Utrecht

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Smallest province of The Netherlands. Located in the center of the country. 1.1 Million inhabitants. 1,445 km2 (560 square miles).


Important cities are it's capital Utrecht and Amersfoort.

In the east of Utrecht lies the 'Utrechtse heuvelrug', a chain of hills left after the last ice age, 10,000 years ago. Because of the scarcity of minerals in the soil, the greatest part is planted with pine trees. The south of the province is a riverlandscape. The west consist mostly of meadows. In the north are big lakes because of the digging of peat.


Site of the province


Capital city of the province Utrecht. With 250.000 inhabitants the fourth city of The Netherlands.

History

(Still a lot to do)

The origin of the city is the erection of a Roman fortification (castellum) around 47 A.D. It was build at the river Rhine, which followed a more northern part then nowadays and was the border of the Roman Empire. The name of the place was Traiectum, which means fordable place. During the ages around 500 Romans were encamped here. Near the fort there was a settlement with artisans, traders and soldiers' women and children.

In the middle of the 2nd century German peoples regurlarly invaded the Roman territory, and around 270 the Romans left Utrecht. About the period 270-500 little is known. In the 6th century Utrecht came under the influence of the Franks.

During the Middle Ages Utrecht, a bishopric since 744, was the most important city of The Netherlands.

In 1572 the northern provinces of the Low Countries signed the Union of Utrecht. They decided to work together against the Spanish rule. The Union of Utrecht is seen as the start of The Netherlands.

Nowadays, Utrecht's main importance lies in the Dutch Railways and Utrecht University.

Important people from Utrecht

Museums in Utrecht

Site of the city