Skokie is a village in Cook County, United States, neighboring the City of Chicago’s northern border. Skokie lies 15 miles north of Chicago's downtown loop, its name comes from a Potawatomi word for "marsh." For many years Skokie promoted itself as "The World's Largest Village." Its population, according to the 2010 census, was 64,784. Skokie's streets, like that of many suburbs, are a continuation of the Chicago street grid, the village is served by the Chicago Transit Authority, further cementing its connection to the city. Skokie was a German-Luxembourger farming community, but was settled by a sizeable Jewish population after World War II. At its peak in the mid-1960s, 58% of the population was Jewish, the largest percentage of any Chicago suburb. In recent years, several synagogues and Jewish schools have closed. However, Skokie still has a large Jewish population and an active Chabad, it is home to the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center, which opened in northwest Skokie in 2009.
Skokie has received national attention twice for court cases decided by the United States Supreme Court. In the mid-1970s, it was at the center of a case concerning the First Amendment right to assemble and the National Socialist Party of America, a neo-Nazi group. Skokie lost that case. In 2001, although Skokie was not a direct party to the case, a decision by the village regarding land use led the court to reduce the power of the United States Environmental Protection Agency. According to the 2010 census, Skokie has a total area of all land; the village is bordered by Evanston to the east, Chicago to the southeast and southwest, Lincolnwood to the south, Niles to the southwest, Morton Grove to the west, Glenview to the northwest, Wilmette to the north. The village's street circulation is a street-grid pattern, with major east-west thoroughfare every half-mile: Old Orchard Road, Golf Road, Church Street, Dempster Street, Main Street, Oakton Street, Howard Street, Touhy Avenue; the major north-south thoroughfares are Skokie Boulevard, Crawford Avenue, McCormick Boulevard.
Skokie's north-south streets continue the street names and grid values of Chicago's north-south streets – with the notable exceptions of Cicero Avenue, renamed Skokie Boulevard in Skokie, Chicago's Pulaski Road retains its original Chicago City name, Crawford Avenue. The east-west streets continue Evanston's street names, but with Chicago grid values, such that, Evanston's Dempster Street is 8800 north, in Skokie addresses. In 1888, the community was incorporated as Niles Centre. About 1910, the spelling was Americanized to "Niles Center". However, the name caused postal confusion with the neighboring village of Niles. A village-renaming campaign began in the 1930s. In a referendum on November 15, 1940, residents chose the Native American name "Skokie" over the name "Devonshire." During the real estate boom of the 1920s, large parcels were subdivided. Large-scale development ended as a result of the Great Crash of 1929 and consequent Great Depression, it was not until the 1940s and the 1950s, when parents of the baby boom generation moved their families out of Chicago, that Skokie's housing development began again.
The village developed commercially, an example being the Old Orchard Shopping Center named Westfield Old Orchard. During the night of November 27–28, 1934, after a gunfight in nearby Barrington that left two FBI agents dead, two accomplices of notorious 25-year-old bank-robber Baby Face Nelson dumped his bullet-riddled body in a ditch along Niles Center Road adjoining the St. Peter Catholic Cemetery, a block north of Oakton Street in the town; the first African-American family to move to Skokie arrived in 1961, open-housing activists helped to integrate the suburb subsequently. The name of the town was changed from "Niles Center" to "Skokie" by referendum in 1940. "Skokie" had been used as the name for the marshland on which much of the town was built. Maps long named the Skokie marsh as Chewab Skokie, a probable derivation from Kitchi-wap choku, a Potawatomi term meaning "great marsh". Virgil Vogel's Indian Place Names in Illinois records the name Skokie as: In Native Placenames of the United States, William Bright lists Vogel's Potawatomi derivation first, but adds reference to the Ojibwa term miishkooki recorded in the Eastern Ojibwa-Chippewa-Ottawa Dictionary, by Richard A. Rhodes.
