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It is a centre for research and education in the Nordic countries and home to Aarhus University, Scandinavia's largest university, including Aarhus University Hospital and INCUBA Science Park.

Being the Danish city with the youngest demographics, with 48,482 inhabitants aged under 18, Aarhus is known for its musical history.

The inner urban area contains 269,022 inhabitants (as of 1 January 2017 The history of Aarhus began as a fortified Viking settlement founded in the 8th century and with the first written records stemming from the bishopric seated here from at least 948.

Wooden city walls were erected to prevent smuggling, with gates and toll booths on the major thoroughfares, Mejlgade and Studsgade.

Whichever spelling local authorities choose, most newspapers and public institutions will accept it.

Some official authorities such as the Danish Language Committee, publisher of the Danish Orthographic Dictionary, still retain "Århus" as the main name, providing "Aarhus" as a new, second option, in brackets and some institutions are still using "Århus" explicitly in their official name, such as the local newsmedia Århus Stiftstidende and the schools Århus Kunstakademi and Århus Statsgymnasium for example.

In 2017, Aarhus has been selected as European Capital of Culture along with Paphos in Cyprus.

With the Danish spelling reform of 1948, "Aa" was changed to "Å".

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