Central Germany (cultural area)

Means Germany is used as a geographical term for different regions of Germany.


Linguistically, it describes the area, are common in the Central German dialects, bounded on the north approximately by the North German Plain ( Benrather line) to the Main Line in the south. Geographically, this is the area of ​​the Central Upland Range between the planes of the North German Plain and the Southwest German cuesta and the Alpine foothills.

Since the accession of the GDR to the Federal Republic of Germany ( reunification), so that a region is often referred to, which extends around the tri-border region of the states of Saxony, Saxony -Anhalt and Thuringia. In some cases, the three countries are hereby summarized in its entirety, in particular by the newly founded in 1991 by these countries of Central German Broadcasting.

Historically, the term is quite otherwise occupied. In the first half of the 20th century, the term specifically for the area around Halle ( Saale), Leipzig was used, where one of the " Central German industrial area", now the Central German Chemical Triangle, spoke. As a means Germany, the German Democratic Republic was also referred to reunification ( see also East Germany ). The term includes the center in each cardinal direction at the time of the eastern territories of the German Reich, which made ​​East Germany until 1945. These were the areas east of the present course of the border with Poland along the Oder -Neisse line.

Geographical location

Mịtteldeutschland is geographically the middle section of the German Low Mountain Range. From the perspective of the former German Empire, the concept was to differentiate these from the north and south. Spatially - geographically comprises means Germany about an area by the resin ( in the northwest), the Thuringian Forest and the Franconian Forest (southwest ), the Erzgebirge and the Lusatian Mountains, Saxon Switzerland and Lusatian Highlands ( in the southeast ) and the Flaming ( is bounded in the north). Inside Central Germany are the Thuringian Basin, the Leipzig lowlands and the middle Saxon Hill Country. For the same flow in Central Germany Saale, Mulde and Schwarze Elster. In addition, may be counted for this region historically also the southern Lower Saxony and parts of Hesse and Franconia.

The name means Germany is found today as part of the name of many companies, associations and Christian organizations in this field:

  • The Central German Broadcasting (MDR ) was established after the German reunification, the amendment of the Broadcasting Treaty for the five new countries on 31 May 1991 as ARD Three Countries Institute for the states of Saxony, Saxony -Anhalt and Thuringia - the MDR- radio programs as well as the MDR television since 1 January 1992 to send. precursor was founded in 1924, the Central German Broadcasting Ltd ( Mirag ).
  • In the former Hall County ( the south and east of Saxony- Anhalt) appears the Central German newspaper since 1990.
  • The Central German lignite mbH ( MIBRAG ) is a company that deals with the promotion and partial processing of brown coal in various locations in Saxony -Anhalt and Saxony. The company is located in Theißen near Zeitz.
  • At the Leuna refinery, the total central Germany GmbH is the top-selling companies in the new federal states.
  • The central German publisher ( mdv ) is an independent publisher based in Halle ( Saale) and Leipzig.
  • The central German Transport Association (MDV ) is a traffic network of public transport (LPT ) in the Leipzig -Halle.
  • The Central German press appear in Fulda.
  • The Evangelical Church in Central Germany was at the beginning of 2009 through the merger of the Evangelical Church of the Church Province of Saxony and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Thuringia.

Use in speech research

In this sense, central Germany refers to the area, is spoken in the central German. The term "average German " was born in the 19th century, when they examined the dialects in Germany. Previously, a distinction only between Elblag and Upper German and Dutch or Low German. In the dialect studies, it was found, however, that the high German sound shift that makes the historically most striking difference between Elblag and the Dutch language, is carried out in a very wide strips only partially. Because of these and some other features began therefore, the " strip ", which is much wider than on the Rhine in the east, to be understood as the transition region between the Upper German and Low German. The Middle German area thus represents the area of ​​the Hessian Rhine Franconian and East Middle German dialects and ranges in the south of Alsace along the Main Line to the Ore Mountains and north of Aachen North Hesse to southern Brandenburg. This is in broad agreement with the colonization and urbanization of the Central German region during the Middle Ages, which took place mainly from the middle Rhine and Lower Saxon areas.