The 1940 change of name may have been influenced by James Foster Porter, a Chicago native, who had explored the "Skoki Valley" in Banff National Park in Canada in 1911 and became captivated by the name. Porter supported the name "Skokie" in the referendum. Twice in its history, Skokie has been the focal point of cases before the United States Supreme Court. National Socialist Party of America v. Village of Skokie, 432 U. S. 43, involved a First Amendment issue. Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County v. U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, 531 U. S. 159 touched upon the Commerce Clause. In 1977 and 1978, Illinois Nazis of the National Socialist Party of America attempted to demonstrate their political existence with a march in Skokie, far from their headquarters on Chicago's south side. Ori
The Talmud is the central text of Rabbinic Judaism and the primary source of Jewish religious law and Jewish theology. Until the advent of modernity, in nearly all Jewish communities, the Talmud was the centerpiece of Jewish cultural life and was foundational to "all Jewish thought and aspirations", serving as "the guide for the daily life" of Jews; the term "Talmud" refers to the collection of writings named the Babylonian Talmud, although there is an earlier collection known as the Jerusalem Talmud. It may traditionally be called Shas, a Hebrew abbreviation of shisha sedarim, or the "six orders" of the Mishnah; the Talmud has two components. The term "Talmud" may refer to either the Gemara alone; the entire Talmud consists of 63 tractates, in standard print is over 6,200 pages long. It is written in Mishnaic Hebrew and Jewish Babylonian Aramaic and contains the teachings and opinions of thousands of rabbis on a variety of subjects, including halakha, Jewish ethics, customs, history and many other topics.
The Talmud is the basis for all codes of Jewish law, is quoted in rabbinic literature. Talmud translates as "instruction, learning", from a root LMD "teach, study". Jewish scholarship was oral. Rabbis expounded and debated the Torah and discussed the Tanakh without the benefit of written works, though some may have made private notes, for example of court decisions; this situation changed drastically as the result of the destruction of the Jewish commonwealth and the Second Temple in the year 70 and the consequent upheaval of Jewish social and legal norms. As the rabbis were required to face a new reality—mainly Judaism without a Temple and Judea without at least partial autonomy—there was a flurry of legal discourse and the old system of oral scholarship could not be maintained, it is during this period. The oldest full manuscript of the Talmud, known as the Munich Talmud, dates from 1342 and is available online; the process of "Gemara" proceeded in what were the two major centers of Jewish scholarship and Babylonia.
Correspondingly, two bodies of analysis developed, two works of Talmud were created. The older compilation is called the Talmud Yerushalmi, it was compiled in the 4th century in Galilee. The Babylonian Talmud was compiled about the year 500; the word "Talmud", when used without qualification refers to the Babylonian Talmud. While the editors of Jerusalem Talmud and Babylonian Talmud each mention the other community, most scholars believe these documents were written independently. Here the argument from silence is convincing." The Jerusalem Talmud known as the Palestinian Talmud, or Talmuda de-Eretz Yisrael, was one of the two compilations of Jewish religious teachings and commentary, transmitted orally for centuries prior to its compilation by Jewish scholars in the Land of Israel. It is a compilation of teachings of the schools of Tiberias and Caesarea, it is written in Jewish Palestinian Aramaic, a Western Aramaic language that differs from its Babylonian counterpart. This Talmud is a synopsis of the analysis of the Mishnah, developed over the course of nearly 200 years by the Academies in Galilee Because of their location, the sages of these Academies devoted considerable attention to analysis of the agricultural laws of the Land of Israel.
