Dessau, a city of Germany, capital of the duchy of Anhalt, on the river Mulde, 2 m. from its junction with the Elbe, and 67 m. S. W. of Berlin; pop. in 1871, 17,464. It is the ducal residence, and has a fine park and a picture gallery. The theatre, the palace of the hereditary prince, the council house, the castle church, the government building, the gymnasium, St. Mary's church with some pictures by Lucas Cranach the younger, and the fine cemetery, are the most attractive features of the town. There are many scientific, artistic, religious, and industrial institutions and societies, a commercial school, a high school for girls, a ducal library containing about 25,000 volumes, an orthopaedic institution, and a bank with a capital of about $2,000,000. The manufactures embrace woollen, linen, and cotton fabrics, musical instruments, hats, leather, and tobacco.
An important wool market is held here, and a flourishing trade in grain and other produce is carried on. Its environs are adorned with beautiful gardens, which have been reclaimed from sandy wastes. - Dessau was noted as early as 1213, and in 1313 had a school independent of the church. It was destroyed by fire in 1467. In the German revolution of 1848 it was one of the most democratic cities of Germany. DESSOLLES, or Dessolle, Jean Joseph Paul Angustin, marquis, a French soldier and statesman, born at Auch, Oct. 3, 1767, died near Paris, Nov. 4, 1828. He early entered the army, was captain in the mountain legion in 1792, provisional adjutant on the staff of the army of the western Pyrenees in June, 1793, and chief of staff in October, and served in the Italian campaign under Bonaparte. He was appointed brigadier general May 31,1797, commanded successfully against the Austrians in the Valtellina in 1799, and was promoted April 13 to the rank of division general. He took part in the battles of Novi, Moskirch, Biberach, Neuburg, and Hohenlinden. After the peace of Luneville in 1801 he was made councillor of state and became provisional commander of the army of Hanover. In 1805 he was made governor of the chateau of Versailles. He became commander of a division of the army in Spain in 1808, occupied Cordova in January, 1810, and was made military governor of the city.
On April 2, 1814, he received from the provisional government the command of the national guard of Paris, and contributed largely to the decision of the allies in favor of the Bourbons. On the arrival of the count d'Artois at Paris Dessolles was made a member of the provisional council of state, and upon the organization of the government he was appointed minister of state and major general of the national guards, and a peer of France. Upon the return of Napoleon he took the most energetic measures against him. During the hundred days he remained in retirement, and upon the return of the Bourbons resumed command of the national guards, but soon resigned. He was afterward minister of foreign affairs, and was elected president of the council of ministers Dec. 28, 1818. At the same time he was made a marquis. He opposed in the council the proposed change in the law of elections in 1819, and in November resigned, with the two ministers who shared his views. DESTERRO, Nossa Senhora do Desterro, or Santa Catharina, a city of Brazil, capital of the province of Santa Catharina, on the W. coast of the island of that name, in lat. 27° 30' S., Ion. 48° 30' W., 465 m.
S. S. W. of Rio de Janeiro; pop. about 8,000. The city is on a tongue of land projecting into the bay, and is defended by two forts. It has many well built residences, but the streets are very irregular and badly paved. The public buildings are nearly all ill constructed and unsightly. Next to that of Rio de Janeiro, the harbor is the best on the coast; but its situation on an island is a serious disadvantage. A thunder storm and water spout in 1838 destroyed a considerable portion of the town.