Collier's New Encyclopedia (1921)/Gotha

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GOTHA (gō'tä), a town of Germany, alternately with Coburg the capital of the former duchy of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, 31 miles W. by S. of Weimar, on the N. outskirts of the Thuringian Forest. It is a handsome, well-built town, with fine parks. The principal public building is the castle of Friedenstein, built in 1643, 78 feet above the town; it contains a library of over 200,000 volumes and 6,000 MSS., and a very valuable numismatic collection. The museum (1878), in the Renaissance style, contains the picture gallery, in which Cranach, Van Eyck, Holbein, Rubens, and Rembrandt are represented; a very excellent cabinet of engravings; a natural history collection; collections of Egyptian, Roman, Greek and German antiquities; and a Japanese and Chinese museum. A new observatory was built in 1874. Gotha prior to the World War was an active industrial town, the principal manufactures being shoes, fire engine pipes, sugar and toys. Gotha sausages have a widespread celebrity. Several hundreds of designers, engravers, printers, and map-colorers were employed here in the geographical establishment of Justus Perthes, who also publishes the “Almanach de Gotha” (see Almanac). Pop. about 39,500.