Sibiu (sēbyŏˈ) [key], Ger. Hermannstadt, Hung. Nagyszeben, city (1990 pop. 188,385), central Romania, at the foot of the Transylvanian Alps. There are mechanical engineering works and industries producing textile machinery, foodstuffs, and leather. The city is also a market for farm products and cattle. Founded in the 12th cent. by German colonists, Sibiu was destroyed by the Tatars in 1241. In the 14th cent. it became a leading administrative and commercial center of the German communities in Transylvania. It suffered greatly in the wars against the Turks and in the 17th cent. came under Austrian control. With the rest of Transylvania, it was ceded to Romania in 1918. The city preserves much of its medieval character and has a considerable German minority, although many Germans were forced to leave after World War II. Long a cultural center of Transylvania, Sibiu has a state theater, a philharmonic orchestra, and the Bruhenthal museum. The city is an Orthodox metropolitan see and has two cathedrals.
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