The East Middle German dialects (north of the Thüringer Wald, east of the Werra and south of Benrather line, so in large parts of today known as the " Central Germany " area ) are the modern German of all German dialects closest to how the language researcher Theodor Frings has been proven. The language in the territory between Erfurt, courtyard, Dessau and Dresden agrees in many characteristics with the NHG, for example, in vocabulary, as the High German written language very much goes back to Martin Luther's translation of the Bible, the language of the civil servants of the Electorate of Saxony as a model looked for the high German spelling and pronunciation, and used ( "I speak after the Saxon court ", see Saxon chancellery ). This was, however, a national compensation language and not identical with the spoken dialects of the region.

Use of Saxony, Saxony -Anhalt and Thuringia

Since the founding of the Central German Radio as a common broadcasting corporation in the states of Saxony, Saxony -Anhalt and Thuringia, the term is often used for this area, which is actively encouraged by initiatives from the mentioned countries.

The three countries are linked, among others, by the following aspects:

  • In Saxony, in the southern part of Saxony-Anhalt and in the north of the Rennsteig located part of Thuringia, the Thuringian- Upper Saxon dialects are spoken.
  • Large parts of the territories belonged to the dominion of the House of Wettin, which was divided by the Leipzig Separation ( 1485 ) between the lines of Ernestine (Thuringia) and Albertine ( Saxony).
  • In particular, Saxony and Thuringia are more economically developed than the structurally weaker northern new states of Brandenburg and Mecklenburg- Vorpommern.

Since 2002, the state governments of Saxony, Saxony -Anhalt and Thuringia wanted reinforced cooperate with each other in the Initiative of Central Germany. These various cluster initiatives have been established. Among the important sectors here include the automotive and supplier industry, which played an important role in Saxony and Thuringia have to their creation time ( Auto Union ) and the high-tech sector with centers in Jena (eg Jenoptik ), Dresden ( Silicon Saxony ) and Leipzig ( biotechnology ). The European Metropolitan Region of central Germany is also in the so-called economic area of ​​Central Germany. Today, the metropolitan area Leipzig-Halle is the center of this economic area: here you will find the airport Leipzig / Halle, the important Leipzig Central Station and the Central German highway loop.

The metropolitan region of Central Germany Management GmbH and the Industrial Initiative for Central Germany GmbH merged on 03.21.2014 to the European Metropolitan Region of central Germany based in Leipzig.

Through the Industrial Initiative for Central Germany a reorientation of the concept did not take place in the parts of Hesse, Bavaria and Lower Saxony as part of " Central Germany " would have been felt. Brandenburg on the border with Poland is, therefore, in East Germany, Saxony is not. By identifying with federal states is thereby bypassed aware that Görlitz, the easternmost town in Germany, should be in geographical East Germany, as the natural boundary would be the upper reaches of the river Elbe at the latest.

Most recently, Leipzig's mayor Burkhard Jung and the former Mayor of the City Hall Dagmar Szabados in 2005 called for a merger of the three countries to a state of " Central Germany " in 2018. However, the issue is being discussed politically controversial and has learned from the relevant Minister in May 2011, a rejection.

Use of the term in the political history

The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany, parts of the West German population and in particular the local associations of expellees did not recognize the made ​​at the conferences of Yalta and Potsdam boundary shift initially to be definitive. Indeed it has been explicitly set to the Potsdam Conference in the summer of 1945 that the new German -Polish border only in the course of a future peace settlement ( peace settlement) should be specified. Logically, in part, the designation for the eastern territories east of the Oder- Neisse line and central Germany was used for the GDR in the immediate postwar period in West Germany. Mostly but was spoken of (East ) zone, which term was derived from the Soviet Occupation Zone (SBZ ). Officially, only the term " German eastern territories " is used in reference to the eastern territories of the German Reich to avoid the application of the GDR, which also constitutional and international legal reasons had. In West German side, there was therefore the terms Soviet Occupation Zone (SBZ ) and later Central Germany. By avoiding the term DDR non-recognition of this state should be emphasized by West German side first.

From the mid- sixties, the terms and spellings " so-called German Democratic Republic ", were later only " GDR" usual. Central Germany has been viewed 1976 " as a common name in Germany for the whole territory of the GDR."

Since the so-called reunification in 1990, the former territory of the GDR is usually referred to as New countries (see map opposite ).