Halle is a medium-sized town in the middle of Germany with some 240,000 inhabitants. The town is located on the banks of the river Saale. First mentioned in the ninth century, Halle owed its wealth mainly to salt production.
The university was founded in 1694 and flourished quickly. Shortly afterwards a second educational centre was established in the form of Francke's Foundations. Starting out with an orphanage, August Hermann Francke soon built a schooling town in Halle.
Burg Giebichenstein, an art and design college, was founded in 1958 in a castle built in the 10th century.
Georg Friedrich Händel was born in Halle in 1685 and lived there until 1703. This is commemorated especially in summer during the Händel Festival.
Today, Halle is the largest town in the federal state of Saxony-Anhalt, with industry and service companies, but also a large range of recreational activities.
Apart from Martin Luther University and the College of Art and Design at Burg Giebichenstein, the town hosts a number of other scientific and technological institutes.