Traditionally, this Talmud was thought to have been redacted in about the year 350 by Rav Muna and Rav Yossi in the Land of Israel. It is traditionally known as the Talmud Yerushalmi, but the name is a misnomer, as it was not prepared in Jerusalem, it has more been called "The Talmud of the Land of Israel". Its final redaction belongs to the end of the 4th century, but the individual scholars who brought it to its present form cannot be fixed with assurance. By this time Christianity had become the state religion of the Roman Empire and Jerusalem the holy city of Christendom. In 325, Constantine the Great, the first Christian emperor, said "let us have nothing in common with the detestable Jewish crowd." This policy made a Jew an pauper. The compilers of the Jerusalem Talmud lacked the time to produce a work of the quality they had intended; the text is not easy to follow. The apparent cessation of work on the Jerusalem Talmud in the 5th century has been associated with the decision of Theodosius II in 425 to suppress the Patriarchate and put an end to the practice of semikhah, formal scholarly ordination.
Some modern scholars have questioned this connection. Despite its incomplete state, the Jerusalem Talmud remains an indispensable source of knowledge of the development of the Jewish Law in the Holy Land, it was an important resource in the study of the Babylonian Talmud by the Kairouan school of Chana
Hildesheimer Rabbinical Seminary
The Hildesheimer Rabbinical Seminary was founded in Berlin on 22 October 1873 by Rabbi Dr. Israel Hildesheimer for the training of rabbis in the tradition of Orthodox Judaism. In accepting the call as the first rabbi of the new Berlin Orthodox congregation, the Israelite Synagogal Congregation of Adass Yisroel in 1869, Israel Hildesheimer stipulated that he should be allowed to continue his activities as rabbinical teacher just as he had done at his former rabbinical office in Eisenstadt, Hungary. After delivering lectures which attracted a great many pupils, he addressed ten prominent persons in different parts of Germany in 1872, explained to them the necessity of organizing an Orthodox rabbinical seminary at Berlin; these men at once took up the subject, a central committee was formed, which included Rabbi Joseph Altmann of Karlsruhe, Rabbi Dr. Auerbach of Halberstadt, Chief Rabbi Dr. Solomon Cohn of Schwerin, Aron Hirsch Heymann of Berlin, Gustav Hirsch of Berlin, Sally Lewisohn of Hamburg, Emanuel Schwarzschild of Frankfurt am Main.
The seminary was dedicated on 22 October 1873. At the opening of the institution the faculty included the rector, Dr. Israel Hildesheimer, two lecturers, Dr. David Hoffmann and Dr. Abraham Berliner. In 1874, Dr. Jacob Barth, subsequently son-in-law of Hildesheimer, was added to the faculty as lecturer in Hebrew, exegesis of the Bible with the exception of the Pentateuch, religious philosophy. Dr. Hirsch Hildesheimer, son of the founder and a graduate of the seminary, was appointed in 1882 lecturer in Jewish history and the geography of Palestine; when Dr. Solomon Cohn removed to Berlin from Schwerin in 1876 he took charge of the courses in theoretic and practical homiletics, continuing them until he went to Breslau in 1894. By this time, the attendance had increased, owing to the large number of pupils at the institution it became necessary to employ a new teacher. After the death of the founder, Dr. Hildesheimer, on 12 June 1899, Rabbi David Z. Hoffmann was elected rector of the institution.
During his rectorate the seminary located on Gipsstraße 12a, moved into Adass Jisroel's new edifice on Artilleriestraße 31–32 in 1904. Hoffmann was succeeded by Rabbi Avrohom Eliyahu Kaplan, a graduate of the Slabodka yeshiva and a brilliant talmudist. Kaplan died young however after only four years as rector, he was succeeded by the last rector of the Seminary. The Seminary was closed by the Nazis in 1938. In 2009, the Seminary was reestablished with the blessing of Professor Dr. Meir Hildesheimer and Rabbi Azaria Hildesheimer, great grandsons of the founder, under the name Rabbinerseminar zu Berlin; the contemporary Seminary is funded by the Central Council of Jews in Germany and the Ronald S. Lauder Foundation, occupies premises at the Skoblo Synagogue and Education Center in Berlin Mitte. Rector of the institution is Dayan Chanoch Ehrentreu the Rosh Beth Din of the London Beth Din; the Seminary has ordained eight rabbis since 2009, who serve as community rabbis in Freiburg im Breisgau, Köln, Osnabrück, as educators in Frankfurt am Main and Berlin.
