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Commune (pop., 2007 est.: 117,485), western Netherlands. First mentioned in 922 as a possession of Utrecht diocese, it was governed by the court of Holland until 1420. It became a printing centre after the Elzevir family set up their press there c. 1581. The University of Leiden was founded in 1575, and the town became a centre of theology, science, and art. Leiden was the birthplace of painters Rembrandt van Rijn and Jan van Goyen, and the Pilgrims resided there for 11 years before they sailed to America in 1620.
Variants of LEIDEN
Leiden or Leyden
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Leiden, visit Britannica.com.