Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Munster, the capital of Westphalia, North Germany, is situated on the banks of the Aa halfway between Bremen and Cologne. It grew up around the monasterium established by Charlemagne as the centre of the Saxon bishopric, and five hundred years later it became a prominent member of the Hanseatic League. Tendencies to Protestantism were sternly repressed by the bishops, who reached the height of their power in the 17th century, when Bishop Galen maintained an army of 20,000 men. The place suffered in the Thirty Years' War, which ended in the Peace of Munster (1648), and it was occupied by both parties in the Seven Years' War. The bishopric was annexed to Prussia in 1803. The town-hall dates from the 14th, the cathedral from the 13th, and the churches of St. Ludgerus and St. Maurice were founded in the 12th and 11th centuries respectively. The university was converted a hundred years ago into an academy, which holds a high educational status.