Dresden, the capital of Saxony, is situated in a charming valley on the Elbe, 116 miles SE. of Berlin, and 62 ESE. of Leipzig. The Altstadt and Friedrichstadt on the left bank of the Elbe, and the Neustadt and Antonstadt on the right or northern bank, are united by the Augustus Bridge (1727-29), and the Albert Bridge (1875-77), and by the Marienbrucke, which is at once a railway and a carriage bridge. The Bruhl Terrace (1738), on the Elbe's south bank, is a charming promenade. The museum (1847-54) contains collections of engravings (400,000 examples) and drawings, besides the famous picture-gallery. The last, which owes its origin chiefly to Augustus III. of Saxony, who purchased the Modena gallery in 1745, contains about 2400 paintings, mainly by Italian and Flemish masters. The gem of the collection is Raphael's ' Sistine Madonna;' other masterpieces being Titian's 'Tribute Money,' and Correggio's' Magdalene' and 'La Notte.' Adjoining the museum is the Zwinger, a remarkable rococo building of 1711-22, designed as the vestibule of an elaborate palace, and containing valuable collections of casts, zoology, mineralogy, etc. The Johanneum, erected as royal stables at the end of the 16th century, now accommodates the historical museum, founded in 1833, the gallery of arms, and the priceless collection of porcelain. The Augusteum, or collection of antiquities, chiefly Roman objects of the Imperial times, and the Royal Public Library, are deposited in the Japanese Palace, built in 1715 in the Neustadt. The library contains nearly 350,000 volumes, 20,000 maps, and 4000 MSS. The ' Green Vault' in the royal palace contains a valuable collection of precious stones, pearls, and curios, and articles in gold, silver, ivory, etc. The list of art treasures in Dresden may be closed with the collection of antiques (chiefly ecclesiastical), and the gallery of casts of the works of the sculptor Rietschel, both in the 'Lustschloss' (1680), in the Grossen Garten, a handsome public park, 350 acres in extent. Other buildings not yet mentioned are the royal palace, a large and rambling edifice, begun in 1534; the prince's palace (1718); the Bruhl Palace (1737); the town-house (1741-45); and the magnificent new theatre (1871-78). Of the churches, the finest are the Frauenkirche (1726- 34), with a lofty dome and lantern 320 feet high; the Roman Catholic church (1737-56), in an elaborate baroque style, adorned on the exterior with sixty-four statues; the Sophienkirche (1351-57), restored and provided with towers in 1865-69; and the Kreuzkirche (1764-85). The Synagogue (1838-40) is also noteworthy. The most important industries are the manufactures of gold and silver articles, artificial flowers, machinery, chemicals, paper-hangings, artists' canvas and colours, chocolate, etc.; and straw-plaiting, brewing, and market-gardening. The so-called ' Dresden china' is manufactured not at Dresden but at Meissen. Pop. (1871) 177,087; (1900) 395,349.
Dresden is of early Slavonic origin. Henry the Illustrious made it his capital in 1270, and after the division of the Saxon lands in 1485 it became the seat of the Albertine line, and its prosperity gradually increased. It suffered severely during the Seven Years' War; and again in 1813, when the Allies were repulsed by Napoleon, but, after he had left, forced the city to capitulate. During the revolution of 1849, also, very great damage was inflicted upon the town, which was occupied by the Prussians in 1866 during their Avar with Austria.