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Alba Iulia

Alba Iulia (älˈbä-yōˈlyä) [key], Hung. Gyulafehérvár, Ger. Karlsburg, town (1990 pop. 73,383), W central Romania, in Transylvania, on the Mureşul River. It is a rail junction and distribution center for a winemaking region, where grain, poultry, and fruit are raised. The town's light manufactures include leather goods, furniture, and footwear. Alba Iulia is the site of the ancient Apulum, founded by the Romans in the 2d cent. A.D., and destroyed by Tatars in 1241. It was the seat (16th–17th cent.) of the princes of Transylvania, of a Roman Catholic bishop, and of an Eastern Orthodox metropolitan. From 1599 to 1601, Alba Iulia was the capital of the united principalities of Walachia, Transylvania, and Moldavia. It was the site (1918) of the proclamation of Transylvania's union with Romania and of the coronation (1922) of King Ferdinand. Points of interest include an 18th-century fortress, built by Emperor Charles VI; a 13th-century Roman Catholic cathedral; and a museum and library housing exhibits from the Roman period and rare manuscripts.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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