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Germany or the Federal Republic of Germany is located in Central Europe with Berlin as its capital city. The German language was once the lingua franca of central, eastern and northern Europe. It is a member state of the United Nations, NATO, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the G8, Group of 8, and the G4, Group of 4, nations, and is a founding member of the European Union. It is the European Union's most populous and most economically powerful member state. Germany is one of the largest European economies and the third largest economy in the world in real terms.
Hamelin is a town in Lower Saxony, Germany. It is the capital of the district of Hamelin-Pyrmont. The Weser river runs through the town. As of 2005, it had a population of 58,872. The town is famous throughout the world, for the folk tale of The Pied Piper of Hamelin, written by the Brothers Grimm. It is also the subject of a well-known poem by Robert Browning. Although Hamelin was a fine medieval old town with some remarkable buildings, the main attraction is the Pied Piper tale. In the summer every Sunday the tale is played by actors in the authentic settings.
There was a monastery at the place, which was founded as early as 851. A village grew in the neighbourhood and became a town in the 12th century. The incident with the Pied Piper is said to have happened in 1284 and may be based on a true event, although somewhat different from the tale. In the 15th and 16th century Hamelin was a minor member of the Hanseatic League. The era of greatest wealth began in 1664, when Hamelin became a fortified border town of the Duchy of Brunswick-Calenberg. In 1867 the town became a part of Prussia. Hamelin is also the gateway to the surrounding Weserbergland mountains, which can be visited by hikers and bikers.
Tourism in Germany has expanded since the end of World War II, and many tourists visit Germany to experience a sense of European history. The countryside exhibits a pastoral aura, while its cities exhibit both a modern and classical feel.

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