Berlin is the capital city and one of the sixteen states of the Federal Republic of Germany. It is the heart of the Berlin-Brandenburg metropolitan region, located in northeastern Germany. With a population of 3.4 million, Berlin is the country's largest city, and the second most populous city in the European Union.
Berlin is one of the most influential centers in European politics, culture and science. The city serves as an important hub of continental transportation and is home to some of the most prominent universities, sport events, orchestras, and museums. Its economy is based on the service sector, encompassing a diverse range of media and life science corporations, convention venues, research institutes, and creative industries.
The rapidly evolving metropolis enjoys an international reputation for its festivals, contemporary architecture, nightlife, and avant-garde arts. Being a major tourist center and home to people from over 180 nations, Berlin is a focal point for individuals who are attracted by its liberal lifestyle, urban eclecticism, and artistic freedom.
First documented in the 13th century, Berlin became successively the capital of the Kingdom of Prussia (from 1701), the German Empire (1871-1918), the Weimar Republic (1919-1932) and the Third Reich (1933-1945). After World War II, the city was divided. East Berlin became the capital of the GDR (East Germany), while West Berlin remained a West German enclave surrounded by the Berlin Wall from 1961-1989. Following the reunification in 1990, the city regained its status as the capital of all Germany.
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