Bonn, Germany, a city in the state of North Rhine Westphalia and the capital of West Germany during 1949–90. It lies on the Rhine River, near Cologne. Just south of the city is Siebengebirge, a national park consisting of seven scenic hills overlooking the Rhine.
Bonn University is housed partly in the 18th-century palace of the electors of Cologne. Beethoven's birthplace and childhood home, now a museum, and the annual Beethoven Festival are among Bonn's chief attractions. Also noteworthy are the Alexander Koenig Zoological Museum, the Art Museum of Bonn, and the Rhineland Museum.
Bonn evolved from a Roman encampment and eventually became the residence of the electors of Cologne (1267–1794). It was taken by France in 1794 and awarded to Prussia in 1815. Damage was extensive during World War II. Germany's constitution was drafted here during 1948–49. The dimming of hope for the restoration of Berlin as capital caused a rapid buildup of Bonn, beginning in the late 1960's. By annexation the city more than tripled in size. In 1990, after the reunification of Germany, Berlin replaced Bonn as the capital. By 2001, most of Germany's federal ministries and offices had been moved to Berlin.