Zwickau tsvĭk´ou [key], city (1994 pop. 107,988), Saxony, E central Germany, on the Mulde River. It is an industrial city and until the late 1970s was the center of a coal mining region. Manufactures include machinery, textiles, and automobile parts. Zwickau was chartered in the early 13th cent., and it was a free imperial city from 1290 to 1323, when it passed to the margraves of Meissen. The city was (1520–23) the center of the Anabaptist movement of Thomas Münzer . It was repeatedly plundered during the Thirty Years War (1618–48). Noteworthy buildings include a basilica (12th–15th cent.), the Church of St. Catherine (14th cent.), and the city hall (15th cent.). Robert Schumann was born (1810) in Zwickau, and the city has a Schumann museum.

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