The course of study is four years, is divided into two major and one minor areas of study. The major areas are classical Talmud and Halacha, a state accredited degree in social work offered by the University of Applied Sciences Erfurt; the minor area includes professional qualifications such as pastoral care, bereavement counseling, public speaking, as well as intellectual history and constitutional law. In 2013, the Seminary established an affiliate institution in partnership with the Israelitische Religionsgemeinde zu Leipzig, the Institute for Traditional Liturgy, to train both rabbinical students and communal lay leaders to lead prayer services in accordance with halachic practice and normative ritual tradition; the seminary was divided into a lower division. Pupils in the lower division followed a two-year course, being promoted to the upper division on passing an examination; the course in this division lasted four years. The conditions for admission to the seminary included the following: the candidate had to prove by examination that he was able to understand a moderately difficult Talmudic text and the Tosafot.
At the end of the course, pupils who left the institution as qualified rabbis had pass special examinations showing that aside from their attainments in the various branches of Jewish science they were sufficiently familiar with the ritual codices to decide on ritual and religio-legal questions. 1873–1899 - Dr. Azriel Hildesheimer 1899–1920 - Dr. David Zvi Hoffmann 1920–1924 - Rabbi Avrohom Eliyahu Kaplan 1924–1938 - Dr. Yechiel Yaakov Weinberg Dr. Jacob Barth, lecturer for Hebrew language Dr. Abraham Berliner, lecturer for Jewish history and literature Dr
Muʿtazila is a rationalist school of Islamic theology that flourished in the cities of Basra and Baghdad, both now in Iraq, during the 8th to the 10th centuries. The adherents of the Muʿtazili school, known as Muʿtazilites, are best known for denying the status of the Qur'an as uncreated and co-eternal with God, asserting that if the Quran is the word of God, He logically "must have preceded his own speech"; the philosophical speculation of the Muʿtazilites centred on the concepts of divine justice and divine unity. The school worked to resolve the theological "problem of evil": how to reconcile the justice of an all-powerful God with the reality of evil in the world, it believed that since God is just and wise, He cannot command what is contrary to reason or act with disregard for the welfare of His creatures. Muʿtazilites believed that good and evil were not always determined by revealed scripture or interpretation of scripture, but they were rational categories that could be "established through unaided reason".
This part alone made them the enemy of those who follow the Tafsirs. The Muʿtazili school of Kalam considered the injunctions of God to be accessible to rational thought and inquiry and that reason, not "sacred precedent", is the effective means to determine what is just and religiously obligatory; the movement emerged during the Umayyad Caliphate and reached its height during the Abbasid Caliphate. After the 10th century, the movement declined, it is viewed as heretical by some Sunni scholars in modern mainstream Sunni theology for its tendency to deny the Qur'an being eternal. In contemporary Salafi jihadism, the epithet or supposed allegations of being a Muʿtazilite have been used between rival groups as a means of denouncing their credibility; the name Muʿtazili is derived from the reflexive stem VIII of the triconsonantal root ع-ز-ل "separate, segregate", as in اعتزل iʿtazala "to separate. The name is derived from the founder's "withdrawal" from the study circle of Hasan of Basra over a theological disagreement: Wāṣil ibn ʿAṭā' asked about the legal state of a sinner: is a person who has committed a serious sin a believer or an unbeliever?
