The city is modern yet retains some historic buildings, including a cathedral (founded 971), the Church of the Holy Cross (10th cent.), the Church of St. Denis (10th–11th cent.), and the 16th-century Palace of Justice (the former residence of the prince-bishops). The city is the cultural center for Belgium's French-speaking population. It has a university (founded 1816) and a music conservatory. The composer César Franck was born there.
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