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Füssen is a town in Bavaria, Germany, in the district of Ostallgäu, situated one kilometre from the Austrian border. The town is known for violin manufacturing and as the closest transportation hub for the Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau castles. As of 2018 the town has a population of 15,608.
October 2009 aerial view of Füssen
|• Mayor||Paul Iacob (SPD)|
|• Total||43.52 km2 (16.80 sq mi)|
|Elevation||808 m (2,651 ft)|
|• Density||360/km2 (930/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)|
|Vehicle registration||OAL, FÜS, MOD|
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Füssen was settled in Roman times, on the Via Claudia Augusta, a road that leads southwards to northern Italy and northwards to Augusta Vindelicum (today's Augsburg), the former regional capital of the Roman province Raetia. The original name of Füssen was "Foetes", or "Foetibus" (inflected), which derives from Latin "Fauces", meaning "gorge", probably referring to the Lech gorge. In Late Antiquity Füssen was the home of a part of the Legio III Italica, which was stationed there to guard the important trade route over the Alps.
Füssen later became the site of the "Hohes Schloss" (High Castle), the former summer residence of the prince-bishops of Augsburg. Below the Hohes Schloss is the Baroque complex of the former Benedictine monastery of St. Mang, whose history goes back to the 9th century. Füssen has Saint Mang (Magnus of Füssen) as its patron saint. He and his Benedictine brother Theodor were two monks from the Abbey of Saint Gall and are considered to be its founders, in addition to the Monastery of Kempten. Magnus' original burial place was in the small chapel he built. His bones were transferred to the crypt of the church built in 850. Around the year 950 all his bones disappeared.
Füssen is located on the banks of the Lech River, which flows into the Forggensee. The Forggensee is a man-made lake which was built to prevent flooding. It is the catchment area for all the melting snow in the spring, and is drained after the middle of October.
Füssen is 808 meters (2,651 ft) above sea level. The castles of Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau are located near the town. At latitude 47°34 N it is one of the southernmost towns in Germany, at roughly the same latitude as Seattle, Washington, United States.
The High Castle houses a branch gallery of the Bavarian State Collections of Paintings, which focuses on late Gothic and Renaissance works of art.
St Mang's Feast Day (6 September) is commemorated with a Holy Mass followed by a procession by torchlight through the old part of the city. During the week of the Saint's Feast a special 'Magnus Wine' is sold, with only 500 bottles produced.
The local newspaper for Füssen is the Allgäuer Zeitung, printed daily except Sundays and on Holy Days of Obligation. It contains a special section with news from Füssen and the surrounding towns and villages called the Füssener Blatt.
- Paul Ambros (1933–2015), Olympic ice hockey player
- Oliver Axnick (born 1970), former curler and curling coach for the German men's team
- Johann Baptist Babel (1716–1799), sculptor
- Richard Bletschacher (born 1936), writer and former chief dramatic advisor at Vienna State Opera
- Patrick Einsle (born 1987), professional snooker player
- Michael Endrass (born 1988), professional hockey player
- Günther Förg (born 1952), painter, sculptor, photographer, and graphic designer
- Michael Greis (born 1976), triple Olympic gold medalist in biathlon
- Thomas Greiss (born 1986), National Hockey League (NHL) goaltender
- Jennifer Harß (born 1987), goaltender and Olympian for the Germany women's national ice hockey team
- Uli Hiemer (born 1962), former NHL and Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL) professional hockey player
- Holger Höhne (born 1970), curler playing for the German national team and a medalist at several World Curling Championships
- Max Koegel (1895–1946), Nazi SS commandant of several concentration camps
- Julia Manhard, freestyle skier representing Germany at the 2010 Winter Olympics
- Volker Prechtel (1941–1997), actor, best known for his roles in The Name of the Rose and several films by Werner Herzog
- Francis Xavier Seelos (1819–1867), son of the sacristan at 'St Mang's Basilica and a priest of the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer; he died in New Orleans and was beatified by Pope John Paul II on 9 April 2000
- Xaver Unsinn (1929–2012), Olympic medal winning ice hockey player and coach
Füssen is twinned with:
- "Fortschreibung des Bevölkerungsstandes". Bayerisches Landesamt für Statistik und Datenverarbeitung (in German). July 2019.
- Saint Gall (Princely Abbey) in German, French and Italian in the online Historical Dictionary of Switzerland.
- "Heiliger Magnus" (in German). Pfarreiengemeinschaft Füssen. Retrieved 2018-05-25.
- "Partnerstädte" (in German). Füssen Tourismus und Marketing, Stadt Füssen. Retrieved 2015-03-14.
- Feistle: Materialien zur Geschichte der Stadt Füssen, Füssen, 1861.
- Wüst, Wolfgang: "Füssen", in: Werner Paravicini, ed.: Höfe und Residenzen im spätmittelalterlichen Reich: ein dynastisch-topographisches Handbuch, 2 Teilbde (1: Dynastien und Höfe, 2: Residenzen) (Residenzenforschung 15 I/ 1,2) Ostfildern 2003, Bd. 1, pp. 204–205
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