Hasan answered. Wasil dissented, suggesting that a sinner was neither a believer nor an unbeliever and withdrew from the study circle. Others followed to form a new circle, including ʿAmr ibn ʿUbayd. Hasan's remark, is said to be the origin of the movement's name; the group referred to themselves as Ahl al-Tawḥīd wa l-ʿAdl (اهل التوحيد و العدل, "people of monotheism and justice", the name muʿtazili was first used by its opponents. The verb iʿtizal is used to designate a neutral party in a dispute. According to the Encyclopædia Britannica, "The name first appears in early Islāmic history in the dispute over ʿAlī's leadership of the Muslim community after the murder of the third caliph, ʿUthmān; those who would neither condemn nor sanction ʿAlī or his opponents but took a middle position were termed the Muʿtazilah." Nallino argued that the theological Mu'tazilism of Wasil and his successors was a continuation of this initial political Mu'tazilism. Muʿtazili theology originated in the eighth century in Basra when Wāṣil ibn ʿAṭā' left the teaching lessons of Hasan al-Basri after a theological dispute regarding the issue of al-Manzilah bayna al-Manzilatayn.
Though Muʿtazilis relied on logic and different aspects of early Islamic philosophy, ancient Greek philosophy, Indian philosophy, the basics of Islam were their starting point and ultimate reference. The accusations leveled against them by rival schools of theology that they gave absolute authority to extra-Islamic paradigms reflect more the fierce polemics between various schools of theology than any objective reality. For instance, Muʿtazilis adopted unanimously the doctrine of creation ex nihilo, contrary to certain Muslim philosophers who, with the exception of al-Kindi, believed in the eternity of the world in some form or another, it was Muslim philosophers, not the Muslim theologians speaking, who took Greek and Hellenistic philosophy as a starting point and master conceptual framework for analyzing and investigating reality. This school of thought emerged as a reaction to political tyranny; the philosophical and metaphysical elements, influence of the Greek philosophy were added afterward during the Abbasid Caliphate.
The founders of the Abbasid dynasty strategically supported this school to bring political revolution against the Umayyad Caliphate. Once their authority was established, they turned against this school of thought. Like all other schools, Muʿtazilism developed over an extensive period of time. Abu al-Hudhayl al-'Allaf, who came a couple of generations after Wāṣil ibn ʿAtāʾ and ʿAmr ibn ʿUbayd, is considered the theologian who systematized and formalized Muʿtazilism in Basra. Another branch of the school found a home in Baghdad under the direction of Bishr ibn al-Mu'tamir; the Muʿtazilites maintained, like the Qadarites of the Omayyad period, man's free will that justice and reason must form the foundation of the action God takes toward men, both of which doctrines were repudiated by the later
Kabbalah is an esoteric method and school of thought of Judaism. A traditional Kabbalist in Judaism is called a Mequbbāl; the definition of Kabbalah varies according to the tradition and aims of those following it, from its religious origin as an integral part of Judaism, to its adaptations in Western esotericism. Jewish Kabbalah is a set of esoteric teachings meant to explain the relationship between God, the unchanging and mysterious Ein Sof, the mortal and finite universe, it forms the foundation of mystical religious interpretations within Judaism. Jewish Kabbalists developed their own transmission of sacred texts within the realm of Jewish tradition, use classical Jewish scriptures to explain and demonstrate its mystical teachings; these teachings are held by followers in Judaism to define the inner meaning of both the Hebrew Bible and traditional rabbinic literature and their concealed transmitted dimension, as well as to explain the significance of Jewish religious observances. One of the fundamental kabbalistic texts, the Zohar, was first published in the 13th century, the universal form adhered to in modern Judaism is Lurianic Kabbalah.
Traditional practitioners believe its earliest origins pre-date world religions, forming the primordial blueprint for Creation's philosophies, sciences and political systems. Kabbalah emerged after earlier forms of Jewish mysticism, in 12th- to 13th-century Southern France and Spain, was reinterpreted during the Jewish mystical renaissance of 16th-century Ottoman Palestine. Isaac Luria is considered the father of contemporary Kabbalah. During the 20th-century, academic interest in Kabbalistic texts led by the Jewish historian Gershom Scholem has inspired the development of historical research on Kabbalah in the field of Judaic studies. According to the Zohar, a foundational text for kabbalistic thought, Torah study can proceed along four levels of interpretation; these four levels are called pardes from their initial letters. Peshat: the direct interpretations of meaning. Remez: the allegoric meanings. Derash: midrashic meanings with imaginative comparisons with similar words or verses. Sod: the inner, esoteric meanings, expressed in kabbalah.
