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Århus (ôrˈhōs) [key], city (1992 pop. 204,139), capital of Århus co., central Denmark, on Århus Bay, an arm of the Kattegat. The second largest city in Denmark, it is a commercial, industrial, and shipping center. Manufactures include beer, metals, textiles, machinery, chemicals, processed food, ships, and tobacco products. First mentioned in the mid-10th cent., Århus is one of the oldest cities in Denmark. It developed rapidly after it became an episcopal see in the 11th cent. The city declined after the Reformation (16th cent.) but recovered its prosperity in the 18th cent. Århus is also a cultural center, with a university (opened 1928), a prominent theater, a museum group of early Danish houses, and a large library. Noteworthy buildings include the Cathedral of St. Clemens (1201) and the town hall (1942), made of Norwegian marble. Until 1948 the city's name was spelled Aarhus.

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

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