But as part of the archaeological excavations at Marienhof in advance of the expansion of the S-Bahn from shards of vessels from the eleventh century were found, which prove again that the settlement Munich must be older than their first documentary mention from In Munich received city status and fortification.
Wittelsbach's heirs, the Wittelsbach dynasty , ruled Bavaria until He strengthened the city's position by granting it the salt monopoly, thus assuring it of additional income. In the late 15th century, Munich underwent a revival of gothic arts : the Old Town Hall was enlarged, and Munich's largest gothic church — the Frauenkirche — now a cathedral, was constructed in only 20 years, starting in When Bavaria was reunited in , Munich became its capital.
During the 16th century, Munich was a centre of the German counter reformation , and also of renaissance arts. The Catholic League was founded in Munich in When the bubonic plague broke out in and , about one third of the population died. Under the regency of the Bavarian electors, Munich was an important centre of baroque life, but also had to suffer under Habsburg occupations in and In the city became the capital of the new Kingdom of Bavaria , with the state's parliament the Landtag and the new archdiocese of Munich and Freising being located in the city.
Twenty years later, Landshut University was moved to Munich. Many of the city's finest buildings belong to this period and were built under the first three Bavarian kings. Especially Ludwig I rendered outstanding services to Munich's status as a centre of the arts, attracting numerous artists and enhancing the city's architectural substance with grand boulevards and buildings.
On the other hand, Ludwig II , known the world over as the fairytale king, was mostly aloof from his capital and focused more on his fanciful castles in the Bavarian countryside. Nevertheless, his patronage of Richard Wagner secured his posthumous reputation, as do his castles, which still generate significant tourist income for Bavaria.
Later, Prince Regent Luitpold 's years as regent were marked by tremendous artistic and cultural activity in Munich, enhancing its status as a cultural force of global importance see Franz von Stuck and Der Blaue Reiter. Following the outbreak of World War I in , life in Munich became very difficult, as the Allied blockade of Germany led to food and fuel shortages.
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During French air raids in , three bombs fell on Munich. After World War I, the city was at the centre of substantial political unrest. When Communists took power, Lenin , who had lived in Munich some years before, sent a congratulatory telegram, but the Soviet Republic was ended on 3 May by the Freikorps. While the republican government had been restored, Munich became a hotbed of extremist politics, among which Adolf Hitler and the National Socialists soon rose to prominence. In , Adolf Hitler and his supporters, who were concentrated in Munich, staged the Beer Hall Putsch , an attempt to overthrow the Weimar Republic and seize power.
The city again became important to the Nazis when they took power in Germany in The party created its first concentration camp at Dachau , 16 kilometres 9. Because of its importance to the rise of National Socialism, Munich was referred to as the Hauptstadt der Bewegung "Capital of the Movement". The city is known as the site of the culmination of the policy of appeasement by Britain and France leading up to World War II. Munich was the base of the White Rose , a student resistance movement from June to February The core members were arrested and executed following a distribution of leaflets in Munich University by Hans and Sophie Scholl.
After US occupation in , Munich was completely rebuilt following a meticulous plan, which preserved its pre-war street grid. In , Munich's population surpassed one million.
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The city continued to play a highly significant role in the German economy, politics and culture, giving rise to its nickname Heimliche Hauptstadt "secret capital" in the decades after World War II. Munich was the site of the Summer Olympics , during which Israeli athletes were assassinated by Palestinian fedayeen in the Munich massacre , when gunmen from the Palestinian " Black September " group took hostage members of the Israeli Olympic team.
Most Munich residents enjoy a high quality of life. Mercer HR Consulting consistently rates the city among the top 10 cities with the highest quality of life worldwide — a survey ranked Munich as 4th. Environmental pollution is low, although as of [update] the city council is concerned about levels of particulate matter PM , especially along the city's major thoroughfares. Since the enactment of EU legislation concerning the concentration of particulate in the air, environmental groups such as Greenpeace have staged large protest rallies to urge the city council and the State government to take a harder stance on pollution.
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For its high quality of life and safety, the city has been nicknamed "Toytown"  among the English-speaking residents. German inhabitants call it "Millionendorf", an expression which means "village of a million people". Due to the high standard of living in and the thriving economy of the city and the region, there was an influx of people and Munich's population surpassed 1.
Munich is situated in the Northern Alpine Foreland. The northern part of this sandy plateau includes a highly fertile flint area which is no longer affected by the folding processes found in the Alps, while the southern part is covered with morainic hills. Between these are fields of fluvio-glacial out-wash, such as around Munich.