Kabbalah is considered by its followers as a necessary part of the study of Torah – the study of Torah being an inherent duty of observant Jews. Modern academic-historical study of Jewish mysticism reserves the term "kabbalah" to designate the particular, distinctive doctrines that textually emerged expressed in the Middle Ages, as distinct from the earlier Merkabah mystical concepts and methods. According to this descriptive categorisation, both versions of Kabbalistic theory, the medieval-Zoharic and the early-modern Lurianic kabbalah together comprise the theosophical tradition in Kabbalah, while the meditative-ecstatic Kabbalah incorporates a parallel inter-related Medieval tradition. A third tradition, related but more shunned, involves the magical aims of Practical Kabbalah. Moshe Idel, for example, writes that these 3 basic models can be discerned operating and competing throughout the whole history of Jewish mysticism, beyond the particular Kabbalistic background of the Middle Ages.
They can be distinguished by their basic intent with respect to God: The theosophical tradition of Theoretical Kabbalah seeks to understand and describe the divine realm. As an alternative to rationalist Jewish philosophy Maimonides' Aristotelianism, this speculation became the central component of Kabbalah The Ecstatic tradition of Meditative Kabbalah strives to achieve a mystical union with God. Abraham Abulafia's "Prophetic Kabbalah" was the supreme example of this, though marginal in Kabbalistic development, his alternative to the program of theosophical Kabbalah The Magico-theurgical tradition of Practical Kabbalah endeavours to alter both the Divine realms and the World. While some interpretations of prayer see its role as manipulating heavenly forces, Practical Kabbalah properly involved white-magical acts, was censored by kabbalists for only those pure of intent, it formed a separate minor tradition shunned from Kabbalah. Practical Kabbalah was prohibited by the Arizal until the Temple in Jerusalem is rebuilt and the required state of ritual purity is attainable.
According to traditional belief, early kabbalistic knowledge was transmitted orally by the Patriarchs and sages to be "interwoven" into Jewish religious writings and culture. According to this view, early kabbalah was, in around the 10th century BCE, an open knowledge practiced by over a million people in ancient Israel. Foreign conquests drove the Jewish spiritual leadership of the time to hide the knowledge and make it secret, fearing that it might be misused if it fell into the wrong hands, it is hard to clarify with any degree of certainty the exact concepts within kabbalah. There are several different schools of thought with different outlooks. Modern halakhic authorities have tried to narrow the scope and
Berlin is the capital and largest city of Germany by both area and population. Its 3,748,148 inhabitants make it the second most populous city proper of the European Union after London; the city is one of Germany's 16 federal states. It is surrounded by the state of Brandenburg, contiguous with its capital, Potsdam; the two cities are at the center of the Berlin-Brandenburg capital region, which is, with about six million inhabitants and an area of more than 30,000 km², Germany's third-largest metropolitan region after the Rhine-Ruhr and Rhine-Main regions. Berlin straddles the banks of the River Spree, which flows into the River Havel in the western borough of Spandau. Among the city's main topographical features are the many lakes in the western and southeastern boroughs formed by the Spree and Dahme rivers. Due to its location in the European Plain, Berlin is influenced by a temperate seasonal climate. About one-third of the city's area is composed of forests, gardens, rivers and lakes; the city lies in the Central German dialect area, the Berlin dialect being a variant of the Lusatian-New Marchian dialects.
First documented in the 13th century and situated at the crossing of two important historic trade routes, Berlin became the capital of the Margraviate of Brandenburg, the Kingdom of Prussia, the German Empire, the Weimar Republic, the Third Reich. Berlin in the 1920s was the third largest municipality in the world. After World War II and its subsequent occupation by the victorious countries, the city was divided. East Berlin was declared capital of East Germany. Following German reunification in 1990, Berlin once again became the capital of all of Germany. Berlin is a world city of culture, politics and science, its economy is based on high-tech firms and the service sector, encompassing a diverse range of creative industries, research facilities, media corporations and convention venues. Berlin serves as a continental hub for air and rail traffic and has a complex public transportation network; the metropolis is a popular tourist destination. Significant industries include IT, biomedical engineering, clean tech, biotechnology and electronics.
