Surakarta or Soerakarta (both: sōräkärˈta) [key], city (1990 pop. 503,827), on central Java, Indonesia, on the Solo River. Connected by rail with Surabaya and Jakarta, it is a trade center for an area producing tobacco, rice, and sugar. Manufactures include textiles, leather work, machinery, metal products, furniture, and cigarettes, but Surakarta is particularly noted for its batik cloth and goldwork. It is also a cultural center, featuring gamelan music and wayang, or shadow plays. Surakarta's outstanding feature is the vast, walled palace of the sultan, virtually a city in itself. The European section of the city, which contains a Dutch fort built in 1799, resembles an old Dutch town. Surakarta is the seat of a private university and an extension facility of Islamic Univ. of Indonesia. The city is commonly called Solo.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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