Wherever these deposits get thinner, the ground water can permeate the gravel surface and flood the area, leading to marshes as in the north of Munich. Studies of adaptation to climate change and extreme events are carried out, one of them is the Isar Plan of the EU Adaptation Climate. The city center lies between both climates, while the airport of Munich has a humid continental climate.
The warmest month, on average, is July. The coolest is January. Showers and thunderstorms bring the highest average monthly precipitation in late spring and throughout the summer. The most precipitation occurs in June, on average. Winter tends to have less precipitation, the least in February. The higher elevation and proximity to the Alps cause the city to have more rain and snow than many other parts of Germany.
Being at the centre of Europe, Munich is subject to many climatic influences, so that weather conditions there are more variable than in other European cities, especially those further west and south of the Alps. At Munich's official weather station , the highest and lowest temperatures ever measured are From only 24, inhabitants in , the city population doubled about every 30 years.
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It was , in , , in and , in Since then, Munich has become Germany's third largest city. In , , inhabitants were counted, and in over 1 million. In July , Munich had 1. The largest foreign resident groups by As in the rest of Germany, the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches have experienced a continuous decline in membership. As of 31 December , There is also a small Old Catholic parish and an English-speaking parish of the Episcopal Church in the city.
According to Munich Statistical Office, in about 8. Munich has been governed by the SPD for all but six years since This is atypical because Bavaria — and particularly southern Bavaria — has long been identified with conservative politics, with the Christian Social Union gaining absolute majorities among the Bavarian electorate in many elections at the communal, state, and federal levels, and leading the Bavarian state government for all but three years since Bavaria's second most populous city, Nuremberg , is also one of the very few Bavarian cities governed by an SPD-led coalition.
As the capital of the Free State of Bavaria, Munich is an important political centre in Germany and the seat of the Bavarian State Parliament , the Staatskanzlei the State Chancellery and of all state departments. Munich is twinned with the following cities date of agreement shown in parentheses :  Edinburgh , Scotland   , Verona , Italy  , Bordeaux , France   , Sapporo , Japan , Cincinnati , Ohio, United States , Kiev , Ukraine and Harare , Zimbabwe Since the administrative reform in , Munich is divided into 25 boroughs or Stadtbezirke , which themselves consist of sometimes quite distinct smaller quarters.
The city has an eclectic mix of historic and modern architecture, because historic buildings destroyed in World War II were reconstructed, and new landmarks were built. A survey by the Society's Centre for Sustainable Destinations for the National Geographic Traveller chose over historic destinations around the world and ranked Munich 30th. Its tower contains the Rathaus-Glockenspiel.
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Three gates of the demolished medieval fortification survive — the Isartor in the east, the Sendlinger Tor in the south and the Karlstor in the west of the inner city. The Karlstor leads up to the Stachus , a grand square dominated by the Justizpalast Palace of Justice and a fountain. The Peterskirche close to Marienplatz is the oldest church of the inner city. It was first built during the Romanesque period, and was the focus of the early monastic settlement in Munich before the city's official foundation in Nearby St.
Peter the Gothic hall-church Heiliggeistkirche The Church of the Holy Spirit was converted to baroque style from onwards and looks down upon the Viktualienmarkt , the most popular market of Munich. The Frauenkirche is the best known building in the city centre and serves as the cathedral for the Catholic Archdiocese of Munich and Freising. The nearby Michaelskirche is the largest renaissance church north of the Alps, while the Theatinerkirche is a basilica in Italianate high baroque, which had a major influence on Southern German baroque architecture.
Its dome dominates the Odeonsplatz. Anna Damenstiftskirche. The Asamkirche was endowed and built by the Brothers Asam , pioneering artists of the rococo period. The large Residenz palace complex begun in on the edge of Munich's Old Town, Germany's largest urban palace, ranks among Europe's most significant museums of interior decoration. Next door to the Residenz the neo-classical opera, the National Theatre was erected. All mansions are situated close to the Residenz, same as the Alte Hof , a medieval castle and first residence of the Wittelsbach dukes in Munich.
Lehel, a middle-class quarter east of the Altstadt, is characterised by countless well-preserved and in parts excellently reconstructed townhouses, giving a thorough impression of the "old Munich" outside of the main tourist routes. The St. Anna im Lehel is the first rococo church in Bavaria. Lukas is the largest Protestant Church in Munich. Four grand royal avenues of the 19th century with official buildings connect Munich's inner city with its then-suburbs:. Boniface's Abbey was erected. Louis church , the Bavarian State Library and numerous state ministries and palaces.
The southern part of the avenue was constructed in Italian renaissance style, while the north is strongly influenced by Italian Romanesque architecture. The avenue is framed by elaborately structured neo-Gothic buildings which house, among others, the Schauspielhaus , the Building of the district government of Upper Bavaria and the Museum of Ethnology.