frankfurt-Hahn Airport

External links

Skyline of Frankfurt, photographed from the south-west

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