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Salzburg (population 150,000 in 2006) is a city in western Austria and the capital of the federal state of Salzburg (population 520,000 in 2003). The geographic coordinates of Salzburg are 47°48'00?N, 13°02'36?E.
The city is noted for its baroque architecture and Alpine setting. It was the birthplace of Mozart and the setting for the musical and film The Sound of Music.
Traces of human settlements are documented in the area of modern Salzburg since the Neolithic Age; probably it was later a Celt camp. Starting from 15 BCE, the small communities were grouped into a single town, which was acquired by the Romans with the name of Juvavum. A municipium, from 45 CE it became one of the most important cities in the province of Noricum. The Festung Hohensalzburg, the city's fortress, was built in 1077 and expanded during the following centuries.
On October 31, 1731, the 214th anniversary of Martin Luther's nailing of his 95 Theses to the Wittenberg School door, Roman Catholic Archbishop Count Leopold Anton von Firmian signed his Edict of Expulsion (not to be confused with many similar edicts of expulsion issued against the Jews in various cities in Europe), the Emigrationspatent, declaring that all Protestants recant their non-Catholic beliefs or be banished.
Archbishop von Firmian declared that it was to be read publicly November 11, 1731, the 248th anniversary of Luther's baptism. Believing that his edict would drive away a few hundred troublesome infidels in the hills around the town, Firmian was surprised when 21,475 citizens professed on a public list their Protestant beliefs.
Landowners were given three months to sell their lands and leave. Cattle, sheep, furniture and land all had to be dumped on the market, and the Salzburgers received little money from the well-to-do Catholic allies of Von Firmian. Von Firmian himself confiscated much of their land for his own family, and ordered all Protestant books and Bibles burned. Many children aged 12 and under were seized to be raised as Roman Catholics. Yet those who owned land benefitted from one key advantage: the three-month deadline delayed their departure until after the worst of winter.
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