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Nassau (// NASS-aw, also UK: // NASS-ow, US: // NAHSS-ow, German: [ˈnasaʊ] (listen)) is a geographical, historical and cultural region in today's Rhineland-Palatinate and Hesse in western Germany. Named for the town of Nassau, it includes the territory of the Duchy of Nassau, a former sovereign country which existed until 1866. Occupied by Prussia and annexed into the Province of Hesse-Nassau in 1866, Nassau briefly became the name of a separate province, the Province of Nassau, in 1944. Much of the area is today part of the Nassau Nature Park. Nassau is also the name of the smaller Nassau collective municipality, the area surrounding the town of Nassau.
Nassau is located on the German-Dutch Orange Route, and has strong historical and cultural ties to nearby Luxembourg and historical ties to the Netherlands, which were both ruled by the House of Nassau and are still ruled by its descendants. "Duke of Nassau" is still used as the secondary title (of pretense) by the Grand Duke of Luxembourg. The coat of arms of the Netherlands is based on the Nassau arms, and the coat of arms of the Grand Duke of Luxembourg also incorporates the Nassau arms in its third and fourth field. The Nassau name is also part of the name of the Dutch royal family, Orange-Nassau, and its secondary titles of Prince or Princess of Orange-Nassau.
The Nassau cultural identity can be seen in the name of the regional newspaper Nassauische Neue Presse.
Cities and townsEdit
The most important cities and towns of Nassau, and of the former Duchy of Nassau, are: