Commercial city in Baden-Württemberg, Germany, 133 km/83 mi southwest of Stuttgart, situated in the Breisgau at the western edge of the Black Forest; population (2007 est) 217,550. Chief products are pharmaceuticals and precision instruments. It has a university (founded in 1457) and a Gothic cathedral dating from the 12th century. Tourism is important.
Features The cathedral is one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture in Germany; it is built of red sandstone and its tower, 118 m/387 ft high, is considered one of the finest in Europe. Among other notable buildings are the arcaded Merchants' Hall, the Kaufhaus, which dates from 1525; the 18th-century archbishop's palace; and 13th-century Franciscan church.
History Freiburg was founded in about 1120 and came under the control of the Hapsburgs in 1368. In 1806 it became part of Baden. The medieval town partly destroyed in World War II has been restored. From 1946–1952 it was capital of the Land of Baden.