city, Saxony-Anhalt Land (state), central Germany. It is situated in the eastern foothills of the Harz Mountains. First mentioned in 994 as a market called Islebia and in 1180 as a town, it belonged to the counts of Mansfeld until it passed to Saxony in 1780. It was assigned to Prussia in 1815. Eisleben is divided into the old and new towns (Altstadt and Neustadt), the latter having originated as a residential district for miners in the 14th century. The houses where Martin Luther was born (1483) and where he died (1546) have been preserved, and the Saints Peter and Paul's Church (1486-1513) contains his baptismal font; several buildings throughout the city associated with Luther (along with similar locations in Wittenberg) were designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1996. The city was the centre of the former Mansfeld copper-slate-mining region, but it suffered economically as mining declined. Its manufacturing sector is relatively small and diversified, with the most production centred on foodstuffs and clothing. Tourism is also important. Eisleben has a business and engineering school that once emphasized mining. Pop. (2003 est.) 21,355.
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