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Zurich is the largest city in Switzerland and the capital of the canton of Zurich. It is located in north-central Switzerland at the northwestern tip of Lake Zurich. The municipality has approximately 390 000 inhabitants, and the Zurich metropolitan area 1.83 million.Zurich is a hub for railways, roads, and air traffic. Both Zurich Airport and railway station are the largest and busiest in the country.Permanently settled for around 7000 years, the history of Zurich goes back to its founding by the Romans, who, in 15 BC, called it Turicum. During the Middle Ages Zurich gained the independent and privileged status of imperial immediacy and, in 1519, was the place of origin and centre of the Protestant Reformation in German-speaking Switzerland, led by Ulrich Zwingli.
Zurich is a leading global city and among the world's largest financial centres.The city is home to a large number of financial institutions and banking giants. Also, most of the research and development centres are concentrated in Zurich and the low rate of tax attracts overseas companies to set up their headquarters there.Monocle's 2012 "Quality of Life Survey" ranked Zurich first on a list of the top 25 cities in the world "to make a base within".According to several surveys from 2006 to 2008, Zurich was named the city with the best quality of life in the world as well as the wealthiest city in Europe.Many museums and art galleries can be found in the city, including the Swiss National Museum and the Kunsthaus.Zurich also hosts one of the most important theatres in the German-speaking world.The Swiss standard German pronunciation of the name is. In Zurich German without the final consonant, Züri, although the adjective remains Zürcher. The city is called Zurich in French, Zurigo [dzuˈriːɡo] in Italian, and Turitg in Romansh.The earliest known form of the city's name is Turicum, attested on a tombstone of the late 2nd century AD in the form STA. Neither the name's linguistic origin nor its meaning can be determined with certainty. A possibility is derivation from *Turīcon, from the Gaulish personal name Tūros.The stress on the long vowel of the Gaulish name, was lost in German but is preserved in Italian Zurigo.A first development towards its later, Germanic form is attested as early as the 6th century with the form Ziurichi. From the 10th century onward, the name has more or less clearly been established as Zürich.
Zurich is sometimes referred to as "Downtown Switzerland" for publicity reasons.

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Additional Photos by Chris Vekris (chrisvek) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 793 W: 11 N: 1384] (7003)
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