Dresden is the capital city of the German state of Saxony and the state’s second most populous city after Leipzig. It is the 12th most populous city of Germany, the fourth largest by area after Berlin, Hamburg and Cologne, as well as the third most populous city in the area of former East Germany, after (East) Berlin and Leipzig.
Dresden is contiguous with Freital, Pirna, Radebeul, Meissen and Coswig. It is the second largest city on the River Elbe after Hamburg. Most of Dresden’s population lives in the Elbe Valley, but a large, albeit very sparsely populated area of the city east of the Elbe lies in the West Lusatian Hill Country and Uplands (the westernmost part of the Sudetes) and thus in Lusatia, while many boroughs west of the Elbe lie in the foreland of the Ore Mountains as well as in the valleys of the rivers rising there and flowing through Dresden, the longest of which are the Weißeritz and the Lockwitzbach.
Since German reunification in 1990, Dresden is again a cultural, educational and political centre of Germany and Europe. The Dresden University of Technology is one of the 10 largest universities in Germany and part of the German Universities Excellence Initiative. The economy of Dresden and its agglomeration is one of the most dynamic in Germany and ranks first in Saxony.
Just before German reunification, these fascinating photos were captured by Sludge G that show what Dresden looked like in 1988 and 1989.