Frankfurt is a Main River cruise port and large city in Germany's Hesse state, ranked as Hesse's biggest and Germany's 5th largest (after Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Cologne), with population around 730,000. Its metro population is over 2,2 million, ranking it as Germany's 4th-largest metropolitan region (after Hamburg, Berlin, Rhine-Ruhr). EU's geographic center is located approx 40 km (25 ml) east of Frankfurt. City's namesake is the smaller German city Frankfurt-Oder (Brandenburg state, on Oder River).
Frankfurt is Europe's most important financial centre. Here are the headquarters of Deutsche Bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, European Central Bank, DZ Bank, Commerzbank, the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The Messe Frankfurt trade fair is one of the world's largest. Other famous worldwide fairs are the Frankfurt Motor Show (world's largest) and the Frankfurt Book Fair (also world's largest). The city has renowned universities (Goethe University, University of Applied Sciences), numerous museums (including Senckenberg Natural Museum, Stadel, Goethe House, Schirn), botanical gardens (including the Palmengarten - Germany's largest).
According to a ranking list by the University of Liverpool in 2001, Frankfurt is the richest European city by GDP per capita. Next in line are Karlsruhe, Paris, Munich. On the other hand, Frankfurt consistently features Germany's highest level of crime per 100,000 inhabitants and is therefore dubbed the "crime capital" of Germany. However, the statistic is often criticized as it ignores very important factors: it is calculated based on administrative 680,000-inhabitant figure but the urban area has 2.5M inhabitants. On weekdays it adds another million people, not to count the 53M passengers passing each year through the airport.
Frankfurt-Oder (aka Frankfurt an der Oder) is an Oder River cruise port and city in Germany's Brandenburg state, with population around 60,000. The town is located on the Germany-Poland border, approx 80 lm (50 ml) east of Berlin (Germany's capital). Until 1945, Słubice (Poland) was also part of Frankfurt-Oder.
The settlement was established as a Polish village (named Zliwitz) in the early-13th century. During the Thirty Years War (1618-48), in April 1631 in Frankfurt an der Oder fought Konungariket Sverige (Kingdom of Sweden / 1611-1721) and Heiliges Romisches Reich (Holy Roman Empire / 800-1806). After a 2-day siege, the Swedish troops entered the town and destroyed most of its buildings.
Frankfurt-Oder became part of Germany (Prussia's Brandenburg province) in 1815, following the Napoleonic Wars (1803-15). Due to its central location in Prussia (between Berlin and Posen (Poznan) and Oder River's increased shipping traffic, Frankfurt developed as a major riverport and had Germany's second-largest annual fair (following only the fair in Leipzig). The current-day city is served by the Berlin-Warsaw Express railway with regular train connections to Magdeburg and Cottbus.