Berlin is home to world-renowned universities, orchestras and entertainment venues, is host to many sporting events. Its Zoological Garden is one of the most popular worldwide. With the world's oldest large-scale movie studio complex, Berlin is an popular location for international film productions; the city is well known for its festivals, diverse architecture, contemporary arts and a high quality of living. Since the 2000s Berlin has seen the emergence of a cosmopolitan entrepreneurial scene. Berlin lies in northeastern Germany, east of the River Saale, that once constituted, together with the River Elbe, the eastern border of the Frankish Realm. While the Frankish Realm was inhabited by Germanic tribes like the Franks and the Saxons, the regions east of the border rivers were inhabited by Slavic tribes; this is why most of the villages in northeastern Germany bear Slavic-derived names. Typical Germanised place name suffixes of Slavic origin are -ow, -itz, -vitz, -witz, -itzsch and -in, prefixes are Windisch and Wendisch.
The name Berlin has its roots in the language of West Slavic inhabitants of the area of today's Berlin, may be related to the Old Polabian stem berl-/birl-. Since the Ber- at the beginning sounds like the German word Bär, a bear appears in the coat of arms of the city, it is therefore a canting arm. Of Berlin's twelve boroughs, five bear a Slavic-derived name: Pankow, Steglitz-Zehlendorf, Marzahn-Hellersdorf, Treptow-Köpenick and Spandau. Of its ninety-six neighborhoods, twenty-two bear a Slavic-derived name: Altglienicke, Alt-Treptow, Buch, Gatow, Kladow, Köpenick, Lankwitz, Lübars, Marzahn, Prenzlauer Berg, Schmöckwitz, Stadtrandsiedlung Malchow, Steglitz and Zehlendorf; the neighborhood of Moabit bears a French-derived name, Französisch Buchholz is named after the Huguenots. The earliest evidence of settlements in the area of today's Berlin are a wooden beam dated from 1192, remnants of a house foundation dated to 1174, found in excavations in Berlin Mitte; the first written records of towns in the area of present-day Berlin date from the late 12th century.
Spandau is first mentioned in 1197 and Köpenick in 1209, although these areas did not join Berlin until 1920. The central part of Berlin can be traced back to two towns. Cölln on the Fischerinsel is first mentioned in a 1237 document, Berlin, across the Spree in what is now called the Nikolaiviertel, is referenced in a document from 1244. 1237 is considered the founding date of the city. The two towns over time formed close economic and social ties, profited from the staple right on the two important trade routes Via Imperii and from Bruges to Novgorod. In 1307, they formed an alliance with a common external policy, their internal administrations still being separated. In 1415, Frederick I became the elector of the Margraviate of Brandenburg, which he ruled until 1440. During the 15th century, his successors established Berlin-Cölln as capital of the margraviate, subsequent members of the Hohenzol
Oradea is the capital city of Bihor County and Crișana region and one of the most important economic and cultural centers in the western part of Romania. The city is located in the north-west of the country, nestled between hills on the Crișana plain, on the banks of the Crișul Repede River, that divides the city into equal halves. Located about 10 km from Borș, one of the most important crossing points on Romania's border with Hungary, Oradea ranks tenth in size among Romanian cities, it covers an area of 11,556 hectares, in an area of contact between the extensions of the Apuseni Mountains and the Crișana-Banat extended plain. Oradea enjoys a high standard of living relative to other Romanian cities and ranks among the most livable cities in the country; the city is a strong industrial center in the region, hosting some of Romania's largest companies. Besides its status as an economic hub, Oradea boasts a rich Art Nouveau architectural heritage and is a member of the Réseau Art Nouveau Network.
