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city, North Rhine-Westphalia Land (state), central Germany. It lies on the Pader River, a small affluent of the Lippe formed from rain seepage on the slope of the Egge Mountains (Eggegebirge) and emerging from below the cathedral in about 200 springs, about 60 miles (100 km) east-northeast of Dortmund. Paderborn was the birthplace of the Holy Roman Empire when Charlemagne met Pope Leo III there in 799 to discuss the founding of a German nation. Excavation of Charlemagne's palace there began in 1964 and has uncovered many artifacts. Since 805 Paderborn has been the seat of a bishopric, and it joined the Hanseatic League in the 13th century. It was ruled by prince-bishops from about 1100 until 1802, when it passed to Prussia under an agreement with France.