The city lies at the Crișul Repede's basin. It is situated 126 meters above sea level, surrounded on the north-eastern part by the hills of Oradea, part of the Șes hills; the main part of the settlement is situated on the floodplain and on the terraces situated down the river Crișul Repede. Oradea is famous for its thermal springs; the river Crişul Repede crosses the city right through the center, providing it with a picturesque beauty. Its flow depends on the season. Oradea has a warm-summer humid continental climate with oceanic influences; the city's topoclimatic action is determined by the prevailing Western winds. Annual average temperature is 10.4 °C. In July the average is about 21 °C, while in January the average is 1.4 °C. Rainfall is enough to support the woods and vegetation of the zone, registering an annual average of about 585.4 mm. Rainfall is variably distributed throughout the year, with a maximum in June and a minimum in the late Autumn and Winter months of the year. While modern Oradea is first mentioned in 1113, under the Latin name "Varadinum" in a diploma belonging to Benedictine Zobor Abbey – Bishop Sixtus Varadiensis and Saul de Bychar are mentioned in the document – recent archaeological findings, in and around the city, provide evidence of a more or less continuous habitation since the Neolithic.
The Dacians and Celts inhabited the region. After the conquest of Dacia the Romans established a presence in the area, most notably in the Salca district of the city and modern day Băile Felix; the feudal state was a principality ruled by Prince Menumorut at the end of the 9th and beginning of the 10th centuries, until the Hungarian land-taking. Its citadel was centred at Biharea. In the 11th century when St. King Ladislaus I of Hungary founded a bishopric settlement near the city of Oradea, the present Roman Catholic Diocese of Oradea; the city flourished both economically and culturally during the 13th century as part of the Kingdom of Hungary. It was at this time that the Citadel of Oradea, first mentioned in 1241 during the Mongol invasion, was first built, it would be rebuilt several times over the course of following centuries. The 14th and 15th centuries would prove to be of the most prosperous periods in the city's history up to that point. Many works of art would be added to the city, including: statues of St. Stephen and Ladislaus and the equestrian sculpture of St. King Ladislaus I were erected in Oradea.
St. Ladislaus' fabled statue was the first proto-renaissance public square equestrian in Europe. Bishop Andreas Báthori rebuilt the Cathedral in Gothic style. From that epoch dates the Hermes, now preserved at Győr, which contains the skull of St. Ladislaus, and, a masterpiece of the Hungarian goldsmith's art, it was at this time that astronomer Georg von Peuerbach wrote his Tabula Varadiensis, published posthumously in 1464, at the Observatory of Varadinum, establishing the city's observatory as the Earth's point of reference and prime meridian. In 1474, the city was captured by the Turks after a protracted siege, their tolerant policies towards others peoples ensured that the city would become an ethnic mosaic of Romanians, Austrians, Hebrews and Turks, causing Oradea to grow as an urban area starting with the 16th century. After the Ottoman invasion of Hungary, in the 16th century, the city became a constant point of contention between the Principality of Transylvania, the Ottoman Empire and the Habsburg Monarchy.
The Peace of Várad was concluded between Emperor Ferdinand I and John Zápolya here on 4 February 1538, in which they mutually recognized each other as legitimate monarchs. Following Michael the Brave's conquest of the Principality of Transylvania, the Ottomans sent a punitive expedition that laid siege to the city in 1598, however the siege failed. After Michael's assassination in 1601 and the Peace of Vienna of 1603, the city was permanently incorporated in the Principality of Transylvania by imperial decree; as a result of Gyorgy Rakoczi II's, at the time Prince of Transylvania failed attempt to gain the throne of Poland the Ottomans sent yet another punitive expedition against him and his Wallachian and Moldavian allies. The expedition failed, but it gave the Romanian chronicler Miron Costin the occasion to write the first full chronicle about the city, Oradiia. In 1660 the Ottomans, wit